The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE) has set up a new advisory committee to help the hundreds of thousands of flexible workers currently working in the construction sector.
The Construction Advisory Committee aims to develop research and policy and provide contractors in construction with a stronger voice. Workers in construction often have to face additional challenges compared to those in other sectors and committee chair David Jackson said it is “high time that they are regarded as an asset to the UK economy.”
The new committee consists of several industry experts, including tax firm Deloitte, client companies and academics. They will look at key police issues affecting contractors throughout the year before reporting their views to freelancer representative group IPSE.
The first meeting took place earlier this month and those present discussed tax simplification legislation, ongoing skills shortages and concerns that freelancers in construction still struggle to be recognised as genuinely self-employed by HMRC.
IPSE chief executive Chris Bryce said: “People working for themselves in the construction industry face a specific set of challenges, such as overcoming stereo-typical views, finding affordable training opportunities, and skills shortages. They also have to operate with the additional burden of the Construction Industry Scheme.”
He added: “This important section of the freelance community is vital to the future growth of the economy.”
There are currently around 640,000 contractors and freelancers in the construction sector, which equates to 14% of the self-employed workforce in the UK.