Although I am an accountant I have not worked in practice for many years so I am not familiar with current accounting software packages. I use a spreadsheet to record transactions for my company. Once a year I send the data, as a pro-forma spreadsheet, to an accountancy firm who read it into their Digita software package to produce the company’s accounts and tax computation to submit to HMRC and Companies House.
The company is not currently VAT registered, as it deregistered when the flat rate scheme advantages were removed in April 2017. However, the projected income for 2019 shows that it will have register for VAT from May or June 2019. Hence the need to have MTD-compatible software in place soon rather than later.
This software needs to submit the VAT return under the MTD regime and compile the company accounts with iXBRL tagging to submit with the corporation tax return. I see no point in having two separate software packages to do these separate tasks.
I don’t want to pay for lots of features I don't need such as management reports or invoice production. The company has less than 12 customers and sends a similar number of invoices per month. Expenses are few and are mostly zero-rated or exempt for VAT. I have the following reservations about accounting products:
- If the data is kept in the cloud how can I be sure it is secure and which laws apply to protect the data?
- If I stop paying the subscription fee for the software will I lose access to my business data?
- How do I access and control a back up of the data?
- If the software requires access to the business bank account, is this a security risk?
I am posting this anonymously as I don’t want the company to be identified, but I will respond privately to those who reply with helpful suggestions.