Latest findings have revealed that a growing ‘professional gig economy’ of highly skilled, independent workers is flourishing in both the UK and Europe.
According to the data compiled by Source Global Research, published by Odgers Connect, this is being driven by organisations cutting back on core staff and instead relying on outsourced professionals working for themselves.
Senior executives across 250 UK and European organisations were surveyed, with the results showing that changing attitudes to professional support are driving demand for independent workers.
Interestingly, the study notes that Brexit and new regulation are likely to favour independent consultants because organisations will seek the increased flexibility they offer and resist taking on permanent professional staff.
The survey also revealed that the biggest impact is found at the very top of the professional workplace – looking at management consultancy bought by organisations in the UK in 2016 for example, Source Global Research estimates that independents supplied 20% of all consultancy bought by organisations, worth around £2 billion of the £9.75 billion total.
If this were translated to the wider market for professional services in the UK, valued by Source at around £215 billion in 2016, it would imply the UK professional "gig economy" - defined as project-based work - is already worth over £40 billion a year.
Adam Gates, Principal of Odgers Connect, commented, "An army of independent professionals and consultants is growing within both private and public-sector organisations.
“Brexit is accelerating this trend due to the uncertainty it is creating. Companies need professional support to navigate through these uncertain times, without increasing costs and headcount -further encouraging them to bring in independent operators."
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|Lucy Smith is the Managing Director for ContractorUmbrella Ltd, one of the UK’s Most Respected Umbrella Companies and founder member of AllUmbrellaCompaniesAreEqual. Learn more about Lucy on Google.|