According to the Bank of England, the UK workforce is undergoing a major shift thanks to the hard work of umbrella company contractors and freelancers.
The BoE was quite insistent that the burgeoning numbers of freelancers, contractors and other sole traders working in the UK is triggering a strong and steady increase in GDP. On top of that, the Bank says that out of all the jobs that have been created since 2008, one out of every three can be traced back to self employment.
The Government agrees with the BoE’s assessment, especially its self-employment ambassador, David Morris. In fact, Morris gave the Labour Party both barrels when the party said the amount of increasing self-employment was a failure and not a triumph. Morris said Labour needed to change its tone and recognise how important self employment is to the British economy.
But enough of that – back to the matter at hand. The Bank says that the change in the workforce’s composition is likely part and parcel to the increase in self employment. Technological changes have also made it much more possible for individuals to start up businesses on their own or to work in a mobile environment – all things that have led to increases to self employment.
The rapidly aging workforce is also thought to be a contributing factor for the rise in self employment. The BoE says that older employees that have gained high enough levels of experience to strike out on their own, eschewing the 9-to-5 salary grind to work on their own, for themselves, whenever and wherever they want. It’s this flexibility that is as much a draw for older workers than anything else, the Bank suggests.
Of course, when the credit crisis hit, it triggered a recession of bloody amazing proportions, and plenty of people lost their jobs. Many of these suddenly unemployed Brits ended up going into self employment to keep the cash rolling in, and found out that while the move was a necessary one at the time it turned out for the best – and this started attracting even more Brits to working as a contractor or freelancer instead.
Now, self employment is no longer a necessary move for individuals but instead an excellent way to make a living without having to deal with arsehole employers.