Specialist R&D Tax & Grant Funding Advisors


In computer software the advance is rarely implicit in the product. The advance comes not from the application layer, but from the technology layer. It is the science of technology that had to be advanced in order to develop the application that establishes the R&D eligibility.


R&D Tax Credits for Software Explained

R&D takes place within a computer software project that seeks to achieve an advance in computer science or information technology.

An advance in computer science or information technology means an advance in overall knowledge or capacity in computer science or information technology.

It is not an advance in a company's own state of knowledge or capability alone, except where the details of the advance are not available to the company due to proprietary considerations.

Usually, an advance in a computer software project involves the search for new software constructs or new architecture techniques. If it is present, an advance in a computer software project usually takes place at the algorithmic, design or architectural level.

In order for an advance to take place, the objective of the work must go beyond routine analysis, copying or adaptation of an existing software product or software process. 

In computer software, the advance is rarely implicit in the product. A new or improved management information system is not an advance in science or technology.

The advance comes not from the application layer, but from the technology layer. It is the science of technology that had to be advanced in order to develop the application that establishes eligibility as R&D. 

What type of software projects can qualify for R&D Tax Credits?

Common examples of software development projects that may qualify for R&D tax relief include:

  • state-of-the-art software for new projects, or new functionality for existing R&D projects;
  • tools to extend the functionality of application software programs or of an operating system;
  • extensions to database software, programming languages, or operating systems;
  • software development tools, such as tools to port data across platforms, tools for image processing or character recognition;
  • novel data management techniques, such as new object representations and new data structures;
  • innovative methods of capturing, transmitting, manipulating, and protecting data;
  • software to run new computer hardware;
  • software to run on devices with pre-installed operating systems, such as handheld GPS, mobile phones, and tablets; or,
  • means of integrating hardware and software platforms.

What activities can be included in an R&D Tax Credit claim for software projects?

In terms of qualifying tasks, the following activities would be considered eligible for R&D tax credits:

  • 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 or software; and,
  • planning and managing projects.

In addition, certain indirect support activities may qualify for R&D tax relief, such as:

  • administration, finance, and personnel services specifically required to support R&D activities; and,
  • training to support R&D.

What R&D expenditure can be claimed for software projects?

You can claim relief on costs that have been expensed through the Profit & Loss account and in certain circumstances you can also claim capitalised expenditure (providing that the assets purchased have been classified as Intangible Assets).

The main areas of costs that can be claimed are:

  • staff costs (gross pay, employer's NI and employer's pension contributions);
  • agency workers (externally provided workers);
  • subcontractors/freelancers;
  • software license costs; and,
  • consumable items (heat, light and power, and materials and equipment used or transformed by the R&D process).

What staff roles can be included in an R&D tax relief claim for software projects?

It is not uncommon for an R&D team to consist of many individuals from different parts of the business. Your R&D project team may include the R&D Manager, a Lead Developer, Engineers, Project Co-ordinators, Quality Control and Testing specialists, and Cost Accountants, as well as members of the senior management team.

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How Myriad Associates Can Help

Why choose Myriad Associates as your specialist R&D tax credits advisor?

By profiting from our specialist knowledge and experience, you can be sure of maximising your R&D tax relief claim. As a rule, Myriad Associates submit R&D tax relief claims that are up to three times higher than in-house prepared claims or those filed by generalist accountants.

  • We handle your R&D claim from start to finish, taking up just two to three hours of your time.
  • We can maximise your R&D claim because our expert consultants can identify your qualifying projects and all your eligible expenses.
  • We write technical reports describing your projects to support your claims.
  • We make sure HMRC handles your claim promptly, because of our right-first-time approach and because of our outstanding relationship with R&D tax inspectors.
  • Our 5-Step Claim Process is simplicity in itself, so you always know where we are with your claim.

We identify all your R&D activities

We capture all your R&D expenditure

We write your R&D technical reports

We submit your R&D Tax Relief claim

We work with HMRC to agree your R&D claim

With just two to three hours of your time we'll take care of your claim from start to finish

  • 100% success. We have successfully claimed R&D tax relief for all our clients, for over ten years, and without exception.
  • An unbeatable offer. Confident of delivering a winning service, we offer our services on a success-only basis.

You can download our information sheets on R&D Tax Relief for Software Development Companies, and for Manufacturing & Engineering Companies.

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Client Testimonials

At Myriad Associates we've had the opportunity to provide R&D Tax Credit claim services for some of the UK's most innovative software companies. 

Lumi Technologies

Lumi Technologies is a worldwide market leader in real-time audience engagement. Lumi’s range of products leverage the latest mobile technologies to offer live feedback systems for market research, events, meetings, and corporate communication.

Myriad Associates ensured that Lumi’s R&D tax claim was maximised. Myriad Associates undertook a full assessment of the group structure to ensure that all overseas subsidiary costs were fully claimed.

Our accountants told us that we were not eligible for R&D Tax Credits.

Roger Lovegrove, Chief Financial Officer, Lumi Technologies

Rittman Mead Consulting

Rittman Mead Consulting specialise in the technology and delivery process of data integration, business intelligence and data warehousing solutions. Rittman Mead had developed technology that significantly enhanced the business intelligence and data warehousing offerings from Oracle. This included developing real-time event driven business intelligence analytics.

Myriad Associates undertook an initial review of all Rittman Mead’s software development activities and immediately identified considerable levels of eligible R&D activities.

Myriad Associates identified £1.8m of R&D expenditure, which has resulted in corporation tax savings of £400k.

Jon Mead, Managing Director, Rittman Mead


Silvertoad are an award-winning specialist media agency based in Bedfordshire. Silvertoad provide a vast range of digital and traditional communication services which includes creative graphic design, web design and application development.

Myriad Associates undertook a review of Silvertoad’s technical projects to establish which development activities met the HMRC and BIS guidelines. Myriad’s Technical Consultant then conducted brief technical interview with Silvertoad’s Managing Director and Lead Developer, before producing very accurate technical reports.

Myriad Associates came in, they helped us identify what was and what wasn’t eligible for R&D tax credits. They then conducted a 45 minute technical interview, went away and came back with a very detailed and accurate technical report.

Toma Habashi, Managing Director, Silvertoad

R&D Calculator

R&D Tax Relief Calculator

This R&D tax credits calculator estimates the amount of corporation tax savings you may be entitled to by making a claim for R&D tax relief.

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