March 31


The best ways to track a staff members time in an R&D activity

By Simon

March 31, 2020

Employee time, R&D tax credits, Staff time

It is crucial to ensure the proper part of staff time spent in qualifying research & development tasks is noted down and recorded.

There are a variety of no-cost tools that will help document the real-time the employee spends on a task and may be used.

You’re able to claim 230% of director and staff salaries who are actively involved in a qualifying Research & Development activity. Workers costs are a permitted expense for the purpose of R & D.

It is evident that employees can at times be taken from one project to another.

It is vital that a fair assessment of their time is worked out for inclusion in your claim.

Let’s take a close look at the 2 specific types of ‘staff expenditures’ for the purposes of R&D tax credit claims:

  • Personnel contributing to figuring out the technical barrier in the project directly
  • And next support staff members who are involved with the endeavour in some other capacity e.g. a Manager loosely engaged in an assignment in some capacity. In plain English, a member of staff engaged in qualifying indirect functions.

When assessing the data you’ll want to evaluate the nature of their role in the endeavour along with the period these people were engaged.

Listed below are some quick questions to look into concerning the person:

  • How much time did these members of staff spend involved with the process?
  • Which Research & Development functions did the employee do?
  • What qualifying tasks did the worker work on during the time frame?

Tracking staff costs in a project

Of course, keeping control of every intricate area of an R & D process can on occasion be tricky. All too often ‘business as usual’ gets in the way.

Let’s be honest you’ve got a business to manage and paralysis by analysis has sunk many organisations.

Most companies have spent company cash on initiatives and only figured out after the event that they may be able to recover some of their expenses.

Attempting to unravel precisely how much time a staff member has utilised on a project can be difficult.

It is really important that tasks are looked at in the correct way and employees units of time are noted down carefully. Make certain there is some supportive information and facts to help you and if you are not clear, we are able to help.

Where granular timekeeping information are not attainable investigate what records can be obtained and use a level of critical reason. Can you fairly make a case for 100% of employees time over the length of the plan?

As we have discussed, you can get free tools available that can help with the tracking of jobs. Clockify is one such tool and may be found here:

Where we fit into the process is that we actively help our customers create better processes so that each year your award is safely enhanced ensuring that no stone is left unturned.

When tracking your staff amount of time in an undertaking it usually helps to do this simultaneously alongside the project.

Banking on guestimates to allocate workers time is dangerous territory. You should have some practical justification for the allotment of time used. We recommend that you look at the activity in its entirety and then work backwards from there. Who is required to be included and why?

At all times, you should be sure that the time calculated is correct so you don’t falsify a claim that can leave your small business subjected to a minefield of financial risk later on.

Our team are happy to ‘hold your hand’ and give the pragmatic guidance and support you need to safely enhance your claim.

If you need more help with documenting staff time in a project, feel free to make contact as our friendly team of professionals will be ready to help you.


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