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Direct Placement vs. Contract-to-Hire: What is Best for My Career in the Long Run?

It might seem like all jobs are essentially the same in terms of employment structure. For example, a company hires an employee and compensates them for their work. While that’s true to an extent, there are various types of employment. And direct placement and contract-to-hire are two of the most common.  

What are these two types of employment, and which one is best for your career? Let’s take a closer look.  

What is direct placement? 

When a company hires an employee directly with no third-party involvement, it’s a direct hire. The employee starts on the company’s payroll, not the staffing firm’s or any other party’s. The goal of a direct-hire is, generally, long-term employment.  

What is contract-to-hire? 

A contract-to-hire employee doesn’t work directly for the company itself but instead for a staffing firm. A contract role will typically be specified for a set amount of time, depending on the company’s needs. At the end of that time period, the company can decide whether to hire the employee full-time, renew or make a new contract agreement, or end the original contract. If both parties agree the relationship is a good fit, most contract-to-hire roles end with the employee converting to full-time employment. 

What are the main differences? 

Direct hire roles are usually full-time positions, whereas contract-to-hire roles aren’t necessarily full-time. Contract workers are not usually eligible for company benefits the way that direct hires are. Some employers treat contracting roles as an opportunity to vet and test an employee before committing to them full-time.  

What type of employment is best for me? 

At the end of the day, choosing what type of employment is best for you depends on your circumstances, desires, and career goals. For example, if you’re looking to test out a new career field, vet a company before committing to them full-time, or need a flexible schedule, a contract-to-hire role might be perfect for you. On the other hand, direct hire is the way to go if you’re interested in jumping into full-time work directly with a company.  

Interested in contracting or direct hire roles with leading companies in your area? We can help. Contact High Profile online or by calling 972-991-7900, and take a look at our Job Portal.