product design

Why do so many British Companies ignore R & D Tax Credits?

The Government wants to give money back to British Companies that undertake research and development. Unfortunately many Managing Directors and Finance Directors and even their Accountants concentrate on the word ‘research’ and not on the word ‘development’ and so believe that this means that they will not qualify. In many cases this will not be true and so they are missing out on this very useful source of funding. If you are developing a new product or service, or making improvements to existing products and services you may very likely be eligible. Even software companies have been successful.

The scheme is designed to encourage and reward innovation. It allows innovative companies to either recover Corporation Tax paid and or receive a rebate of the NIC/PAYE generated by the business. Most first time claimants are able to also submit a claim for the last two completed year ends.
The average claim in the first year is £40k

Amongst The Cloud


CloudsA few years ago my girlfriend bought me a book called The Cloudspotters Guide by Gavin Pretor-Pinney. Mr Pretor-Pinney is passionate about clouds – cumulus, cirrus, cumulonimbus – he loves them all. He encourages the reader to take some time out of their day to just lie back on some soft grass, look up at the clouds and find shapes in them. This kind of lazy afternoon sounds blissful to many and I would certainly fancy a slice of that leisurely pie. My only problem, however, is with the word cloud. It has taken on a whole new meaning for me as of late.


Google Apps for Business – is it right for business?

This post was written by Elliot Zissman

This post consists of  2 parts

The top 13 things to consider – Part 2.


8. Why don’t you Try Before You Buy: although Google Premier is a paid-for service, Google Standard is free.  It comes with lots of advertising but you can use the software and see if it meets your needs.

9. Support – phone and email support is available 24/7 but is it likely to be from a call centre operative, or someone who truly takes the time to understand your business needs? If you think that your business operates in a standard way, with nothing unique about your requirements or those of your team, then this level of support might be right. If not, you should think if this is all you need.

10. Uptime – is 99.9% enough for you?  It sounds a lot, but this means 8 hours per year. When would you like your day without IT?  Spread over a series of 1 hour periods at 2am on a Sunday would be ideal.  But what if it’s the Monday morning you are finalising your accounts for the year? In reality, Google meets its SLA without issue – they reckon 10-15 minutes per month is the outage they experience and that’s normally a second here and two seconds there. But what happens if you do have a complaint? Who can you hold responsible?  I’m not sure having a go at Barry in Google Support will help matters.

Google Apps for Business – is it right for business?

This post is by Elliott Zissmann

This post consists of  2 parts

 The top 13 things to consider – Part 1.

You may have heard of Microsoft Cloud 365, where the software giant is offering hosted versions of its popular Office Suite, as well as Exchange for email and SharePoint for collaboration. From meetings with Microsoft we know they are doing this in direct response to competition from Google with the Google Apps Premier Edition.

But is this a service they should worry about? Is this something businesses should consider?