Things to consider when setting up as an interim manager

Things to consider when setting up as an interim manager

Starting an interim career can be daunting – where to start, what to do and how to market yourself. There are several things to consider when setting up as an interim – some of which we have listed below. 

Business Bank Account:

When the limited company/umbrella is set up, spend time researching the best business bank account and business savings account to open. A business saving account is a useful place to set aside taxes – including VAT, NI corporation tax.

Interim executives need to register their business for VAT with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) if their VAT taxable turnover is more than £85k – more can be read about this here: VAT registration - GOV.UK. An accountant can help with advice around setting up a business bank account and or business saving account as well as being able to advise on registering for VAT.

CVs and LinkedIn:

CV writing is an important skill for every professional – with these documents displaying your skills and experience, as well as often influencing both first impressions and recruitment searches. When starting out on your interim career it is important to review your CV, and to understand that interim CVs tend to differ slightly from those of permanent employees by being more actions and deliverable focused. Please see our content piece on how to best format your CV here.

It is important to ensure that your LinkedIn profile is kept up to date and current – often recruitment agencies, others in your networks and clients will view your LinkedIn profile and compare this with the dates and assignments listed on your CV – ensure they match. If you are seeking or are available for work, it may be useful to make it clear on your LinkedIn profile that you are open to work.

You can also increase your LinkedIn visibility in several ways:

  • Connect with people within your network – including clients, colleagues, recruiters, and other interims
  • Engage with posts, blogs, podcasts, articles, or other marketing in the sector you are interested in – or create your own content
  • Check the profile photograph – how will this be viewed by others?
  • Follow relevant companies and groups


When preparing for an interview for an interim role it is important to research the role, client and deliverables. Speak with your recruiter to understand what the client is looking for, where are they at with a specific project/challenge, what is the reason for role. Researching who you will be meeting, the organisation structure and any press that is searchable on the client – the more prepared you are the more confident you will feel in your interview.

Some roles may not have clear deliverables set by the interview stage, your recruitment consultant will be able to discuss this with you and share any knowledge they have surrounding the reason for the role.

See the article we have previously produced on top tips for interviews here.


Interim executives will need professional indemnity insurance to cover them in the unlikely case of litigation costs/damages – typical cover ranges between £150k-£1 million. Interims may choose to also take out public liability and employer’s liability as well.

Do your research on the level of cover you will need to take out – view the Institute of Interim Managers (IIM), speak with colleagues, fellow interims, and an accountant for further guidance.

Please note – at Odgers Interim, we ask interims to have minimum indemnity cover of £1 million.


Research and understand the IR35 legislation and what it means for you as an interim executive.

There are many free guides online detailing IR35 including our own additional articles and resources that can be found on our website here.

Limited Company Vs Umbrella Company

Limited Company

If choosing to go down the limited company route, you will need to decide on a name for your company and register it on Companies House. If you are the director of any other companies you will need to declare this when going through the setting up process. 

Whilst it is important to choose a name carefully, it can be tempting to get distracted by the “right name”. Perhaps think about:

  • the professional impact of the name and if it stands out?
  • Does it state what you do / offer?

There are many website/companies that can be used to set up a limited company – research which is best for you. An accountant can also advise on the responsibilities associated with a limited company – including PAYE/national insurance, IR35 legislation and VAT. They can also advise on the differences between working via a limited company or an umbrella company.

Umbrella Companies

Some interim executives may choose to register with an umbrella company themselves, who will calculate the amount they should be paying themself. The umbrella company will take off VAT returns, company accounts, tax, and payroll, with the interim essentially being an employee of the umbrella company – there is a fee for this service.

If trading under an umbrella company, it can be a good idea to trade with umbrella companies that are accredited, i.e., FCSA.

Marketing Yourself:

When starting out as an interim it is important to properly market yourself and your skills. Use your network – colleagues, acquaintances and ex-clients; LinkedIn; recruitment agencies; industry/professional conferences or networking events and other marketing tools.

Understand your skills and strengths – what are you looking for in an interim role, what can you deliver on successfully and where do your strengths lie?

Ensure that your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date and detailing key words and key skills clearly, with details of deliverables achieved during assignments clearly presented.

We will be releasing a content piece with top tips on how to best market yourself as an interim in the next few weeks – this is based on advice from our working interims who have had personal experience in this.

Negotiation and Communication:

Communication with your recruitment consultant is important – inform them what you are looking for – and what you are not looking for, what locations are suitable, working patterns and day rate expectations you are seeking.

If you are unsure on any aspect of the recruitment process, contact your consultant to discuss in more detail.

You can find a previous content piece we compiled on the relationship between interims and recruiters here.


Think about the day rate you would be seeking for roles both inside and outside of IR35 legalisation – will this flex for the right role, what will you need to charge for longer or shorter roles, or for roles that may require more time on site?

Take advice from others in your network, executive search agencies, colleagues, and an accountant. When working with executive search agencies, your contact should be able to offer guidance on what the role is being offered at. 


References are usually required prior to placement – in a lot of cases these will be requested after a placement offer has been made. Your recruitment consultant will request referee details when these are needed. 

It may be useful to know who you will provide as referees if asked. Some executives also have several testimonials on their LinkedIn profiles or CVs.


You may wish to set up a website to detail further information about your work, testimonials, your skills as well as listing ways to contact you. The website can also be listed on your CV, LinkedIn profile and any business cards you may have.

These are some of the things to consider when setting up as an interim executive – take your time to do the research, speak with colleagues, other interim managers, executive search firms, and seek advice from an accountant.

For more information, please contact Zoe Spalding


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