Insight / Making Tax Digital drives Xero revenue growth

Cloud accounting software provider Xero has reported a 36% hike in operating revenue to NZ $552.8m (£283m) for the 2019 financial year and signed a record 151,000 new users in the UK

Insight / Artificial intelligence, robots and accountants

Concerns about the increased automation of accountancy tasks and transactional business should not instil fear into accountants despite the impact of artificial intelligence (AI), says Simon Wright, managing director at

Insight / Accountancy firms must improve quality of their websites

Accountancy firms are failing to get the most out of their websites, because they are not making good use of search engine optimisation (SEO) techniques which will push them up the page rankings on Google searches, while only one in four use Twitter to promote the practice

Insight / Accountex 2019 exhibition showcases Making Tax Digital

This year’s Accountex exhibition will focus on Making Tax Digital with over 200 exhibitors including leading software and technology companies, and a keynote from HMRC’s head of MTD Theresa Middleton

Insight / Big data needs an ethical framework, says ICAEW

There is an urgent need for an ethical framework for the use of big data or there is a risk of undermining the social purpose of financial services according to ICAEW

Insight / CogitalGroup launches digital workplace platform

Big Four challenger CogitalGroup has launched CoZone, a next generation digital workplace which will allow clients to access the full breadth of its services in one secure place, timed to coincide with the introduction of Making Tax Digital, HMRC’s move to digitise tax

Insight / Artificial intelligence: the pros and cons of AI for accountants

Artificial intelligence (AI) can reduce the volume of transactional work and improve productivity through the use intelligent accounts payable management systems but it cannot replace humans. Alan Rajah, partner at Lawrence Grant Chartered Accountants, examines the use of AI in accounting and finance teams

Insight / Scotland offers rates relief to boost full fibre for business

Telecommunications firms are to benefit from 100% non-domestic rates relief on new fibre broadband infrastructure in Scotland to help them make the business case for installations, the Scottish government has revealed

Insight / Fraud total hits £1.2bn

Authorised and unauthorised fraud totalled £1.2bn in 2018, with the theft of personal and financial data through social engineering a major contributor to fraud losses, according to the annual report from UK Finance

Accounting / Sub-postmasters win first trial over accounting IT issues

A group of over 500 former sub-postmasters (SPMs) have won an important first step in a series of trials relating to claims that the Post Office incorrectly and unfairly held them responsible for accounting discrepancies, which they held were due to failings with the Post Office’s Horizon IT system

Insight / Lack of funding for cyber security for government online services

Despite the importance of the digital economy and the move to online services such as Making Tax Digital, the government does not have a sufficiently clear strategy for ensuring cyber security and may not have allocated sufficient funds to its five-year action programme, the National Audit Office (NAO) is warning

Insight / Treasury report calls for action on tech giant dominance

The government has signalled it plans to take further action on the digital economy, including requiring companies like Apple, Microsoft and Google to make it easier to move data between platforms, after a Treasury report recommended greater competition in the market

Accounting / What happens when no one trusts the numbers?

Financial discrepancies in month end reporting and inaccurate financial data is a major risk and reputational issue for CFOs and finance directors so why does the C-suite trust the numbers, asks Mario Spanicciati, chief strategy officer at BlackLine

Insight / FTSE 350 failing to grasp cyber risks

Less than a fifth (16%) of FTSE 350 boards have a comprehensive understanding of the impact of loss or disruption associated with cyber threats, despite almost all (96%) having a cyber security strategy in place, government research has found

Insight / PwC and ICAS test blockchain for qualification verification

PwC is testing the use of blockchain technology to issue staff with digital versions of their certifications, kept in virtual wallets, as part of an initiative looking at ways to reduce the amount of time and cost organisations spend checking an individual’s identify and qualifications