Accountants are very much in demand!

Demand for qualified accountants has increased significantly in the last month, according to the latest Job Index from Reed.

It would appear that even small businesses in the UK are realising the importance of using a professional accountant if they want their enterprise to succeed.

The Reed Job Index showed a six percentage point increase in demand for accountants, from 127 to 134. The benchmark was set at 100 when the Index started in December 2009. This increased demand could be caused by the complex UK tax system, an issue the coalition says it is keen to address as soon as possible.

One example of the complexities was highlighted by the CIoT recently when it said the tax breaks on money given to charity are so complicated that even HMRC has problems understanding them.

One of the ways that an accountant could prove an invaluable asset to a small business owner is in helping him prepare for the new auto-enrolment pensions legislation.

RSM Tenon recently conducted research that found many UK SMEs are unprepared for the changes that come into force next year. A spokesman from the company said this lack of preparation could mean small businesses do not factor in the additional administrative and financial burden that will be added to their payroll bill.

Advance budgeting and planning are essential and employers must make sure they are ready and have strong compliance processes in place, he added.

Between 2012 and 2015, all firms will have to automatically enrol their staff into either an existing pension scheme or the government run National Employment Savings Trust.

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