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Consolidating LTD clients deadlines

Consolidating LTD clients deadlines

I  was thinking that it would be easier to cope with deadlines for my limited companies clients (accounts to Co House and tax returns), if I changed them all to one date, OR split them in blocks and have a couple to maximum four deadline dates. This will immediately make a huge positive impact on my calendar, because they are scattered now all over the place and harder to keep an eye on.

What is your experience, pros and cons on using this system?

Comments based on experience are greatly appreciated.

Many thanks!


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By Anonymous
25th May 2010 13:43


Being spread throughout the year  means you have a more even workload, set up a simple speadsheet to keep track of them!

If you do change them you will have peaks and troughs - which may suit you better, in terms of holiday planning etc.. but for me a more even workload works better.

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By nigel
25th May 2010 13:55

Who chooses?

You question implies that the choice of company year end is your's, which I suppose in many cases it may well be. However, you may well have a number of clients who have either chosen their own year end - e.g to fit in with a seasonal trade - or are just happy with it anyway. After all, it's THEIR year end.

Having said that, we do have a lot of clients who ask our advice on year end, and for tax-driven incorporation we normally recommend 31 March to tie in with the personal tax year. In reality, the 31 March year ends don't all come in at once, some are very quick, others string it out to the bitter end, so even with one predominant year end the workflow staggers itself pretty well.

Monitoring deadlines is a real challenge once you have more than a handful or corporate clients - and don't forget annual return, P35 and P11D deadlines too! A well-maintained diary (you could set them up as reminders or Tasks in Outlook), database, practice management system or some other alerting system is the only answer.

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By Anonymous
25th May 2010 14:07

Bad idea

I think it is a bad idea to ask your clients to change their year end to suit your workflow.  Have you thought through the impact that this could have on your clients?

Why not target your clients to bring their books in during a certain time frame.  

Just write to them and tell them that you want their books in on a certain date and you will find that most comply.  

I have a system where I over quote a fee for a job and offer a 5% discount if the books come in when I want them. I then also quote a 10% surcharge if the books are in within 2 months of the filing dealine and a 20% surcharge if they are within a month of the filing dealine.  I do not always impose the surcharge but I will always remind the client that I could and will do if they are late again.  The client either comes around to my way of thinking, or pays a fee that reflects the hassle or goes and hassles another accountant that is willing to be mucked around.

Try it on the ones that give you problems.

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02nd Jun 2010 08:11

This is a good situation!
As you grow your practice you will come to appreciate the varies year end dates for your clients. Many practices I have worked on, including my own, have a disproportionate number of march year ends. This then leaves you with hectic December and January workloads as you get the accounts completed for the filing deadline and to enable the tax return to be finalised, and you end up with spare capacity in February and march because you have worked your socks off in the previous few months. Another problem is that when you prepare managment accounts for a number of clients, if they all have the same year end then the quarters for which the information is produced become extremely busy and put pressure on the team.

We use iris practice management, not the cheapest but definitely worth the money for recording all deadlines including annual returns, accounts, tax returns and even p35 and p11d. Investing in a system such as this will allow you to wok smarter, concentrate on winning new clients an ultimately make more money.

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