“We have the comfort of knowing that we’ve dotted all the i’s and crossed all the t’s on corporation tax.” Kevin Thomas, Director, Rickard Luckin
Rickard Luckin Chartered Accountants and Tax Advisers is a large independent firm offering a full range of accountancy, tax and business services from offices in Basildon, Chelmsford and Southend-on-Sea. Over 150 members of the Rickard Luckin team assist clients across and beyond Essex.
Efficiency through integration
Director Kevin Thomas explains why the firm switched from using best-of-breed software products to an integrated suite of software, “The downside of stand-alone software products, however good they are at a particular task, is that there’s no connectivity. In contrast, using the CCH Central suite gives us the benefits of a client-centric database – a single source of information that everyone works from and contributes to every time they update a client’s details.”
Kevin adds that this approach has been critical to operating efficiently as the firm has grown, “In being able to draw on data held elsewhere in the suite, we keep manual data entry to a minimum whenever we undertake a new job.”
A single suite of software also has the advantage of being easier to use:
“As a user, you’re looking at everything from the same angle, with a common theme, rather than having to adapt how you work to separate products, each with its own look and feel. This consistency makes it easier to train new users on the software, too.”
Checks and balances
Rickard Luckin adopted CCH Accounts Production software back in 2002, adding on the tax products two years later. The latter included software for corporation tax, which has become a staple of the firm’s work.
Kevin says, “Like the vast majority of UK businesses, most of our clients are SMEs, ranging from start-ups to established companies. We need a product that quickly, efficiently and reliably handles corporation tax for us. CCH Corporation Tax links directly to the accounts data in CCH Accounts Production and draws on up-to-date static data such as names and addresses stored in the CCH Central database, so once again integration is a big plus in eliminating re-keying and improving accuracy.”
Changes such as utilising losses or adding a new source of income are instantly reflected on the return. Meanwhile, a panel displays a list of inconsistent or incomplete information, updated in real time, which prevents users from filing until they have drilled down and fixed the mistake.
Commenting on this nifty feature, Kevin says, “With the Errors & Exceptions panel, we have the comfort of knowing that we’ve dotted all the i’s and crossed all the t’s on corporation tax, and not accidentally overlooked anything.” Timely software updates by Wolters Kluwer ensure the software aligns with regulatory changes.
An IT strategy aligned to today’s clients
Adopting products such as CCH Corporation Tax back in the early 2000s reflects the firm’s forward-looking approach to IT: “It’s essential to work in the way that clients prefer. Coming up to date, we’ve found that using the Wolters Kluwer client portal and document management software has enhanced communications. Both solutions have been a resounding success with our clients, especially younger business owners. Being able to exchange and approve documents electronically fits well with how they run their lives as a whole.”
“As a firm, we’ve always been ahead when it comes to IT and using Wolters Kluwer’s products is an essential component in our strategy.”
Key benefits for Rickard Luckin
- A fast, streamlined process produces technically accurate CT600 submissions every time
- As part of an integrated suite, the software draws on data entered in the course of client work such as accounts production
- Users are prevented from filing the return until inconsistencies and errors are corrected