Going Digital

With the government’s announcement that from April 2019 businesses, self-employed people and landlords (who turnover £10,000 a year or more) will need to keep records digitally to update HMRC more frequently than is currently the case, what impact will this have on the ubiquitous spreadsheet?

I don’t know about you, but until recently, along with approximately 60% of small businesses, I kept most of my business information on Excel files. If you are an employer, your business will probably use spreadsheets to record and track…

  • Employees’ details, employment and personal information
  • Time and attendance for payroll
  • Holidays, sickness and other absences for payroll
  • Training records to identify when people were trained and when they need to renew certificates/qualifications for compliance
  • Business expenses and business mileage for individual employees
  • Vehicle details, scheduling, servicing and certificate renewal dates

The list goes on; but with the expected requirement for digital/online accounting, how feasible are these spreadsheets moving forward?

The Making Tax Digital initiative is being hailed by the government as the way to reduce red tape and bureaucracy for businesses of all sizes, however, moving forward, spreadsheets are not apparently considered to be a digital record from an HMRC perspective. But these records will still need to be kept and, as they are not all a necessity for HMRC compliance, businesses will need to keep some of those spreadsheets going unless alternative solutions can be found that integrate with online accounting software.

Alpaka is a real-time workforce management system, including time and attendance and expense management system that cuts the need for additional spreadsheets and paperwork.


Payroll and expense data can be exported to most online accounting systems. Most paper processes can be replaced with simple automation, giving you time to focus on developing your business.

Overview on HMRC website

HMRC pushes ahead with digital tax plans but with some concessions

Excel is NOT the way to do it

My name is Phill Rodgers and I am the creator of Alpaka. I sincerely hope you find Alpaka useful and enjoy using it as much as we enjoy building it.

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