Making Tax Digital – accounting software

Making tax digital is the government’s plan to take information for tax purposes directly from business owners’ online accounting software with no recourse to their accountant.

This explains why HMRC are so keen to work with Xero, QuickBooks and FreeAgent. This move was foreseeable, and should be less of a shock to forward-thinking business owners who have already started to take control for their bookkeeping.

And while HMRC has said that it does not want transactional data in the proposed quarterly returns, what it will want is for businesses and self-employed people themselves to keep their accounting records digitally. Verbally we are told that using Excel is not digital record keeping; it will have to be accounting software.our text here…

Although I suspect that many business owners will still want and value the services of an accountant, particularly when the alternative is that entrepreneurs just trust HMRC to interpret and then tax their numbers properly.

For those business owners who have not accepted the inevitable – that they will have to adopt digital accounting software in the very near future – time is running out.


Noel Guilford, Principal at Guilford Accounting
Noel Guilford is the principal of Guilford Accounting a small business accountancy practice specialising in advising owner-managed businesses on current accounting, finance, and tax matters. You can reach him via email at or by phone at 01244 660866. He is the author of the 'Figure it out - an entrepreneurs guide to understanding your business numbers' which you can obtain by visiting​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ His latest book, How to Build a Successful Business' will be published in 2018.

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