Enhancing your services and broadening your practices through technology

Enhancing your services and broadening your practices through technology

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By Mike Dean, Managing Director of WhisperClaims

At WhisperClaims, we’ve made it our mission to simplify R&D claims for our clients through innovative technological solutions.

With the Big4 firms now emphasising solutions that are “human-led, technology-powered” in their services to clients, we’re proud to highlight that we’ve been at the forefront of this approach for several years. Our technology, supported by our R&D tax experts, has played a key role in helping accountancy firms of all sizes to revamp their R&D services.

By combining their existing client knowledge with our user-friendly technology, we’ve facilitated a straightforward and replicable business process for accountants and have witnessed first-hand the transformative power of technology in delivering what are traditionally “people heavy”, consultative processes. 

From my perspective, the integration of technology is paving the way for significant growth and expansion across parts of the sector that so far have been impacted little – no longer just in the realm of compliance, the impact of tech on advisory services of all flavours is set to really bite over the next few years.

Digital Tools vs Traditional Methods 

Digital solutions offer significant efficiency gains. We’ve seen this first hand – our clients who leverage our technology have gained a competitive edge over traditional competitors (other accountants) and specialist service providers. Our technology has disrupted a market once dominated by specialists, empowering accountants to play a more prominent role with newfound confidence that a combination of tech and appropriate support brings.

Furthermore, digital solutions substantially enhance quality. Standardising processes across the board significantly improves overall quality, extending beyond mere compliance to encompass repeatability and consistency across team members and multiple office locations. This consistency positively impacts brand credibility and customer satisfaction. 

Finally, scalability – a paramount consideration for our customers, who seek to expand either by enhancing the productivity of their current teams or by introducing new service lines. They leverage our technology to achieve this growth without incurring additional costs associated with recruiting for increased capacity or expertise. 

The Importance of Support 

Initially, we anticipated technical support queries following the launch of our product. However, we soon realised that our software required minimal assistance. Instead, our customers sought guidance on navigating R&D tax legislation and providing optimal advice to their clients. 

This realisation led us to integrate support features into our app, such as videos, dynamic feedback, and automated risk assessments, and most importantly, to develop our Advice Line. Through live chat, telephone, and email, our customers have access to quick and reliable support from our expert team. This positively impacts our customers by eliminating the need for in-house resources to address client queries, as they can lean on us for support whenever they need it.  

Our integrated technology and support model have become vital in our market, particularly in light of recent changes in R&D tax legislation and HMRC’s evolving practices. Accountancy firms now play a crucial role in providing clients with support in this area of tax, and our structured, technology-driven approach, coupled with expert support, has proven essential for meeting clients’ needs effectively and confidently. 

Will Technology Take Our Jobs? 

This question is a common concern within our profession, and one that I’m often asked.

From my perspective, the integration of digital solutions hasn’t jeopardised the jobs of accountants. 

Instead, our customers fall into two categories. Firstly, there are those who utilise WhisperClaims to expand their business offerings by enhancing efficiency, freeing up their team’s workload to focus on other projects. 

Secondly, there are those who have yet to delve into R&D tax claims, either choosing to outsource to third party specialists, or leaving clients to handle it independently. 

Empowered by our innovative technology and comprehensive support, these accountants can smoothly transition into the R&D tax arena, providing a competitive and efficient service without the need to hire specialised professionals or expand existing operations. If anything, this is only having a positive impact as it broadens the firm’s service offering, enables deeper and more meaningful dialogue with clients and bolsters the top and bottom line. Ultimately, this builds a more successful firm.

My Predictions for the Future 

I predict a continued rise in the adoption of digital solutions across various facets of accounting. Automation will become increasingly sophisticated, incorporating AI and machine learning to handle more complex tasks with greater accuracy and efficiency. 

This shift towards automation won’t render accountants redundant; rather, it will redefine their roles. 

Accountants will continue to advance as strategic advisors, placing greater emphasis on interpreting data rather than solely gathering and presenting it. They will cultivate deeper and potentially more robust connections with clients. This does not diminish the significance of numbers; compliance will remain central to any practice. However, the ability to develop and provide competitive services, as well as distinguish oneself from competitors, will increasingly hinge on delivering a wider range of services efficiently, which will inevitably involve leveraging technology.

I’d love to hear what you think – feel free to drop me a line on mike@whisperclaims.co.uk – it’s always good to catch up on how the market is developing.

How to write an R&D tax relief technical narrative

With HMRC’s new mandatory requirement for project descriptions on all submissions, we wanted to share our experiences to help others to write their best possible technical narratives.

Available to download here.

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