1. Context of the Policy
1.1 We recognise the vital role freelance workers play in the cultural sector, and how much we have to gain from these relationships. We believe it is important to acknowledge the challenges that freelancers face that are not shared by salaried staff, and to find ways of providing employment on an equitable basis. This policy sets out our commitment.
1.2 Trac Cymru employs artists, tutors and project staff on a freelance basis, primarily to deliver creative learning activity or develop artistic work with us.
1.3 Trac Cymru is taking positive action to implement inclusivity and diversity in our workforce and actively seeks to offer opportunities to members of under-represented communities. (See also our EDI Policy and Plan.)
1.4 We are committed to treating freelancers fairly and respectfully, recognising that they do not benefit from the same terms and conditions as salaried staff. We value the collaborations with freelance staff which enhance Trac Cymru’s ability to deliver its work. This commitment is demonstrated by the following:
2. Contact and Communication
2.1 Trac Cymru is a bilingual organisation, and welcomes contact in Welsh or English. Some roles offered to freelancers may require the ability to use the Welsh language, and this requirement will be clearly stated in any publicity.
2.2 Freelancers will always have a named point of contact within the organisation, and access to other staff to support their work and practice.
2.3 We value freelancers’ time and will seek to maximise the effectiveness of contact time and meetings, and save travel time and costs by offering opportunities to talk by phone or meet online.
2.4 If we are contracting you on a freelance basis to deliver a programme of work, you will be given a written brief and a line manager. We will discuss all relevant areas of delivery expected from both of us.
2.5 Freelancers working regularly with us become part of the fabric of who we are and will be included in relevant organisation-wide communication, invited to all-staff meetings and special events.
2.6 We acknowledge how time-consuming administration is and will always look at ways to keep this to a minimum for freelancers in areas such as contracts and information based forms.
3. Orientation and access
3.1 We will ask if freelancers have any access requirements when we start working with you. We endeavour to meet the access requirements of all members of staff, including freelancers.
3.2 If you are new to Trac Cymru, we will give you an orientation session when you begin your work with us. We will largely leave you to get on with your work but you will always have a named person to respond to any questions.
4. Professional Development and Training
4.1 If we offer freelancers support and training we will always be clear about what that is, and when it will be available.
4.2 Wherever possible, we will open up training sessions available to salaried staff to freelancers who work regularly with us.
4.3 Freelancers working with Trac Cymru will be offered an opportunity to observe a Board meeting. This is part of our wider commitment to operate as transparently as possible, reduce the mystique around boards, and equip more freelancers with the knowledge and experience that might encourage you to apply to boards in the future.
5. Fees and Payments
5.1 Trac Cymru prioritises paying freelancers as quickly as possible, and aims to pay within 14 days of receipt of invoice.
5.2 We do not require freelancers to fill out supplier forms, and will make payments on submission of an invoice which provides the following information:
– Contact details including email and phone number
– Date, nature of work undertaken and agreed fee
– Bank or building society account details, to enable electronic payments
5.3 We always agree fees and payment schedules in advance. Trac Cymru is an accredited Living Wage Employer and is committed to pay at the recommended union rates, eg Musicians’ Union, as a minimum. We expect freelancers to scale the activity to fit within the available fee, not to reduce your fee or work unpaid hours. We want freelancers to tell us if our expectations are bigger than the fee available.
5.4 We acknowledge that freelancers have to make provision for your own sick pay, holiday pay, pension, training and development and other costs within your fees, so we expect rates to be higher than the salaried equivalent.
5.5 Freelance staff are responsible for their own tax and National Insurance. We will ask you to confirm this on your invoice together with your Unique Tax Reference (UTR) number.
5.6 We do not expect freelancers to subsidise Trac Cymru’s cashflow. We will arrange advance payment or part-payment where appropriate and either pay directly or repay expenses as soon as possible.
6. Planning and Agreements
6.1 We will always agree fees, arrangements, responsibilities, timescales and deadlines for activity in writing. This will not always be a formal contract but may take the form of a letter of agreement or email exchange. We are happy to provide more formal paperwork if requested.
6.2 If delivery circumstances change, for Trac Cymru or for freelance staff, we will try to find alternative ways for freelancers to engage in the contracted work and receive payment as planned, providing that alternatives (streaming, blended delivery, online) are appropriate, practical and possible for the purpose of the work.
6.3 We will always agree in writing and in advance what will happen in terms of fees if the activity is postponed or cancelled.
7. Safeguarding and Policies
7.1 We may require you to have an up to date DBS check to carry out your work with us. If so, we can make arrangements for this.
7.2 We require freelancers working for Trac Cymru to be aware of our policies, which are available on our website, in particular those on Safeguarding, Privacy, Equalities and the Welsh Language, in advance of carrying out work for us.
8. If things go wrong
8.1 Freelancers should not engage in any activity whilst under our employ which could result in adverse publicity to the organisation or prevent you from performing your duties and responsibilities to our satisfaction. When delivering on behalf of Trac Cymru you will appreciate that your behaviour reflects on our image and we reserve the right to take appropriate action if you do not comply with this provision.
8.2 In the event of anything going wrong, we hope our own systems will pick this up, and that by establishing honest relationships based on trust, freelancers will feel able to tell us if something goes wrong. Any issues can be raised with your main point of contact or directly with Trac Cymru’s Director. We will always respond.
Adopted by Trac Cymru’s Board of Trustees on 29 June 2022, reviewed and agreed 20 September 2022.
Trac Cymru would like to thank ARC Stockton for the source input adapted to create this policy.