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Latest SME survey shows business finds RTI problematic

September 20, 2013


A survey of some 2000 SMEs has revealed that many businesses are not yet experiencing any benefit from RTI.  The survey, by London accountancy firm HW Fisher, found that a third of respondents described the system as ‘needless’, with a further 23% describing the RTI process as ‘frustrating’.  Around half of those SMEs surveyed (46%) were either encountering problems with RTI or were still getting to grips with the system over five months after it went live.

The survey showed that the majority of firms were managing RTI in-house at 69%, and that the remainder had outsourced the work to a third party provider.  RTI had increased costs by up to 5% for 31% of the businesses polled; however, some respondents reported rises in costs of between 11 and 15%.

Overall, more than half of the respondents felt that RTI had added a burden to their business in terms of either cost or the extra time required to set up and run RTI.  29% of the SME respondents felt that RTI had added a cost burden to their business, and 23% said that adjusting to RTI processes had been time consuming.

Quoted in Payroll World, Toby Ryland of HW Fisher said that: “It’s clear from our research that the move to RTI has caused many small businesses difficulties, during a time when they would have preferred to have been fully focused on the very tough trading environment faced by most firms.”

Ryland also pointed out that: “The poll underlines the importance of seeking professional expertise from an accountant.”

Responding to the findings, HMRC told Payroll World that: “Some employers will take a little while to get used to reporting PAYE in real time, but once the new system is bedded in, we estimate it will reduce admin costs overall.”

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