3 tips for a successful contractor job application

When you decide to make the move into tech contracting, you’ve got to think about all sorts of things. Setting yourself up as an independent business, training yourself up in necessary skills and dealing with the financials will all come high on your to-do list, but you should also give a lot of consideration to your CV. After all, this is what’s going to get you the jobs and the income that makes setting yourself up as a business worthwhile.

Successful job application for contractor

Contractor CVs are a little different to those written for permanent positions, however:

1) Have a master CV and a tailored one

When you become a contractor, it’s a good idea to have a master CV – one that you can give recruiters and share on LinkedIn – as well as a CV that’s tailored to individual positions you’re applying to. This master CV is a good idea because in many cases potential clients may end up coming to you if you’ve been recommended to them. This means it’s an easy way for them to see your whole skill set quickly.

However, when you apply to individual positions, it’s important to tailor your CV to the job advert. Clients won’t be interested in training you up like they might be for permanent employees – instead they’ll want you to hit the ground running, so showing them you have to the necessary skills to do that is important.

Specific programs, frameworks and tools you’ve used are much more important than what you did at school.

2) Make your CV skills and outcomes-based

One of the key rules for a contractor CV is that you have to cut the fluff. That Duke of Edinburgh award you did 10 years ago simply isn’t relevant anymore. Instead, clients want to see the skills you have and how you applied them in the projects you worked on. You could even consider having a section at the top of your CV that lists your main tech skills (putting them in order of how necessary they will be for the job you’re applying to).

If you’ve completed a few contractor jobs already, you need to show exactly what you did on each project, and show the outcomes for the company. Try and be as specific as possible – for example, do you have data on how much you were able to improve productivity or efficiency?

3) Be specific

Individual programming languages, tools and frameworks you used on each project is an essential addition for any tech contractor CV. Keep these relevant – a project you worked on the early 90s is unlikely to have any specific frameworks that are still applicable today.

Talent Engage is an online portal that allows contractors to create a profile detailing their skills and experience. Potential clients can then browse these and contact contractors they think will be suitable. For more information, get in touch with the team today.