Share this content
12

MTD-ANY recommendations for software

MTD?? Which package??

Didn't find your answer?

With the new MTD era round the corner, does anyone have any recommendations for software? Most small businesses are going to be reluctant to spend big on software and I would like to encourage clients to use a specific package but having just started out, I am trying to decide which one may be best....any assistance respectfully received 

Thanks

Replies (12)

Please login or register to join the discussion.

By Tim Vane
11th Oct 2016 19:29

You see, the thing about corners is you can't see around them.

We're told there's something there. We just don't know what it looks like, how it behaves or what it's wearing.

Actually, I suspect it's wearing the emperor's new clothes, but that's just a guess.

Which all means that picking a hat to fit is really not possible at this time.

Thanks (15)
Tornado
By Tornado
11th Oct 2016 20:17

I think it is best to wait until around this time next year when there may be a range of products to seriously compare by then. I have been through this sort of situation before and the lesson I learned is that those who jump in quickly end up as software testers with all the associated hassle. Hold back until the software is better developed and more reliable.

A lot is going to happen over the next year or so and it is far too early to say to what extent MTD will actually be introduced which will in turn determine what you are going to be looking for.

Good reliable software with first class support is top of the list for requirements but also don't forget to look at the commissions being offered by the software developers to see which one will pay you the most for recommending them, as this may be the deciding factor.

In the fiercely competitive software market that MTD will create, Accountants will have considerable power in determining which software is promoted.

Thanks (5)
Replying to Tornado:
By jon_griffey
13th Oct 2016 17:01

Tornado wrote:

In the fiercely competitive software market that MTD will create, Accountants will have considerable power in determining which software is promoted.

I don't think the MTD market will be competitive. If the software industry suddenly has a captive market and massive demand that it can barely cope with then prices will get hiked accordingly and service deteriorates. Indeed we have just received hefty price hikes from cloud players already.

What I do foresee is a proliferation in rubbish apps. The client will come in with some free app they have signed up for, that you have never heard of, full of pop up ads and lacking in any functionality and you are expected to work with it.

Thanks (2)
Replying to jon_griffey:
RLI
By lionofludesch
13th Oct 2016 17:50

For me, the problem is that these "free apps" are intended to be free to both taxpayer and HMRC. It's not like the 1997 SA software - free to the taxpayer at HMRC's cost.

So the free apps will either be paid for by irritating ads or just hooks to get the taxpayer to buy something that actually works from the software provider.

Thanks (0)
RLI
By lionofludesch
12th Oct 2016 09:22

Everyone's in such a rush!!

The consultation period hasn't ended yet. We're not even sure that MTD will start in 2019. We don't know what information will be needed - so the software can't be produced yet.

Chill. Stop wishing your life away.

Thanks (7)
Tornado
By Tornado
12th Oct 2016 12:11

Yet another example today of the importance of waiting until there is a good selection of software available to choose from.

I have received yet another Tax Calculation amendment because IRIS Opentax has calculated payments on account for next year from the Class 2 inclusive current year liability. I have no control about the amounts calculated so I either tell the client that we have to wait until the software is fixed and then submit his tax return or submit it with the error and tell him to expect the amendment. Not very professional but I am stuck with IRIS.

I believe this, and other tax calculation errors have now been fixed, long after the software was first made available for 2016, and perfectly illustrates my point about choosing the right software to commit yourself and your clients to and the level of support you can expect to receive.

I am happy to use IRIS Opentax (through PTP) and find that it has many of its features are first class, but this year the level of support has been abysmal and is nowhere near acceptable in a MTD age.

Further, we are having Auto Enrol problems with IRIS Payemaster as it is exporting some data files (weekly) in the wrong format for NEST. It was one of the helpful people at NEST that discovered this and talked us though fixing the data file.

As I said, I will review the situation again in a years time and then assess which software developers are going to be up to the job.

Another hint to software developers is that I will be looking not only for good support, but almost on demand support. Not necessarily 24 hours 7 days but something near to it. As we eventually move towards a more digital tax administration system, whether that be MTD or an alternative, not just Accountants will be using tax and accounting software but businesses as well, and many small businesses will require assistance at any time of the day and night, weekdays and weekends, and will expect to get that support.

The same will apply to banks and other similar organisations. Bank transactions will need to be instant 24/7.

Thanks (1)
avatar
By North East Accountant
14th Oct 2016 09:02

I understand that we don't know what MTD will look like and by this time next year software providers should know and be on the way to delivering something but can the OP or indeed other practices wait that long to decide which software horse to back.

Let's say a practice has 240 clients who are not on the cloud. They will need to onboard 80 per year for the next 3 years. Taking account holidays, busy January etc I reckon that's 2 per week every week for the next 3 years. So meeting clients, convincing them this is the way to go, getting software in place, training them, dealing with the resultant queries (and hassle), support etc for an increasing number every week for the next 3 years.

Decision - wait for software and the bigger the mountain to climb or jump in now with software that doesn't deliver and have to unwind X number of clients and start again with new software.

As the OP is just starting out possibly best to pick a software horse, go with it and hope it doesn't fall before the finish line. In that regard one of the big names is probably a safer bet, but with a cost attached.

Thanks (1)
Replying to North East Accountant:
RLI
By lionofludesch
14th Oct 2016 09:26

North East Accountant wrote:

I understand that we don't know what MTD will look like and by this time next year software providers should know and be on the way to delivering something but can the OP or indeed other practices wait that long to decide which software horse to back.

Let's say a practice has 240 clients who are not on the cloud. They will need to onboard 80 per year for the next 3 years. Taking account holidays, busy January etc I reckon that's 2 per week every week for the next 3 years. So meeting clients, convincing them this is the way to go, getting software in place, training them, dealing with the resultant queries (and hassle), support etc for an increasing number every week for the next 3 years.

Decision - wait for software and the bigger the mountain to climb or jump in now with software that doesn't deliver and have to unwind X number of clients and start again with new software.

As the OP is just starting out possibly best to pick a software horse, go with it and hope it doesn't fall before the finish line. In that regard one of the big names is probably a safer bet, but with a cost attached.

Quite. And I'll be mentioning that in my submission to HMRC in the consultation process as it's the main reason why MTD won't work. Or, at least, not in it's proposed form.

Thanks (0)
avatar
By JMBS
15th Oct 2016 10:55

We use IRIS for our finishing and tax and it's expensive but we are used to it and it does what we need with very little problems. We currently used Quickbooks desktop and have tried QB online but really don't like it's functionality so it makes sense for us to go with Kashflow it then imports straight to the IRIS system whereas now we export from QB to excel and import it using import maps.

We want to introduce it for the year ended 05.04.18 accounts so by the time we have to do all these quarterly returns we are proficient as using it and are not entering starting balances for clients and trying to complete the quarterly returns at the same time.

My concerns are that my clients will now have to fork out for cloud software when they think I should be providing them with the software and they may call another accountant who may have the it'll never happen attitude and think I am over-reacting.

I think to wait until HMRC publish the revised document would be wise but we are sending info to clients to make them aware of the possible changes.

Anyone thought about how to approach clients re them paying the subs for the cloud accounting system?

Thanks (0)
Replying to JMBS:
Tornado
By Tornado
15th Oct 2016 11:48

You are neatly illustrating my point that it is best to wait until next year when we know more about what is required.

You are already experiencing the problems of software that is not up to the job when we should all be making decisions on software that does exactly what it is required to do. It is madness to have to wade through so many different choices in the hope that the one you choose will work properly.

I am sure that MTD will not be introduced in its proposed format and a key concession being that it will not be mandatory. It makes complete sense to allow people to adapt to this over a period of time.

I also believe that it will not be necessary to use specific software and it will be possible to enter quarterly data in a template from existing accounting systems and that the minimum limit for quarterly reporting will align with the VAT threshold.

I do agree, however, that making clients aware that something like this is being introduced is a good idea.

Also note that our VAT threshold is the highest allowed under EU law and successive Governments have said that they would like it higher but could not do this. So watch out for a big rise in the VAT Registration Limit once we leave the EU.

Thanks (1)
Replying to JMBS:
RLI
By lionofludesch
15th Oct 2016 13:24

It's already been put back to April 2019, so you have a year more than you thought.

Thanks (0)
Replying to lionofludesch:
Tornado
By Tornado
15th Oct 2016 20:47

Can you please direct me to this update as I am having some trouble finding it!

Thanks (2)
Share this content

Related posts