Becoming an Engineering Contractor

Depending on your level of experience, on where you are based and on the state of the industry at the time you start contracting, you could expect to earn twice as much, or even more, than a permanent employee would. Somewhere in the region of £45 per hour or more in fact. Our take home pay calculator can show you how much more you could take home as a contractor.  To find out more about how you can get paid and the different options available to you please visit our page on take home pay

Money is not the only positive aspect of a decision to work on a contract basis. When the market is good, you could find yourself in a position where you can choose where, when and for how long you work - and subsequently, how much holiday you can take! 

But with this level of freedom comes the responsibility to make sure that you do actually find and complete enough contracts to maintain your required level of income. This is quite straightforward when there are lots of projects available which suit your skill set, experience level and location - but it can be tougher in more challenging economic times, when projects are not as readily available, and the competition for the best contracts is that much higher. For advice further advice please visit our page on finding a contract

What happens next?

The decision to move to contracting is often a conscious one, but sometimes it happens as the result of redundancy, where you simply don’t have a choice if you want to keep the money coming in. Either way, as soon as the decision has been made, there are a number of things that you will have to consider. The most vital of these is the need to manage your finances yourself, as you will no longer just be paid by a payroll department somewhere within your employer’s organisation!

The first step is to decide how you will operate – the two most common options being to work through an umbrella company or to set up a limited company. For more information please visit our page on Limited vs Umbrella . 

If you do choose to set up a limited company, RMI Accountancy can give you with a wealth of information and advice – as well as providing a low cost fixed-fee accountancy service which has been especially developed for contractors. You can also read here about working as an engineer through your own limited company

You should also make sure your CV is as up to date as it possibly can be, and that it is saved in a universally-recognised format such as Microsoft Word or as a PDF file – so when you start to email it out to prospective companies, you can be sure they will be able to read it. Our Contractor Careers Centrehas all the information you need on writing the perfect CV and how to perform your best during an interview

It’s also a good idea to have some business cards. They are useful for meeting situations whilst sorting out your first contract and are always worth having as you continue in your contracting career, as you never know when an opportunity might present itself in the future!

If you have any question about contracting or would like any further advice please call our New Client Services helpdesk on Freephone 02036977703 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

RMI Accountancy

We are the only national specialist firm of contractor accountants with offices across the UK. RMI Accountancy also have more qualified staff than any other firm in our market with qualifications from the following major tax and accountancy bodies - IFA, FTA, IBA, ACCA.

  • Unlimited face to face meetings. This is another unique service for a nationwide accountant to contractors, only RMI Accountancy offers unlimited face to face meetings across the UK - tax is complicated and sometimes only a meeting will do.
  • UK's Largest contractor accountants with more qualified staff. No call centres, no outsourcing, no automated call handling. Simply telephone, email or meet your own dedicated tax expert face to face.
  • Money back service guarantee. All your telephone calls and emails will be answered the same day or we will make a full refund of that months fee.
  • Outstanding reputation. We have won more awards for customer service and accountancy excellence than any other firm in our market, including: Best Accountant for Contractors, Accountant of the Year and Best Professional Service Team to name just a few.
  • All inclusive low cost fixed fee accountancy package which includes completion of accounts*, payroll bureau, dividends and corporation tax computations, personal taxation, free bookkeeping software, access to your own dedicated tax expert and all company returns for a fixed fee of £95 per month.

If you have any questions about contracting or would like any further advice please call our new client services helpdesk on Phone 020 3697 7703 - 01282 454 322 -0161 413 7958 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Getting paid

If you are considering becoming an engineering contractor then this page will talk you through the two options available to you.  

Following the April 2007 Budget announcements there are only two real options for engineering contractors:

1. Operate through your own limited company. It is very important to stress that these must be genuine, one person Limited Companies and not a 'scheme' dreamed up by what are nothing more than marketing organisations.

2. Work through a PAYE umbrella company and pay full income tax and full national insurance contributions on your entire earnings. 

A large percentage of ‘employment services’ companies offering to set up Personal Service Companies or put you in a special 'scheme' are wide open to attack by the Revenue under the new guidelines, and it is unlikely that the major agencies would deal with them. Remember, if they don't have Accountancy in their name they probably aren't Accountants.

 

If you are thinking of freelancing through your own limited company, please read our new straightforward guide on How to Contract through your own Limited Company. You'll be surprised how little time it takes and just how easy it is.

Alternatively, if you are undecided about whether to go limited or whether to consider using an umbrella company please visit our page  Limited vs Umbrella - Take home pay through a limited or umbrella company – The differences.

If you have any question about contracting or would like any further advice please call our New Client Services helpdesk on Phone 020 3697 7703 - 01282 454 322 -0161 413 7958 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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