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in Self-employed Accounting Expert
550 points

edited by
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After many years being employed I have taken the step to try Contracting.

The job agency I am currently using are suggesting I work via a Umbrella Company they are linked to, having done a bit of research there seems to be hundreds of Umbrella Companies out there.

Is there anything I should look out for in particular when choosing one?

1 Answer

1 vote

An Umbrella company is a separate company that acts as an employer for contractors working on fixed-term contracts. The Umbrella company organizes the payment for the contractor and takes care of all the invoicing and administration work.

Since working under an Umbrella company is supposed to be ‘hassle-free’, you need to make sure you choose the right company for your needs, in order to be exactly that.

You could ask your agency if they recommend a particular Umbrella company. Some points you can consider are the following:

  • On first contact, check how quick they are to respond. Having the right support quickly is crucial
  • Check reviews and recommendations to ensure the company is reliable
  • Consider the fees they charge and compare between companies
  • Check if there are any hidden costs or penalties – make sure you have the complete picture on fees
  • Ask whether they have online portal to submit your timesheets and expenses – you can ask for a sample viewing. Discuss the overall process with them in detail
  • Consider their speed of processing payments – how and when will you get paid
  • Check their contracts and ensure you will receive a full contract of employment
  • Verify that their services include your tax paperwork
  • Consider the exit fees or even entry fees

Overall you should be looking for an established Umbrella company with professional and friendly approach, quality of service and reliability.

Accounting Guru
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