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  • How much time will Xero save me?

    As a general rule the more transactions you have and the more you use Xero features to streamline your financial processes, the more time you will save. It also reduces the risk of you wasting time. By staying on top of your finances and maintaining their accuracy, you will avoid costly and time consuming mistakes.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our accounts services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • I already have accounting software – is it easy to switch to Xero?

    If you are changing from Sage or Quickbooks, converting to Xero is easy. You will need to supply a backup file of your existing data, Xero will then check and convert your data so it can be used in Xero in a matter of days, rather than weeks.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our accounts services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • Do I need accounting software?

    Accounting software will help you to keep your bookkeeping up-to-date so you have a clear picture of your financial position. Cloud accounting software is a step up from that as it lets you view and manage your finances anytime, anywhere.

    More importantly, cloud accounting software helps you to make the most of us, as your accountant. We can view your accounts online to answer queries in real-time as they arise, giving you the peace of mind that anomalies or concerns are dealt with before they become an issue.

    To help you understand how your business is performing, we can analyse your accounts information on a regular basis to highlight parts of the business that are performing well and identify areas for improvement.

    Finally, the introduction of digital tax accounts will make it essential to have accounting software so that accounts can be submitted online.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our accounts services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • How can operating a tronc reduce National Insurance Contributions (NICs)?

    One advantage of having a tronc system is that it can allow you to qualify for exemptions from National Insurance Contributions (NICs). The exemption applies to service charges, as well as to tips and other gratuities paid by customers on a payment card and distributed to staff. In comparison, you and your staff would pay a combined total of almost 26% more in NICs if you distributed these funds to your employees outside of a tronc scheme.

    These exemptions are unique to the hospitality industry – no other business sector has the ability to legitimately reduce NICs paid by themselves and their employees to such an extent.

    As an example, a hospitality business turning over £250,000 per annum could save in excess of £4,000 per year. If an employee is receiving £100 per week through a compliant tronc system, they will receive additional net pay of over £600 annually.

    The rules for qualifying for the exemption from NICs can appear daunting as HMRC’s guidance on the subject is extensive. WMT cuts through the complexity to find a practical, pragmatic and commercial approach that benefits you and your staff.

    Getting things wrong could be crippling for your business. Should HMRC discover that your tronc has been operated incorrectly, they will seek both employees and employers NICs from you, together with interest and penalties. For a business turning over £250,000 per annum this could easily result in a liability exceeding £30,000. This should not put you off setting up a tronc – take it more a cautionary tale and make sure you get expert advice when designing and managing a tronc system.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our hospitality services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • What is an ethical tronc scheme?

    An ethical tronc scheme is set up and run in line with these 10 principles.

    1. Any tips or discretionary service charges paid by customers are managed and processed in a way that is fair and transparent. The tronc scheme seeks to reward and benefit those members of staff who contribute to the customer experience.
    2. Tips and service charge are never be used to meet National Minimum Wage obligations.
    3. If you invite customers to pay for service, you should operate a fair and well-managed tronc system. Customers expect service charges and tips to be paid to staff in addition to basic pay, not as part of it.
    4. Any service charge is always discretionary and should be clearly advertised as such to the customer.
    5. As an operator, never get involved with cash tipping. Whatever cash staff receive directly from customers belongs to them and they are responsible for ensuring they pay the income tax due on it.
    6. Businesses should aim to distribute 100% of the tips and service charges to staff. Where this is not possible, they should set a fee for administration that does no more than cover genuine third-party costs incurred in respect of collecting, administering, processing and making payments to staff. The operator should not make a profit from the administration charge.
    7. Customers should be clearly advised of the level of any administration charge, whether a tronc scheme is operated, and who manages it (eg, a member of staff, an independent third party).
    8. In keeping with the principle of transparency, staff should always be aware of the rules of the scheme. Staff should be told about how their own share is calculated, who the Troncmaster is, and how to raise questions about the operation of their scheme.
    9. The Troncmaster should manage the tronc scheme fairly and free of bias, favouritism and personal friendships. They should not seek to unfairly exclude any individuals or groups of staff.
    10. Tronc members expect to earn more through the tronc when business is good, the restaurant is busier and more service charge is paid by customers.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our hospitality services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • What is a tronc?

    Tronc, from the French “tronc des pauvres” meaning poor box or alms box”

    Troncs have come a long way from the wooden boxes left in French churches to gather alms for the poor of the parish. Today, a tronc (also known as a tronc scheme or tronc system) is used to distribute tips and discretionary service charges from customers to hospitality employees.

    A tronc is usually set up to make the most of favourable rules which, subject to meeting certain conditions, allow payments to be made from the tronc free of National Insurance Contributions. A correctly operated tronc will put employers and employees in the same position as when a customer leaves a cash tip, and the employee pays the correct tax on the tip to HMRC.  Employers and employees will pay a combined total of almost 26% more tax on the same funds if they are distributed without the use of a tronc scheme.

    There are many different types of tronc, but all are run by a Troncmaster. This person decides how the money in the tronc is shared out. In some cases, they will also make payments to the scheme members. More commonly though, the Troncmaster will be given the right to share out a sum of money by the owners of the business, but will not actually make the payment.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our hospitality services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • How much does your payroll service cost?

    There are two elements to the cost of our service:

    • Set up cost, which varies depending on the complexity of your requirements; plus
    • Cost per employee for each time your payroll is run.

    After discussing your individual needs with you, we will produce a bespoke quote which clearly explains the costs for your particular requirements. The quote can include managing your auto enrolment process for you.

    Get in touch with our payroll services team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • How do I get value from my statutory audit?

    An audit should always add value. We see an audit as much more than an independent professional review of the company’s reporting procedures. It’s an opportunity for you to receive assurance from an independent expert about what is working well as well as some fresh ideas to help you resolve issues and continue improving.

    Communication is key to adding value. Discussing which areas you want us to focus on is the first vital step. We will also agree how and when you would like us to update you on our findings as the audit progresses, so that any concerns can be addressed early on. Finally, a face-to-face meeting to discuss the outcomes of the audit will help you and your management team to set priorities.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our audit team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • What is FRS 102?

    FRS 102 is the UK and Republic of Ireland Financial Reporting Standard. This standard came into effect on 1st January 2015 and replaces previous standards including UK GAAP.

    The introduction of FRS 102 has had a major impact on the financial statements of any entity that previously prepared accounts under UK GAAP including the format of financial statements, the disclosures required and the recognition criteria for various assets and liabilities.

    As this is your first audit under FRS 102, we will provide a review of the implications of changing to the new accounting standards and restate your previous year’s accounts so you have a comparison year.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our audit team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • Do I need an audit?

    Your company will require a statutory audit if it meets two or more of the following requirements, for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2016:

    • turnover more than £10.2m per year,
    • have assets worth more than £5.1m or
    • employ over 50 employees

    There are however some exceptions to the above criteria, please visit our statutory audit page for more details.

    Any charity that falls below a gross income of £1,000,000 or less for accounting periods ending on or after 31 March 2015 (£500,000 or less for prior accounting periods), unless both their gross assets exceed £3.26m and their gross income exceeds £250,000), can choose to opt out of a full audit. Most are required to obtain an alternative assurance service, independent examination.

    If you do not meet the criteria for a statutory audit, you can still benefit from the rigour of an external review of your financial statements and advice on your financial risk management through a voluntary audit.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our audit team to find out more about how they can help you.

  • What adjustments are made to EBITDA when it is used to value a business?

    If future profitability was certain then the valuation of a business would probably be quite easy.  In reality, a buyer forms an opinion on value after considering many factors. These relate to historic performance, projected performance, market conditions, the quality of management, barriers to entry and other risks.

    The most favoured method for determining the open market value of an SME, is to consider a multiple of the underlying earnings of a business. Typically, the Earnings Before Interest Tax and Amortisation (EBITDA) is used to calculate this, which is a widely accepted approximation for operating cash flows.

    Taken alone, EBITDA is a rather blunt tool. To present a more rounded picture of the underlying financial performance of the business, you need to make a number of adjustments. Typically, EBITDA adjustments include:

    Owners salaries, pensions and bonuses are altered to reflect the estimated market rate compensation for the roles that need to be performed within the business.

    Related party revenue or expenses (known as non-arms-length transactions) which were priced at higher or lower than market rate. Related parties include companies owned by the same shareholders or the shareholders themselves.

    Unusual expenses or income that will not occur again and will need to be normalised to reflect typical expenses and income.

    Research and development, repairs and maintenance costs, where the available tax reliefs have been claimed in full. If these are not adjusted for, they can damage the valuation.

    An SME’s reported results may not show the sustainable performance of the business. WMT’s corporate finance specialists will typically prepare a three to five-year summary of the adjusted EBITDA when marketing a company for sale, which reflects performance over time.

    Do you still have questions? Get in touch with our corporate finance team to find out more about how they can help you.

Tax advisory

Effective tax planning from our specialist tax accountants helps individuals, businesses and other organisations to ensure that tax does not become a barrier to their ambitions. As our clients often benefit from both personal and…

Business consulting

Our business advice service provides you with guidance throughout the whole of your business’s lifecycle. We develop a deep understanding of your key business drivers, which enables us to provide advice and support at every…

Audit services

WMT’s external audit services go beyond ensuring that your business is compliant with the Companies Act and other regulatory requirements. It offers you a greater insight into the way your business functions and where improvements…

Accounts services

We provide a comprehensive range of cost effective accounts services including accounting, bookkeeping and management information services. These are designed to supplement any internal resources or to be a fully outsourced solution. You will benefit…

Payroll & employment

Dealing with the ever-increasing range and complexity of employment taxation, alongside constant changes to legislation makes it challenging for employers to stay on the right side of the rules. WMT will answer your day-to-day queries…

Corporate finance

With our extensive commercial experience and technical know-how, our corporate finance team are well-equipped to help you with your corporate transactions. Having established a deep understanding of your business needs and goals, we are able…

Tronc & hospitality

Whether you are a start-up or an established company, our hospitality experts can work with you to manage and develop your business. They can take the hassle out of compliance, set up and manage your…