Can I become an Interim?

Article By
James Cumming
James Cumming
Posted On9th June 2020
Posted On9th June 2020
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Our Managing Director, James Cumming, discussing how you can start and build an interim career.

Many people come to me and ask me, can I become an interim?

Becoming an interim isn’t as easy as people think. They think that their friends have done it, their colleagues may have done it – they see people around them going into it. But it isn’t always the answer they’re looking for in their career. Being an interim is really tough. It’s a challenging role, you’re always having to deliver quickly. It’s not a consistent job opportunity where you know you’re going to be paid every month. You can have a period of time when you’re not working. And actually, people find it really challenging not to be part of a team.


What do you need to think about?

So I think people need to think long and hard if an interim career is the right career move for them. I think some of the key things you need to think about are- what is your skillset? Is it the sort of thing a company might buy in to use? Why would they use that skill set? And is it rare enough in the market to demand a premium? Because if it’ not, why would they use you? Why wouldn’t they use someone else or an internal resource?


Challenges

The most challenging part of becoming an interim is building a network. Most people in permanent jobs don’t have a network, especially if you work for a company for a longer period of time. So where are you going to get work from? Yes, you can go to a recruitment agency, but recruitment agencies have lots of people on their books and they can only fill a certain amount of roles per year. You can apply for roles, but most companies don’t have interim roles advertised on their website. How are you going to get a role 100% of the time when there are limited resources to enable you to get one. You need to think about it more holistically, as a business opportunity and not just as a short term fix because you’re not in work. They’re two separate things. Especially with IR35 coming in this year, people need to think long and hard about is it a job you’re going into (as an interim) or is it something bespoke and niche that clients can buy in as a service.


The three most important things to think about if you’re thinking of becoming an interim are:

  • Speak to people alreay in the interim market, to get their opinion on whether you can be an interim or not
  • Think about if your skillset is required, is it niche enough and ar businesses looking to bring it in
  • Can you build a network orleverage people you’ve worked with before

James Cumming is our MD and leads our HR practice. He has recruited senior HR professionals for over 15 years and has experience in finding niche HR talent. Connect with him on LinkedIn here.

If you would like to find out more about re:find and how we can support you and your business, then please get in touch.


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