A recent survey has discovered that as many as 72.4% of IT contractors would prefer a ‘soft Brexit’ whereby the UK stays in the single market and freedom of movement is retained within the UK.
The ClearSky Accounting research confirmed that of the 300 IT contractor surveyed, less than a quarter believe that the government will be supportive.
Derek Kelly, chief executive of ClearSky Accounting, commented on these findings, “There is clearly significant concern among many IT contractors about the possible dislocation of leaving the single market and the impact that could have on demand for IT skills.
“IT contractors are often the first to feel the pain in the event of a downturn as it is normally discretionary IT spend that is cut. These tend to be the projects that use a high proportion of IT contractors. The fear is that the so-called cliff edge of a hard Brexit could undermine business investment, which would hit discretionary IT spend.”
He added, “IT contractors are highly mobile and many have worked in the EU. It is possible that, in the event of a soft Brexit, British IT contractors would retain the opportunity to work in Europe much as they do now. On the other hand, a hard Brexit would presumably limit opportunities for EU nationals to work in the UK, which could create more opportunities for British contractors at home.”