The economy has forced many candidates who swore that they would never, ever relocate to reconsider their positions, and contracting is a great way to take the sting out of that decision.
One reason contracting is a great option for those who feel forced to relocate is that the jobs are most often short-term. They allow the worker to buy time while waiting for a job to open up closer to home rather than having to pick up and move permanently. For those who are willing to make a permanent change, a contract-to-direct situation is a great option because they can try out the new job and city without having to make a long-term commitment. If they don’t like what they see, they can opt not to take the permanent position and try something else.
The other reason that contracting is ideal for those who can’t find work close to home is the current housing market. If a worker takes a permanent job out of town and the employer is not willing to provide assistance in selling the home, that worker could end up paying two housing bills for quite some time. But often, those working away from home on a contract assignment are eligible for per diem, which helps them pay their living expenses while on contract. A recent Fistful of Talent blog post titled “Relocation May Require Landlord Skills” also discusses how those relocating may want to consider renting their homes while working out of town, so that is an option you may want to mention to candidates who are reluctant to accept contract positions away from home.
This is a time when a lot of people are making hard decisions to keep their families fed, but this is one area where you as a recruiter can help make a difficult situation much easier for your candidates by providing contract assignment opportunities.