Statutory definition of self-employment would clear up gig economy confusion


IPSE has called for a statutory definition of self-employment in response to Deliveroo’s submission to the Taylor review on modern employment practices. The Taylor review is expected to be launched in the coming days.

IPSE Chief Executive Chris Bryce said:

“Deliveroo’s suggestion that riders be given additional rights could be examined in terms of creating a wider worker employment status. However, IPSE is clear we do not want changes to the treatment of self-employed people that would threaten their inherent flexibility. As a starting point, we urge the government to adopt a statutory definition of self-employment to clarify who does and does not work for themselves.

“Being self-employed means being in control of when you work, how you work and who your clients and customers are. It also means you are responsible for saving for later life and being prepared for situations when you aren’t able to work. Self-employment can be hard work and it’s not for everyone, but increasing numbers of people are making the decision to take their destiny into their own hands. IPSE respects this and membership of IPSE can help the self-employed provide for themselves both in terms of saving for later life and preparing for times when they can’t work.

“The gig economy is a new and exciting part of the labour market. It provides freedom, flexibility and work opportunities to many people who might otherwise not have them. The many people working in the gig economy have helped swell the number of self-employed to over 4.8 million. However, these gig workers remain a very small part of the wider self-employed population. We shouldn’t forget the millions of plumbers, designers, consultants and builders who go into business for themselves and are fully aware that they have to stand on their own two feet.”

Meet the author

Chris Bryce

Chief Executive

Chris was one of the original 2,000 members of the organisation when it was formed as the Professional Contractors Group in 1999 and was a long-time contractor with a strong client base in global scale change management.

Before becoming a contractor Chris had a career in sales and marketing followed by 10 years in senior management in the logistics industry. Chris was appointed as Interim CEO in June 2013 and accepted the role permanently in December 2013.