More than 70% of UK contractors are using recruitment agencies and jobs board to find new employment opportunities. That’s according to new research undertaken by FPS Group, the Umbrella Company administrator for Contractors, and, the jobs board for freelance professionals. The survey found that more than 42% of contractors secured their current position through a recruitment agency. However, a significant 30% of respondents indicated that they used friends and family to get to their last role.

But contractors are leaving it late to find their next role, with over 80% of respondents not making any plans until the last two months of their contracts. Of those, 15% only start the search once they are out of work are already out of work and 36% start looking for alternative positions within their last month of work.

60-65 year olds are the most prepared in the search for their next contracting role, with 48% of respondents in this category starting to look for alternative positions over two months before their current job role ends.

Matt Huddleston, Chief Financial Officer, FPS Group said: “The results show that recruitment agencies are still the first port of call for contractors looking for a new position. But worryingly contractors are taking risks in securing their next role by leaving their search until the last minute.

“It comes as little surprise that the over 60s plan the furthest ahead when looking for their next position. A competitive jobs market and tough economic conditions have meant that over 60s are being savvy in the fight for sought after contracting positions, and therefore ensure they are looking well in advance of their current contract’s end.”