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IT contractors in the UK saw their earnings jump ten per cent last year following greater demand for their services.

Thanks to an increase in spending from the public sector, as well as companies spending more on their IT projects, it seem IT workers are quids in, according to a survey of one thousand contractors by accountants JSA Services.

It found that the average annualised contract value is now £56,540 compared with £49,882 a year ago, and that the average contract length has increased from 99 days to 109 days.

JSA services chief exec Barry Roback reckons the increase is down to a growth in spending on IT by large companies following the Y2K slump, and a rapid increase in public spending in the last two years.

"After the Millennium, many IT projects were put on hold," said Roback. "However, large companies could not afford to hold back on development for very long. Once one started to invest, the others had to restart their projects too, in case they lost their competitive edge."

While rates for contractors now appear to be on the up, Roback warns that double-digit may not be sustainable. He reckons that the "public spending bonanza" is likely to tail off after the General Election and that new EU legislation could make it harder for contractors to secure long-term contracts.

"It would be complacent to think that the future for IT contractors is entirely rosy, but there is no doubt that good times have returned, at least in the short-term," he said. ®

Related stories

UK tech jobs jump in Q4
IT contractors dream of fat futures
Public sector snaps up IT pros
Freelancers fret over tangle of EU red tape

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