Is my recruiter referring me to the right accountant?
By David Hughes

It’s an exciting time when you secure your 1st contract and this often happens when working with a recruitment business/agency. As a part of the relationship, when negotiating your new day rate contract, you accept that the recruiter is getting a cut of your day rate eventually after their company has taken their fees. This is all totally acceptable and above board, as they have to get paid for securing your role and sourcing candidates.

During this daunting time, you are often looking for as much help as possible. When the recruitment consultant advises that they can point you in the direction of an excellent accountant/umbrella company, you may feel greatly relieved, as they are making your life easier.

Be wary of the referral

Have you ever wondered why the consultant is so insistent on you going with the company they recommend after that referral?

Have you ever wondered what their motive for making that referral is? It may surprise you!

Most recruitment businesses spend a lot of money getting onto end client preferred supplier lists (PSL) and, in turn, choose to work with quality accountancy and umbrella providers. This, however, is at the Board level, and not the recruiters who you may be dealing with. Any due diligence done on the accountant/umbrella just gets them in the door, and none of the recruiters refer to them unless they are given an incentive to do so.

Here is the surprising part:-

Would you believe that the individual recruitment consultants may also receive up to £400 on a ‘charge card’ for making each referral to accounting and umbrella companies?

Ask the right questions of your recruiter

If the recruiter refers 5 people a month, the reward is tax-free charge card cash of more than the national average wage.

It should be easy to see why the recruitment consultant almost insisted that you work with the accountant/umbrella they recommended because they are given tax-free cash when the deal completes!

Does this remove their bias?

Do they have your best interest at heart?

Do they care who they are referring you to?

Does that company paying them have to pass that cost onto you?


Use your free will to research the market and select an accountant that is perfect for you, without the risk of predatory advice encouraged by suspicious incentives and tax-free hand-outs.

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