Self employment continues to rise

Thursday 22 January 2015

The number of people who are becoming their own boss, whether that's by becoming a limited company, a contractor, a sole trader or taking up some other form of self employment, is on the rise.

This is according to the most recent Labour Market Statistics from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), which shows that there has been an increase in the number of people who are taking up self employment either full time or part time.

Comparing the September to November period in 2013 to the same few months in 2014, the number of people taking up self employment full time has risen by 54,000. For the number of people taking up part time self employment, this figure has risen to 68,000.

These figures were welcomed by The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed (IPSE), which said that this shows self employment will continue to be a popular area of the labour market. It also says that these latest statistics are a sign that the smallest businesses in the UK should be at the top of the political agenda.

Commenting on the figures, chief executive of IPSE Chris Bryce said: "The number of people choosing to become their own boss continues to rise at an incredible rate and proves this way of working is here to stay. Self employment is no longer just for the few, it’s for the many and it’s particularly welcoming that the number of women choosing to go solo continues to increase and has reached a whopping 1,450,000.

“Today’s figures show that it’s more important than ever before to recognise and embrace the rise of people becoming their own boss."

He said that, prior to the General Election in May, small businesses should be put at the top of the political agenda. IPSE also hopes that all the major parties will commit to offering the support needed to the UK's smallest businesses.

The latter, Mr Bryce argues, will create rewards for all of the UK economy. On top of that, it will help independent professionals up and down the country.

Small businesses have some opportunity to weigh in on their views for how government policy could be changed. HM Treasury has been asking the public to send in representations for proposals to be included in this year's Budget.

It wishes to receive views for how policy can be changed for the better from individuals, interest groups and representative bodies.

The Treasury says that these representations should be sent in by February 13th at the latest so that there is time to consider each one individually. Any that are included will be announced as part of the Budget on March 18th.

By Victoria McDonnell

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