Coronavirus Business Support | R&D tax credit improvements | WFH

The package of measures rolled out for businesses in last week’s Budget Statement looked generous - however, it all appears woefully inadequate now.

So Rishi Sunak had to step up again this evening to unveil a further round of support in an “unprecedented package” of £330bn for companies.

I personally can’t help but feel that this might be just the tip of the iceberg…

Please reach out if you would like to explore your options further.

R&D Tax Credit - Potential improvements ahead

A common problem with the UK R&D tax incentive is that it fails to recognise certain costs as eligible for the relief, despite the fact that they can be key to the R&D work.

This is especially true for software development companies in which the following costs come up time and again in discussions with business owners:

  1. the costs of acquiring data sets and

  2. cloud computing costs

Although often key to the R&D work, these costs do not qualify for relief under current rules.

Although ‘software’ is a qualifying cost, HMRC does not accept that data or cloud computing costs fall within any of the qualifying criteria.

This very point was raised in an interesting publication ‘Credit Where Credit’s Due, issued by Coadec (the Coalition for a Digital Economy representing UK tech startups and scale-ups) back in the Summer of last year - well worth a read - with a proposal for this change.

The good news is that HMRC recently announced a consultation on the possible inclusion of these costs in R&D claims going forward.

I’ll keep you posted.

WFH: Maintaining staff morale and engagement

We are entering unchartered waters with offices across the country having to consider closing, resulting in team members working remotely from home (WFH).

Keeping track of staff morale whilst they are remote working will become key.

Daily online meetings will be important and tools like Zoom, Google Hangouts, MS Teams, Slack or Skype should help. Plus tools like Officevibe might help for quick, snappy and regular check-ins.

What tools are you using to help enable remote working for your team? Any other tips to share with fellow founders?

Take care,