Proportion of female IT contractors increases by 25%

Women still only account for 16.5% of the entire IT contractor market

More women than ever before are joining businesses as contractors, attracted to the more flexible working practices, despite the risks associated with self-employment.

According to a study by accountancy business Nixon Williams, the number of female IT workers switching to self-employment increased by almost 25% between 2016 and 2017. Women now account for 16.5% of the total IT contractor market, up from 13.8% in 2016.

"There are more women in IT in both permanent and contracting roles, but the increasing proportion of contractors who are women is particularly significant as contractors tend to earn more than their permanent counterparts, which suggests that the pay gap between men and women in the IT sector is likely to be narrowing," Derek Kelly, chief executive officer of Nixon Williams said.

But it's not just women attracted to the benefits of working for themselves. The number of IT workers now self-employed has increased by 4.5% over the last 12 months - more than the general IT workforce increase of 3.9% year-on-year.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

"The increase in the proportion of the IT workforce operating as contractors has been driven by demand from both IT professionals and the end users of their skills," Kelly added. "The shift in the composition of the IT workforce since the financial crisis is doubly remarkable because much of the change is due to an influx of women into contracting."

He said that although contracting is generally riskier than standard employment, more people are recognising the benefits of working for themselves as in-house benefits are losing momentum.

"In areas which suffer from chronic skills shortages, such as IT and engineering, many contractors are rarely out of work, and higher levels of pay generally more than compensate for any gaps between contracts," Kelly said.

It also has greater benefits for cash-strapped businesses too. Because firms can't guarantee their cashflow with the threat of Brexit, businesses are favouring using contractors, which present a smaller financial risk.

"The current economic uncertainty is making the use of contractors increasingly attractive to organisations," Kelly finished. "With future demand so hard to predict many organisations are deferring hiring decisions and turning to contractors to provide additional capacity."

Image credit Shutterstock 

Featured Resources

What you need to know about migrating to SAP S/4HANA

Factors to assess how and when to begin migration

Download now

Your enterprise cloud solutions guide

Infrastructure designed to meet your company's IT needs for next-generation cloud applications

Download now

Testing for compliance just became easier

How you can use technology to ensure compliance in your organisation

Download now

Best practices for implementing security awareness training

How to develop a security awareness programme that will actually change behaviour

Download now
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/policy-legislation/data-governance/354496/brexit-security-talks-under-threat-after-uk-accused-of
data governance

Brexit security talks under threat after UK accused of illegally copying Schengen data

10 Jan 2020
Visit/web-browser/30394/what-is-http-error-503-and-how-do-you-fix-it
web browser

What is HTTP error 503 and how do you fix it?

7 Jan 2020
Visit/infrastructure/server-storage/354476/broadberry-cyberserve-r182-z90-review-gigabytes-epyc-gamble
Server & storage

Broadberry CyberServe R182-Z90 review: Gigabyte’s EPYC gamble pays off handsomely

7 Jan 2020
Visit/operating-systems/microsoft-windows/354526/memes-and-viking-funerals-the-internet-reacts-to-the
Microsoft Windows

Memes and Viking funerals: The internet reacts to the death of Windows 7

14 Jan 2020