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Clear Books Final Accounts Will Be Withdrawn

News posted by Darren Taylor 4 years ago

Following an extended beta programme, the decision has been taken to withdraw the Clear Books Final Accounts product for the foreseeable future whilst we concentrate on some major upgrades and enhancements to our core Accounting and Payroll products.

We are aware that some users would still like to use the product in the short term, so it will remain available for existing users until 30th September 2016. Please also note that as the product is still a beta version, Clear Books does not guarantee the accuracy of any reports produced from it, so users should take care to check all reports produced before submitting returns to Companies House.

9 Replies

Very disappointing. I fear that this is due to pressure from your Accountant user base. I am afraid that I will now be looking at alternative products as this is a costly decision for me. Holding this out as coming soon is one of the things that encouraged me to sign up for multiple years. Not really fair for you to simply withdraw it. You should remember that there are many more small businesses than accountants and you are risking alienating the larger group of users.

In my opinion your fear would be wrong, I very much doubt it's anything to do with accountant's if i'm being totally honest.

I wasn't a huge fan of the idea but not for the reason you may think. My feeling was it took up far too much time at Clear Books HQ which could better spent elsewhere. Creating a working Final Accounts product AND maintaining it is a huge task.

If CB had an infinite budget with infinite staff then great but they don't and at present at least there are much more pressing matters for the user base as a whole.

PS if you don't use an accountant and are price sensitive why not just use HMRC's free filing service? https://www.gov.uk/guidance/corporation-tax-use-hmrcs-free-filing-software

Hi Alastair,

I hear your concerns and empathise with how disappointed you feel, but unfortunately this was a difficult business decision Clear Books had to make.

As Kevin Doran explains above, there is the free HMRC filing service, which is used by hundreds of our small business customers who are not currently connected to an accountant.

If you have any further queries please feel free to contact help@clearbooks.co.uk.

Many thanks,

Lizzie

Hi Alastair

You may be interested in this similar question a month ago: https://secure.clearbooks.co.uk/community/questions/16602/generate-micro-entity-company-s-first-final-accounts

I'm CB's consultant accountant, with my own practice, and was actually brought into CB originally to help with developing Final Accounts and Kevin is absolutely right, it would have been in my best interests as an accountant to be able to do my clients' accounts where their books sat rather than, as I do at the moment, export the data into specialist, expensive software.

As Kevin says, there was a huge amount of development time involved in getting the original version to 98% only to then look at building or buying in a tax module to enable the full range of possible tax issues and submissions to HMRC. This was on track but then HMRC's digital tax plans loomed on the horizon with the distinct possibility that HMRC will not require final accounts in a few years.

When added to the fact that the Government's own facilities were perfectly adequate (and free) for micro businesses, the case for in-house Final Accounts was lost and so the decision was made to spend the time on far more important core development that would be more beneficial to all users.

Personally, having invested a couple of years into it, I too have an element of regret in it not coming to fruition, however, these days nothing stands still for long in compliance & IT and this is another casualty I'm afraid.

All the best

This is extremely disappointing and will make me consider moving to another software that will prepare final accounts. I have been a loyal customer for many years, for several companies but this is increasingly frustrating. I know that HMRC have their own free software but I have to input all of the figures manually rather than what I should be able to do as hitting a button on my accounting software to do it for me. AHHHHH!!!

Hi Richard - You commented on the plans for final accounts four years ago and so you are indeed a loyal user and I assume happy with the software in general?

Before jumping ship bear in mind that bookkeeping is something that takes place 365 days a year whereas the year end stuff, especially for small companies, is now maybe 2-3 hours on one day of the year.

Hi Richard,

I'm very sorry about this. We currently are focusing our resources on a bigger project, Clear Books Micro; which is essentially a spreadsheet software suitable for smaller businesses. However, we will keep in mind of the Clear Books Final Accounts product and hopefully can work on this in the future.

Thanks,

Tommy

Hi (again) - lots of water under the bridge since Tim wrote that one, abbreviated accounts in that format were pulled by CB about 3 years ago, plus you were never able to send those to HMRC anyway as they have to have the full accounts in electronic format.

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