16th April 2010
There was a palpable sense of excitement in the UK this week as the leaders of the three main political parties lined up for British television’s first live political debate. Although a certain amount of time was devoted to the economy and the prospects for recovery one issue that did not surface (and is unlikely too in my view) is the amount of over-regulation of business.
In the past year or so UK businesses have had to endure, the change of VAT rate (back and forth) the introduction of online filing of VAT returns, the submission of accounts and tax returns using the iXBRL standard, the introduction of heavy weight certification of credit card processing (PCI DSS), the Carbon Reduction Commitment, (CRC) – Energy Efficiency Scheme and now the likely introduction of IFRS for SME’s.
No doubt some of this will benefit consumers and businesses in the longer term but how much advance warning is given to business and who in government is coordinating the changes. Furthermore, it seems that all too frequently, the systems and process implications of these policy changes is overlooked, leaving the software industry to hurriedly work out solutions and companies to pick up the tab.
In the same way that local authorities are supposed to coordinate all of the utilities that want to dig up our roads, it is high time that someone coordinated the digging up of our business infrastructure.