In light of recently passing our second anniversary, I write this to give a perspective of where we have come from and how through hard work we continue to develop to being an industry leading Umbrella and Accountancy service provider.
In 2015 I set up Bright Sky Umbrella as I had my own views on what constituted a good umbrella company. My view was simple, complete compliance was to be a pre requisite and then a strong focus on service to both agency partners and contractors. Understanding that there would be issues but always being on hand to answer any questions, and providing a transparency and proactive attitude to resolving any issues that would on occasion arise.
Fast forward to 2017, and in just two years I am happy to announce that we have grown a lot as a company, maintaining our strong ethos of caring equally for both our agency partners and contractors. We have increased the number of services that we offer and are now offering the same contractor focus and commitment to always being on hand to our accountancy service clients.
We have now evolved to the more fitting name of Bright Sky Contracting, as now offer “Our family” of services which has been developed to be a genuine one stop shop to the flexible contractor market.
In order to cater for an expanding client base, we have grown from a small two person office, which was too cold in the winter, and too hot in the summer due to a necessity of having more than one shared desk in a cramped room with a cracked window. Whilst our current office in the same building has the same temperature issues we now take up considerably more space on the top floor. The company has grown and improved but it still retains its original identity as well as a postcode.
As a senior management team, my department heads have worked within the industry and have brought that experience and their own views to create an offering that stacks up in terms of compliance and genuine customer service. This I know from experience is the exception rather than the rule. When I say senior management team I note that all are under the age of 30 (including myself just), and completely averse to the “short termism” attitude that is too prevalent within the industry of only pursuing financial gain in the short term and sacrificing all considerations of compliance as the only method of achieving such. With questionable models and foreign directors, mini companies and any manner of questionable practice.
The Bright Sky Contracting team all understand the company ethos, and there is a true collective spirit which allows us to offer a top level customer experience, which I am genuinely proud of. Without question if there is work to do; a contractor to be advanced late in the day, fifty payslips to be franked in an hour to make the post, an agency needing contractors registered for that week’s payroll they stay together until it is done. From our Customer Service Manager who has to be ordered to take her holidays, our Apprentice who has to be forcibly removed when she is sick, or a team member being told she cannot live in the office; their commitment cannot be questioned.
I must reserve special praise for our Operations Director Becci Power, who could not have a more apt name. She is the driving force that ensures that all our departments maintain the levels of service that I as the Director promise all agencies and contractors we have the privilege of working with. We understand the importance of our role, and our responsibility to the people we work with, and the importance of each individual.
It has not all been plane sailing and lessons have been learnt, and we now only engage with agency partners who share our contractor and compliance focus. I have had my fingers burnt trusting business owners who I believed shared my desire to ensure contractors receive their pay each Friday. With Bright Sky covering the payroll with our agency partner to quickly cease trading. In addition, there have been some questionable recruitment decisions by myself, which has led me to change strategy as we grow as a business, and dispense with a sales team. As such I am proud to be the spokesperson for my company along with any of the contractors we have worked with, who on continued regularity advise us to any agency they work with. For this I am truly grateful. We will grow on our reputation and focus on providing ever improving service levels.
Having been accredited as a trade member of the FCSA we are demonstrating our commitment to maintaining the highest levels of complicity and an understanding that we have a responsibility to maintain such standards as rules, regulations and legislation evolve. We look forward to working alongside compliant providers to drive forward compliance across the board.
Bright Sky Contracting has passed the landmark of trading for two years, and I can now say that my vision has been surpassed. I wanted to set up a good Umbrella company in response to a fundamental conflict with a previous umbrella that had a different modus operandi. I can now say that Bright Sky Contracting is far more; offering additional services, supported by independent auditing, and a platform to continuing to grow to aid the freelance contractor market.
I thank all of our agency partners, contractors, and service providers, as we look forward to the future.