Aside #7 – Career Change

Whilst I’ve been attempting to learn a new thing each month this year, I’ve been finding it really tricky to keep to the pretty loose schedule. As such, I though I’d try and note down every time a shiny new thing takes my interest, so that I have some idea why I’m incapable of completing a series of blog posts.


Having decided to leave senior management and get back into something more technical, I thought about what I enjoy doing. I had a short chat with a very smart business friend of mine and thought I’d try to go it alone and focus on devops as a service I would eventually provide.

I was in the enviable position of having the luxury of a little bit of time to work out the direction to take, and made a great move in crowd-sourcing my decision making! I sent out a verbose email explaining all of the options and what I wanted to get out of life (!) to a group of friends (some techies, some not) and asked for their thoughts. The replies covered every possible scenario and reading them helped me work out what I wanted to do myself.

As such, I’m leaving permanent employment behind for the time being, becoming a contractor and working on setting up as a freelancer/consultant for DevOps evangelism.

Initially I needed to set up a company.. which isn’t particularly complicated, but it’s certainly not quick and easy! Coming up with a company name, checking domain availability, registering a company bank account, setting myself up as a consultancy; this is all time consuming stuff.

If you’re thinking of doing the same thing I would recommend reading up on it – there is a VAST amount of info out there on the interwebs and this article from Simon Rigsby is a great one to get your head around things.

What I ended up doing, after loads of email conversations with techie mates who have gone contracting, was to join the Professional Contractors Group and also got insurance, set up a company, and chose an accountant all via the PCG.

In the end it’s all been handled very smoothly by my accountants, and I’m now able to review a contract myself for basic IR35 flags, but I can get one contract reviewed for free each year via PCG.

— not liking my job in senior management, deciding to work out what’s important to me instead and focus on that.

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