Independent review into self-employment announced

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A review into measures to support the self-employed has been launched

The government has announced the creation of a new independent review that will examine the pressures faced by self-employed individuals across the country, as well as the future measures that could better support these people to follow their dreams.

Figures collated by the Office for National Statistics show that currently one in seven people in employment are working for themselves - the equivalent of 4.5 million people nationwide.

As such, the government is now taking its responsibility to support those keen to pursue their entrepreneurial spirit very seriously.

Leading entrepreneur Julie Deane, founder of The Cambridge Satchel Company, has been tasked with carrying out the review, which will focus on three key areas:

  1. Examining the reasons why individuals choose to embrace a self-employed position, as well as the types of roles they typically embrace, such as freelancing, sole traders and those who simply work for themselves.
  2. The review will look into the challenges faced by those that are self-employed, especially at the stage of setting up their business and when trying to expand.
  3. Ultimately, the role of the review will be to put forward key recommendations as to how the government can better support this group in the future.

Looking forward to the challenge, Ms Deane commented: "Having grown my business to employ more than 130 people and selling to over 120 countries, I have a clear idea of the way in which government can better support the self-employed.

"I hope this review will help others in the future to turn their ideas into successful businesses."

She added the business landscape of the UK has changed dramatically over the last ten years, with self-employment becoming a much more viable option for countless people. It is therefore important that challenges being faced by this group are now more widely understood.

Prime minister David Cameron was pleased to announce Ms Deane as the chair of this new independent review, with her extensive experience particularly highlighted as a cause for optimism that the review will be prove a success.

He noted that the chief aim of this consultation will be to deliver "more security and peace of mind for people wanting to work for themselves" in the year ahead.

Echoing Mr Cameron's sentiment, business secretary Sajid Javid stated: "The government is on the side of working people.

"As part of our aim to achieve full employment, we want to create an environment that supports people who want to work hard and strike out on their own and make the UK the best place in Europe to start and grow a business."

The independent review is now underway and its preliminary findings are expected to be published in early 2016.