Thursday, 20 November 2014

Who do you work for?

Given the apparent cluelessness of call centre workers, I did wonder if there are lots of people who have no clue who they work for.

For a start, it seems clear that many people have no clue at all about the basic concept of "legal entity".

There are several legally recognised types of entity, or thing in the UK. Basically, this is an entity that can own property, make contracts, have a bank account, etc. That obviously includes "people", but there are many other types of entity. A Limited Company (which is a legal person distinct from the people that work for it or that own it); A person (sole trader) or group of people (partnership); A government department; A charity or a friendly society. One issue is that, whoever it is, they could be using a trading name that is different, though in most cases the original entity has to be named on letterheads and adverts and stuff. It is well worth reading up on the basics, and understanding who you do work for, and who you sell to, and who you make contacts with.

But then I got thinking, especially with people with such little clue themselves, what would it take to make a fake company or better still a fake government department? What about a fake secret government department? A small office, perhaps in London, and some suitable letterheads and stuff. You could have someone in charge, with a title like commander that takes you through, and makes you sign, The Official Secrets Act, and so on. It could even be pushed as a rather underfunded secret government department, so a lack of budget.

You'd end up with gullible people doing work for you - things that might normally be quite illegal - thinking that it was all legit, and taking care to keep quiet about it all. Done right, you may be able to work the whole operation from afar, just in case it all unravels.

I mean, if you got a proper M.I.B. or Torchwood type job, how would you check it was legit?


  1. You are assuming that the call centre operatives are directly employed by the call centre. They may well be agency staff.

  2. Huh, you thought you worked for 'AAISP'...

  3. Hm. You could call them 'the Laundry'... oh dear.

  4. >>>>I mean, if you got a proper M.I.B. or Torchwood type job, how would you check it was legit?

    There would have to be some enabling legislation....

  5. If it was a real government department you would be continually frustrated by paperwork and rules that got in the way of you actually doing your job. Oh, and there would be a final salary pension scheme.

  6. An aside, but a (normal) partnership is not a legal entity/thing for the purposes of English law, although a limited liability partnership (LLP) is, and can.


  7. In leu of there being any type of legal framework for the "organisation", would it not default to a sole tradership in the name of whoever set it up (trading under whatever organisation name you chose to give it)? Sole traders are allowed to employ people, after all.