Self employed contractor

Building a digital product in an analogue industry

“And this is the reason they want to speak to you, it’s all about the upsell!”

Hello everyone, this is another article from me but not about legislation or comparing solutions. I want to take some time and tell you about the journey Cool Company and I took to create what I believe to be a revolutionary solution we now have available to contractors. 

Let me set the current scene in the UK and international umbrella company market. If you want to join an umbrella solution, your options are to call them or fill in an online form and wait for them to call you. It’s a bit old fashioned, but there is a reason for this.

Most businesses are dual-purpose having both umbrella and limited company accountancy services in their product set. And limited company customers stay with the supplier far longer than an umbrella customer.

And this is the reason they want to speak to you, it’s all about the upsell! Now I’m not saying there isn’t a benefit to the contractor, and in fact, there are many. But, not everyone qualifies and in a solution based industry, they want the chance to sell all of the solutions.

This is why the umbrella industry has let its self stay behind some of the more tech-based industries when it comes to customer experience. While a conversation is great, the modern-day customer likes the minimal contact approach. We live by email, Whatsapp, Messenger and other online services. All of which have no need for a phone call, it seems as a society we prefer to have text conversations for the most with face to face for the important stuff.

In my industry, our client expects speed and efficiency in the onboarding of a contractor. Unfortunately, this is where a phone calls cause issues. Not everyone answers the phone, and something that should be quick and simple can drag out for weeks due to needing to speak with someone directly.

And when you throw in the international umbrella industry paperwork, paperwork, paperwork is the main phrase. Not much is digital and if it is, trust me someone somewhere is cutting and pasting that info into another form.

Having 10 years experience both in the umbrella and the recruitment industry, I know that the main bottlenecks and chokepoints when working with umbrella companies can be very frustrating. And this drew me to Cool Company, being a Fintech business and not an accountancy firm meant they looked at things from a digital perspective rather than a traditional one.

This is why I choose to join Cool Company, and the opportunity to be the Amazon/ eBay of the umbrella industry. To create a solution that works seamlessly for both the contractors and their client. And this is where it all started, Cool Company already had the online infrastructure from the solutions in Sweden and Norway, and now we needed to tailor it to the UK market.

As any tech firm will agree, if you have a clear direction, then changes happen quickly, and Cool Company is no different. We achieved an amazing amount of work in such a short time, and in April, we launched the Umbrella 2.0 solution.

A solution that is 100% online-based, a contractor can register at a time that suits them as the internet doesn’t have opening hours. Our client’s funds are automatically matched and paid to the contractor without delays. A truly digital solution in an analogue industry. Now don’t get me wrong we have a human customer support team because let’s face it chatbots can’t solve every issue. But we have is the best of both worlds. It’s self-service until you need help then it’s human all the way.

I’m proud of the solution we have created for the UK, and remember all of our solutions work in the same way it’s a digital-led world. We are pioneering the digital change in the international umbrella industry.

So if your have issues with onboarding bottlenecks, and clients who expect seamless stress-free processes. Get in touch maybe just maybe we can solve those problems.