Taylor Report Supports Umbrella Companies

After months of commentary and speculation, Matthew Taylor’s report on modern working practices was published on the 11th of July. You can read our detailed summary of the report here.

Commenting on the report, Graham Fisher, Group Chief Executive of Orange Genie described himself as “pleased” and with good reason.

Not only does the report recognise the importance of flexibility in the UK workforce, it also acknowledges the market segmentation between low paid workers who are at risk of exploitation, and independent professionals who choose contracting as a career and lifestyle choice. The report suggests various measures to protect the former, while still ensuring the latter retain the freedom and choice that is so valuable to them and the economy.

Recognising and acknowledging this segmentation challenges future government thinking that “one size fits all” legislation is an appropriate response. Over the years we have seen the unintended consequences and damaging effects of this short sighted approach which combined with a continued lack of enforcement has damaged the reputation of our sector.

The report recognises the need for enforcement of current legislation, and we concur unreservedly. The complexity of the regulations makes them difficult to understand and enforce and the resulting uncertainty is exploited by the unscrupulous. This environment of sporadic and ineffective enforcement leaves workers at risk and puts compliant firms at a commercial disadvantage.

We have always believed that effective enforcement will solve a great many of the issues facing the Flexible Workforce and will, in many cases, negate the need for further legislation. Taylor suggests a move towards regulation of umbrella companies.  We enthusiastically welcome this idea, and we believe that, as the trade association for professional employment services, the FCSA is ideally placed to assume this responsibility.

Mr. Taylor suggests measures to ensure workers receive basic rights, like National Minimum Wage, holiday pay, sick pay and maternity/paternity pay. We are pleased to note that all these and more are already provided by genuinely compliant umbrella companies.

In conclusion we are pleased that Mr. Taylor and his team have listened to the evidence provided and they have understood the role of umbrella companies in the supply chain. Many of the report’s recommendations serve to confirm the need for compliant umbrella companies and we take them as a ringing endorsement of what we do.  

If you have any questions about the report or if Orange Genie can help in any way, please contact us on 01296 468 483 or email info@orangegenie.com

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