If you’re looking at your calendar, wondering when or if your contract will be renewed, read on! In this week’s blog post, we’ll explore the complexities of contract termination and renewal to help you answer the question that often comes up as your contract is winding down: “Where is my recruiter?”
On this week’s episode of “All My Applicants”: Recruiter Sally Maywell finds herself stuck in a contingent workforce love triangle, trying to balance the needs of her contractor with those of her client.
Recruiters, clients, and you: a messy love triangle! Although recruiters rejoice in getting you a great gig and want to keep you working, they also have the client company to consider when deciding whether to renew a contract.
“Clients sometimes wait until the last minute to contact us about renewing their contractors’ agreements. Often a staffing firm will have an agreement with the client that forbids us from re-engaging that contractor until their assignment has ended,” says Wendy Kennah, Procom’s Director of Recruiting. This agreement between a staffing agency and its client reduces competition by ensuring that an agency’s recruiters don’t “poach” contractors from one client to fill the job orders of another.
Clients want to have their cake and eat it, too. Your hiring manager may not want to renew your contract, but she doesn’t want you to leave before it’s up, either. So, chances are that whether you’re renewing your current contract or seeking a new one, you’ll have a very short time frame to do so.
If you call your recruiter and let them know you’re looking for a new contract, it could go one of three ways:
- If your recruiter doesn’t have to wait until your contract is up, he will contact you with a suitable position as it opens up.
- If your recruiter must wait until your contract is up, he will hold out and contact you with a suitable position that becomes available after your contract ends.
- If your recruiter must wait until your contract is up, but the client intends to keep you, the recruiter will wait for the client to approach you with a new contract before offering you any open positions from other companies.
None of these scenarios are bad ones, if you play your cards right. The key is keeping the lines of communication open.
If you are keen to renew your contract, speak directly with your hiring manager about the future of your assignment. If she can’t give you a clear timeline, ask for further details about the scope of your current project(s), the company’s hiring budget, or team dynamics. If any of these factors have changed, you may no longer be needed. If they seem stable, you might be looking over a new contract shortly. However, remember: nothing is guaranteed!
Your best bet is doing your job well while remaining receptive to new opportunities:
- Keep the lines of communication open with your recruiter — make your recruiter aware of any developments with your contract and inform him that you’re interested in new opportunities should your contract be terminated.
- Keep your resume up to date — this is true regardless of your employment situation. You never know when a new opportunity will arise!
- Keep your network intact — just like you would with your recruiter, you should make your peers and former employers aware of your recent activities and accomplishments.
- Be discrete — If you want to network but worry about the rumor mill, play your cards close and keep the conversation about the other person. Let your companion talk about their work life – you’d be surprised how many hiring clues you can glean from small talk!
In the end, the quality of your work and the professional relationships you form with your recruiter, your company, and your peers will prove invaluable in guiding and growing your career.
We hope that the “Where Does My Resume Go?” series has answered your questions about the job hunt.
Did we miss something? Tell us what you’d like to know about the job hunt below!