Executive Grapevine | Executive Grapevine International Ltd

Flexibility - a boost for contractors

With the benefits of flexible and remote working generally agreed upon…
Flexibility - a boost for contractors

“It’s not like a traditional face-to-face interview where you can ask for feedback and work on improving your interview technique and skills.”

At the start of the year, research found that three-quarters of UK workers believe a job with more flexibility is more appealing – a number that has steadily rose.

It appears that contractors feel the same way. In a separate study, conducted by Workr, 45% of contract workers said a flexible lifestyle was the main reason for ditching the nine-to-five routine.

According to Matt Tyson, Managing Director at Workr, this attitude is now reflected in numbers of people that are embracing this working pattern.

He said: “The way we work is changing. One in four of us in the UK now works flexibly and we’re seeing a new generation of individuals enjoying the freedom and benefits that being a contractor can offer.

“It’s not like a traditional face-to-face interview where you can ask for feedback and work on improving your interview technique and skills.”

 “We’re also witnessing progressive organisations benefiting from being able to develop and retain a flexible workforce as a key part of the talent strategy.

“However, it’s important that recruiters as well as individuals who are considering becoming a contractor seek key advice on areas such as tax, company formation and legal.”

It’s not just flexible working that’s enticing more employees to become contractors – more than a third (36%) are enticed by the prospect of higher take-home pay.

However, there are downsides. 40% of contractors surveyed admitted they disliked the uncertainty of not knowing where their next gig was going to come from.

“It’s important that recruiters as well as individuals who are considering becoming a contractor seek key advice on areas such as tax, company formation and legal.”

According to the research, 45% of contractors believe that their future rates of pay could be impacted by increasing competition and legislation – such as IR35.

Anecdotally, however, it seems that contracting is on the rise. Earlier this year, it was reported that Google’s parent company Alphabet had more contract workers than direct employees for the first time ever.

In the United Kingdom, IT contractors UK approximate that there are two million self-employed professionals. Between 2008 and 2016 the number of self-employed professionals rose by 43%.

IT contractors UK add that freelancers contribute £119billion to the UK economy.