Why you need to hire an external consultant for SR&ED

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When it comes to SR&ED, there’s a lot of information and explanatory material that exists for you to read through. While it’s helpful in the interests of disseminating knowledge and for transparency, unfortunately, it is also a problem. While these resources are pretty comprehensive they are not necessarily easily comprehensible. 

Take the official website. The SR&ED section there has a wide range of information that includes definitions, FAQs, success stories, guides and much more. The official policies, procedures and guidelines subsection alone has 28 individual links. Each of these open up to detailed explanations. The problem, as many businesses know, isn’t a lack of information. It lies in understanding and interpreting all of that information to derive the maximum benefit out of it. 

Enter the expert 

Consultants have a wealth of experience born out of a hyper focus on all matters related to SR&ED. They’ve accumulated this expertise thanks to years’to several  years’ worth of work across various business sectors. Their mastery over the program intricacies technicalities combined with rich practical understanding allows them to efficiently demystify the jargon and technical verbosity of information in most SR&ED knowledge resources. 

Besides, as an entrepreneur, you want most of your time and focus to be on your work. Meanwhile, SR&ED can be time consuming and confusing. With so much on your plate already, why pile on additional work?

Some more reasons why consultants make sense

  • They simplify a tedious process, help cut to the chase and save time and effort.
  • In many cases, businesses don’t even know their work qualifies for SR&ED claims. Consultants are uniquely apt  placed atto picking out those blind spots. 
  • Even if a business has handled SR&ED well in the past, consultants can look through claims with a fresh pair of eyes and pick out missing elements. This helps a business submit its claim on a surer footing. 
  • The whole process of SR&ED claims can be daunting especially for first time claimants. While CRA has services to help – Pre-Claim Consultation, Pre-Claim Review, First-Time Claimant Advisory Service, Self-Assessment and Learning Tools – they’re not easy to navigate for first timers. 
  • SR&ED is a dynamic world. A consultant is better placed to keep you informed about changes in guidelines and how theyit might affect you and your claims. 
  • <There is a tax factor to be considered here – I need some clarity on this count>

It’s more than just subject matter expertise

An in-depth understanding of SR&ED is the basic starting point of why hiring consultants make sense, b. But it’s more than that. One of the main reasons why external consultants work so well is because they truly understand businesses – the nature of the work involved and the different processes. Even when they’re faced with a new industry or segment, thanks to their wide exposure, they can pretty much hit the ground running by quickly grasping and familiarising themselves with yourthe work. Subsequently, they can get to the task of recording the SR&ED components of it easily. 

Picking a consultant 

Selecting an SR&ED consultant is pretty much like selecting any service providers, such as lawyers or accountants. You start withfrom a point of research by looking through  their experience, track record, reputation and of course, their fee structure. 

Not all consultants and consultancies follow the same approach. Some consultancies are behemoths in their field. Some follow a smaller, boutique model of operation. Some are big on software driven solutions. Some only enter the picture at the end of the year to assess and help prepare a claim while others offer to be a part of the journey in real time. Larger consultants bring big reputations, expertise and resources to the table, but they may not be hyper-focused on SR&ED. It probably functions as one of their many service offerings. 

On the other hand, boutique consultancies might be your best bet if you’re looking for a more engaging and personalised experience in your SR&ED work. With smaller, dedicated teams, you’re unlikely to get lost in a sea of departments. What boutique SR&ED consultancies lack in size, they make up in expertise, experience and personalization. Besides, many of them are even open to even helping trainingtrainning your employees in SR&ED.

Different businesses have very specific needs and requirements. So, whether you choose to work with a large consultancy or a niche one, it’s best to weigh all of your options against specific requirements before making a choice. For instance, at Checkpoint, our service offerings are divided into broad categories based on our understanding of what clients usually want.

Either way, getting external help makes a whole lot of sense whether you’re a first time claimant or a veteran.

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