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When, If Ever, Do Job Contracts Get Extended?

10 Mar 2023

Derek Smyth

Do job contracts ever get extended?

Working as a Contractor within the Information Technology sector can be a very rewarding choice, and one which offers many excellent advantages to skilled IT professionals.

 However, one of the perceived disadvantages of taking on a contract role, is that it will end at some point. The majority of contracts are initially set up for 6 months and the contractor could be back on the market again, looking for a new role. For some, after spending time searching for a role and going through the interview process, they don’t want to be back on the market for at least another year.

However in our experience, while there is never a guarantee that the contract you take will be extended, in the vast majority of cases the original contract is extended. Some are continuously extended over many years. Often, you will have an idea at the beginning of a contract about the likelihood of extension and you can make a judgement on it. However, far more often than not an extension is actually offered.

The extension of contract jobs depends on various factors, such as:

(1) the nature of the project

(2) the employer's business needs

(3) the contractor's performance.

In general, contracts will can be extended if the employer requires the contractor's services beyond the original contract period.

 If the contractor's work meets or exceeds the employer's expectations, the employer may be more likely to extend the contract. Similarly, if the project is ongoing, the employer may need the contractor's services for an extended period. On the other hand, if the project is completed or the employer's needs change, the contract may not be extended. However, you will usually know this well in advance and will be able to plan accordingly to avoid being out of work.

In summary, whether an IT contract job gets extended or not depends on the specific circumstances of the job and the employer's needs. It is essential to clarify the terms of the contract and discuss the possibility of an extension with the employer or recruitment consultant before accepting the job. Partnering with an experienced recruiter will ensure that they can start searching for new opportunities to suit you before your current contract ends to ensure a seamless transition to a new position.

For a confidential discussion on our open roles, and to discuss whether contracting might be right for you, please contact Derek Smyth at 01 5927861 or via email.