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About In House Tax

About In House Tax

This weblog is a news and views site for tax professionals within the UK and international in-house tax community.  You will find information about appointments and people moves in and around the in-house tax market, issues affecting the in-house tax professional, opinions on the state of the tax job market, updates on tax technology, and other general thoughts of the day.

Hope you find it useful.

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Location: St Albans, United Kingdom

This site has been developed by Simon Godley, who also runs the niche tax recruitment company Talentpool Selection . Simon spends a lot of his time placing tax specialists into FTSE companies, large in-bound groups and some professional services organisations. He also recruits and is well networked around the UK tax technology and VAT markets.

Tax News

Tax Technology Forum - 29th April 2009 at the IoD - Review

Saturday, 2 May 2009


The first Tax Technology Forum, hosted by Talentpool Selection, was held at the Institute of Directors on Wednesday evening this week.

Following initial welcome drinks and opportunity for networking / reacquainting with ex-colleagues, the event got straight into the discussion on current issues and challenges faced in tax technology, and what we could expect in the future.

There was a panel of six experts, highly experienced in the field of tax technology and accounting systems, answering questions and queries from a room of 35 tax and/or tax technology professionals.

The panel was:

Andrew Wrentmore – ONESource Tax Provision, Thomson Reuters

Alan James – European Director, Vertex Global Tax Solutions

Graham Tilbury – Independent Tax Technology Consultant

Michael Camburn – Managing Director, Ryan & Company

Ilana Rinkoff – Director of Tax Risk Management Network

Gareth Scanlon – EMEIA Tax Performance Advisory Group, Ernst & Young


Questions raised included:

• My organisation is about to embark on a major finance transformation. We are looking to implement a standardised ERP system with a view to achieving tax automation. What have other companies done on this? We are looking for creative / visionary ideas which are currently being employed in the market.

• Under proposals introduced in the Budget, the Senior Accounting Officer will now be personally accountable for certifying that they have adequate accounting systems in place to ensure the accuracy of their tax computations or face penalties of up to £5,000 plus loss of reputation and Company fines:
- What is meant by 'accounting systems' – would this naturally include the tax technology/IT system?

• What type / size of organisation benefit most from employing an indirect tax solution?

• What are the expectations / predictions for the future in terms of how tax / VAT / PAYE technology will look? Are companies looking to automate tax to the extent they will be operating with a ‘touch of a button’ solution?

• I work in tax with a UK group. From a risk management perspective, what do you advise re filing of our documents / correspondence. What e-filing systems are available?

Quite thorough and well thought out answers were given from a combination of the panel experts. The Senior Accounting Officer personally accountable question was heavily debated, with some conflicting views on what we could expect from HMRC on this. This questions could have potentially filled the whole hour of discussion, rather than the 20 mins it was granted. This really does sound like it will be a major minefield for FDs / CFOs of large companies when the rules kick in, and it was likened to the whole Sarbanes-Oxley regime that came in a few years ago.

The question about the future outlook of tax technology and could we see a 'push of a button' solution was healthily debated between the panelists and the attendees, with the general consensus that this is slightly in the realms of Sci-fi rather than practical realism, and that international businesses are so complex than human input can not yet be replaced by clever machines.

Initial feedback from the event has been very positive:

"Thank you Simon for organizing the event, the event also clearly marked that even with the technology today and virtual communication, people like to discuss and share information verbally and face to face, thanks from Holland"

"A great evening Simon. Many thanks for organizing the event. I made a number of new friends and reconnected with some old ones too. Budget Note 62 seemed a big topic, and one that didn't fit into the time our session allowed, so I'm expecting to see plenty of debate here over the coming days once the Draft Finance Bill has been published and digested."

"Thanks for the opportunity to present; it was very worthwhile from my perspective and actually I have had quite some interest from people looking to “link-in” on LinkedIn which is great testament to such a networking event."

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posted by Simon Godley

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