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I am a software/web developer with just over two years of experience. I love what I do but I also would like to work on different projects from time to time. the potential of being able to work on greenfield projects while contracting is appealing to me. I was wondering if it would be advisable for me to try to enter into the contracting world with only two years of experience.

any advice is appreciated.

closed as off-topic by Jim G., gnat, jcmeloni, IDrinkandIKnowThings, Michael Grubey Jun 24 '14 at 10:39

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  • Do you mean independent contracting, or with an established consulting firm? – mxyzplk Jun 22 '14 at 15:26
  • either, I have looked into bite consulting here in UK, who say have the contacts of 4000 agents, and would help me customize my cv and set up an umbrella company for me.etc... but I am worried that my small professional experience would mean less opportunities and long periods of having no job and no money. – user4764 Jun 22 '14 at 15:28
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    If you like living out of a suitcase, you can join any one of the Big Four - they recruit right out of college, no experience. By time they've finished conditioning you - which should take a couple of months - living at home for two weeks will be your idea of a vacation :) – Vietnhi Phuvan Jun 22 '14 at 16:04
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Going into independent consulting, with the avowed intent of "working on greenfield applications," with only two years of experience is potentially a problem. Years of experience, besides bringing skills, bring the kind of contacts required to make a go of it as an independent contractor (and thus also a small business owner). It's possible to have all that with 2 years experience but it's certainly not the average case. There are firms that will help with that, but you're less likely to get hired for 'greenfield' and more likely to be approached by people that want staff augmentation for maintenance and whatnot. (Again, unless your two years of experience are hotshot startup stuff already.) The advantage to this approach is that you can turn those down and insist only on greenfield, though how that impacts your cashflow is the question.

As for consulting companies, of course. Many of the large consulting companies hire loads of people straight out of school (and then sweatshop them a bit). The smaller the group, the more likely you need experience/contacts to get in with them. But two years experience will put you as more senior with the "hire out of college" types. You will have the same challenges with "just doing greenfield," you'd need to pick the consulting firm well or get hired on for a very specific project.

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Yes, it is possible, but any serious company would be fools if they allowed a person with such limited experience to design anything of importance. You are not a beginner but you are not a master yet either: your place is, like any journeymen, to improve your skills, learn by helping from masters.

But: you can start your own open-source project and try "greenfield project". Chances are, you will fail, and will learn valuable lesson: "greenfield project" code looks so pretty and clean because it does not have all the convoluted code which fixes all the bugs and quirks how your users interface with it. Once your code will get exposed to real world, it will accumulate all that cruft - because that code makes it functional.