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The self-employed – are they worth it?

Widespread use of contractors, consultants, casual workers, agency staff and other types of “non employee” workers by organisations has been in place for some time, due to the advantages that such arrangements can offer to both parties.  Individuals providing services on a contractor or consultant basis are afforded a cash flow advantage (and perhaps even a perceived tax advantage) until self assessment at the end of a financial year, whilst businesses have what they hope will be the benefit of reduced cost and risk but also flexibility in disposing of or altering the numbers of workers within an organisation when necessary.

Indeed, such are the perceived advantages of engaging consultants and contractors that it is not unusual for either or both parties to want to characterise a work arrangement as such, even where it is really an employment relationship. More...