After the announcement of MTD for VAT, there was widespread outcry on the administrative and financial burden that it would place on both Accountants and owners of small businesses.
It has been six months since MTD for VAT has gone live and we can look back and review the process and share our experiences.
PLANNING! – We cannot stress this enough. The planning stage was the most important part of implementing MTD. We attended CIOT meetings, webinars and live forums to get our heads around what would need to be done to ensure that we could comply with MTD and deliver what our clients expect from us.
Once we knew what HMRC was expecting from both us, and our clients, we sat down amongst ourselves and mapped out our client base by VAT reporting period and current record keeping process. We then had an idea of how and where to dedicate our time in ensuring that clients were maintaining digital records and ready to submit their VAT returns under MTD – be it via cloud-based software or bridging spreadsheets.
Many clients embraced the chance to bring their record keeping into the digital era and sitting with them to discuss MTD for VAT gave us all an opportunity to streamline processes and improve the flow of information from client to accountant.
Feedback from clients so far indicate that they appreciate having instant, digital access to their books and records whilst also making use of the reporting functions available.
After initial worries and frustrations from both ourselves and our clients, we can say that MTD for VAT was not as painful as first thought and clients have appreciated the insight gained from the software.
The soft-landing period has been a welcome safety net for situations where we have been unable to comply with MTD for VAT for a small sample of clients.
The biggest points of frustration for us was there not being a dedicated MTD helpline offered by HMRC and that we still are questioning the need for an agent services account.
If you wish to learn more about our MTD process or share your experiences with us, please get in touch.
Further details on our VAT services can be found here