For many professionals, taking on temporary or contract to hire work is a great way to try and find their niche in the workforce. Working for different companies in a variety of roles can help you to develop your skillset in multiple environments without a long-term obligation.
Although some professionals really enjoy the change of scenery and thrive in these roles, others prefer a long-term commitment. If you find yourself in the latter category, however, making the leap from a contract to hire role can be easier said than done. Navigating this journey can be frustrating at times, but it’s important to remain confident and positive throughout this process.
While there is never a guarantee that a contract role will transition to a full-time one, if you put in the hard work and meet expectations, the opportunity could be there. Here are a few ways that can help you turn your contract position into a full-time one:
Go the extra mile
Even though your position is technically a contract role, don’t think of it that way. Instead, consider it as an audition for the role of a lifetime by going the extra mile and trying to exceed all expectations. Come in early and stay later, offer to help with specific tasks / projects, and ensure you are dependable. Your commitment and enthusiasm can go a long way in proving you are the right long-term fit for the position!
Be social & network
First and foremost, you want to be known at the company for the quality of your work. However, do not rule out the social aspects as well. Building strong relationships with your coworkers, both in and out your department, can make all the difference when looking to make the leap from a contact to hire role. Not only does it allow you to make a more memorable impact across the workplace, but it can also create more opportunities to collaborate with other managers who might also have an opening on their teams. This is especially critical given how important cultural fit is to employers. While you might have the technical skills required for success in the role, your ability to fit in with your team and other colleagues is just as, if not more, important.
Patience (and flexibility) is a virtue
If you really like the position and the company you’re working for, the end of your contract to hire assignment can be especially nerve-wracking. The key is to be patient and don’t let it affect your work or temperament. Be flexible and try to take on more work to highlight your commitment to the position whenever the opportunity arises. If a full-time position doesn’t open up immediately or near the end of your contract, try to extend your current role as contract employee as long as they’ll have you. Going to these lengths will leave a lasting impression with your manager and the company and prove your enthusiasm for the work / role.
Honesty is the best policy
At the end of the day, it’s important to be transparent about your interest in a full-time role. Go directly to your supervisor and, in a polite and approachable manner, be open with them. Tell them how you feel about the work, the company, and how you can see yourself growing in that role. Your honesty won’t guarantee that the role will be yours, but it’ll help you gain a better understanding of where you stand with your manager and will better suit you for how to go about obtaining your next position, either internally or externally.