Computers are not everyone’s cup of tea. In fact, there are very few of us who can declare with some confidence that we are computer literate.
Unfortunately, there does seem to be a drive to increase their effective use in business and the offices of HMRC. Gone are the days when HMRC’s offices were populated by human beings checking hand written tax returns and transferring the data to foolscap folders. Racks and racks of these files flanked by rows of desks. The data is now pushed along underground cables, from your PC, or by your advisors’ desktop, and seamlessly integrated into your personal tax account on some distant server. Or at least that’s what we are led to believe.
If HMRC’s current ambition, to forward this process by requiring business owners to upload – essentially send information to HMRC via computerised process – quarterly, summarised data, then any non-computerised accounts process will become extinct.
Where does this leave smaller businesses, especially those who have no great desire to become computer literate, are content with the annual chore of dumping everything: invoices, bank statements, cheque stubs etc., into a carrier bag, and leaving this with their accountant?
We seem to be moving into an age where computer software is taking over the computational activity previously undertaken by accounts clerks and bookkeepers, bent double over ledgers and calculators.
The message we need to communicate to readers today is that this digital process seems to be unstoppable. HMRC’s Making Tax Digital for Business endeavours aim to make this digital upload a legal requirement, starting April 2018.
We can help. We have already crossed the computer Rubicon. Our staff are trained and ready to go. We have software that we can use on your behalf, or if you fancy having a dabble, we can recommend and show you how to use software to meet these new obligations, in house.
The clock is ticking. If you are still unsure whether to embrace these new challenges, or consider our support in dealing with them for you, can we suggest that you call to discuss your options.