Harold Sharp - Making Tax Digital

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Client

Harold Sharp

Problem

In order to comply with the HMRC's "Making Tax Digital for VAT" initiative, the firm needed a way to automatically feed transaction data in a variety of formats into Xero (accounting system).

Solution

Harold Sharp chose SolveXia to automate the processing of their clients’ transaction data for importing into their accounting systems.

Harold Sharp has been helping businesses achieve their boldest ambitions since 1927. The firm provides accounting services for businesses and individuals not only in Manchester but throughout the UK, focusing on areas such as tax, audit and accounting, forecasting, business planning and fully outsourced finance solutions.

By combining their experience in accounting with new technologies like the cloud, Harold Sharp is able to provide a unique and highly-tailored service to their clients. This willingness to embrace technology has helped Harold Sharp to automate laborious data transformations that are required under the HM Revenue & Customs “MakingTax Digital for VAT” initiative, saving the firm time and helping to ensure accuracy for their clients' data.

SolveXia has been an integral part of our investment in systems to comply with Making Tax Digital Requirements, saving hours of manual work on a weekly basis across the firm.

– Christopher Wrighton
Director at Harold Sharp

Challenge

Under the HM Revenue & Customs “Making Tax Digital for VAT” initiative, organisations are no longer allowed to manually copy data from transaction systems to their accounting software. The challenge was that Harold Sharp's customers use a diverse array of transaction processing systems such as Bookalet, Sonovate, Amazon and Paypal (to name a few). This means that transaction data comes in all shapes and formats, making it a difficult undertaking to transform and feed into their accounting software (Xero, Quickbooks or Sage).

Harold Sharp needed a way to automatically convert raw data from any of the various transaction processing systems used by their clients into a clean, consistent format that could be imported into their accounting software. In addition to ensuring an automated and auditable process, and saving time for staff, Harold Sharp also needed the data transformations to be auditable and able to be executed by any staff member (not just those with intimate knowledge of the transformations that are needed).

Solution

Harold Sharp chose SolveXia to automate the processing of their clients’ transaction data for importing into their accounting systems. The four key factors for this were:

  • Ability to replace existing macros with a low-code platform relying on configuration rather than programming.
  • Ability to replace Access databases, which were struggling with growing data volumes, by using the scalability of SQL Server tables within the SolveXia platform.
  • Easy deployment of a process built by a designer to others in the team, who did not need to know the details to be able to run the process.
  • The assurance of having a depth of support provided by SolveXia for their critical business processes.

Harold Sharp selected four members of their accounting team to become process designers.  They underwent a training course using a combination of classroom-led and self-service learning coupled with dedicated support from an instructor.  Within days they were up and running with a programme to configure automated processes.  Once the designers of these processes were comfortable that they met the needs of their clients they were rolled out to other end-users at Harold Sharp, who simply access these processes via a web portal, upload the files and click go.

Key Results and Outcomes

Having automated using SolveXia, Harold Sharp was able to save hours of manual work on a weekly basis. The firm is now able to comply with HMRC’s "Making Tax Digital for VAT" requirements, with transaction data being automatically transformed into a format that can then easily be imported into any of their accounting software packages.

In addition to time-saving and compliance, a key benefit for Harold Sharp is that the transformation of their customer's transaction data is no longer dependent on any key staff at the firm. By eliminating key-person dependency, Harold Sharp is able to ensure a consistent, accurate and timely service to their customers.

SolveXia has minimised our key-person risk. Processes are much easier to create and run (vs. using macros). Automated processes can easily be handed over to anyone in the team to run.

– Andy Brewood
IT Manager at Harold Sharp

Key Metrics

  • 50 runs a month supporting a range of clients and systems.
  • 600 steps automated, eliminating repetitive manual activity
  • Solution easily processes large volumes of transaction data (100k+ rows)

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