The Role of Umbrella Companies in Seamless Onboarding

The Role of Umbrella Companies in Seamless Onboarding

Onboarding is a vital part of the recruitment process – improving retention, reducing turnover, and creating better business outcomes. Here we look at how recruiters can partner with an umbrella company to integrate seamless onboarding for the benefit of their agencies, their end-clients and their contractors alike. 

What is onboarding?

Onboarding is the process of welcoming an employee to a company and helping them become familiar with both the company and their role within it. Often it will include information about the company and its ethos, their own role within it, who their co-workers will be, the training they’ll receive, and might even include where the best local sandwich shop can be found. 

It’s done to provide new employees with all the information they’ll need, to offer them a positive first impression of the company they’ve chosen to join and to bring them up to speed on their employer’s expectations.

Why is onboarding so important?

Effective onboarding benefits the company, the agency and the employee.

For the company it:

  • Helps attract and retain talent
  • Reduces turnover rates, and therefore costs
  • Gives a positive impression of the company
  • Creates an ethos of teamwork
  • Increases productivity

For recruiters it:

  • Eases recruitment
  • Provides a wider pool of talent
  • Builds a deeper connection with the company
  • Creates a positive impression of the agency
  • Offers reassurance that the employee will be well-looked after

For employees it:

  • Gives a good first impression of the company
  • Deepens their understanding of their role, and where it fits into the wider organisation
  • Offers them the training they need and the support they might require
  • Increases commitment
  • Heightens team ethos

How can umbrella companies help?

Of course, onboarding is not simply about orientation and familiarisation. There are other, more practical, elements to consider too. 

Workers in the UK need certain documentation and to provide information to their employers in order that they can both identify themselves and ensure that they’ll be paid on time.

As an umbrella company is a contractor’s employer, it’s their duty to collate the required information and provide proof to the end-client and recruitment agency. This helps both the end-client and the recruitment agency minimise their administrative burden and ensures a seamless onboarding process.

They’ll need to know the contractor’s:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Contact details 
  • Address
  • Proof of identity
  • Right to work in the UK
  • P45
  • NI number
  • Bank Account details
  • Assignment information
  • Recruitment agency or end-client details


Once this information has been received – at i4 we make it easy to submit it all online via  our website – a formal offer of employment and employment contact can be issued. Umbrella companies ensure that this bureaucratic and time-consuming part of the onboarding process is simplified and streamlined, and the contractor can get on with the other elements of their onboarding with the end-client, secure in the knowledge that they’ll be paid in a compliant manner when we’ve received their timesheet. And as each party has a copy of the information, there is no confusion, no delays and no further administration anyone needs to do.

We can’t help contractors with finding out where they’re going to sit, or assist in providing the Health & Safety training they need to do their job, but we can offer a seamless and speedy onboarding process when it comes to the administration of their contracts and payments, alleviating the burden on them, the recruitment agent who put them forward for the job, and the end-client for whom they’ll be working.

If you’d like more information about how i4 can help your agency with its onboarding process you can call us on 0800 084 3058, email us at, or fill in the contact form here.