In Pictures: 15 tips for surviving - and thriving - as an IT contractor

Pundits are calling 2014 the year of the IT contractor. Here are 15 tips for setting up shop and making it stick.

Are you up to the task? "Contractors have to be able to deliver 100% of the time. Not everyone can do that," says Cici Mattiuzzi, director of the College of Engineering & Computer Science's Career Services Office at Sacramento State University and author of The Serious Job Seeker blog. So be clear upfront on the job's requirements and your ability to meet expectations.

"You have to listen long enough to figure out if it's something you can deliver. Sometimes it might be stretching yourself. You have to know if you have the underlying foundation," Mattiuzzi says. If you blow a deadline or botch the project, she says, it can cost you not only your current contract but the next one as well.

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