Britain’s self-employment boom has been very well documented, and, regardless of your stance on this subject, it cannot be denied that self-employed workers have done wonders for reducing the large unemployment statistics that were (up until recently) so prevalent in the UK. However, it has also been observed that the duration of self-employment within the UK is greatly expanding, with more and more people now committing to the practice for the long term.
Are People Happy in Self-Employment?
There are two ways that one can look at this. For example, The Guardian relates how fewer people have moved away from self-employment within the last 5 years than at any other point in the last two decades, and a generous number of people are also choosing to carry on working for themselves long after they have reached retirement age. As such, the rise in self-employment could theoretically be attributed to people simply remaining in it for longer, and The Guardian article takes the line that this longevity is due to ‘limited opportunities for people to move out of self-employment’.
Whilst it’s worth bearing in mind the considerations that are raised by this argument, there is another way to look at the situation. The previously related opinion appears to suggest that self-employment is almost a ‘desperation’ measure that people become trapped within, but other statistics would convey a very different story. The Financial Times declares that, whilst the self-employment boom does owe much to the high average longevity of a self-employed profession, there is little evidence that it is a career move of desperation, and similarly only a small percentage of self-employed workers (a mere 5%) are actively seeking alternate work.
As such, it seems that many people choose to remain in self-employment for such a long time simply because it suits them. At ICS, we offer a variety of accountancy and payroll services to contractors and freelancers, and we regularly find that such individuals are very happy in their chosen professions. For example, the ability to serve as your own boss, organise your own time and choose your own work is all attractive, as is the fact that contractor rates are usually fairly high. When this is coupled with the fact that contractor accountants can assist to remove some of the administrative drawbacks, most contractors are totally content with their occupation.
If you are one of the many people earning your living through a contracting lifestyle, and you’d like a professional service to help to optimise your business methods, then feel free to get in touch with the ICS team today. From offering compliance assistance to making an umbrella company solution available, we can assist you in many ways.Contact us now by calling 0800 195 3750 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.