Contracting FAQs 

 

What does contracting actually mean?

What are the pros and cons of contracting?

Should I set up using an umbrella or limited company?

How do I register with Huntswood?

How do I get paid?

What do I need for referencing and vetting?

What does the credit check look for and what does it mean?

Why professional indemnity insurance of £1million?

Why do you need a copy of a cheque/paying-in slip?

Do I need to be VAT registered?

What is IR35 and how does it affect me?

Can you provide me with a reference?

Where can I find Huntswood's company policies?

Is my personal data stored securely?

Who sees your personal data and how is it used?

Your data protection rights

Contacting Huntswood

 

What does contracting actually mean?

As a contractor you are not an employee of Huntswood - instead, you are ‘contracted’ to work with Huntswood. Often, contractors work on a specific project that lasts a certain period of time. With Huntswood, contractors typically work on three to six month projects, for example. There are two options when setting up as a Huntswood contractor - either use an umbrella company or set up a limited company. Read more here.

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What are the pros and cons of contracting?

These days, the employment market is far more transient than it once was. Long-term job security is certainly becoming a thing of the past. So the benefits of contracting are attractive to many. More money, the possibility of increased flexibility and getting a wider set of skills are just some of the attractions. However, there are downsides too. For example, you don’t get paid for holidays – so if you don’t work, you don’t earn. Plus, you may not always have a contract, which means you must prepare financially for the times when you don’t have work.

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Should I set up using an umbrella or limited company?

All our contractors must use either an umbrella company or set up a limited company. But what’s the difference and what does it mean to you? Read more here. We always recommend that you take professional advice before making a decision.

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How do I register with Huntswood?

To kick the process off, submit your CV

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How do I get paid?

We ask all contractors to complete a timesheet for each day they work. They can do this through our easy-to-use online portal.

If you are using JSA Services Limited as your umbrella company, you will be paid on the third Friday of each month (for the previous month worked). For example, the time you worked in October would be paid on 21st November. Payment to a limited company, or any other umbrella company is made on the last working day of the month (for the previous month worked). So, the time you worked in October would be paid on the last working day of November.

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What do I need for referencing and vetting?

Both permanent and contracting staff are required to pass our referencing and vetting checks. These can vary depending on the assignment you work on, but will typically include:

  • Passport
  • Visa check*
  • Proof of address (utility bill from last three months)
  • Qualification certificate
  • Completed Registration form and ‘Fit and Proper’ form
  • Confidentiality Agreement

*Scanned using our L1 ID official document scanner to verify the MRZ, font and paper authenticity)

Once you’ve passed the assessment, we complete the following checks:

  • Worldcheck (including Sanctions and Politically Exposed People)
  • Directorship Check
  • Insolvency Check
  • Fraud database Check
  • Credit Check using Equifax (including linked addresses, death check and alias information)
  • Five years of employment and education verified with company checks
  • Three years of employment references

Finally, once you are confirmed to start we check:

  • Limited company / Umbrella certificate
  • Business bank account verification
  • VAT Certificate (if applicable)
  • Personal Indemnity (PI) Insurance of at least £1million

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What does the credit check look for and what does it mean? 

As we provide financial services firms with professional contractors, we carry out the FCA-required credit check on their behalf. This is to make sure that you are what the regulator calls ‘fit and proper’. But don’t worry, these checks don’t leave a footprint or any information that other organisations can see. And it’s worth noting that CCJs and bankruptcy will not preclude you from our database, whereas not declaring them might.

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Why professional indemnity insurance of £1million?

You only need to take out professional indemnity insurance if you are contracting with us through a limited company, as it is used to protect your limited company; umbrella companies will have this in place for you already. Should the client be unhappy with the standard of your work, for example, they are entitled to take your company to court - even sue you for compensation and court costs. Personal indemnity insurance will help protect you. The £1million level was set on advice from our solicitors and our own insurance provider.

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Why do you need a copy of a cheque/paying-in slip?

We must prove that we only pay into business bank accounts. The bank account details alone are insufficient in assuring us that all accounts are business accounts. So a cheque or paying-in slip will prove to us and the Inland Revenue that we only pay into business bank accounts (and therefore you will not be considered to be a “quasi employee”.)

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Do I need to be VAT registered? 

VAT registration is only necessary when you intend to charge VAT and is subject to certain earnings thresholds. Seeking the advice of an accountant is recommended. This helps you make sure you register for VAT at a time that is beneficial for your company.

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What is IR35 and how does it affect me?

IR35 are the Inland Revenue guidelines governing contractors that work through a limited company. The good news is that our contracts are IR35 friendly. However, the Inland Revenue may take an independent look at your business and how you run it. As such, we recommend you take the advice of an accountant to guide you through the IR35 legislation.

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Can you provide me with a reference?

We are only able to give a reference for your limited company seeing as that’s who the contract is with. We can only confirm factual information such as, for example, dates of project.

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Where can I find Huntswood's company policies?

We will give you copies of the Huntswood policies that you need to comply with, such as our Health & Safety and Information Security policies. If you are working at a client site then you’ll also need to comply with their policies, and these will be provided to you at the start of your assignment.

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Is my personal data stored securely?

We take your personal information seriously and go to great lengths to protect it. We comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 and all subsequent amendments to this Act. You’ll find more detail around how we collect, use and disseminate your personal data below.

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Who sees your personal data and how is it used?

We use your CV to send to companies, and we use your personal details for referencing and vetting. As the owner of your CV, we believe that you should be in full control of its contents and who sees it, so we will always ask your permission before sending on. Only current (authorised) Huntswood employees have access to other personal data. This is held so that we can supply information to credit reference agencies, and data to JSA Services Limited (if you choose them as your umbrella company) so that they can pay you. If you prefer to provide this information yourself though, just let us know.

We will also send you positions that we think you’ll find interesting. You can unsubscribe at any time by just emailing us at cv@huntswood.com. And if you want to be taken off our database altogether, simply send an email to the same address.

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Your data protection rights

In accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 you, the data subject, can ask to view all documentation we hold at any time. Huntswood reserves the right to charge the sum of £10.00 for this request.

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Contacting Huntswood

If you have any questions about this privacy statement or the practices of this Site, you can contact:

Data Controller
Huntswood CTC Limited
Abbey Gardens
Abbey Street
Reading
Berkshire
RG1 3BA

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