Did you know that, by the start of 2014, the Department for Business Innovation and Skills estimated that 99.3% of UK private sector businesses were small and medium-sized enterprises (better known as SMEs)? Their combined £1.6 trillion annual turnover accounted for 47% of private sector turnover.
Despite all the political, social, and economic doom and gloom that wrapped around 2016 like a suffocating vine, Britain’s self-employed continued to rage against the dying of the light. Damian Hinds, the current Employment Minister, recently hailed “the resilience of the UK labour market”, citing the fact that Britain’s unemployment rate has fallen to 4.8% – its lowest level in over a decade. Coupled with that, the Office of National Statistics’ employment report for July – September 2016 revealed that the number of self-employed rose to 4.79 million, an increase of 213,000 for the year. That figure now equates to over 15% of the total UK workforce.
Why mention the above? Because instead of the recognition and support they deserve, contractors, freelancers and the self-employed found themselves under sustained attack in the 2016 Autumn Statement.
Regular readers of this blog will know that we held the first Kingsbridge No Email Day last month. Such was its success, we’ve decided to make it a (semi) regular occurrence. No Email Day II (all sequel-based puns welcome) arrives at Kingsbridge on Thursday 17th November. The rules remain the same – see below for our original rationale.
We’re throwing a little extra ‘carrot’ into the mix this time too – there’ll be treats laid on for all staff, and all workers will be encouraged to dress down for the day.
Expect an ecstatic review of NED II in due course.
As a rapidly growing company, we’re always on the lookout for new staff at Kingsbridge. In the last month or two we’ve added quite a few new faces to the team, and we wanted to take a minute to introduce you to our most recent recruits. Below, meet Sophie Harrington, Sean Walker, Tanya Walters, Tessa Whittock, and Ben Fox.
Name: Sophie Harrington
Job Role: Customer Services Administrator
Previous: Sophie joined the Kingsbridge team after six fruitful years at the John Lewis Partnership. She will be looking after the daily concerns of our client base, as well as making sure that all policies run smoothly. If you call Kingsbridge (and you’re more than welcome to – it’s 01242 808740) Sophie’s will likely be the first voice you hear.
Press Release: APSCo Affiliate of the Year awarded to recruitment specialists Kingsbridge Contractor Insurance
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday 18th October saw the second major award win of the year for the team at Kingsbridge Contractor Insurance. Following on from their triumph at the 2016 UK Broker Awards, where they won the prestigious Customer Service Award, Kingsbridge went on to collect the gong for Affiliate Member of the Year at the 2016 APSCo Awards for Excellence.
Fresh from our victorious evening at the 2016 UK Broker Awards (which you can read about here), we spent yesterday at the 2016 edition of the APSCo Awards for Excellence. Having spent the day in excellent company in the fine surrounds of the RBS Building in London’s Bishopsgate, we were delighted to pick up the award for Affiliate Member of the Year.
We’d like to say a big thank you to everyone at APSCo for the award, for their impeccable hosting skills, and for the lunchtime feast. We’d also like to thank the guest speaker, the ever insightful Andrew Burke. It was a pleasure seeing familiar faces and meeting new ones too.
To be recognised by APSCo, and to receive such a prestigious award, was a proud moment for everyone at Kingsbridge. We’re already looking forward to next year. Time for us to order a new trophy cabinet!
On 19th October Kingsbridge will be hosting our first No Email Day (inspired in no small part by Paul Lancaster’s original idea). We’ll be placing a block on internal emails only – emails out of the business will still be permitted. You might be thinking of doing your own, or just wondering what it might involve. Here’s how we’re doing it, and why:
That’s Isaac Newton’s Second Law of Motion – an equation that laid the foundation stone for classical mechanics. It’s unlikely that, back in 1687, Newton could have foreseen that this seminal piece of work would have been applied to 12 people running around a football pitch in Tewkesbury on a Wednesday evening encased in transparent plastic orbs, but it turns out that there are few better examples of force being the sum of mass multiplied by acceleration.
Friday 16th September marked the day of the 2016 edition of the prestigious UK Broker Awards. Kingsbridge were nominated in four categories – the Digital Broker Award, the Best Employer Award, the Customer Service Award, and The Broker’s Insurer of the Year. We were delighted to take home the trophy for Customer Service, triumphing against some hardy competition. It was a just reward for the tremendous hard work our team put in every day, and we were particularly pleased to be recognised for our contribution by our peers and contemporaries within the industry.
Kingsbridge sent a delegation of 10 to attend and much fun was had by all. Expertly compered by Romesh Ranganathan, the day was a great success full of great food, sharp suits, and the occasional misplaced bid on a signed Eric Cantona shirt. We’d like to send a hearty congratulations to our fellow winners and nominees, and a big thanks to the team behind the awards for a superbly orchestrated day. Enjoy a selection of photos from the event below. Here’s to next year!
The idea of Legal Expenses cover may seem a bit scary, especially if you are just starting out as a contractor. After all, we’re sure you don’t intend on getting embroiled in any legal battles!
But, intentions aside, being a contractor does carry risks and it can be unexpectedly easy to find yourself in the middle of an unforeseen dispute — whether because of something you’ve done, or even because of something a client has done.