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IR35:Orion prepared for off-payroll changes

07/12/20

Orion Group, is showing the recruitment industry how to successfully prepare for and manage changes to the off-payroll working rules

With thousands of contract workers out on assignment at any given time, Orion Group is one of a growing number of agencies that recognised the importance of preparing early for IR35 reform in the private sector which, after a 12-month deferral, will be rolled out on 6th April 2021. 

We realised that in order to continue placing contract workers and protect themselves from the risks of the IR35 legislation, which fee-paying recruiters will carry next year, a measured approach to the changes was required. 

However, despite having a fair understanding of the IR35 legislation already, Orion Group identified several challenges that the reform presents, explained HR Director and Group Deputy Managing Director, Ross MacRae:

“IR35 presents a range of challenges not limited to consistent application and interpretation, awareness, complexity, variations between public and private sector, time constraints, cost, uncertainty and threat to business.”

To manage the challenges, Orion Group approached the team at Qdos - with whom they already shared a successful relationship - to assist with their IR35 reform preparations. 

As one of the leading authorities on IR35, having specialised in the legislation since it was introduced in 2000, Qdos provided a range of leading IR35 solutions via the Qdos Status Review facility, which was designed to help businesses implement changes to the off-payroll working rules.

By working closely with the business, Qdos assisted six of Orion Group’s key clients with a compliant IR35 service before 6th April 2020, the date upon which the reform was initially due to be enforced. 

By adopting this approach, Orion Group’s Ross MacRae is confident the business has not only strengthened its relationships with important clients and ensured its IR35 compliance, but is also in a position to attract and retain the contractors it relies on.

“With an extensive contractor network along with Statement of Work activity, project work and large volumes of contracting assignments, Orion Group is well-placed to attract contractors. Many of the contractors on assignment have operated through us many times with different customers.”

Having already implemented the processes needed to minimise disruption and successfully navigate IR35 reform next year, Ross MacRae offered the following advice to other businesses gearing up for the changes:

“Ensure that you are provided with a robust proven process that contractually underwrites you and provides insurance protection. The Orion Group and Qdos partnership is an excellent example of this.”
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