Julia is a TEDx speaker, podcaster, and campaigner with a passion for the rights of all independent workers. Like many people, the pandemic made Julia re-evaluate her purpose, and she founded IWORK to support and champion the UK’s army of temps, agency workers, gig economy workers, contractors and the self-employed.
Before setting up IWORK Julia single-handedly grew FCSA, a compliance standard for accountants and umbrellas, from an unheard-of niche organisation to becoming ubiquitous within the recruitment supply chain. Here she led unprecedented growth, successfully raising the profile of FCSA and it’s influence within the government, recruitment sector and amongst employers.
During covid it became apparent that many people were losing their jobs and needed to work differently, and were turning to self-employment, temping, side hustles or other forms of contingent work. This meant a new crop of people vulnerable to exploitation simply due to their lack of knowledge. Julia couldn’t simply stand by and watch this unfold, so in July 2020 she launched IWORK and her mission to empower all independent workers so they get the fair deal they deserve.
Supporting independent workers
Julia is a well known authority in the contracting sector, having been an expert panellist on TV and radio programmes, commentator on relevant news stories, and has many articles published in national and trade press. She has an in-depth understanding of the many complex issues affecting independent workers, which coupled with her belief in justice and equality make her a force to be reckoned with! Julia’s common sense approach, balance and fairness mean that she is often called on to contribute to government policy development, including as an expert witness at various House of Lords inquiries over the years.
Chief Executive at PayePass
More recently, Julia has become increasingly frustrated with the continued scourge of dubious practices within the umbrella sector, exploiting workers yet no-one is doing anything about it! Wrongdoings have been exposed at seeming ‘compliant’ umbrellas which hold external accreditations, yet disappointingly these umbrellas are not being properly challenged. Clearly action is needed to ensure workers are protected.
This led to Julia taking on the role of CEO at PayePass in May 2023. By forensically scrutinising everything relating to worker payments PayePass protects the supply chain from the financial risks of tax avoidance, tax evasion, mini-umbrella company fraud, payroll skimming, and holiday pay misconduct.
Julia says “it seems that misconduct is on the increase and that it’s going unchallenged. I have been waiting for others to flex their muscles and take action, but nothing seems to be happening. I can’t continue to sit back and watch an industry I love being increasingly vilified and untrusted. That’s why I am taking matters into my own hands to raise standards and clean up the sector once and for all!”
Julia is an accomplished business leader having landed her first CEO role aged just 31. She has experienced many ups and downs in her career including: the shock of starting a CEO role at an organisation with no financial viability; a dream job that was actually anything but; and transforming a business from obscurity to ubiquity. Advocacy and fighting for the underdog have been common themes throughout Julia’s career as she cares about ensuring fairness for everyone.