As a professional contractor or freelancer you may have built up a reputation for your work and developed strong business relationships. Your personal name is your reputation, synonymous with your work and more than likely how clients or agencies know you. Your Limited Company name is less directly communicated so does its name really matter?

Considering your company name can help you promote your professional image, help you to stand out from the crowd and be taken seriously in business, then the answer would have to be yes! Let’s face it, a name can project so much about you but only if it’s memorable, obvious, and relevant.

Working through a Limited Company means your company name has to be on all your business correspondence from your initial tender document for work and the contractual agreement for services, through to your invoices, business emails and stationery. Having a name which presents a professional, recognisable image to clients and agencies is therefore very important if you want to make the right impression as it will be seen regularly.

Your company name is a name you’ll also say out loud and be known by so you’ll want to feel comfortable with it.  If you’re not happy with the way it sounds or looks, or don’t feel the name reflects your business ventures, it is simple and cheap to change and something a specialist contractor accountant like Brookson could assist with.

As a contractor, there’s another benefit of ensuring you have an individual and memorable business name. You may not feel like you run a Limited Company because there’s just you, but ensuring that business colleagues, agencies and clients understand the ‘business’ rather than ‘personal’ relationship is key to supporting your IR35 status as an independent contractor. Having a memorable company name will help to reinforce your business position in the minds of the people you work with and as such help prevent you being seen or treated as an employee.

There are many reasons people choose to change the name of their business. It could be the name is too generic, too like others in the same industry, doesn’t represent their business venture or simply because the domain name is not available. What ever the reason it’s not uncommon, with over 3000 Limited Companies requesting to change their name with Companies House every month.

So if you are just starting out in business and looking to name your company for the first time or well established but having second thoughts about the name of your company, take a moment to think about what name would suit your business best and follow my 5 pointers of what makes a good name for your contracting business:

  1. Something unique that isn’t automatically associated with another company that already exists – do your homework and see what the search engine results bring back
  2. A name that reflects you and your trade
  3. A name that is future proof that will still reflect you and your trade even if your business grows and expands in the future
  4. Something that is easy to say and write as there is nothing worse than having to spell it out each time you are asked about the name of your business
  5. Something you would be proud to put on your business card or website or talk about at a networking event!