Elevating Business: 1 Accounts Partners with Swoop

In the ever-evolving landscape of business and finance, staying ahead means leveraging every available resource to fuel growth and efficiency. That’s why 1 Accounts Online is thrilled to announce our partnership with Swoop, a move set to revolutionise the way our clients manage their finances, access funding, and combat the energy crisis.

Swoop is a renowned platform that simplifies and speeds up access to loans, equity, and grants for businesses. Their expertise in financial solutions, combined with our accounting prowess, creates a synergy that promises to bring unparalleled value to our clients.

Gain access to a broad range of funding options tailored to fit your business needs. Whether it’s a loan, equity finance, or grant, our combined efforts make the search and application process easier than ever.

In today’s world, being energy efficient is not just good for the planet, it’s essential for business success. Our partnership with Swoop opens the door to innovative solutions that reduce energy costs, contributing to a healthier bottom line and a greener planet.

Knowledge is power, especially when it comes to financial planning. With our collaborative tools and expertise, you’ll have a clearer understanding of your business’s financial health, empowering you to make informed decisions that spur growth.

The business world is dynamic, and so are the needs of our clients. This partnership is just the beginning. We are committed to continuously exploring innovative ways to provide value and support to our clients at every stage of their business journey.

Are you ready to explore how this partnership can benefit your business? Reach out to us today to learn more and take the first step towards a more prosperous and efficient future.

Our Journey to Becoming Xero Platinum Partners

Celebrating Our Journey to Becoming Xero Platinum Partners: How Your Trusted Business Advisors & Accountants in Haverhill Made it to the Top

We’re incredibly excited to announce a milestone moment for our team here at 1 Accounts Online. After years of hard work, dedication, and a commitment to excellence, we have officially become Xero Platinum Partners. This achievement places us among an elite group of UK accountants recognised for their expertise and service quality.

This journey began with a vision to be more than just accountants in Haverhill. We wanted to become trusted business advisors and coaches, helping businesses transform their financial management and achieve their objectives. Xero, with its innovative approach to online accounting, aligned perfectly with this vision, and we embraced its platform to provide a seamless, intuitive accounting experience to our clients.

Becoming a Xero Platinum Partner represents a commitment to efficiency, modernity, and exceptional client service. As UK accountants, we’re proud to be part of an community of accountants that Xero recognises for their dedication to clients.

At 1 Accounts Online, we’re not just accountants in Haverhill; we’re also renowned business advisors and coaches. We understand the challenges of running a business. That’s why our role as business coaches in Haverhill extends beyond numbers. We strive to provide strategies that help businesses thrive, with an emphasis on financial health, growth and sustainability.

This new status as a Xero Platinum Partner confirms our ability to provide superior service to businesses in Haverhill and beyond. It’s a validation of our skills and a testament to the relationships we’ve built with our clients, who trust us to guide their financial journey.

However, this achievement isn’t just about us; it’s about you – our clients. Your faith and trust in our services as your preferred UK accountants and business advisors have made this journey possible. We thank you for your unwavering support and promise to continue delivering excellence, innovation, and professional guidance.

So, whether you need expert accountants in Haverhill or dedicated business coaches in Haverhill, remember that at 1 Accounts Online, we’re committed to helping you build your dreams. This journey from zero to Xero Platinum Partner has been an exciting one. We look forward to continuing to strive for excellence together.

Thank you for being a part of our journey. Stay tuned for more exciting updates and insights from your trusted business advisors at 1 Accounts Online.

Why we love Xero!

It’s no secret that we love Xero! It is the accounting software that we recommend to absolutely all of our clients. This is because we truly believe that it offers better features and useability than its competitors. Here are just some of the reasons why we love Xero!

1) Easy to use

Xero has made its interface very user-friendly and we find it easy to use on our end as well. This also makes it easy for us to teach you how to use it, to make sure that you get the best out of it and make sure your data is always accurate and up to date! We offer Xero training sessions to all of our clients at the onboarding stage so we can make sure you start off with it well, especially if you have never used it before.  Multiple users can be added who can all access the software at the same time.  You can also have different access levels for different team members so individuals can access or be restricted from certain parts of the software as appropriate.

2) Up to date reports

Using Xero means you will be able to access up-to-date reports that make it easy to understand how your business is doing. These are also able to be tailored to your specific needs for your company.

3) Cloud accounting

As with the majority of the other products that we love, Xero is cloud based! This means there is no need to save your documents to your PC and your data is backed up automatically and securely so you will never lose it. This also means that it can be accessed anywhere at any time, either via the web browser or the app.

4) Automatically brings in bank feeds

Xero can be set up so that it automatically brings in bank feeds from your business bank accounts and credit cards so your transactions are automatically bought into the software daily.  This limits the need for manual entries and means your figures are up to date in real time. This makes it easy for our bookkeepers as well as we won’t have to ask you for statements!

For a list of available bank feeds please see here.

We can help you set up your bank feed if you need, please just get in touch.

5) Integrations with other software

Xero also has over 1000 different apps, add-ons and integrations with software such as Dext, GoCardless, Stripe, Vend, Square, PayPal and more. Many of these apps can be set up to automate time-consuming tasks to make your admin easier!

If you need any help with setting up apps and integrations with Xero please get in touch.

6) Ahead of the crowd

Xero is typically always one step ahead of its closest competitors.  This can be in terms of reporting or keeping up with change in statutory requirements and legislation such as Making Tax Digital, Domestic Reverse Charge and even the Covid Furlough Scheme. It is constantly evolving and adding new features, particularly based on customer feedback on what features users would like to see implemented or ways existing features can be improved.

If you would like to find out more about Xero, transfer over from your existing software or try a free trial or demo please contact us so we can discuss!

Signing a proposal with Ignition

So you want to sign up to working with us and have had a successful meeting! Or maybe you’re already a customer of ours who wants to change or add to your existing service? Unfortunately we need more than a verbal agreement in today’s world so we will send you a proposal to sign so that we can complete the work as agreed.

At 1 Accounts we like to be as paperless as possible so we make use of a software called Ignition which allows us to create and send your proposal to you via email, and allows you to sign it digitally getting rid of the need to print out long contracts and wait for them to be delivered by post. This way you can sign up to our services while enjoying your beach holiday at the same time!

What is a proposal

When we agree to complete a service for you, whether you are signing up with us for the first time, or changing your existing services, we will send you a proposal for you to sign in order for us to complete the work.

Your proposal will contain the agreed services, our terms and conditions, and the agreed fee. It’s basically our contract and invoice for the services we have agreed to complete for you, and we need it to be signed and returned to us before we are able to start the work for you.

When we send proposals

 As we said above, we will send you a proposal after we make an agreement with you to complete some work. This could be when you sign up with us for the first time, if you want to add something to your existing service such as bookkeeping, or if you want us to change your address with HMRC & Companies House. Any service that you ask us to do, even one-off jobs, will require a signed proposal even when we are not charging you to complete the work.

How to sign with Ignition

When we send a proposal we use an online software called Ignition. This functions similarly to DocuSign in that it will send your proposal to you via email and makes use of digital signatures, so you are able to sign your proposal wherever you are in the world.

The email will come from a 1 Accounts email address and will contain a link to your proposal. When you click the link, you will see a message from us. On the next page will be a breakdown of the services we agreed with you. Please double check that you are happy with everything that is included before you sign as we can easily make an adjustment and re-send it to you. The following page is a schedule of your payments which breaks down how much you are going to pay us and when. Again, make sure you check this carefully and when you are happy proceed to the signing page.

At the top of the signing page is a link to our terms and conditions that you are agreeing to by signing the proposal. Once again, please read these to make sure you are happy with what you are agreeing to. Once you are happy, please tick the box that says “I accept the above terms” then type your name in the box. This acts as your digital signature. The last thing to do is to click the button in the bottom left corner that says “accept”!

What happens after you sign your proposal

After you sign your proposal, we will receive an email to say you have signed it and we can begin working with you. You will also receive a confirmation email with a link to download your engagement letter for your records.

If this is the first time you have signed a proposal with us, you will receive another email from GoCardless to set up your direct debit. Please fill this out so that we can receive payment from you. If you have completed this step before then the software will trigger the money to be taken according to the schedule agreed upon in the proposal.

We love using Ignition to complete this as we believe it makes the process very straightforward for both us and our clients. Please watch the below video for a walkthrough of the signing process.

The benefits of using DocuSign to sign your documents

One of the things we pride ourselves at 1 Accounts is our ability to be cloud-based and as paperless as possible. This is because we care about the environment and also because we believe these methods give greater flexibility to our clients. In accounting there will always be documents for which we need your signature, and this is where DocuSign comes in. Instead of making the traditional trip to your accountant’s office to sign off your tax return or your accounts, you can do it from anywhere with an internet connection!

What is DocuSign?

DocuSign is a software that allows you to send and sign documents with an E-Signature quickly and easily. As the documents are sent directly to your email address, you can access them wherever you are in the world on whatever device you have to hand. The signatures are as legally binding as ink is, so you can sign contracts and documents knowing that they will be fully official.

Why do we use DocuSign?

As well as reducing the impact on the environmental by not printing something out that we don’t absolutely have to, using DocuSign’s E-signature method frees up lots of time as you don’t have to go back and forth to our office or the post office whenever we ask you to sign a document!

It also reduce our turnaround time significantly as there can be very little waiting around. Everything can be signed as soon as it is ready just with the click of a button.

DocuSign is a secure platform so your information will be safe at all times, and will never get lost in the post!

How do we use DocuSign?

When we send you a document to sign through DocuSign, you will receive an email saying that your documents are ready to sign. We typically use this for tax returns, accounts, board minutes or other documents for which we need your signature.

Clicking on the “Review Documents” link in the email will bring you into your document in DocuSign where the places for you to sign will be helpfully marked.

Once you have signed your documents, the completed documents will be emailed to you.

Make sure that you download these and keep save them with your records as it will save time if you need them in the future.

You can either click on the link in the email to download your completed documents or save them from the attachment on the email.

We find DocuSign a big help and a huge time saver for us, and we believe it saves time for our clients as well as making their access to their important documents quick and straightforward.

All about requesting your documents using Karbon!

As a cloud-based accountancy practice, we very rarely ask you to bring in physical copies of your documents to our offices in Haverhill. This option is available to you if you really need it, however we find most of our clients prefer to send their information in digitally. This also has the benefit of being able to keep your original hard copies safe!

When we send requests for your documents we use a system called Karbon. We may request various documentation from you over your time with us starting right at the onboarding stage.

When do we use Karbon to send requests?

During onboarding we will use Karbon to send you requests for your ID and to fill in some information forms. After this, you will get requests from Karbon annually for your accounts and tax return information, and to confirm that your details have not changed. If you have bookkeeping services or reviews with us, we also may use it to request bank statements.

If you have changed any of your details such as your name or address, we may also use Karbon to request updated ID from you.

Why do you use Karbon for this?

Karbon is fully GDPR compliant so you know your data is safe. It is more protected than if you were to simply email it to us as it is harder to hack than an email account. For this reason, if we ever have to send sensative documents to you then we will use Karbon for this as well.

What does it look like when Karbon sends me a request?

All requests from Karbon come in the form of “checklists”. To access your checklist and upload your documents you need to click on the “manage checklist” link inside your email.

All requests from Karbon come in the form of “checklists”. To access your checklist and upload your documents you need to click on the “manage checklist” link inside your email.

Once in your Karbon checklist, you will be able to see your task. Clicking on a task will expand it and allow you to read any extra comments or directions that we have written.

Use the “Upload files” button to upload your documents safely and securely, or if you want to ask us a question use the “comment” button. We can reply to you directly on this chain and you will get an email every time we leave a comment.

When your task is completed, tick it off on the left. This will let the person who sent you the task know that you have completed it straight away. Make sure all of your completed tasks are ticked off otherwise you will continue to get reminder emails automatically.

We love Karbon and its interactive workflow features and we hope that this process makes it as easy and safe as possible to get your documents to us so that we can complete your accounts and tax returns!

Why we love Dext!

Dext, formally known as Receipt Bank, is a software that we recommend so much that we include it in all our Limited Company and Sole Trade services!

Using it, you can take a photograph of your receipts and it will extract the information from them with 99% accuracy and upload it to your accounting software.

Why do we love it so much?

This easy to use and time saving software fits right in with our ethos of “life is too short to be doing your accounts”! Instead of spending lots of time manually inputting the data from all your receipts, invoices, or bank statements, you can upload them to Dext instead. This means you can get the right information into your Xero account quickly and easily.

If we do your bookkeeping for you, then using Dext also keeps our bookkeeping team happy! You will be able to send the necessary information with as little effort as possible whilst allowing them to keep on top of your bookkeeping, a definite win-win!

We love a product that saves time like this does, and just think about what you could be doing with the time you save!

How does Dext work?

Our fantastic bookkeeper Charlie has prepared a video giving you an overview of Dext and some of its features:

To make things even easier, Dext have prepared a helpful PDF guide on how to use their mobile app. Download it by clicking here.

Dext have also got some very helpful videos on their YouTube channel. Below is a video that goes into more detail about the various methods that you can use to submit your information to Dext, including Fetch, email, and the mobile app.

If you are struggling with using Dext or have any questions about it, please contact any members of our bookkeeping team as they will be happy to help you

why should I switch to a digital payment process

Why should I switch to a digital payment process?

According to studies, SMEs spend on average, a whopping £4.4 billion per annum chasing late payments. This problem is only exacerbated by traditional (and slow!) payment methods too such as cash and cheques, so what is the solution to this?

To reduce the time between invoicing and the money actually clearing into your accounts receivables – thereby minimising the negative impact on your cash flow – small and medium businesses should consider switching to digital payment. Here’s why.

6 benefits of switching to a digital payment process

1 . Consistent cash flow

Digital payments mean a faster processing time which results in a much faster cash conversion cycle. This means no more big gaps in cash flow due to late payments.

2 . Lower processing costs

Switching to digital means lower payment processing fees than standard bank transfers. As there’s no need for manual reconciliation, labour costs are also reduced.

3 . Greater visibility of your finances in real-time

Businesses that use a digital payment process always have their accounts receivables in real-time. This allows them to refine their credit control processes and make informed strategic decisions.

4. Quicker reconciliation

Digital payments don’t take days to reconcile, they show up on your accounts receivable almost instantly. The result? Better documentation and more time for your staff to focus on the high-value stuff instead.

5. Happier clients

Going digital benefits your clients too as it gives them the widest and most convenient range of payment options to choose from. Making it quick and easy for your clients to pay makes them happy and it builds loyal relationships too!

6. Security compliant

The vast majority of software providers abide by the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). This means all business and client data can be processed securely.

Wave goodbye to late payments

Payment delays can build and threaten the future of your company. To avoid potentially irreparable damage, implement digital payments sooner rather than later. Not only will this balance out your monthly cash flow and reduce manual work and extra costs, but it will also improve your client journey and most likely ensure repeat business.


accountant with laptop

15 things you didn’t know an accountant could do

When asked “What does an accountant do?” many people answer with accounts, tax or compliance work. While that’s true, what many don’t know, is that the good ones do so much more. The best accountants will become a part of your team; they will give you strategic advice to save money and boost revenue, they will help you work more efficiently, and they will not only help you plan for your future, but they will help you get there.

To better answer the question, “What does an accountant do?” here is a taster of what they offer to you and your business.

Things an accountant can do…

  1. Launch a start-up

You need to know that your idea will make money and may potentially need to convince investors of the same thing. An accountant can do that for you plus work out your start-up and operating costs and create credible revenue forecasts.

  1. Manage your cash flow

Getting a stable and consistent cash flow is every business owner’s dream. An accountant can make sure that you always have the money there to pay staff and suppliers, as well as cash reserves in case of an emergency.

  1. Help make you more tax-efficient

Everyone knows that an accountant can help you complete and submit your returns at the end of the tax year. What many don’t know is that they can also help you to lower your tax ethically as well as helping you deal with old tax debts and making sure your books are watertight if you’re audited.

  1. Manage your debt

What loan should you choose? Should you use spare cash to pay back loans or reinvest in the business? An accountant can help you develop a specific strategy to manage debt in a way that is best for your business.

  1. Chase unpaid invoices

An accountant takes the ‘chasing money’ headache away from you by setting up an automated invoice system. When a payment is due or overdue, this will send out automatic reminders to your clients until they pay. Some accountants will even call clients who are very overdue with payments.

  1. Improve your business strategy

Yes, your accountant can help you figure out where you want to go and what’s important. They will work with you to set realistic personal, professional, and financial goals, and then they will measure your progress to help you achieve them.

  1. Budgeting and forecasting

Working off a vague set of numbers can result in irreparable damage to a business. With an accountant, you can work to an exact budget where you know exactly what is coming in and going out, and how much money you have to reinvest, and all in real-time. As well as having the figures at your fingertips, you will also know your figures that you’re aiming for and how long you could last in a crisis.

  1. Writing and pitching loan applications

Applying for a loan is a tedious and difficult process, but not with an accountant. They can pull together your numbers to help you write a solid application, not to mention give you the forecasting figures that will win over any loan officer.

  1. Help you with recruitment and payroll

Should you hire a full-time employee or outsource? Will your bottom line benefit more from a salesperson or a technician? Can you afford to hire and train a new employee? All these questions are important and should be handled with confidence. An accountant can help you make the best choices for you and your business and make payroll easy.

  1. Set up your cloud accounting software

Accountants aren’t stuffy number crunchers who speak a different language, they are tech-savvy and future-driven. Using the best tools out there, good accountants can help you automate your business’s accounting so that you’re always on top of your finances wherever you are. As well as implementing this software in your business, they can also train you to use it confidently.

  1. Help your business run more efficiently

In addition to accounting software, accountants can also help you unlock the power of other applications so that you can start working smarter, not harder. They can help you increase productivity with your invoicing, payroll, customer relationship management, staff scheduling and time-recording etc, and integrate all these tools together to create an effortless workflow.

  1. Improve your inventory management

Many business owners don’t realise how much money is lost due to poor inventory management. What an accountant can do is help you identify the cost of holding inventory and how much revenue is lost, so you can start to place accurate (and cost-effective) orders.

  1. Help you plan for the future

Do you want to sell your business in the future? Do you have a succession plan? Do you want to retire early? All these questions need to be addressed and planned for early on in your business journey. As well as helping you develop a plan for the future, an accountant will keep this larger goal in mind and will help you stay on track.

  1. Listen and support you

A good accountant will become an essential part of your team. They will be your financial advisor for all aspects of your life and will be there to listen and support you whenever you need them (not just appear in your life at the end of the tax year).

  1. Give you peace of mind

Your business, your finances, and the welfare of you and your family are probably the three most important things in your life. An accountant can help ease this pressure, giving you the reassurance and confidence that everything is being done or is planned for. The result? Peace of mind and being able to sleep soundly.

VAT reverse charge

What is the VAT reverse charge?

From the 1st March, the VAT reverse charge scheme now applies to construction. If you work in the construction industry and are VAT registered, this applies to you, your suppliers and your customers.

If you are not VAT registered or do not work in the construction sector you can ignore this blog but feel free to share with someone that you know who is. 

This new scheme has been brought in to reduce VAT fraud in the construction sector. For businesses which fall under this scheme, it will mean significant changes for how you charge and recover VAT.

Click here for the published guidance that has been released by HMRC so far.  

Build UK have also prepared a guide which includes a checklist to assist with the changes. Click here to view the checklist. 

It is also useful to look at and understand the published guidance on the CIS scheme itself which can be found at www.gov.uk/government/publications/construction-industry-scheme-cis-340

But let’s start with WHO this scheme DOESN’T apply to: 

  • When you are not VAT registered as a business
  • You are not in the construction industry
  • If you are VAT registered and supplying:
  1. A non-VAT registered customer
  2. The ‘end users’, i.e. a VAT registered customer who is not intending to make further on-going supplies of construction
  3. Intermediary suppliers who are connected, e.g. a landlord and his tenant or 2 companies in the same group.

Now let’s look at WHO this scheme DOES apply to – and ALL the conditions need to be met: 

  • Where the customer and supplier are both registered for CIS
  • The customer and supplier are not connected
  • The customer is intending to make an ongoing supply of construction services to another party
  • Standard or reduced rate VAT applies to the services or product being supplied
  • The supplier AND customer are both VAT registered.

It’s probably easier to consider different scenarios and what would happen under both the old and new schemes:

Scenario 1:  

Simon the plumber, who is VAT registered, supplies the materials and labour to plumb a new house for Mr Developer (also VAT registered). Mr Developer (also VAT registered) then sells the house to Mrs End User.

Under the old scheme:

Simon would have invoiced Mr Developer £10,000 + VAT, i.e. £12,000

Simon would have accounted for the £2000 of VAT he owes HMRC on his system

Mr Developer would have paid Simon £12,000.

Mr Developer would have accounted for the £2000 of VAT he can possibly reclaim against VAT he owes HMRC.

Under the new scheme:

Simon invoices Mr Contractor £10,000, and marks his invoice as “the CIS reverse charge applies and the applicable rate is 20%”.

Mr Contractor now pays Simon £10,000. But then accounts for £2000 of VAT (i.e. the VAT on Simon’s invoice) that he owes HMRC on his accounting system.

Scenario 2: 

Simon the plumber, who is VAT registered, supplies the materials and labour to plumb a bathroom for Mrs End User.

As Mrs End User is the End User, and a customer who is not VAT registered, Simon under both the new and old scheme, invoices her for £10,000 + VAT, i.e. £12,000.

Simon accounts for the £2000 of VAT he now owes HMRC.

Scenario 3: 

Simon the plumber, who is VAT registered, supplies the materials and labour to plumb a house for Mr Builder. Mr Builder is NOT VAT registered.

As Mr Builder, is a customer who is not VAT registered, Simon under both the new and old scheme, invoices him for £10,000 + VAT, i.e. £12,000.

Simon accounts for the £2000 of VAT he now owes HMRC.

What you need to do now: 

If you are VAT registered, inform all your VAT registered subcontractors that from 1st March 2021:

  • you will no longer accept invoices with VAT paid on it
  • Their invoices which contain products or services which VAT needs to be paid on are clearly marked as ‘the CIS reverse charge applies’ and the VAT rate which needs to be applied to the items.

If you are regularly buying materials which have VAT added, you may like to consider moving to do a monthly VAT return. This will allow you to quickly reclaim any VAT which is owed to you. With the introduction of the reverse charge scheme in construction, most VAT registered construction businesses who do a large proportion of their work as a contractor rather than direct to the end user, would be better off by doing a monthly VAT return


The guys and girls at Xero have been working hard to deal with this for you and here is a link to how to set up VAT Reverse charge on your Xero software

Click here for instructions on how to set up your Xero 

See video below for more instructions on how to set up your Xero