Alternative contracting options
Labour shortages have necessitated employers looking for alternative ways to staff their businesses, other than by using permanent employees.
Permanent employees can be expensive and hard to find, and if they have not already started doing so, many businesses will need to rethink their workforce strategy.
For many employers this has meant dramatic changes to the structure of their workforce and the way their staff work. Tighter regulation, litigation risk and reputational hazards are making it harder to rely on some of the available alternative contracting options – such as zero hours contracts and “gig economy” type arrangements.
We are inevitably seeing an increase in the use of freelancers, fixed-term employees and agency workers for specific projects. The use of intermediaries (such as agencies and umbrella companies) between the “freelancer” and the end-user organisation has also increased following changes to IR35 rules.
As technology continues to develop, automation may lead employers to recruit robots or employ algorithms rather than people to undertake certain tasks.
IR35 reversal reversed!17 October 2022
Plans to repeal IR35 tax-avoidance reforms in April 2023 have been scrapped as part of a major reversal of proposed tax cuts.
FAQs on holiday for workers with irregular working patterns21 September 2022
Calculating holiday entitlement and pay for workers with non-standard working patterns has always been a headache. But a recent Supreme Court ruling makes this topic even more difficult. As more employers start to review their arrangements, we’ve tried to answer the main questions.
Guarding against the go-between – make sure your terms with staffing intermediaries are suitable04 July 2022
Use of staffing intermediaries has increased greatly since the reforms to IR35. We explain why it’s important for end-user organisations to ensure the terms they agree with intermediaries are fit for purpose and protect their interests.
Will the government repeal the ban on agencies supplying workers to fill in during strikes?16 June 2022
Transport secretary Grant Shapps hit the headlines this week when he announced that the government is considering legal changes to allow agencies to supply workers to fill in for striking staff. This is in response to planned strikes across the rail network next week.
A shower of truth: government calls for evidence on use of umbrella companies16 December 2021
The use of umbrella companies is on the rise in the UK. Umbrella companies can support a more flexible and resilient labour market, but some may be misbehaving when it comes to employment and tax laws. This article explains the government’s call for evidence and what the positive outcomes might be.
New apprenticeship funding rules – what’s changing?15 July 2021
Employers will need to comply with new funding rules for apprenticeships starting from the beginning of August if they want to qualify for funding. We explain the main changes.
Staffing solutions and the supply of labour29 June 2021
The supply of labour is a growing area of the UK economy. As employers require more flexible staffing solutions, new business models have emerged offering a range of labour-supply options.