Enrol on Training Courses to Further your Career

Work-related training for contractors.

One of the things that attracts many people to contracting is the autonomy. As a contractor you have clients rather than employers, which makes for a different dynamic. You decide when and how you work, to a greater degree than permanent employees do at least.

That autonomy comes with responsibilities, and you are responsible for managing your own career, including marketing yourself and improving your skills. It falls to you to arrange and finance your own training and like many optional expenses, it’s easy to overlook your professional development in favour of other, more pressing concerns. This is a shame, because you’re talented and you work hard; you’re worth investing in.

Why Work-Related Training is Important

At the risk of sounding like the script from a cheesy self-help video, work-related training represents an investment in your future self. When you undertake training, you’re taking control of your development, just as you took control of your working life when you made the leap from permanent employment to contracting. This investment of time and money sends a powerful message to your clients and colleagues, as well as to yourself; that you’re serious about your career and your goals, and you won’t let the pressures of daily life stop you reaching for the life you want.

From a more practical point of view, up to date skills are more marketable, and additional expertise will make your contracting business more secure, agile and profitable. This can become a self-supporting cycle, as more contracting success makes it easier to find time and money for training, which leads to more contracting success.

Start with a plan

Your training needs will depend on two main factors; where you are, and where you want to be. You wouldn’t buy a train ticket before you knew the destination, and you shouldn’t pay for training until you know what you’re aiming at. Comprehensive research at an early stage will pay off in the long term, helping you avoid wasted time and money.

As a contractor you’ll already have contacts in the recruitment industry and they may well be able to point you in the right direction. You might also contact the National Careers Advice Service for information and ideas.

Funding your training

As a contractor, you’ll usually need to pay for work related training yourself as you won’t have an employer to pay for it and government funding is very difficult to come by. We recommend setting money aside from your contracting income, just as you would to buy equipment or cover time off. However, if the cost of training is the only thing holding you back and you can’t raise the money on your own, you might consider a Professional and Career Development Loan. The Government pays the interest while you’re studying and for 1 month after your course, but ultimately you will have to pay the full loan back. As this is a commercial product, we’d only advise that you consider it once you’ve exhausted all other options.

Don’t forget to claim the cost of training as an expense

Work related training is a legitimate business expense, so you can claim the cost as an expense to reduce the amount of tax you pay.  

If you’re lucky enough to work for Orange Genie Umbrella, our Contractor Support Team will happily answer your questions and help you complete an expense claim.

If you have any questions about work-related training, or if Orange Genie can help in any way, please call our expert team on 01296 468 483 or email info@orangegenie.com.

 

 

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