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R&D Tax Credits for Support Services

We find research and development (R&D) activity that qualifies for the R&D tax relief scheme in places where people least expect them — one of them being in admin and support services. 

R&D is often abundant in:

  • rental and leasing 
  • recruitment
  • call centres
  • travel agencies, tour operators, and other reservation services
  • security and investigation 
  • building and landscape services

We also locate R&D goings-on in internal support services that do not generate main business within companies, including HR, finance, logistics, office admin, and IT. So whether you’re providing internal or external support, there are big claims to be had.

Businesses grow by increasing sales. The more and the faster you sell, the quicker you will grow, conventional wisdom tells us. Yet, there are ways to accelerate your business without the constant need for new sales or new customers. 

These rest mainly on one key ingredient — innovation — which the government will readily award you for in the shape of a reduced tax bill or lump sum. We’ve even helped clients reduce their corporation tax to zero. Innovation does not refer only to new products or ideas; it can apply to new ways of doing things. Even failed innovation attempts can yield lucrative tax relief.

It’s high time that support services, just like yours, took full advantage of their R&D tax credit relief entitlements.

team meeting

Support service projects that may qualify for R&D tax relief include:

  • Security and encryption techniques
  • Improving customer communication tools
  • Enhancing an e-commerce platform to personalise the customer journey
  • Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software that manages and integrates a company’s financials, supply chain, operations, reporting, manufacturing, and human resources
  • Integrating mobile technologies and operating platforms that can involve resolving conflicts within hardware or software and businesses often have to create new encryption or security techniques that don’t follow established methodologies

Key questions on R&D tax relief answered

What activities can be included in a R&D project?

  • Defining technical objectives
  • Identifying uncertainties
  • Feasibility studies, reviewing new and competing technologies
  • Analysing, designing and developing the technology
  • Producing technical specification or other documents to explain and support the R&D project and advancement
  • Testing the product, process, service or software
  • Planning and managing projects
  • Administration, finance and personnel services specifically required to support R&D activities
  • Training to support R&D

What expenditure can be claimed for in a R&D project?

  • Staff Costs – Employee costs (salary, national insurance and employer pension) are apportioned for their time spent on the R&D project plus any reimbursed associated business expenses
  • Software – Purchased for R&D purposes and costs apportioned for any subsequent use
  • Subcontracted R&D – You can claim 65% of what you paid your R&D subcontractor
  • Utilities & Consumables – Water, fuel, power and material used in the project
  • Prototypes – Produced for R&D purposes

About Easy R&D’s R&D tax credit claim process

Claiming R&D tax relief is a niche.

Here at Easy R&D, we’ll probe your company’s activities to reveal the true extent of your company’s R&D.

Averaging £54,000 per claim, we’re a business built around expert tax professionals, skilled technical report writers, and flawless processes to ensure your R&D claims are successful — with maximum return. You could even reduce your corporation tax bill to zero.

HMRC’s criteria for claiming is purposefully broad, so what qualifies may surprise you.


Interested in claiming R&D tax credits?