An Umbrella Company Who’s There When You Need Them Most

Umbrella Company

As a leading UK umbrella company, Orange Genie believe we have a responsibility to look after our contractors. You can see this in some of the services we’ve included in our contractor benefits and rewards platform, Orange Genie Edge. But while we spend a lot of time talking about what those services do, we haven’t paid so much attention to what they mean to the people using them. In this article we’ll examine the impact of two of our most important services, Personal Doctor, and Support and Counselling.

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These two services have one important thing in common; they’re there to help our employees when life gets difficult. No-one seeks medical attention or asks for support because they’re having a great time, but by being there in those tough moments we can make a real difference to our employees' lives.

Why do umbrella company contractors need Personal Doctor?

The British people are justifiably proud of the NHS. To have world-class healthcare available free at the point of use is an unimaginable luxury for much of the world. But important and marvellous as our healthcare system is, it’s not perfect.

For example, in December 2018 the BBC reported that it was common for patients to wait three weeks for an appointment with their GP.  This was supported by NHS digital figures showing 18% of appointments being booked two weeks or more in advance, and 5% taking more than 4 weeks.

With demand increasing and a reported shortfall of around 6000 GPs, patients can expect waiting times to increase too.

Aside from the obvious health risks delays might cause, when all you want is to get well and return to normal, it’s frustrating and demoralising to wait weeks before even speaking to a doctor.

The expensive private solution

There are several “virtual doctor” apps now on the market, and these have put private GP appointments within reach for many people who would not have considered them before. They’re still not what you’d call cheap, ranging between £20 and £55 just for a consultation, but it’s easy to see why someone might pay that much if the alternative is a three or four week wait. It’s not ideal, but it’s a choice that more and more people are making.

Free GP appointments in minutes with Orange Genie Edge

Our Personal Doctor service neatly solves this issue for all our contractor employees and their families. Telephone appointments are available at any time of the day or night, seven days a week, and webcam appointments are available during office hours. There are no usage limits, and there’s no cost at all to our employees.

Where necessary the doctor can electronically authorise private prescription medication which can be delivered to the patient’s home or workplace.

The impact of this service is difficult to overstate. Our contractors have almost immediate, on demand access to a doctor, so they can stop worrying about what might be wrong and concentrate on getting better. The usage figures and the feedback we’re getting confirm that it’s as powerful and positive as we expected. This service takes what can be a stressful moment at a difficult time and makes it easier, and we can’t ask for more than that.

"Just the thought of fighting the routine battle with my GP’s receptionist has persuaded me more than once to wait and see if I get better. I didn’t realise how much stress that issue caused until it was out of my life. Now I can speak to a GP in minutes, whenever I need to, at a time that’s convenient for me. As a result, my health, my stress levels and my life are much improved."

Why is Support and Counselling important?

No matter how great your life is, there will be moments when it gets on top of you. No-one can be positive all the time, it’s not healthy to try, and as the internet is fond of telling us, “it’s ok not to be ok”. Workplace stress is now the single biggest cause of absence from UK workplaces, so mental health issues touch most of us at some point.

Your mental health is important. It seems like an obvious thing to say, but so many of us act as if it isn’t. We feel fine about seeking professional help at the first sign of a physical ailment, and so we should because that’s the best way to protect our health, but for some reason our mental wellbeing doesn’t get the same attention. If we seek help at all, it’s often because things have got very bad indeed.

Free, professional counselling available 24/7 on our confidential helpline

We don’t want it to be this way for our employees or their families. We want help to be easy to access, and we want them to reach out before life as they know it is ending. That’s why our Support and Counselling service is such an important part of Orange Genie Edge.

  • Professionally qualified counsellors are available all day, every day, including weekends and bank holidays
  • The service is free to use, it’s completely confidential and there are no usage limits
  • No issue is too small – we encourage our employees to use the service as much and as often as is helpful to them
  • Specialist services are available for financial issues and family legal support

This service has the power to support our contractors and their families at some of their hardest moments, and to make life’s challenges easier to meet. Again, usage figures and feedback confirm that it’s every bit as important as we thought, and we can’t imagine being without it.

If you have questions about Orange Genie Edge, or if we can help in any way, please contact our expert team on 01296 468483 or email

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