Contracting & Using an Accounting Firm this Tax Year

As we’re now in the 2024/25 tax year, let’s start by saying – contracting and freelancing can be tough. Last year was a tough climate for contractors across many sectors, with hiring being low, the economy proving difficult for big projects and for some industries including tech, layoffs in huge companies such as Meta and Google caused a lot of uncertainty.

However, as the economy stabilises and businesses see new budgets introduced for the financial year, we’re seeing an uplift in securing great contracts.

That being said, as the new tax year unfolds, now is the time to plan your finances accordingly. Individuals and businesses have a level of financial responsibilities and strategic planning needed for business growth, and doing that alone can be daunting.

Navigating through tax laws, regulatory compliance, and financial management is a task, however with the right guidance and expertise, this journey can be made significantly smoother. This is where the role of an accounting firm becomes invaluable.

But what can Gorilla Accounting offer you?

Expertise and Specialism

You get to know your business inside out – just like we know ours. It’s our job to know everything there is to know about accounting, which is why we’re the Most Trusted Accounting Firm on Trustpilot!

One of the primary reasons to work with an accounting firm is access to a wealth of expertise and specialisation. Professional accountants continuously undergo training and will always be clued up on the latest changes to your finances, continuously keeping their knowledge up to date to stay on top of changing regulations and best practices.

For contractors, navigating personal tax obligations can be quite overwhelming. From income tax to capital gains tax to IR35, understanding your tax category requires specialised knowledge, which Gorilla can offer as part of a fixed-fee accounting package.

Compliance

The intricacies of tax laws and regulatory compliance can be difficult for even the most seasoned of self-employed contractor. Failure to comply with tax regulations can result in penalties and legal consequences. But by working with an accounting firm like Gorilla, contractors can mitigate compliance risks and ensure adherence to HMRC guidelines.

All of our accountants have an in-depth understanding of tax laws and regulations, allowing us to provide timely advice and assistance in tax compliance matters. Plus, our Client Service Guarantee means that you’ll always get a reply that day if you contact us before 3pm – if you don’t, we’ll issue you with £50!

Making Tax Digital

In today’s digital age, technology plays a crucial role in streamlining accounting processes and enhancing efficiency. At Gorilla Accounting, we leverage accounting software and technology solutions to automate routine tasks, improve data accuracy, and enhance client collaboration.

We partner with FreeAgent, a cloud-based accounting platform that enables both you and your accountant to access data anytime, anywhere, facilitating real-time collaboration and communication. The automation tools streamline repetitive tasks such as data entry and reconciliation.

Is appointing an accounting firm cost effective?

In the long run, very much so. When hiring professional accounting services, the benefits far outweigh the expenses.

By outsourcing accounting tasks, contractors can focus on maximising productivity and profitability, finding their next work project and not having to spend time balancing the books.

An accountant will help you maximise your tax liabilities, optimise financial strategies, and avoid compliance penalties, helping you with financial stability and success.

Our top tips for contractors in 2024

Be Prepared

For any contractor, there are always periods of down time between contracts which is completely natural. You do however need to plan for this. Ensure you have some form of safety net to use should this go on for a prolonged period of time, or a back up plan to earn passive income to cover the bills.

Reviewing your finances with a specialist can be paramount to financial success, particularly in periods like that.

Keep on top of your skills

Take the opportunity during down time to train and develop your skill set, putting you in a position where there will be less competition from other contractors or professionals in the future. If you’re at the top of your game, you will heighten your demand and your income alongside that.

Take part in training that works for you and your particular goals and achievements to develop your business and opportunities.

Get Networking

Yes, the thought of trying to sell yourself in a room of strangers can seem very daunting, particularly if you’re not the most confident person, but networking can be so important to the success of your business!

All it takes is for one conversation to be remembered and it can open a door full of opportunities for you. Talking to the right person at the right time can give you contracts you could only dream of. See what is around in your local area and give it a go as it’s a great way to introduce yourself and your business.

Use LinkedIn

Another form of networking is online via LinkedIn, which again can open the door to mountains of opportunities should you get chatting to the right people. Make sure your profile is up to date and your job titles and skills are clear and searchable, so that you attract businesses and recruiters looking for contractors just like you.

Make sure your job title doesn’t just read ‘CEO’ or ‘MD’ of your business, show your skill range within that job title so people know straight away what you can do. From there, connect with people you know, people in the industry, even fellow contractors who can recommend you on jobs. You need to then keep active, post regularly and positively and share insights into your industry to keep your name on people’s news feeds.

Watch out for deep fake AI

Hiring fraud is getting much more sophisticated, and it’s worth making sure you can recognise this. Many of you will be aware of WhatsApp job scams, whereby fraudsters offer contractors jobs or training courses that do not exist, often asking for money upfront.

AI risks are growing since the launch of remote hiring done online, mainly post-Covid. This coupled with new technology is presenting new risks such as deepfakes. Criminals are now using AI to produce thousands of fake identity and right-to-work documents for sale to individuals who need them because they cannot secure them legitimately.

Contractors and job applicants are also being created by criminal groups, to insert into organisations for the purpose of doing harm. Many fraudsters post fake job adverts to get real information on people, then use this to create their fake identity which, using AI, can be surprisingly simple.

Watch out for who you’re speaking to regarding job roles and do due diligence about them before sending over any personal details.

Contracting in 2024

Contracting can have its difficulties, but you can reap the benefits extensively if you appoint an accounting firm like Gorilla Accounting to look after your finances. As the new tax year unfolds, partnering with a trusted accounting firm is essential for maximising financial success and prosperity.

With our contractor accounting service, all your business and personal accounting needs will be expertly handled with unlimited support and advice and a same day response guaranteed on your queries no matter how many times you contact us.

If you’d like advice on bookkeeping or have any queries about how our contractor accounting service can help you, call 0330 024 0406 or request a call back to speak to us.

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