MAKE BACK TO NORMAL BETTER THAN EVER.
Both COVID-19 and the economic impact it has had on our economy has dominated the news and our lives. For many, our focus has been more on finding critical supplies and trying to figure out our kid's math assignments then on our careers. The expectation, however, is that we will soon be phasing back into a new "normal". As communities prepare to re-open, recognize and take advantage of the opportunities that will exist and the growing need for independent contract therapists.
Why Independent Contract Opportunities Will Expand
Unemployment is at an all time high and is predicted to rise as high as 32% [Forbes 4/6/2020]. The phased return to work plan will continue to restrict full time work opportunities in a traditional healthcare setting and retaining employees on payroll or adding new ones can be a risk. The solution? Employers will turn to independent contractors during the transition who can fulfill needed roles. This will lead to greater opportunities for you if you are ready to hit the ground running. Here are some tips.
Organize your IC Portfolio
Similar to a Personnel Record, an IC Portfolio is a compilation of all the documents you will need to secure work opportunities as an Independent Contractor. This includes an up to date resume, proof of liability insurance, vaccination history, and background screening if you have it available. You will also want to set up your business structure and obtain a business tax receipt if required in your locality. Not sure how to do this? Check out ITA's CEU-accredited Course "How to Be Your Own Boss" here.
Understand Your Tax Requirements
There are many benefits to work as an Independent Contract Therapist,but it is important to understand your legal responsibilities and tax requirements before you get started. Sadly, ICs often leave thousands and thousands of dollars unclaimed because they were not aware of the benefits or did not track their business expenses. There is also responsibility including different tax rules that you need to be familiar with so you are not taken by surprise when taxes are due. Get organized before you get started so you don't lose a single penny of the money you earned.
Stand Out From the Crowd
Competition will be fierce and you will need to differentiate yourself so that you not only get the contract, but then get the patient assignments. Customer service skills will be essential and you can also gain a competitive advantage through continuing education in a specialty certification. Also, consider earning the Certificate of Regulatory Compliance from ITA. This 6 Hour on-line learning program is accredited for CEUS for PT, OT and SLP and demonstrates your knowledge and skill in Medicare Compliance (while teaching you how to succeed). It's a win-win for you with the core set of tools and knowledge you need to demonstrate best practice and helps protect employers with proof of your competency and commitment to upholding legal requirements.