...good thinking

Join Us: The TTLLP Member Offer

Job Title: Partner

  • Employer: Yourself.
  • Pay: Performance-related.
  • Hours: 35 hours per week (full-time, flexible).
  • Location: Own choice, with site visits.

software.coop is a rare type of software company. It was set up to provide services and we are a tech worker co-op of partners who deliver those services.  The partners are fully involved in directing the business.

We are open to new members, but we do need them to bring enough to the partnership to be worth the cost of taking on new partners, so please show some evidence of cooperative work and free software in your application.  We have a variety of roles in mind, all of which involve some software development or support.

The software.coop Member Offer

You give us:

  • your working time;
  • your knowledge;
  • your contacts; and
  • your input.

We give you:

  • our invoicing and administrative services;
  • our shared hosting and work library;
  • our training and advice; and
  • our support.

The detail

"Computer-related services" is a broad label, but most of our work so far is on internet and web-related projects, so we might not offer much benefit for people who work on hardware and kernel development. For internet and web-related projects, we try to share knowledge and worker time at meetings and on our intranet; and then share the income at the end of each period fairly, in proportion to work done.

The shared services that we offer generally split into:

  1. things that some of us have trained to do: invoicing, book-keeping, credit control, dealing with Companies House and other bits of gov.uk (original training funded by New Entrepreneur Scholarship), project management (certified by Open University);
  2. things that are cheaper or easier as a group: equipment, hosting, accounting, banking, insuring, advertising, marketing, community support; and
  3. training (usually negotiable travel and course costs).

A percentage of income is kept to pay for those things and more.  We expect the percentage to fall as we grow and/or gain experience, but it's for the members to decide.

Each of our workers is classed as self-employed for tax purposes, so will probably need to complete an annual tax return, pay National Insurance contributions every four months and so on, or equivalent for other countries. This happens from day one - workers must be registered with the appropriate authorities on joining. We are not currently employing anyone and changing that is not on the agenda for the forseeable future (because it would require more admin training and so on), but it's not ruled out absolutely.

New workers are subject to a three month trial period and then there's a review to decide whether to continue working together. If you'd like to join, contact us and ask us questions about membership.

Other Organisations

If you are looking to apply to somewhere and become their employee, you might find places like STMicroelectronics Linux or Linuxjobs more useful sources of information.

If you want to join a cooperative to work on hardware or kernel development, we don't know one currently working in those areas. If you can find a few willing workers, we'd try to help, or if you accept the limited help we'd be able to offer, ask us about membership.

We have a page of links to other IT cooperatives.

MJ Ray asked about other software cooperatives on http://comments.gmane.org/gmane.org.fsf.uk/5077