CQU Project Management education

Why project contractors are like MasterChef contestants

Adeline Teoh
October 10, 2012

Almost two in five project contractors consider themselves to be like MasterChef contestants where, although work is not always easy and there is pressure to perform, “advancing your skills and achieving professional growth is the greatest reward”.

The annual IPro index, commissioned by specialist contractor service agency Entity Solutions and conducted by Monash University, tracks the views of white collar contractors, otherwise known as independent professionals (IPros), on aspects such as satisfaction and organisational engagement.

IPros were asked which reality television show best described their contracting life:

  • 38% answered MasterChef: Working under pressure and not always easy; advancing your skills and achieving professional growth is the greatest reward.
  • 29% answered The Block: Getting your hands dirty and putting your heart and soul into delivering the end result.
  • 19% answered The Amazing Race: Conquering lots of little obstacles to achieve success.
  • 7% answered The Voice: Supported by a team and mentored in order to shine and be a winner.
  • 7% answered Big Brother: Your performance is on display and success is usually dictated by democratic vote.

Other questions in the index proved that IPros such as project workers were just as committed to their jobs as those on staff, and were often more productive.

“The 2012 IPro Index survey debunks the myth that IPros are less committed to their work than permanent employees,” reported Matthew Francheschini, CEO of Entity Solutions. “IPros are just as, if not more, dedicated albeit for the duration of their contract.”

The index also found that more than 95% of all survey participants ranked highly on productivity measures including efficiency, quality and timeliness with 96% agreeing that they deliver prompt service and adhere to agreed work schedules and 95% agreeing that they meet project goals as quickly as possible and that the effectiveness of their interactions with others in the organisation contributes to the project’s success.

Of the factors relating specifically to project managers, the index showed that these professionals were the second most satisfied group after mining/engineering IPros. Project contractors had the best client engagement, reflected as the highest commitment level to a client compared to other groups and the most likely to indicate they perceived support from their clients.

The prime reason why these project managers sought contract work was ‘sense of freedom’ and the ‘perceived ability to earn more’.

“They are attracted to contracting work because they want the lifestyle, the freedom, flexibility and the financial rewards,” confirmed Franceschini. “It’s time we acknowledge the human capital of this growing and important workforce in this country. They’re a sustainable workforce and their relationship with their employers is based on mutual benefit.”

For more information on the IPro Index, or to download a copy of the results, visit Entity Solutions > IPro Index

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Adeline Teoh
Adeline Teoh is the editor and publisher of ProjectManager.com.au. She has more than a decade of publishing experience in the fields of business and education, and has specialised in writing about project management since 2007.
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