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HMRC are spending £370,000 on sponsorship of a new TV series aimed at stressing the importance of record keeping for small businesses.

The four part series (each programme lasting one hour), named The Business Inspector, begins on March 10th 2010 on Channel 5. The programme will be presented by Hilary Davey, founder, chairman and chief executive of the Pall-Ex Group.

HMRC are hoping that by raising awareness of the significance of keeping up to date business records will reduce the time spent to handle poor business records. Currently the annual cost of this is £6bn.

Channel 5 has described the venture as a troubleshooting series transforming failing companies. Hilary Davy will take on two failing small businesses a week by ‘injecting business sense into passion projects’.

Although Channel 5 will have full editorial control of the series and no HMRC officials will appear on screen, HMRC will help to produce the series alongside Channel 5 and Optoment Television. Their appearance will be limited to an appearance in the credits.

The latest move from HMRC comes after their efforts to increase the amount of data filed online and, therefore, cutting down on the amount of paper returns filed.

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