Most accountants will agree that the biggest hurdle to meeting the self-assessment deadline every January is collecting the necessary information back in time from the client. In the thick of running their business, clients often find it hard to prioritise submitting the data you need and will often leave it to the last minute. This makes it hard to stagger your staff’s workload throughout the year when you are trying to complete hundreds of tax returns by a fixed deadline.
What if there were digital tools that, when used together, not only reduced the time needed to complete tax returns but also made it easier for your clients to submit the relevant documentation on time? Even better, what if these tools gave you control and visibility over your clients’ progress?
Introducing the main contenders
CCH Personal Tax simplifies and streamlines every step of the tax return process, from data collection and data entry through to review, approval and online filing. CCH OneClick is a secure set of interconnected cloud tools that allow you to connect and collaborate with clients. When combined, it unleashes new levels of efficiency and visibility across your tax process by eliminating the need to rekey data and giving you greater control and visibility.
Two-way sync with your bookkeeping software
Open Integration provides a live link with both your bookkeeping software and your accounts production software through CCH OneClick. It allows users to see all bookkeeping transactions from different providers within CCH OneClick. This saves you needing to log into multiple bookkeeping applications to download a copy of the accounts for formatting and minimises the risk of human error when keying that data back into CCH Accounts Production.
Journals created in CCH Account Production can also be synced back into the bookkeeping product without having to rely on your client to do this. In the past, you might have handed these journals to clients to retype into the bookkeeping software, only to find a year later that this had been done incorrectly or not at all, but this issue can now be easily avoided.
With this bookkeeping information flowing directly into CCH Accounts Production, a tax link can be set to automatically send that information to the client’s tax return.
Populate a tax return without spending time on the phone with HMRC
Often preparing a tax return involves advisors spending a lot of time on the phone with HMRC or logging into their client’s Digital Tax Account to understand what information is being held on them. CCH OneClick allows you to set up a live link to all your clients’ Digital Tax Account, meaning that the data is fed into CCH OneClick ensuring you have all that information in one place.
From CCH OneClick you can review that data and easily compare it to the information you already hold in CCH Personal Tax. If you are happy with that information, you can simply send it to your client’s tax return with no need to re-key data.
Data requests without any “it’s in the post” moments
Having completed your clients’ tax return with information held within their Digital Tax Account, there will inevitably still be information that your clients will need to provide or approve. Often this is where delays occur as you are left reliant on clients responding in a timely fashion with the correct data.
CCH OneClick has tools that facilitate this process. The Digital Data Request allows your clients to see what information you have requested to help assist with the completion of their tax return. Clients can enter the values needed and upload requested information such as P60s or property income spreadsheets quickly and efficiently from their laptop or mobile. This in turn becomes available to you in real-time.
The data submitted by your clients can then be sent straight to CCH Personal Tax thanks to the integration with CCH OneClick, saving time and avoiding human error.
CCH OneClick is a single place for you to review all client and HMRC-held data together, giving you visibility from the day that the first data request goes out until the day that the last tax return is submitted.
Producing the final tax return with one button Completing the tax return might involve a formatted document with a letter which explains the client’s tax information and liability. Creating this takes time, as you’ll need to print that information from CCH Personal Tax, write a personalised letter to each client and save it as a PDF to enable email communication.
Imagine producing the same output with the click of a button. The tax return bundle functionality makes it easy to produce a professional-looking set of client-facing documents as a single PDF pack once a tax return has been completed and reviewed within CCH Personal tax.
Communication and collaboration to get the tax return over the line
When you have finalised your tax return, you will most likely need to send it to your client for approval. With CCH OneClick, you can publish your Tax Return Bundle straight to CCH OneClick for your client’s approval.
CCH OneClick’s Messaging & Documents functionality allows any documentation created for a client to be easily sent securely and confidentially. Clients in turn can approve documents through the system and respond to any messages received.
The trail of communication can then be seen within the client’s record in CCH Central and documents sent filed directly into CCH Document Management.
CCH OneClick’s digital tools make “It’s in the post” moments a thing of the past.
To find out more how CCH OneClick and CCH Personal Tax can help you have a more efficient tax season email [email protected]m.