by Claire Shoesmith
What has the potential to impact the contract and permanent employment markets in opposite ways at the same time? No, this isn’t a joke, it is...
What has the potential to impact the contract and permanent employment markets in opposite ways at the same time? No, this isn’t a joke, it is a serious question to which the answer is the upcoming changes to the UK’s IR35 legislation.
From April 6th, private sector companies will be responsible for determining the IR35 status of their current and future contractors. As a result, the number of so-called ‘off payroll’ contractors is expected to dwindle, making it harder for organisations to fill highly-skilled project-based technical roles. To take them on as permanent employees, which would be welcomed in today’s tight recruitment market, organisations will need to pay more to compensate for the loss of the benefits associated with being self-employed (not paying tax or national insurance contributions).
The latest changes to the IR35 legislation are designed to remove the tax advantages of providing services via a limited company for individuals who are not truly working for themselves. In other words, those employees whose working practices are more akin to those of traditional employees.
The changes were introduced in the public sector in April 2017 and are due to come into effect in the private sector in April this year. From then, the responsibility for declaring tax status will lie with the organisation rather than the individual. The change has prompted many large businesses, including HSBC, Barclays and Lloyds, to consider the way they work with contractors and in the majority of cases, to make a blanket statement saying that they will no longer be engaging with contractors via their own personal service companies (PSCs).
While the actual impact of the changes on the private sector are yet to be seen, we can learn from the experiences of the public sector. Nearly three years into the new regime and the changes have been blamed for a series of delays to public sector IT programmes. A report by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and the association of Independent Professionals and Self-Employed (IPSE) published in June 2018 found that nearly three quarters of public sector hiring managers reported challenges in retaining contractors. It also found that more than half believed they had lost contractors due to the legislative changes.
Moreover, figures released by the UK’s Office of National Statistics (ONS) in November showed that after a decade-long boom in IT contractors, the number of freelance technology workers fell by 2.4% to 121,989 in 2018, compared with the previous year.
While the new regime is without doubt the most fundamental change to the operations of IR35 since its inception, it doesn’t necessarily spell the death of the contractor. Many of these highly-skilled and very valuable individuals will be able to continue contracting via their Limited Companies, provided the end clients can provide recruitment agencies with an IR35 status determination. Companies not willing to embrace the changes will look to force contractors into permanent roles or make them switch to Umbrella companies.
Simon Nicholls, practice manager for the contract recruitment market at Franklin Fitch, says: “We’re seeing a lot of panic from both our clients and the contractors we work with around the IR35 changes. However, if companies have a mechanism to assess IR35 status in a genuine, fair and pragmatic way then it should be business as usual.
“This is where we are educating clients currently in the hope that contractors can continue working in the same way, and clients have access to the vital flexible resources needed.”
As the saying goes, one man’s loss is another man’s gain. In this situation, while the contractor market may be at risk of losing some valuable assets, there’s every chance that the permanent market could reap the benefits as the tight employment market – unemployment is at its lowest for over 70 years - forces organisations to do whatever they can to ensure they attract and retain the best talent.
by Claire Shoesmith
A new year, a new you, or so the saying goes. For some this will mean a new job, for others it will be new resolutions, but for the remainder, it...
A new year, a new you, or so the saying goes. For some this will mean a new job, for others it will be new resolutions, but for the remainder, it will simply be a continuation of the same, picking up where they left off sometime before Christmas. Even if it’s the latter, there’s no room for complacency. The IT world is constantly changing, and so should you if you want to keep on top of your game and get the most out of 2020.
Whilst we at Franklin Fitch have many skills, unfortunately crystal-ball reading isn’t one of them. However, being involved in two of the fastest moving industries – IT Infrastructure and recruitment, we have no doubt that 2020 is set to be an exciting year. So, what do we expect the first year of the new decade to bring, and more importantly, what can you do to ensure you stay ahead?
Here we look at the five top trends we expect to be dominating the market over the next 12 months and how we believe you can use them to your advantage.
There are several reasons for this: unemployment is at its lowest rate for more than 40 years (the latest figures from the UK’s Office of National Statistics (ONS) released in December show the unemployment rate fell to 3.8%, its lowest level since 1974) and the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Britain’s departure from the EU. The upcoming change to the IR35 legislation is also having an impact, but we will examine this in more detail in another article.
Finding individuals with the required skills and experience to fill roles in cutting-edge sectors, such as serverless and cloud technology, DevOps, containerisation, networking and cyber security has never been easy, but it’s now harder than ever. Not only are there not enough Britons out there seeking these positions, but we are now faced with a likely shortage of skilled migrant workers thanks to the uncertainty around Britain’s future immigration policy. While there is much talk of an Australian-style point-based system, which would allow those with the necessary skills to take these roles, David Annable, Franklin Fitch’s founder, says that all the uncertainty is reducing the attractiveness of the UK as a place for non-Britons to work.
While the tight market makes it more difficult for businesses looking to hire highly-skilled security architects, network engineers or chief information (security) officers, it is also an opportunity for the UK’s top technology talent.
The knock-on effect of a shortage of candidates is obviously an increase in salaries. With fewer people to fill the roles, particularly in the highly-skilled areas of networks, servers, security or data, it goes without saying that those individuals capable of doing the job will need to be paid more to attract them to, and keep them in, the role.
Another feature of a tight employment market is that it places the power very firmly in the hands of the candidate. Employers will need to work harder to attract and retain the right people, says Annable.
Training and development will be key to ensuring employees remain engaged and hopefully prevent them being enticed away to other roles. In our 2019 Market and Skills Report, the opportunity to progress featured highly, just behind salary, in the rankings of what candidates consider to be most important when choosing a new job.
Getting the right work-life balance has long been a talking point. While no definitive solution to the age-old challenge has been found, organisations have become much more open to alternative ways of working, including flexible hours, job sharing and the option to work from home. This is understandably not an option for all roles, but in today’s tight job market, organisations are going to have to pay more attention to the requests of individual employees and seek to accommodate their demands to attract the top talent. Again this offers a great opportunity for job seekers.
Improving diversity and inclusion is not just a box-ticking exercise. Organisations are at last starting to realise the benefits of a diverse workforce. According to the latest figures from the UK’s Office of National Statistics (ONS), just over half of the 6.5 million Britons working in professional occupations are women. While this is indeed progress, it has unfortunately not filtered through to the IT and telecommunications’ sectors, where the ratio is just one in six.
However, the IT sector fares better when it comes to ethnic diversity, with the latest ONS figures showing that of the 1.84 million professionals who work in science, engineering and technology, 85.1% are white, compared with 87.6% across the UK workforce as a whole.
While the debate rumbles on as to how to achieve increased diversity in gender, ability, ethnicity and sexual orientation, you can expect organisations to try their own variations of quotas and targets to help achieve their goal. For some individuals, this will be an opportunity.
To conclude, there is no doubt that the tight employment market offers highly-skilled IT candidates the chance to shine and move ahead of the curve, but they aren't the only ones. The market situation also creates a significant opportunity for recruiters to face up to the challenge of finding the right person for the right role in a market where organisations themselves are likely to struggle.
If 2020 is looking like a good year for candidates, then it's also not looking too bad for recruiters.....
by Leonie Schaefer
We are mid-way through January and Blue Monday (voted as the most depressing day of the year) is just around the corner. Even though the...
We are mid-way through January and Blue Monday (voted as the most depressing day of the year) is just around the corner. Even though the festivities are well and truly over and the cold weather is here to stay, that doesn't mean that you should let your mood fall at work. Here are our top tips on how to stay happy at work this January.
Keep your desk as tidy as possible and manage your time to avoid stress. If you have a plan for your day you will feel prepared and work effectively.
Exercising at work can be difficult and it isn’t 100% necessary, but research says staying physically active can improve your mood and performance. Even just standing up at your table or walking around for a few minutes every now and then is better than nothing.
Take care of your professional development. In today’s working world experience is key, so ask for training opportunities to develop and improve your skills.
Ask for Feedback
In order to improve your skills, it's important to look for constructive criticism. If you ask your supervisors for feedback on your performance you might even be praised, which is always a little motivation booster.
Talk to your colleagues
Keeping a good relationship with your colleagues will brighten up your mood every day. It also helps you make yourself more comfortable in your workplace.
If you dread coming into work on a Monday morning, perhaps you're not getting the job satisfaction that you deserve in your current role. We have loads of amazing opportunities available, whether you're an IT Infrastructure professional or looking to start a career in recruitment - feel free to get in touch.
by Leonie Schaefer
One of the most important things within the application process is your CV. It’s the first impression you make on a potential new employer....
One of the most important things within the application process is your CV. It’s the first impression you make on a potential new employer. Here are our top tips on how to make it a good one.
Nearly there! Do’s and Don’ts before sending your CV out
Done? Perfect! Now send it off and let us take care of the next steps! If you have any further questions concerning your CV before sending it to us, feel free to get in touch. We are happy to help!
Currently looking for a new role? Feel free to send us your CV or call us to see what opportunities we might have for you! We specialise in IT Networking, Server, Database and InfoSec.
by Leonie Schaefer
Diversity an inclusion are very important topics for businesses across all industries. We want to shine a light on the topic specifically for those...
Diversity an inclusion are very important topics for businesses across all industries. We want to shine a light on the topic specifically for those working within IT Infrastructure.
We’ve seen a lot of women in tech initiatives over the years yet still only 10% of participants in this market and skills report were female. Although we were hoping that this is not a representative number, day to day conversations with industry specialist show a similar result.
We are supporting events like CYBERWOMEN 2019 in Germany and hope that initiatives like these will give women and girls the confidence to take on a career in IT Infrastructure.
Although we are huge fans of initiatives encouraging women and girls in tech, we think that this is not enough. Diversity & Inclusion is not only about the female-male divide. It is about tackling biases based on gender, race, religion, ethnicity, disability, sexual preference and age (just to name a few) and ending discrimination completely.
We would like to provide a platform for those working within or interested in IT Infrastructure to share their experiences with us and to come up with possible solutions together.
We are conducting interviews with industry experts who are willing to give us their opinions and insights on diversity and inclusion within IT Infrastructure.
Interested? Contact Leonie Schaefer for more information +44 203 696 7950, firstname.lastname@example.org.
by Sian Llewellyn
There are many reasons why Graduates should look to recruitment as their first step into the working environment. The traditional image of...
There are many reasons why Graduates should look to recruitment as their first step into the working environment. The traditional image of recruitment is changing. What used to be a “plan B” career is fast becoming the occupation of choice. Why?
More companies are using recruiters due to the high demand for talented people in the industry. Recruitment consultants use their knowledge, expertise and judgment to match talented candidates to business’ job opportunities. Most companies have realised that their most valuable asset for success is their employees, giving recruiters the change to make a real impact on the economy and business growth.
Agencies are not only seeking the skilled candidates for their clients but looking for the top talent to join their own workforces. There is a significant demand for enthusiastic, ambitious professionals who are self-driven, hardworking and want to “be their own boss”. Recruitment companies are looking for those personalities that can build rapport, handle negotiations, influence and manage relationships.
Here are 8 reasons why recruitment is a good career move for you:
by David Annable
It was a fantastic night at Recruiter Magazine’s Investing in Talent Awards where we were delighted to pick up the award for Best Company...
It was a fantastic night at Recruiter Magazine’s Investing in Talent Awards where we were delighted to pick up the award for Best Company to Work For (11-49 employees) as well as being shortlisted for two other awards.
In what was the most competitive category on the night, with 10 consultancies shortlisted, the award recognises the recruitment company “that provides the most effective work environment, incentives, benefits, professional development/training, internal communications, ‘best practice’-orientated management, inclusion, and social responsibility activity.”
The evening didn’t get off to the best start for one of the team, Chris, realising that his newly purchased suit still had the security tag attached. A dash to Oxford Circus was needed, and all was quickly forgotten when the Franklin Fitch name was announced and the team proudly walked up on stage to pick up the trophy.
Dave Annable who collected the award with the team from Hays’ Director of People & Culture, Trisha Brooke reacted to the recognition with pride:
“I was genuinely surprised when we were announced as winners, we’ve been working hard to build a great business, and to receive some external validation and recognition is fantastic. The whole team are bought into our vision and we are committed to the ongoing development of each person working for us, whatever their role.
We have ambitious growth plans for all of our offices in Europe and the US, so hopefully the 2019 awards will see Franklin Fitch feature in the 50 – 99 headcount category!”
We’d like to thank Recruiter Magazine for putting on an excellent evening and congratulate all other winners and shortlisted companies and individuals.
by Oliver Neukamm
For many, when they hear or read the word ‘Brexit’ they roll their eyes with disillusionment of the ongoing saga. After all, it has been...
For many, when they hear or read the word ‘Brexit’ they roll their eyes with disillusionment of the ongoing saga. After all, it has been 36 months since the United Kingdom voted to leave the EU and it is still no closer to recognising what that may mean – or even if it will happen.
But it would be remiss not to understand that it affects people. People who have ambition, dreams, careers, relationships and families.
At Franklin Fitch we have a presence in the UK and Europe. We work together, overcome challenges together and celebrate successes together. This is down to our people.
A number of these people are EU citizens living and working in the UK with genuine concerns around Brexit and what it may mean for them. One of these individuals is Oliver Neukamm, who has worked at Franklin Fitch in London since January 2017. He reflected after Theresa May’s recent crushing defeat in Parliament after MPs voted on her negotiated Withdrawal Agreement:
“I’m disappointed and astonished at how the country seems to be dismantling itself.
I’m currently enjoying my work and have had a very successful career to date in the UK. Myself and my partner (a British citizen) are currently in the process of purchasing a property so I want to be here for a while longer! I’m lucky in the sense that I have the security that Franklin Fitch will support me and sort out any visa requirements should they be needed, but I can imagine that many others in similar situations are more concerned.
From my point of view a ‘No Deal Brexit’ wouldn’t be good for anyone and I personally don’t think it will happen when it comes to the crunch. I hope that the current political purgatory ends as soon as possible to give everyone some clarity and security.”
Oliver’s comments first appeared in the German newspaper, Frankfurter Allgemeine on the 16th of January.
by Leonie Schaefer
Franklin Fitch, the IT Infrastructure specialists have launched their fifth international office, and first outside of Europe, in Austin, Texas. With...
Franklin Fitch, the IT Infrastructure specialists have launched their fifth international office, and first outside of Europe, in Austin, Texas. With established offices in London, Frankfurt, Cardiff and Vienna, Franklin Fitch’s expansion into the United States comes during a period rapid growth in terms of headcount and financial performance.
Jordan Guttridge who has been with the business for four years will be joined by Matthew Forshaw who has over 10 years recruitment experience with four of them based in Texas. Managing the operation will be Steven Ewer who has been a director at Franklin Fitch since 2013 and is excited about the new venture:
“Establishing a presence in the US has always been a part of the Franklin Fitch growth strategy. We didn’t want to jump into such a big move until we knew we had the right team, infrastructure and opportunity. We have that now.
Being true specialists in the areas of networking, systems infrastructure and cyber security means we can carve out a real niche in these markets and we’re determined to offer a real focused offering to the US market. In Jordan and Matthew, we have experienced and ambitious individuals who will go that extra mile for candidates and clients as well as provide the platform for Franklin Fitch’s growth in Texas and beyond.”
David Annable, founder of Franklin Fitch, says that he believes that the latest office will emulate the existing offices that have performed so well since they launched:
“This year our business performance has consistently exceeded expectations and I’m confident that the newly formed Austin team will follow in the footsteps of its European counterparts. We’ve invested significantly in our people development, brand and systems infrastructure over the past 12 months and it’s great to see it now paying dividends. The US is another exciting marketplace, offering further opportunity to our existing team but also playing a vital role when attracting external talent to Franklin Fitch. We work hard daily to fulfil our vision, and this really is a giant leap in the right direction.”
About Franklin Fitch:
Founded in 2011, Franklin Fitch is a specialist recruiter in IT Infrastructure, covering the networking, systems infrastructure and cyber security markets across the UK, Germany, Austria and United States.
by Xenia Armbrust
As attractive as a counter-offer may seem, you should seriously consider if it’s wise to accept it. If you have already decided to move on from...
As attractive as a counter-offer may seem, you should seriously consider if it’s wise to accept it. If you have already decided to move on from your current job, you shouldn’t let anyone change your mind.
As soon as you hand in your notice, a lot of bosses will try and convince you to stay – the standard counter-offers include higher salary, more training and development, more new technologies, etc.
So your mind starts wandering: “What if they are right?” “Should I give my old job a second chance?” “Who knows, what the new job might be like – it could be even worse than the current one…”
Please stop this thought process right now! Counter-offers have a lot of traps that you might not detect at first. In most cases, people regret accepting counter-offers.
Why does your employer only react to your wishes now?
Counter-offers are quite a common thing – and here’s why:
Let’s imagine you accept the counter-offer – what happens next?
Your boss is happy you stayed, and he doesn’t have to replace you, so he pays more attention to you and your needs for a while. You might get that pay rise, better working hours and that long-desired bonus. Then your boss eventually realises – you wanted to leave. So, he will keep a close eye on you and what you do: a person that decided to leave once might do it again. Unfortunately, that makes you a very unsafe candidate for any upcoming promotions – because if they invest in you today how do they know you won’t take your expertise to a competitor tomorrow. Chances are, your boss only wants to keep you until he has found the right replacement. Once you realise what’s happening – the job offer you secured back when you decided to leave will be long gone.
Why is your employer only appreciating your value now?
Receiving a pay rise is a nice perk – but was the pay rise really the reason you wanted to leave in the first place? Money is important, but usually there are more reasons for an employee to leave: no career progression, no work-life-balance, not enough appreciation, bad atmosphere within the team, feeling bored or overwhelmed with the tasks. If you are now still considering accepting the counter-offer from your boss, then please make sure you mention the other issues you have within the company – more money alone won’t make you happy. In a lot of cases, and we are speaking from experience, accepting a counter-offer has made candidates unhappier rather than happier.
If you are looking for a new position within IT Infrastructure, contact Xenia Kusainov today or browse our current vacancies here.
by Leonie Schaefer
Today’s the day – 32 countries from all over the world are about to compete in one of the most renowned tournaments on the planet. Entering for Franklin Fitch this year will be Team #Germany, Team #England, Team #Wales and Team #Austria. “4 Locations?!”, you say? – Yes, that’s correct! We’ve grown a lot over the last few years not just in the number of consultants, but also in experience, market knowledge, internationality, and languages we speak. (9. We speak 9 languages 😊: German, English, Russian, Arabic, Spanish, French, Swedish, Greek and Welsh of course!)
Since we started in 2011, we have used the international football tournaments (previous UEFA Euros and FIFA World Cups) for team motivational purposes. And since the official Panini FIFA World Cup Collector’s Sticker Albums have always played a big role in this, we wanted to honour this by changing our profile pictures for the duration of the FIFA Football World Cup in Russia. Let us know what you think!
by Charlotte Drury
Are you a Network Visionary?
The Network Architect
Do you want a thriving IT career? This is the roadmap to becoming a successful Network...
Are you a Network Visionary?
The Network Architect
Do you want a thriving IT career? This is the roadmap to becoming a successful Network Architect.
Compared to a traditional Network Engineer, who is focused on implementing and troubleshooting, a Network Architect designs computer networks. This means constructing layouts for the usage of hardware and software and creating models to predict future network needs, using network modeling tools such as Opnet, OMNeT++ and NS2. Furthermore, architects are involved in the analysis of business requirements, project planning and budgeting, and often require softer skills including stakeholder management to complement their technical abilities. This requires a lot of diplomacy and consultancy skills.
But, Network Architects are among the highest paid employees in the IT-world.
Skills & Certifications:
The role of a Network Architect usually requires a bachelor’s degree. Furthermore, several network certifications are highly recommended. These include Expert level certifications, such as Cisco Certified Design Expert (CCDE) or Cisco Certified Internet Expert (CCIE). Also beneficial are certifications such as ITIL and TOGAF or even the Cisco Certified Architect (CCAr).
Knowledge in key areas such as cloud computing, virtualization, programming, security and application design are also in high demand.
However, it should not be forgotten that building your experience is as important as having a degree.
If you put in the time and effort into gaining professional skills, certifications and experience in the networking field, the position of Network Architect could be the ultimate goal in your IT career.
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