Member Since: 2nd Feb 2009
Overt sarcasm may ensue
10th Dec 2020
Really too expensive? I find that hard to believe
You can get Hubdoc for free with a Xero subscription, QBO has a similar system, or RB and AE start at £9 per month - a cost that is quickly recovered when compared to paying a human to process things slowly. None of these are breaking the bank IMO!
There are freeware OCR apps available. Problem is, most of them are carp and lack compliance with GDPR or integrations with decent software where the real time savings are had.
10th Dec 2020
There is a global standard - it was developed by the EU and has been around for years. Problem is its adoption has been optional, which means it hasn't been - a legacy from pre-cloud accounting solutions (when the standard was developed).
Having said that some governments have seen the light and are rolling out standard, digital, invoicing in their respective territories. NZ/AUS being one of the more recent to announce a roll out.
As for the OCR solutions in ERP systems - frankly many of these are laughably terrible when compared to the products discussed above. But that's what happens when you try and provide everything to everyone without specialising in any one area. More often than not these ERP systems are closed to 3rd parties (although I do acknowledge this is changing slowly) and as a result the users don't know any better and accountants that do know better are unable to make any recommendations that would make a difference.
10th Dec 2020
Why are we still asking these basic (and stupid) questions?
There is no one best product in the app market, only the most appropriate to the firm's or client's circumstances. That question can only be answered by knowing the products and the needs. Which requires the right questions to be asked which can be far from basic...
This isn't a criticism of the commentators, who know their stuff, but the framing of the article itself!
16th Jul 2020
I don't think separation of audit firms will make any difference to audit quality. Ironically, I think large audit firms should be closer to their clients rather than further away to aid their understanding of the business and really get into the nuts and bolts of the incredibly complex organisations they are auditing.
Longer reporting timetables would help auditors, although it doesn't help the markets, as this would remove some of the pressure these firms naturally have to deal with.
That and removing or reducing the gaping hole that is the audit expectation gap.
Audit quality isn't just a big firm issue - it affects all firms. It's just that the smaller firms don't find their names splashed across the tabloids and broadsheets because their clients aren't newsworthy enough, the impact of an audit failing is lower, and the local press rarely trawl the disciplinary pages of ICAEW/ACCA.
16th Jul 2020
It wouldn't make a difference because it's the FRC that monitor the big firms not the accountancy bodies...
Which, if this isn't known and understood within the profession, only adds to the audit expectation gap without...
11th Jun 2020
Great write up Rowan. Too often accountants ask the wrong questions or start on too simplistic a premise when doing app advisory resulting in recommending the wrong solutions.
3rd Jun 2020
"I do find it difficult to understand the reason why disciplinary tribunals decide to impose a fine in addition to excluding the individual from membership. Is not this a double punishment? Magistrates would never impose a prison sentence and a fine as well."
Really? When typically excluded accountants just carry on trading, just without their chartered status, the comparison with the machinations of a magistrates court are way off. It seems only reasonable IMHO.
21st May 2020
Breaking news - traditional high street banks can't compete with their agile neo-bank competitors...oh wait....
30th Jan 2020
For me the real opportunity for RB is to push into integration with the wider app ecosystem. There's a big issue in this space where you use an app like, for example, Unleashed where PO and PI processing is dealt with in the app before being pushed to Xero. There are workarounds to the problem but they lack finesse and don't actually provide the real benefits of the app - data extraction removing the need for manual processing. The result is that you automate the processing of overheads but manually process the bulk of purchases.
I do realise there are apps that partially solve this problem (Lightyear and Aptimise being a couple) but they are pretty niche and don't feature wider app integrations either.
The Sage acquisition of AE is likely to slowly kill their subscriber numbers where they use alternative providers, but will increase on the Sage side if their sales team hit the phones. The Hubdoc freemium offering will increase usage of OCR at the bottom end of the scale where business couldn't justify the cost of extraction tech for a handful of invoices a week but these were never on the RB radar anyway.
29th Jan 2020
Would be nice to have some clarity over this. We've already prepared clients for the potential changes and the likely need to register in Ireland, to minimise the language barrier. This just creates more red tape for SMEs than less, but that's been typical of government policy for the last 10 years+