Young .NET developer Jonas Jes
– 10 questions to the expert
Not only seasoned developers with decades of experience can create a career as independent consultants. If you are skilled and a quick learner, then you will find numerous contract and freelance opportunities also for young developers. If you have considered taking the step and become a contract developer, then read on to see how the experience has been for a young .NET Developer.
1. You recently made the leap from permanent to contract .NET consultant. What made you decide to take the plunge?
I had resigned at my previous position and was questioning whether to go back to being self-employed or work as a freelancer, because I’ve always felt I’ve been good at starting new tasks. Whilst having this thought, I was contacted by Right People offering work as a contractor through them. I saw this as a golden opportunity to test whether this freelance lifestyle was something for me.
2. Have there been any challenges associated with becoming a contractor?
Business wise no, but with regards to accountancy, I can find it hard to keep track of the rules on VAT, tax, driving, etc. But it’s not worse than that you can get help from an accountant if you’re really stuck.
3. What benefits have you had with becoming a contract .NET developer?
It gives you a little more freedom compared to being on a fixed contract with regards to switching between tasks and taking on extra work from other clients etc., and as we are paid by the hour, you can also earn more through taking on more hours. Also, as a contractor you get the added advantage of experiencing work in many different places and different tasks, so you end up learning more on the job.
4. What would you see as the most important trend in .NET?
I wouldn’t say I pay much attention to trends in .NET, I typically prefer to program things from scratch over using a third-party solution which eventually needs to be recoded anyway. But one thing in particular that I have noticed becoming more widespread is the improvement of IT security against hacking.
5. How do you see a good .NET developer as standing out from the crowd?
Being able to look at projects and tasks in a forward-thinking manner, so that the code is a flexible solution that can be changed and worked upon, rather than short-term thinking with an eye for what’s right in front of you at the time.
6. What determines that a project is successful – and what increases the risk of failure?
Firstly, the success is dependent on a clear definition by the client about what they want to see delivered, secondly, a good project manager and thirdly, a foundation of decent code. You can look at it like building a house: if the foundation is not stable from the beginning, it’s hard to create a good result when building on top of it, and the risk of having problems throughout the project increases.
7. What skills do you expect to acquire in the next year – and why?
Usually, I manage to gain the things I need throughout the year relatively easily. But I would like greater knowledge of hacking and IT security, as I think it is a very interesting and an incredibly topical issue. In addition, I would like to create more apps for smartphones, as it is a slightly different way of working, both in relation to design, user experience and coding.
8. Who or what is your greatest professional inspiration?
The Internet! IT news sites, stack overflow, and whatever else I happen to encounter. It is often triggered by a specific project where I have to do something I have not tried before, or because I wonder how something is made, then I sit down and find inspiration and gain some knowledge on how to tackle the task.
9. How do you keep yourself up to date in .NET news?
I continue developing my methods all the time. I do not say no to a challenge and find solutions to whatever I have to do.
10. What’s your best advice for other young developers who are considering becoming contractors?
The freelance lifestyle isn’t for everyone but if you are considering it, I would recommend you to try it. I know many who regret not having done it sooner! It is not a completely binding choice, you can always switch to being employed full-time again, if you find out that life as a contractor isn’t for you.
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