Consultant experiences are 'all over the place': I worked as an individual on a client site, and also did WFH for Ciber (in both cases, was very isolated, felt disconnected).
Also worked at managed service for a major company. In those cases, best bring major 'clique' skills! (suck up & schmooze to get/keep good assignments.)
After contract is over, it's hit or miss re. getting a new assignment. Saw a LOT of talented consultants let go -- even for personality issues with client -- while popular people were carried between assignments. (Bad for morale.) Personally, I was not rewarded for achieving certification (which was highly encouraged), nor considered for next-rung jobs.
Meanwhile, people who DID get promotions had to put in major work on their own time.
Not surprising this company went Chap 11, poorly managed on many levels!
Great resources for self-education
Culture of job fear at end of contract