Prime Minister Theresa May has ordered a review of modern employment practices. This means that a review panel will now scrutinise the employment structures used by professionals and workers, such as IT contractors, who do not fit into the typical definition of an employee.
The review will be headed by Royal Society of Arts CEO Matthew Taylor and will check whether the existing understanding, meaning and classification of employment status within the UK should be updated to cover other forms of employment.
It is expected that the review will be quite comprehensive, encompassing different forms of employment, including Personal Service Companies and Freelancer Limited Companies.
Taylor stated that he will be conducting the review with an open mind. He said that in today’s world, lines between owner, worker, consumer and contractor were blurring. This makes it necessary to determine how the new forms of enterprise and employment impact the stakeholders, and whether these forms of employment should be promoted and encouraged.
Taylor is aware that today’s workers require opportunity and control, and it is the latter that is one of the keys to determining an individual’s employment status. He stated that he was aware of the distinction between a software consultant who is self-employed and happy with their employment status, and a worker who is seeking more job security and progression.
The recommendations that the review make will have a profound effect not just on IT contractors but also on other self-employed professionals across the country.
There is a need to update employment status and engagement practices, and this review is a start. With IT contractors as well as other contractors and intermediaries constantly facing a flux of changes, it has become essential to identify new business models and their rights and responsibilities.