Research by HMRC shows the majority of small businesses and landlords expect to consult an accountant for support in meeting the requirements of digital reporting under Making Tax Digital.
From April 2019 all compulsorily VAT registered businesses must submit their VAT returns through software under the HMRC’s Making Tax Digital plans. If a business is currently submitting their VAT returns using Sage desktop only software, and they don’t upgrade it, they will lose this functionality from February 2018.
Of the 2,900 small businesses and landlords surveyed, 72% were most likely to ask an accountant/tax agent for advice and support about MTD, compared to 20% who would use the HMRC website, 13% the HMRC helpline, and 5% family and friends.
Taxpayers wanted guidance on how to prepare for the new requirements (cited by 40%), while 18% wanted reassurances that they were carrying out requirements correctly and 16% wanted guidance on using software.
PKF Francis Clark are recommending a number of software packages to businesses to overcome this issue. These fast, secure and easy to use, cloud-based accounting packages enable a business to see their financial data in real time, speeding up decision-making and adding flexibility and control.
Martin Atkins, Cloud Accounting Partner at PKF Francis Clark said:
“These powerful applications allow clients to reduce the amount of time spent writing up their business records and reinvest it in the business. This financial data is always on hand, being instantly accessible from any mobile device.
“Using a remote log-in, your existing PKF Francis Clark accountant can become a virtual finance director, carrying out checks on a client’s finances and examining how they stand with creditors, debtors and banking. Importantly, it allows them to spot potential business critical issues, anticipate developments, and provide clients with vital help and support.
“We are currently working with our clients to guide them through the process and help them select the product that’s right for their business. There are variable price points to these packages and we can ensure a cost effective option, especially as our clients will benefit from preferential partner rates on these products.”