Small businesses should tap into the freelance talent pool in order to withstand the economic downturn, it has been claimed. Speaking ahead of National Freelancers’ Day, Sir Tom Farmer, the founder of Kwik-Fit said: “What we’re beginning to recognise is that the bigger you are the dumber you are – over the next 10 years business will go through tremendous changes as companies “trim the fat” and make themselves more efficient. “We’ll have the core that we need to run our businesses and we’ll outsource the other services that we need. I think that it will make businesses a lot more efficient, and a lot more cost-effective than they are at the moment. And it will create a lot more employment for everybody.” Farmer said that freelancers had played a part in the success of his business which was sold to Ford in 1999 for £1bn. Michael van Swaaij, the former managing director of eBay Europe and chairman of Skype, reiterated the value of freelance workers. He said: “The traditional model has always been one of employer/employee. Clearly that is changing. A lot of people opt to work for themselves as a freelancer and it would be enormously helpful, not just on the side of taxation and regulation, but also on the practical side, if there are ways to make this easier for people.” National Freelancers’ Day takes place on Monday 23 November and is run by The Professional Contractors Group, which represents UK freelancers, consultants and contractors.

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2009