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Many contractors find using an umbrella company an efficient way of outsourcing their payroll and HMRC headaches. We'll help you weigh your options.

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8 steps to taking guilt-free holidays as a contractor

As a contractor, lots of people think you have it easy – they’re wrong. Yes, there are plenty of benefits of being a contractor employee like higher pay and more flexibility. But none of these are a given. Everything you get is based on hard work. For starters, you’ve got long hours to contend with and hard deadlines to meet. Then there’s the time you invest in maintaining a steady work flow as well as managing your owns finances and taxes. Just like everyone else, you need to recharge your batteries from time to time. Here are 8 simple steps for taking holidays as a contractor.

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How to maintain a healthy work-life balance

When work ramps up, managing your own time can be tricky. Amidst the hard deadlines and long hours – not to mention the endless emails and client meetings – it’s easy to neglect that one person you might regularly overlook: you. Finding the right work-life balance can help you avoid burnout and boost productivity in your role. That’s why it’s important to set aside some time to hang out with friends or to chill out at home. Here are a few ways you can give your wellbeing and, in turn, your career a boost.

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11 ways to spot a bad client (before it’s too late)

Clients are people too you know. Somewhere beneath that starched suit and industry jargon is a human being with actual feelings…just like you and me. They’re not necessarily bad people, but sometimes personalities simply don’t gel. This might lead to repercussions at work such as missed deadlines, failed targets, late payments and unnecessary levels of stress. It doesn’t have to be like this. Nip it in the bud right away, just say “no”. Here are a few ways to tell when a client might not be a good fit for you.  

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The do’s and don’ts of building your CV and LinkedIn profile

Want to give your job search an edge? Of course, you do. Maybe it’s time to spruce up your CV and LinkedIn profile – it’s not really a case of one or the other, the pair go hand-in-hand. Most of the time you’ll be found on LinkedIn, then your CV will be read if the employer likes what they see online. So you’ll need to consider what to include and where to include it. Luckily, we’ve got your back. Here are a few do’s and don’ts that can make or break your application.

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How to invoice your client in 7 simple steps

Late hours? No problem. Early conference call? Of course. You love what you do. This is more than a career – it’s your passion. But let’s face it, you’re not running a charity. Everyone needs to get paid. Even a young Bill Gates needed some moolah to carry on the good work.

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Everything you need to know about becoming a medical locum

More and more healthcare staff are suffering from burnout and leaving the sector for good. In 2017, a survey of junior doctors found that 70% worked in permanently under-staffed conditions, 80% felt excessive work-related stress, and a quarter felt their job was damaging their mental health*. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way – after all, your health is important too.

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5 tips to succeed as a digital nomad

You live to travel. You love your job. Why not do both? With the right skills and a good internet connection, you can make a living anywhere. Hit deadlines from Delhi, present in Paris and Skype from Stockholm. Forget 9-5, take your office around the world. Soak up the sun on a pristine sandy beach or inhale crisp mountain air deep into your lungs – all while satisfying your passion for work and wanderlust. 

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The A-Z jargon buster: health insurance for contractors

Health insurance can be a bit of a minefield – choosing the right cover is hard enough without all that jargon. We’re here to make things simpler. Forget complicated industry terms. We’ve put together a list of important words and explained them in everyday language, so you can hit the ground running.

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Freelance life: the power of self-branding

If you’re thinking of making, or have already made the gigantic leap from employment to self-employed, you’re probably wondering how you can get your business off the ground and start winning freelance gigs.

Effective advertising and connecting your business with people will go a long way in ensuring the gigs are lined up, as will building your brand and social media presence.

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Maternity pay for the self-employed

When it comes to another mouth to feed in the family, the financial pressure can seem overwhelming, and that’s when you’ve got Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) coming in from an employer.

But you’ve given up being employed in favour of being self-employed – so who is going to provide the maternity pay? The brutal truth is that you aren’t entitled to maternity pay from an organisation if you’re a contractor – no matter how long you’ve been working there.

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IR35 explained

IR35: two letters and two numbers that are enough to strike fear in the hearts of the self-employed.

But fear not: Contractor Supermarket is on-hand to make IR35 easy.

IR35 is often bogged down with boring legal jargon and technicalities, which causes panic. Luckily, Contractor Supermarket doesn’t do jargon, doesn’t do boring, and doesn’t create unnecessary drama.

IR35 isn’t as complicated as it’s frequently made out to be.

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Tax saving tips

12 Tax Saving Tips for Small Businesses

Source: Competex

As a small business owner, there are many ways to save tax and become even more profitable in your business. However, with so much to do in your business and so many hats to wear, it can be difficult to keep track of which savings you are entitled to. With this in mind, you may wish to consider these tax-saving tips over the coming year. Whilst the individual savings may seem small they can add up, especially if claimed every tax year and by each director (where permissible).

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