Five moves to make cloud-based tax transformations thrive

Migrating Your Tax Processes to the Cloud with Vertex tax automation

While digital transformation isn’t synonymous with migrating to the public cloud – it’s possible to complete some remodels with on-premises infrastructure – it represents a vital component of most transformation programmes today. In tax transformations, cloud-based technology solutions and coordination with cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) initiatives are quickly becoming strategic necessities.   

Here are five key practical actions tax teams should consider performing to enable a smooth, speedy cloud transformation journey:  

  1. Knock on your IT colleagues’ doors early and often: Most digital transformation strategies are led by CIOs and IT teams, so you’ll want to ensure that your tax automation roadmaps align with their current plans. IT leaders can help you select the right solution, manage the vendor relationship and meet integration requirements. Tax and IT tend to bring very different viewpoints to cloud initiatives, and it’s important for each team to understand how roles and requirements will evolve after the new system is up and running. Tax activities will shift away from manual tasks to planning and analysis while IT's approach to cloud operations differs from traditional infrastructure management.  
  2. Get ready to harness new functionality, delivered faster: Keep a close eye on new and upcoming features from your vendor. Because cloud solution vendors provide updates more frequently than on-premise systems – often every six to 12 weeks – you have more opportunities to plan for tomorrow’s needs today.   
  3. Go all-in: CIOs often adopt “cloud-first” game plans, for sound reasons. The cloud experience includes increasingly robust security, the flexibility to scale capacity up or down quickly to meet changing business risks and opportunities and an ever-expanding range of features and capabilities. Don’t shy away from a digital-first approach.  
  4. Insist on broad integration capabilities: Modern ERP platforms can easily interact with a wide range of other applications and solutions via application programming interfaces (APIs). Check with your tax technology partners to make sure they offer the right APIs to get the most out of ERP ecosystems.  
  5. Look for advanced functionality: Cloud solutions should not only deliver scalability, flexibility and rock-solid security, but also data visualisation, advanced reporting features and comprehensive support throughout the lifecycle of the project.   

With a little planning and resolute action, tax can claim its share of the benefits that the cloud has already delivered across today’s distributed IT environments. For additional information, download the Tax Transformation, Modernisation and Oracle Migration white paper here.

Blog Author

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Tim Kirkpatrick

Principal/Partner at PwC

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Tim Kirkpatrick is a Partner in PwC’s Indirect Tax Operations (“ITO”) practice. He has shared national responsibility for the ITO practice and leads a team of professionals responsible for tax technology and tax process improvement. Tim has managed a variety of implementation projects throughout his career and has been an implementer of various tax automation tools for over 20 years. He has developed numerous customized solutions for many of the Fortune 500 and is a trusted advisor. Tim has managed numerous implementation projects with a wide variety of ERP/Tax Engine variations.

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