This Valentine's Day, I received an unexpected gift. Entrepreneur and founder of the Cambridge Satchel Company, Julie Deane published an independent review into self-employment in the UK.
Having now had time to read the 40-something page review, several pertinent points were raised with regards to the 4.6 million self-employed Britons. We are a diverse and motivated group, enabled by technology and form a significant chunk of the UK workforce - some 15 per cent. Self-employment figures and optimism in the sector are at an all-time high, but the treatment of freelancers and contractors is not.
Here's a snapshot of the recommendations made by the review:
So, what opportunity has this report missed? I must admit a little poetic licence here, the report has not missed an opportunity. The Government has.
Page four of the review says it all: "choosing to be self-employed should not mean that people are disadvantaged in the support that they receive from Government". I could not agree more.
Instead of Julie Deane spending her time writing recommendations that, in my opinion, should already exist; imagine this.
Imagine she had the opportunity to use her brilliant business mind to speak to fellow entrepreneurs and work out how we could help the Government dig its way out of the diabolical financial situation the nation finds itself in.
Imagine the Government listening to the small guys and girls that work tirelessly to succeed, despite all the obstacles they seem to throw at us.
Julie and the Cambridge Satchel company are one shining example of how entrepreneurs can succeed during adverse times. I applaud her review and its recommendations.
But, if the self-employment sector can thrive in one of the nation's worst financial times, surely the Government should listen to how we have found such success, instead of side-lining us?
What advice would you share with the Government, if you had the chance? Let me know in the comments below.
Hello. I'm the freelance writer who gets tech. So, I blog on three core topics:
Science and Technology
And I explain science with Lego in Sunday Science.
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