There’s no denying that 2022 has been tumultuous for the contract workforce. Despite the UK falling into recession, new research by Cool Company, the digital payroll solution for contractors, reveals the overall outlook for the industry is positive.
In fact, just over three-fifths (61%) of contractors are feeling positive about contracting as a whole, with many working with overseas clients hoping to avoid the UK’s economic contraction.
Contractors have had to look beyond the UK to shore up client worries with an average of 49% of contractor work coming from clients outside of the UK in the last 12 months. 42% of contractors said that 51% or more of their work currently comes from non-UK clients, while 55% of contractors expect that figure to increase in 2023.
Despite the confusion of IR35 reforms and then potential Off-Payroll legislation repeal, most contractors are now feeling more positive about the industry at home. Almost two-thirds (64%) of contractors surveyed believe that all clients will increase their use of contractors over the next 12 months and more than a quarter (26%) of contractors use recruitment agencies to source new clients.
Kris Simpson, Country Manager UK at Cool Company said, ‘2022 has been difficult for most people, with considerable economic and political uncertainty and coming on the back of last year’s IR35 reforms, it could potentially have caused significant difficulties for contractors.
‘The fact that contractors have found new ways of working, using umbrella companies and recruiters to connect with both British and overseas clients, testifies to the versatility of our contract workforce. So, although the UK’s economic outlook may be grim, I think there is some justification for the positivity currently found amongst contractors.’