How to choose an Employment Umbrella Company

When it comes to payroll providers, your main options are PAYE through your agency or an Employment Umbrella company.

There are plenty of Umbrella companies out there and choosing the right one is an important decision for you and your career. Furthermore, it’s one that could have a major impact on your financial future. The best Employment Umbrella companies can offer you security, rewards, and all the benefits of full-time employment, while the worst could cost you a fortune.

Read on for the five things to look for when choosing an Employment Umbrella company.

1. Compliance

Compliance is crucial, as it’s you who ultimately stands to be investigated if there’s any wrongdoing. So, do your due diligence; press your Employment Umbrella company on their marketing claims, and check whether or not they’re independently audited. After all, it’s your livelihood and you need to be sure you’re dealing with a provider whose affairs are clean, clear and above board.

Don’t forget, all Umbrella companies are governed by the same HMRC rules. More often than not, if your potential provider promises things like ‘receipt-less expenses’ or noticeably high take-home pay, it’s probably best to steer clear.

2. Reputation

If you’re looking for an Umbrella company, you’re in the unique position of being able to select your own employer. For that reason, you should grasp this opportunity and make sure you get it right. You need a well-established brand with a distinguished reputation because you don’t want to be left out of pocket by an unknown, non-compliant provider.

It’s also worth noting that some agencies receive a commission for endorsing certain Umbrella companies, meaning impartiality and authenticity are reduced when it comes to their recommendations.

3. Approach

It’s important to find the right balance when shopping for employment providers. For instance, you need a company with a structured, professional approach, who also offer that personal touch. Whilst you may pay less for fully automated or online only solutions, being able to interact and discuss your position with an expert advisor can make all the difference. Dedicated payroll teams, HR departments, and experienced personnel will look after your interests in a way no faceless automated system could.

4. Cost

Company margins (which are retained to cover the admin costs of processing necessary deductions and sending them to HMRC) are the only variable that should differ between providers.

Take our advice, avoid those Umbrella companies with entry fees, exit fees, or minimum term tie-ins. You might also want to rule out companies that link their fees to your rate; these can be particularly costly, with your fees possibly rising along with rate increases. Remember, it’s you who’s doing the work. Make sure you select a provider with clearly defined, fixed fee structures in place.

5. Benefits

Statutory Employment Rights: When you join an Umbrella company, you ought to have your statutory employment rights conveyed to you. This includes things like sick pay, holiday pay, maternity pay and paternity pay.

Continuity of Employment: That sense of security is something that Umbrella companies are able to provide to freelancers, contractors and the self-employed. Whilst you might have multiple contracts in the pipeline, you’ll only ever have one employer, which as a result will make it easier to borrow money or apply for a mortgage, for example.

HR Support: As with ‘regular’ employees, Umbrella employees should have access to a professional HR department to support them if things don’t run as smoothly as expected. The support can be anything from notice pay disputes to unfair dismissal, and the quality of your support will, of course, vary between providers depending on the company’s stature and experience.

Expenses: A good Umbrella company should discuss your eligibility to claim certain work-related expenses. Likewise, they will advise you about your employment status, in terms of SDC, to ensure you are compliant with HMRC’s rules.

Insurance: Whichever Umbrella company you choose as your employer, you’re going to need insurance. Certain Umbrella companies provide necessary cover, as standard, to enable you to perform your work safely and securely. Your Umbrella company may also provide additional cover such as health, life and accident insurance, at no extra cost.

Why Choose Danbro?

Here at Danbro, we offer a wide selection of employment solutions. In addition, they all include the benefits of full-time employment,  such as statutory payments, holiday pay, and our private pension scheme. We’re here to support your contracting career, provide employment benefits, take care of your admin and, most importantly, pay you on time and in full.

Here’s a brief summary of what our Employment Umbrella solution has to offer:
  • Weekly payments, with mobile alerts
  • Danbro Rewards
  • BUPA Cash Plan
  • Full statutory employment rights
  • Danbro One pension scheme
  • Personal accident cover
  • Public Liability, Professional Indemnity & Employers’ Liability insurance
  • Dedicated customer care team
  • Discounted Self-Assessment tax return
  • Online timesheet portal
  • No set-up costs, no exit costs, no tie-in period
So, if you decide that our Employment Umbrella is right for you, get in touch today. Our dedicated team will give you a full consultation to help find the most suitable solution. You’ll also receive a sample calculation to give you an idea of your take-home pay.

Finally, registration to our Employment Umbrella is swift, simple and stress-free. We can get you set up in a matter of minutes. Call us now on 01253 600 140, or click here to register online.
Blog written by
Sam Wright
Marketing Manager at

Sam Wright is Danbro’s Marketing Manager. He produces regular content and feature articles on our digital and non-digital channels – and social platforms – for the Danbro Group and its subsidiaries, as well as having responsibility for the Company’s internal and external communications.

His background is in Journalism and Creative Writing, having previously contributed to publications such as The Daily Post, The Lancashire Evening Post, and The Blackpool Gazette.

He is a keen swimmer and avid Manchester United fan (but don’t hold that against him), and he lives in Lancashire with his wife, Sarah.

Share This Post