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Empowering Women in Engineering: Unveiling the Advantages of Contract Work

26th March 2024

Unlocking New Horizons: Embracing Contract Work in Engineering

A noticeable trend has emerged in the male-dominated field of engineering and the built environment – fewer women are inclined to explore the world of contract work. In this blog, we aim to break down the barriers surrounding contract employment for women, shedding light on the untapped benefits and providing a platform for three inspiring female contractors to share their experiences.

There’s a unique opportunity for change and empowerment in a sector where women are underrepresented. Contract work in engineering offers flexibility, diverse project exposure, and the potential for career growth. We sat with three inspiring female contractors to hear their stories and insights.

In a recent survey of our network asking; What do you consider the most significant advantage of contract work in the engineering industry? 52% of respondents stated Flexible work arrangements, 35% Potential for higher earning, and 13% Exposure to diverse projects.

Why Consider Contract Work in Engineering?

Many women may not have fully explored the advantages of contract work in the engineering and built environment sectors. Contract roles offer a unique set of benefits, including flexibility, diverse project exposure, and the potential for higher earning potential. It’s time to challenge the status quo and encourage women to embrace the opportunities contract work can provide.

Interviewing Trailblazing Female Contractors

To provide authentic insights, we sat down with three female contractors who have successfully navigated the contract landscape in engineering. Their stories showcase the advantages of contract work, dispelling myths and empowering women to consider this alternative career path.

What motivated you to choose contract work over permanent employment in the engineering sector?

Predominately money but also flexibility to work on varied projects.

How has contract work enhanced your career flexibility and work-life balance?

It has been easier to negotiate terms on a contract compared to a permanent contract as it is easier for companies to alter short-term contracts rather than company policies. For example, I negotiated an absolute of no working after 4 pm on Mondays due to child activities.

What advice would you give to women hesitant about exploring contract roles in engineering?

I would suggest giving it a try but ensure that your pension arrangements are taken care of either through limited company or umbrella, I would be as up front as possible, we are sometimes afraid to ask we don’t want to be seen as “problem employees”, which has got better since I started in engineering a long time ago. Trust your abilities and be confident.

In what ways has contracting exposed you to diverse projects and expanded your skill set?

In my years of contracting, I have worked in various parts of the country from small jobs to large projects.

In the realm of engineering, the underrepresentation of women in contract work is a glaring reality. However, by unravelling the misconceptions and showcasing the benefits, we’ve aimed to spark a conversation to pave the way for change. Our discussions with pioneering female contractors underscore the potential for growth, flexibility, and empowerment inherent in contract roles within engineering.

Now is the time to embrace this shift and encourage women to explore contract opportunities in engineering. By doing so, we not only diversify the workforce but also tap into a wealth of talent and perspectives. Take the first step by viewing our latest available jobs in contract engineering roles.