1th January 2017

Our take on IR35

A lot has been said about the forthcoming changes to IR35 and the full technicalities can be found here.

So not to dwell on the mechanics I’d rather give a view of what we believe will happen and how the market for the NHS will be impacted.

Firstly, we cannot take this in isolation as it coincides with the agency cap pressures we are experiencing, which together with the new tax rules compound the issue for LTD Co interims in the NHS. When taken together, and importantly followed to the letter, I cannot see why the vast majority of people would work as an interim in the NHS. It makes no sense financially and the other rewards for variety and political detachment would be lost with greater job insecurity and lack of continuity of work (upsides of jobs are only relevant when you actually have a job that meets your minimum, fundamental requirements).

Any organisation should worry when there pool of available talent is being so drastically eroded but even more so when demand already outstrips supply. With Trusts’ having such performance challenges as they face today and being so resource-light with many having significant transformation, integration and/or merger plans then I believe market forces will eventually prevail and there will be opportunities for interims to work as exception to the new norm. But with a caveat.

Thus I believe that interims who offer real change, who have a strong track record of success and a strong reputation will continue whilst the “Temp” market covering permanent roles and those who struggle to set themselves significantly apart from their substantive colleagues will see a deterioration of opportunities.

However, to get to this point where market forces determine the landscape we are (almost) all going to experience turmoil and it is yet to be seen if there will be any winners at all at the end of it.

Interim Professionals derived from providing quality in the market. Where other agencies were happy to deal in volume we wanted to stand out with the quality of contractor we provided and if this above scenario plays out then, in time, it would work to our advantage. Many competitors would retreat from this sector and clients would value our knowledge and ability to source the interims who make a difference.

It is going to be a bumpy ride but rest assured we are working hard to being able to offer our clients and candidates the best advice and opportunities.