Gain a competitive edge with a digitised trust accounts process

5th Sep 2019
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In today’s competitive environment, it is increasingly important to provide a cost-effective service, and using the right software is essential in maintaining a competitive edge. While you might complete your trust accounts using historic data and spreadsheets, could this process be more efficient?

Meeting the needs of a changing landscape

Trust practitioners face simultaneous pressure from two directions. While trust accounting and tax work is becoming more competitive, the obligations on trustees are also continually increasing. Working with a combination of spreadsheets and general-purpose accounting software makes these pressures increasingly difficult to manage.

Clients trust you to perform their tax and accounting tasks in a meticulous manner, so you need to be able to trust the data you are using without questioning its accuracy. Without a centralised data entry point that integrates data across both functions, there isn’t a single source of truth. One staff member might trust your tax software over the accounts data, while another will consider the accounts data the primary source.

Furthermore, standalone solutions coupled with multiple spreadsheets require data re-entry every time there is a change. Laboriously re-entering data when performing tasks on both trusts and estates means duplication of work.

Trustees are facing extra pressure when it comes to legislation changes. If you use standard spreadsheets to complete your trust and accounts work, the burden of compliance updates falls to you.

With that said, what is the forecast for growth? What with improving the presentation of reports, monitoring investments and eliminating errors while increasing efficiency and cutting costs, do you really have the time to take on more work with your current workforce?

Bringing your trust and estate work to a single application

Firms today are turning more and more to automation to perform routine, traditionally manual tasks. Gaining the competitive edge requires removing the need for manual data entry and bringing all your functions together to a single location.

By turning to a single application for both the trust and estate work, data no longer needs to be laboriously re-entered into multiple applications. This eliminates wasted time, duplicated effort and unnecessary errors.

Many actions can be performed instantly across your entire client database without needing to re-enter data or change platforms. For example, when a de-merger or takeover takes place, all investment portfolios can be updated to reflect the change across the database.

Once client information is entered, each client case history is recorded, and information is transferable when individual staff members are unavailable or move to other departments. What’s more, entering the data is straightforward, leaving senior staff available to concentrate on other areas such as business growth.

With all trust work in a single database, CGT calculations, dividend schedules and other reports can all be produced in a consistent style, making it easier to implement standards across the practice.

Improving the customer experience

Staying ahead of the competition today will not be decided by a price war, but rather by customer experience. Reporting and forecasting is an area where firms can prove themselves with the ability to provide accurate, consistent and presentable reports at a moment’s notice.

Clients can be unpredictable and request reports when you least expect it. Using a single application for trust and accounts enables you to produce consistent reports at the click of a button, whether it be for general case management, statutory reasons or client reporting.

Partner with market leading software

More than 50% of trust and estate returns today are submitted through CCH Trust Accounts to HMRC. This market-leading software offers trust and estate practitioners a single platform for all their trust and estate work.

CCH Trust Accounts can be used for many other entities that hold investments such as estates, charities and pension funds, and supports the investment reporting requirements of high-net-worth individuals.

  • Reduce work loads

Eliminate as much as 80% of the work involved in the preparation of tax returns for trusts and estates.

  • Save time

Rather than using a general-purpose accounting application together with extra spreadsheets and some form of filing software, save time and work more efficiently with a single, purpose-built application.

  • Ensure compliance

Regular programme updates will ensure your calculations remain compliant with the latest legislation.

  • Create comprehensive reports

Produce cross-client reports covering a client’s complete portfolio during the year.

  • Integrated tax and accounts

CCH Trust Accounts integrates with CCH Personal Tax and CCH Trust Tax to provide a genuine one-stop shop for practitioners performing trust accounting and tax work for their clients.

  • Future growth

'What if' calculations enable you to accurately forecast for investments. Using CGT calculations helps your clients fully utilise their exemptions and avoid unexpected liabilities.

For a full demonstration of how you can use CCH Trust Accounts to support the specialist accounting requirements of trusts, estates, charities, pension funds and similar entities, register for our live webinar on September 26th.