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Contractor agency billings see marked rise as Brexit concerns intensify

08/06/16 Peter Livingstone Director of Contracts & Interim

Contractor placements have accelerated as clients seek to mitigate the impact of an unfavourable outcome in the EU referendum, whilst still retaining capacity to meet rising demand, according to the Contractor Calculator Market Report June 2016.

Contractor fortunes are faring better than most would have expected heading into June. With the EU referendum less than a month away, clients continue to tap into the contract and temporary recruitment market to meet demand without leaving themselves vulnerable to an unfavourable outcome. ContractorCalculator CEO Dave Chaplin highlights: “Firms want candidates who are the complete package, and contractors who possess the necessary qualities will be able to command substantial fees.” Of these qualities, soft skills are becoming essential for contractors, who are increasingly being required to contribute to aspects of product strategy and business development.

As the conjecture around the EU referendum on June 23rd shows no sign of abating, it is perhaps worth establishing a fact that both the ‘leave’ and ‘remain’ camps would agree on – the position of UK contractors working within the European Economic Area will change if there’s a Brexit.

The reason there are so many assumptions is because the exact details of how the UK’s independent workforce will be treated when contracting in an EU country, if the UK is no longer an EU member, will not be known until treaty negotiations are concluded. This is a ‘known unknown’ situation. It stems from the fact that a whole host of bilateral treaties will need to be agreed if Britain votes to leave the EU. The areas affecting contractors are numerous and include, but are not limited to:

• Taxation
• Freedom of movement
• Employment law
• Social security
• Public services such as healthcare

Peter Livingstone, Redline Group Head of Contracts comments: “Adding to the speculation is not helpful but the above issues will definitely affect British Technology contractors who work overseas if Britain votes to leave the EU, mainly as there is nothing to give advice on. There seems to be more certainty drawing on the current regulations for non-EU workers, as these may become the regulations for UK contractors if the Brexit vote is successful on 23rd June.”

Redline Group is a specialist recruitment consultancy sourcing and selecting professional & qualified Management, Technical and Sales staff for the European technology market. They provide recruitment, retention and management advice, and expertise to assist technology companies in identifying and developing the best talent for their organisations.

For more information on Redline Group's Contracts Division, please contact Peter Livingstone, Head of Contracts on +44 (01582) 878852 or email PLivingstone@redlinegroup.com.