Managing Director Avery Martin Limited
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Accountex 2017: This year's quest

9th May 2017
Managing Director Avery Martin Limited
Columnist
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London Skyline

Well I have just boarded the train to head down to Accountex 2017 and its looking like this year is going to be a busy one.

My email inbox and Twitter are pinging every few seconds with details from exhibitors to drop by and sample what they have to offer.

This year I am keen to look at some practice software. Since moving from Digita, I have been let down so I am planning to take a less hasty look at something that will fit the bill for me and MTD. I dont need all the singing and dancing tools (or the price) from the big boys, but have short listed BTC and Taxcalc, with maybe Gbooks and Taxfiler as possibles.

What I also enjoy about Acccountex is actually meeting the suppliers you already deal with. As I have said before I am unlike FirstTab in that I like to know and meet the people I deal with. It's always good to meet these guys face to face instead of just via remote emails with your account manager.

I will be dropping by the lads at AutoEntry, who seem to be doing really well and signing up a lot of new cleints. I am looking forward meeting my account manager, Wayne.

The meet-up with the AccountingWEB and Sift crowd is also worth the train ticket alone, as I have had some great help and support from various members over the years. I just hope the legend that is FT can make it, unless he is too busy now that he is a man of property.

As with any conference its essential you get a fresh supply of "merch" when down. I always raise a smile when I see my mother in law off shopping down the street with her TaxCalc shopping bag or my wife drinking her tea in Sunderland A&E from an IRIS mug.

Perhaps we should have a top 10 league post accountex of "Best Merch" at the show.

I give all my contractor clients an AM branded thermal mug and a branded power pack at sign up. Strong coffee and power for your phone will be essential to survive in a post-MTD world so I am gearing my clients up to be ready. Speaking of which, I am running short on mugs for the office, no doubt I will return fully stocked, although water bottles maybe better these days in an attempt to drink less hot drinks.

MTD is sure to dominate the show and I will be looking to catch a few workshops on it. I am also keen to see what tools will be available to take the sting out of it. I see TaxCalc are launching a MTD-ready version of their sofwtare, which is sure to  grab a few headlines, and seems to be first to the market with anything like a finished product (subject to HMRC agreeing final details presumably). I am sure there will be a few other big annoucements along thes lines that have been kept under wraps until Accountex.

I am not fully aware of speaker line up this year as I did get the usual magazine so will see on the day who is there. I will probably stay away from the marketing stuff as done it to death, but am always keen to see what Xero have to say. I see the HMRC chief has pulled out last minute.

I felt 2016 was a touch flat but I suspect this year will be a belter and it seems to be at almost fever pitch now with a real buzz to this year's events.

Anyone who is going have a great day or two and see if you can get to the "after party" on the night.

See you there.

Replies (10)

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By Tailored_Accountancy
09th May 2017 23:27

Please let us know your findings on the holy grail that is the ideal practice management software. I have been looking for the past 18 months and even though there have been a few more recent entrants into the field, I still haven't found something that really fits with my small practice. I like parts of each one, but each one seems to miss something. I was really hoping to get to Accountex again this year, specifically to chat with the new providers of practice management software but personal circumstances have prevented me from doing so. Have fun! Sarah

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Replying to Tailored_Accountancy:
Glenn Martin
By Glenn Martin
10th May 2017 09:25

Hi Sarah there is no holy grail available yet.
The best are maybe 70% to 80% there with road maps to fill in the gaps.

If you are not happy the PM that comes in a suite of products probably look no further than Senta or Mtrio.

I have went with Senta and very happy with it although underestimated the time cost of getting it set up properly.

I moved to Capium last year and it hasn't worked out so probably looking to move to BTC or Taxcalc but will still have Senta sitting above them.

There are a few others in display I will have a look and let you know what I think..

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bike
By FirstTab
10th May 2017 00:07

I hope you are enjoying the bright lights of London Glennzy. The best place to be.

I am very busy with FT Tower purchase. I will provide details in my next blog.

You need to blog more often.

You report last year on Accountex was very good. I hope you will produce another report this year.

As you know Accountex is just not my bag. Though the post-event meetup is good. I intend to attend this next year.

Thanks (3)
Man of Kent
By Kent accountant
10th May 2017 00:10

Nice summary Glennzy

See you tomorrow.

I'll be in the "advisory" workshops giving my twopenneth...

Thanks (1)
Replying to Kent accountant:
Glenn Martin
By Glenn Martin
10th May 2017 09:26

See you there for some vibrant advisory discussion.

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Replying to Kent accountant:
Red Leader
By Red Leader
10th May 2017 11:17

Kent accountant wrote:

Nice summary Glennzy

See you tomorrow.

I'll be in the "advisory" workshops giving my twopenneth...


I feel sorry for the speakers. Well, almost.
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Sarah Douglas - HouseTree Business Ltd
By sarah douglas
10th May 2017 12:06

"Visiting the lads from Auto Tec "
Nothing against Autotec but accountex is about pure selling where the sales men and women tell you everything you want to here.

Their very good at pretending their your friend and it was great to meet you in the person . It is called marketing. Their are some really good helpful staff in all companies but they are rarely at the shows.

Enjoy the show but be under no illusion they are more interested in your money then having a meeting of minds.

This is why I did not bother this year. I was so disappointed last year.

Last year I asked in depth questions and they cannot get rid of you fast enough. Half the sales staff do not even know their software well enough.

This is not a personal attack on the sales men and women of the companies but the stale and uninteresting way accountex is set up. It is not for the good of the industry but a money making exercise for the majority. As long as it seen as that , but your their customer not their friends .

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Replying to sarah douglas:
Glenn Martin
By Glenn Martin
10th May 2017 09:21

Mind Sarah you are cynical

I already deal with AutoEntry and very happy with it so no need to be sold to. I have also recommended them to others in the same way people recommend me and my services. It's simply good to meet the people you deal via email in person. I do have to like the people I deal with.

I appreciate you do get spammed to death of some companies and they would not invest in the show if they did not come away with a fistful of hot leads. The skill of attended is not getting your badge zapped by the spammers.

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Sarah Douglas - HouseTree Business Ltd
By sarah douglas
10th May 2017 12:05

Glenn I don,t disagree with you that I am cynical. But it has happen over the years. The companies do not understand what loyalty is. It all seems to be one way. The fact is I love software and want to see it improve and I hate been lied to.

For example MY Paye is a great piece of software but you don,t see them shouting from the roof. They spend their time improving the software. By the way they did not have a flash stand last year, but they are well worth a visit as I know you are interested in software.

The most common one is "your the first accountant to raise that issue. I have not heard that before. "

The simple fact is no software company is perfect but they all behaving like a cult, sick to death of it. I wish they would all spend time improving their software

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*
By Zoe Lacey
12th May 2017 14:50

HI Glenn

I am the Event Director of Accountex and it was great to read your blog about the show.

I would love to know what the top "merch" was this year for starters!

Secondly and most importantly I would love to hear your feedback of what you thought of the show this year? Diversified where the new organisers who recently acquired the show from Prysm, had 100% full control of this year and we spent a lot of time with visitors, exhibitors and partners last year to really understand what our visitors need to get out of the show as we wanted to make sure that we had high quality content for everyone, as well as a better looking show with better speakers!

I hope that the show was good for you and look forward to hearing your thoughts

Thanks

The Accountex Team

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