UK govt announces a review of self employment

Tuesday 7 July 2015

The government has announced that it is set to launch a review of the self-employment sector in the UK, as it seeks to find out the best way to offer support to contractors working in this increasingly popular fashion. 

According to a recent study carried out by the Office for National Statistics, as many as one in seven people, amounting to a total of over 4.5 million, are now self employed. Prime minister David Cameron said that this showed the need to shine a light on self employment, which he hopes the review will achieve. 

As part of the process, the government will be looking to analyse the support and benefits offered to those who work on a self-employment basis, including things like pay, advice and childcare commitments.

Leading entrepreneur Julie Deane OBE, founder of The Cambridge Satchel Company, is to carry out the review, and her key tasks will include reporting to the government on the key challenges and opportunities that are available for those who want to work for themselves.

She said: The business landscape has changed so much in the last ten years and in such a way that self-employment is now a viable option for so many more people.”

Ms Deane hopes to discover the reasons that people both choose and choose not to be self employed, as well as looking at the ways in which the government can work with people in the industry to make sure it is providing a modern and flexible platform. 

So far, reaction from the industry has been warm, and Chris Bryce, IPSE chief executive, said of the review, which is set to be published in the early part of 2016: “From engineers to IT contractors, builders to graphic designers, people who work for themselves are playing a crucial role in getting the economy back on track. IPSE welcomes this review which demonstrates the government’s commitment to help the self-employed meet the challenges we have been highlighting." 

By Victoria McDonnell

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