The Big IR35 Survey

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Susie Ferguson
11 Sep 2020 @ 09:09 am
in category: IR35 Hub

Earlier in the year, we launched a survey asking recruiters about the impending IR35 reforms, which were delayed from April 2020 to April 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

We wanted to get a true feel of how the land lies as we approach the new deadline, to find out how recruiters prepared last time around and if the extra time given would provide some relief and the opportunity to properly prepare for the off-payroll reforms. The results helped us to understand our recruiters needs and to ensure that we can offer the best services possible and that our IR35 insurance for contractors check all the boxes required.   

The results of the survey can be viewed here. But what were the main points raised from the survey? And how can you get everything in place for the IR35 reform this time around?  

Working with End Clients  

During the run-up to the original April 2020 date, we saw a group of large corporations taking a blanket-ban approach to hiring contractors. Positively, you’ve said that following the delay, over 50% of end clients have either made a U-turn, deferred their no PSC policy or are undecided on what action to take going forward.  

Notable especially for those end clients that are undecided on their next steps, an overwhelming 80% of recruiters felt they had influence over their clients and could work with them on their strategy. Kingsbridge is also always here to help, so do get in touch if you want help in preparing for off-payroll 2021.  

Preparing for the reform  

Following on from this U-turn from end clients, 61% of recruiters think the delay also provides a vital opportunity to properly prepare for April 2021. 45% of recruiters also don’t think there will be a soft landing to off-payroll 2021, making it even more important to be prepared. With the Government stating they will be looking to claw back money after the pandemic, this stat isn’t surprising.  

Additionally, back in April 2020 when the reform was due, 45% of recruitment businesses implemented a contractual requirement for contractors to hold IR35 insurance ahead of the legalisation.  

IR35 Status Determination 

As for determining a contractor’s status, the question remained whether a manual or fully automated status determinator would be the most appropriate. Like most things, the optimum result was in fact somewhere in the middle. In fact, 68% of those surveyed thought the most appropriate IR35 status tool is a fully automated tool that provides an instant determination, with manual intervention for any indeterminate results. Taking this feedback on board, our award-winning IR35 status tool does just that.  

Get it right this time round 

Whilst the Covid-19 pandemic has undoubtedly been a catastrophe for contractors and recruiters alike, it’s a great opportunity to get your IR35 preparations right this time around and to learn from the mad scrabble that happened post-Christmas last year. It’s not too late to get organised, ensure your IR35 processes are in place, and be ready for April 2021.  

30% of recruiters said that said they would have started IR35 preparations earlier last time around, so it’s important to make sure you are ready this time. Although there is still uncertainty in the current climate, there is nothing to suggest that the reform will be delayed again. 

What next? 

There are plenty of resources out there, including our IR35 hub which has a wealth of information you can access. We also offer IR35 insurance for contractors, which flexes to cover the liable party.  

Our award-winning IR35 status tool was designed to suit the needs of contractors, recruiters and end clients alike. Our automated tool is backed up by our in-house IR35 consultancy team made up of experts, who are here to help and resolve any indeterminate results from our status tool.  Let us do the legwork on your IR35 processes, click here to sign up for a demo or give the team a call on 01242 808740.  


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