As the year 2009 gets off to a slow start, many IT contractors are finding themselves in a position of uncertainty. Will they or will they not have a job in the coming months? As the recession progresses, many companies have had to make budget cutbacks which means that there is less money available to hire IT contractors.

In these challenging economic times, it will be important for IT contractors to pay close attention to tax regulations such as IR35 and not to be tempted to stray from the strict guidelines. HM Revenue and Customs will be acting to enforce compliance with the guidelines and any IT contractor that fails to meet their deadlines can expect to be penalised. New penalties are being put in place by HMRC this spring and it will be particularly important to pay special attention to information about these to avoid an unexpected fine. HMRC is trying to work closely with IT contractors to help them become fully aware of what it is they need to do in order to remain compliant.

There is some good news for IT contractors though. Several industries such as aerospace and gas continue to do well despite the current recession. It is possible that demand for IT contractors from these sectors will increase as they attempt to streamline their processes to become more efficient. It is often possible for an IT contractor to switch between industries with little or no problem and by doing so they may experience a greater degree of job security.

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