As the HMRC pilot for MTD progresses, tax advisors will be working with selected clients to test the quarterly reporting service. This requires a new level of engagement with clients around Making Tax Digital. To help practices now working through this process – and those with an eye on the eventual live implementation in April 2019 – we’ve written these suggestions on how to engage with clients.
Our engagement model is based on a three-step approach. Obviously, this isn’t an exhaustive list of all the activities your practice will have to do, but it’s a useful starting point for you to create your own practice checklist or plan.
Raising your clients’ awareness
Your first priority is to make sure that affected clients are aware of MTD and what you’ll be doing to support them.
- Are your clients aware of Making Tax Digital?
- Do they know what this means for them?
- How will it change how they run their business?
- How will the relationship between you and your clients change?
- Are they aware of the dates involved? Do they understand how these will impact them?
- Do they currently use software? Do they understand any changes required?
- Are they aware of how this software will interact with both you and the HMRC?
Preparing your practice
Once you’ve made your clients aware of MTD, think about how to prepare your practice for the transition.
- What services will you offer?
- How will you explain and market these services to your clients?
- How will you sign up your clients to these services?
- What processes need to be in place to on-board clients to these services?
Working with your MTD clients
Now you’re ready to start working with those clients who are transitioning to MTD.
- How will you communicate with them?
- How often will you need to engage with them?
- What bookkeeping products will they be using?
- What tools will you use to work with your clients’ bookkeeping solutions?
- Who will be responsible for all the different elements of the process such as the bookkeeping, quarterly reporting and the end of period submission?
A number of Wolters Kluwer customer are now working through just these kind of processes as part of their involvement in the HMRC pilot for MTD. We’ll be working to support them over the coming months.
Don’t forget – if you’re a Wolters Kluwer customer there are more resources available to you on the Support website under the What's New heading.