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AccountingWEB’s 2021 editorial calendar

5th Jan 2021
Editor AccountingWEB
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The effects of 2020 will continue to be felt in 2021, but in addition to the ongoing coronavirus struggles, firms will also have to wrestle with the fallout of Brexit, a March Budget and new VAT rules.

Many accountants were glad to see the back of 2020. It was a year dominated with furlough claims, cashflow forecasting and eleventh hour regulation changes. Accountants are hoping 2021 would bring a little more stability and a return to the certainty of the annual compliance cycle.

But until the virus is suppressed, and normality resumes again, accountants will have to wrestle with more virus related work on top of the annual client chasing ritual of self assessment season. However, the workload will not ease even after 31 January as accountants will have to prepare clients for more changes in the form of the off-payroll rules for the private sector and the domestic reverse charge.

But all this extra work will give accountants something to shout about in the Accounting Excellence awards. After last year’s virtual ceremony we’ll looking forward to handing out the gongs in the person in a glitzy award ceremony at London’s Brewery in September.

Finally, December will see the accounting community come together again for the launch of AccountingWEB Live, our first ever exhibition – we hope to see you there.

Here are some of the big stories and topics to mark in your calendars and look out for on AccountingWEB in 2021.

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January

  • Self assessment season: Any snags, exclusions or client headaches affecting practitioners, plus a look at Covid-related late filings
  • Brexit realities: Now the new arrangements have rolled out, what practical challenges will emerge?
  • People – Wellbeing: How are firms looking after staff members as Covid restrictions continue to plague mental health?

February

  • Self assessment: Getting your bills out, community victories, and what would you do differently?
  • Business recovery: Cost control will be high on the agenda of businesses as they attempt to sort the mess out. Expect further redundancies and closures.
  • Accounting Excellence entries open: Firms get their award entries ready to lay their claim on the prestigious awards.  

March

  • Spring Budget: What is the next stage of the Chancellor’s Covid response? Expect full previews, coverage and analysis.
  • VAT: Domestic reverse charge: Unless there is another delay, the domestic reverse charge will take effect from 1 March. How can firms prepare these clients for what they need to do?
  • Client service in the Covid era: Firms have created a lot of good will from clients after their hard work during the pandemic. How will these firms capitalise on this satisfaction? 
  • Productivity and profitability: Are firms capitalising on the growth opportunities from the coronavirus? 

April

  • IR35 in the private sector: The off payroll rules will roll out in the private sector on 6 April. How will this affect contractor firms and will there be any hiccups before the finish line?
  • Finance Act 2021: Look out for possible topics such as MTD, regulation of tax profession and HMRC powers.
  • Practice renewal season: What are firms doing to implement their 2021 strategies?
  • Coronavirus support ends – what’s next? How will businesses and self-employed fare without the furlough/SEISS safety net?

May

  • Wellbeing pulse survey: How is the profession coping following the fallout of 2020?
  • Expenses and benefits (including P11D update): Employee benefits and expenses provided 2020/21 must be reported to HMRC by 6 July 2021
  • Start up in practice: What are the opportunities and challenges for accountants looking to start their own firm?

June

  • Flexible working: The virus has forced firms to adapt to new ways of working, but how many of these new initiatives will remain once life returns to normal?
  • People – skills and development: With the talent gap growing, how will firms invest in people?
  • Improvement efforts - from strategy to implementation: How are firms turning their strategies into news services and/or attracting new clients? 
  • Cashflow and forecasting: We’ll track the ongoing growth of this trend.

July

  • Class of 2021: A roundtable discussion with practitioners who have started their own practice.
  • The virtual finance boom: What is it and how can you capitalise?
  • Data security: With the shift towards remote working, will firms re-examine their cybersecurity processes?

August

  • Making Tax Digital boot camp: What should firms be doing to train clients and how will they overcome the client management challenge?
  • A spotlight on workflow and onboarding: A big trend amongst Accounting Excellence entrants and winners.
  • Fintech focus: The latest trends in Open Banking.

September

  • Accounting Excellence awards: Hear from the winners and the cutting edge trends.
  • Leadership and partnering: How has the finance manager's role changed post-Covid?
  • Tax renewal season: Practitioners are earmarking September as a time to examine their tax software.

October

  • FD handbook: What are the key ingredients of a strategic finance director?
  • Accounting Excellence: Case studies and winner trends.
  • Class of 2021 progress check: How are our group of start-up accountants coping with their first year in practice?

November

  • Budget 2.0: Will we have an Autumn Budget in November? What should we look out for?
  • People - recruitment and retention: What are firms doing to retain or recruit staff in an uncertain market?
  • Budgeting and planning: A spotlight on the finance function's annual strategic goalsetting and decision making.
  • Countdown to self assessment: What snags and challenges can practitioners expect this season?

December

  • AccountingWEB Live: Join us on 1-2 December for our live expo at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena.
  • Community awards: A celebration of the AccountingWEB readers.
  • End of year review: A look back at the highs and lows of 2021.

If you're an accountant or vendor with something to contribute to the site on any of the above areas, get in touch via the 'contact us' page. As the coronavirus pandemic demonstrated in 2020, these topics are subject to change.

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