The efficiencies and financial gains being targeted by enterprise organizations are increasingly dependent on new fintech solutions aimed at supporting better, faster financial activities. Enterprise tax software is essential to these efforts, providing automation capabilities, task management, analytics, and a range of other functionalities that can turn tax activities into a value-added process for your organization.
Just as today’s CFOs understand that tax activities don’t exist in isolation from the rest of the finance department, enterprise tax software doesn’t stand on its own within an organization. Instead, it integrates into an existing CFO tech stack that features a range of other technologies that are now critical to finance department processes.
Budgeting, financial consolidation and planning, and balance sheet management are just a few of the finance tasks powered by your CFO tech stack.
As this tech stack grows, integration becomes a process that requires a careful approach.
Your IT department is well aware of the dangers that come with bringing new business solutions into an existing tech stack. Integration issues could occur, data may not flow seamlessly across the stack, and worst-case scenarios could see an attempted integration cause the breakdown of solutions that were previously working fine.
To manage a successful integration, you need to make sure you’re working with solutions that will play nicely with your existing software—and give you room to grow—while also providing all of your required tax software capabilities. Although this process can be daunting, it’s possible with the right amount of planning and foresight.
Here’s how to empower your tax team with the tools that serve its specific needs:
The Key Features and Capabilities of Enterprise Tax Software
Whether you get them from a single platform or a combination of tax solutions, your tax technology needs to provide a number of different services to support modern, efficient tax activities within your company’s finance department.
Let’s review these capabilities to verify that your chosen tax solutions will provide the services you need.
Provisioning is an essential tax function that lets you project full-year scenarios based on year-to-date data. The provisioning process is critical for tax planning, but it can also be time-consuming without a software solution that can automate some of these provisioning tasks while validating data to ensure accuracy.
With software-enabled provisioning, you can engage more fully in the tax planning process and gain insights into your current tax situation to support financial decision-making.
Planning is dependent on tax provisioning, but it’s also a crucial function of the tax team that supports scenario planning to help organizations prepare for upcoming challenges or shifting circumstances. New corporate tax laws, for example, can be planned for before they go into effect with a tax solution that has access to corporate financial data. This allows your organization to be more agile, anticipating and addressing future changes instead of always reacting after the fact.
Global tax transparency
Tax preparation becomes more complicated when multiple governments and tax authorities are involved. This can be burdensome for a large multinational corporation, which is why such organizations need a tax solution that can automate certain aspects of tax preparation and help them analyze potential outcomes in terms of how foreign authorities will respond to their tax preparation.
Tax team activities are complex, but they need to be efficiently managed to ensure that taxes are prepared on time, every time. In addition, other processes within your organization may be dependent on the timely preparation of certain tax information, and resources used by your tax team may need to be shared with other finance department personnel. A task management solution is key to supporting efficient tax operations and maximizing value from your tax activities.
Reporting and analytics
Modern CFOs recognize that tax preparation isn’t entirely a lost cost. Although the expense can be burdensome for an organization, there is value to be recovered through more effective tax management, as well as using the tax preparation process to generate data-driven insights.
The office of the CFO needs a tax solution that can generate easy-to-understand reports on tax information, which can then be used by executive-level leaders to inform their decision-making on strategy and other business considerations. Additionally, analytics need to be integrated with tax software solutions to identify new efficiencies and optimize tax practices, and to identify opportunities beyond tax activities to improve business operations and increase profit margins.
Integration with payroll and HR
Tax software needs to be able to integrate with payroll and HR solutions, sharing essential data and ensuring that taxes are being accurately deducted from payroll.
Data transparency and centralized storage
Organizations need to ensure a single source of truth for their tax activities. This is accomplished through a centralized hub where data can be stored and validated across different solutions in your tech stack. With a centralized data hub, your tax team will deal with fewer data errors that slow down tax preparation and potentially result in a material cost to the organization.
All of these tax solutions will also need to coexist alongside other technologies used by the finance department. It’s easy to see how the sheer volume of tech stack solutions can be burdensome when it comes to integrating these separate technologies. As a result, your organization may be interested in seeking out technology suites that combine many of these functions into a single platform and interface.
Integrating a Tax Suite into Your Tech Stack
If you’re looking for a way to reduce the risk of managing a large, multifaceted tech stack, a tax suite may be a worthwhile investment. A tax suite can reduce the number of moving parts in your tech stack by limiting the number of end points that need to be integrated with other solutions.
Instead of separately integrating provisioning, planning, analytics, and other tax solutions with one another, and with other solutions in your fintech stack, your organization can instead add all of these technologies through a single new point of integration. This can bring a significant reduction in the work required to integrate solutions serving your tax activities, and it also offers more flexibility in the future as your technology needs evolve.
If you want to integrate a tax suite into your stack, you can improve this process by seeking out a tax suite that offers as many essential tax functions as possible. Leading enterprise tax software solutions will aim to offer comprehensive tax functionality, so your organization may be able to find an all-in-one suite that offers everything you need.
You should also make sure this all-in-one suite is going to integrate well with your existing technologies. Although any suite should function well within its own environment, different suites will have different degrees of flexibility when it comes to working well with different types of software. Do your homework to make sure the tax software suite you choose is a good fit for your existing solutions.
Improving Tax/IT Alignment
As a CFO, your goal with newly adopted technologies should be to improve alignment between your tax team and your company’s IT department. One way to do this is to alleviate dependence on IT by adopting tech solutions that offer easy customizations and low-code/no-code functionality, allowing tax professionals to modify platform features without the involvement of IT personnel.
Using a best-of-breed suite can alleviate demands on IT, improve the seamless nature of your tech stack, and simplify tech stack management, assuming your tax suite integrates well with other technologies.
Furthermore, tax software that supports data transparency can improve the data relationship between tax activities and IT, combining to offer better data-driven insights into business performance and business strategy for the finance department and beyond. Better tech integrations and automated data reporting make it possible for these departments to engage in a more synergistic relationship that benefits the entire enterprise.
Some organizations may be inclined to build their own custom tax platform to be used internally, choosing the customizability and other benefits of creating proprietary software. But most businesses don’t have the resources to engage in such a large project that serves only tax activities, especially when those benefits are contrasted with the fast deployment, seamless integrations, and customizable functions offered by tax suites like Longview Tax.