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We deliver the best recruitment news and advice to the Tax, Legal, Finance and HR sectors, including market updates, CV tips, interview advice, and exclusive interviews.

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15 Best Reasons Why Tax Deadline Day Was Missed

Deadline day was done and dusted last week and whilst I’m sure most were done timely and without hinder, HMRC has released some of last year’s legitimate excuses as to why some didn’t quite make the cut off on the 31st. Take a look at this quick read and try not to laugh out loud! 1. My mother-in-law is a witch and put a curse on me 2. I’m too short to reach the post box 3. I was just too busy – my first maid left, my second maid stole from me, and my third maid was very slow to learn 4. Our junior member of staff registered our client in Self Assessment by mistake because they were not wearing their glasses 5. My boiler had broken and my fingers were too cold to type 6. My tax papers were left in the shed and the rat ate them 7. I’m not a paperwork orientated person – I always relied on my sister to complete my returns but we have now fallen out 8. My accountant has been ill 9. My dog ate my tax return 10. I will be abroad on deadline day with no internet access so will be unable to file 11. My laptop broke, so did my washing machine 12. My niece had moved in – she made the house so untidy I could not find my log in details to complete my return online 13. My husband ran over my laptop 14. I had an argument with my wife and went to Italy for 5 years 15. I had a cold which took a long time to go It wasn’t just excuses for being late that raised the odd eyebrow; there were also a few questionable expenses claimed also. 1. A carpenter claiming £900 for a 55-inch TV and sound bar to help him price his jobs 2. £40 on extra woolly underwear, for 5 years 3. £756 for my pet dog insurance 4. A music subscription, so I can listen to music while I work 5. A family holiday to Nigeria For more information about this article, or to speak to Rebecca about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact her on 02072696320 or rebecca.english@pro-tax.co.uk Source: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/self-assessment-returns-unbelievable-excuses-and-dubious-expenses https://www.gov.uk/government/news/hmrc-reveals-top-10-worst-tax-return-excuses-for-201314

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The Pros of working for the Big 4

As a Consultant who actively works for a Big 4 client, I am often engaging with candidates who have a perception of the Big 4 which can be very positive and sometimes challenged by candidates who have a negative perception of the Big 4. One common theme I have observed is the lack of understanding of the expectations and culture of the Big 4 environment. I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight the ‘Pros’ of working in a Big 4 environment, as I have invested time to meet with multiple teams at the Big 4 to understand the work, culture and environment which candidates would potentially be working in that I represent to them: Exposure to high ranking client personnel, including executives- The Big 4 accounting and consulting firms work with the best companies in the world, their clients include every company in the Fortune 500 as well as nearly every company not in the Fortune 500. Prestigious name to have on your CV- To have Deloitte, PwC, KPMG, or EY on your resume is a huge boost for you for your entire accounting career. International Tax opportunities- The Big 4 have offices internationally who work with the most successful multi-national corporations in the world and are able to offer their services in any location that their clients do business in. Work with specialists and practitioners- You will have the opportunity to work under highly successful, skilled and intelligent people to learn from. It is easy to get a promotion –you can expect a promotion every 2- 3 years at the Big 4 Flexible dress code- Most of the Big 4 firms allow you to wear casual clothing to the office Resources- The Big 4 have a lot of resources available as they are very employee orientated (employees generate revenue). Constant Training- The Big 4 firms have yearly training for their employees and have constant webinars to help them stay level with the current accounting industry. Subscriptions and research tools- These are accessible to support your work and further learning Flexible working- This is promoted within the culture and remote working is encouraged. Holidays- you will receive 25 vacation days a year as soon as you start and can buy more within your benefits allowance. Hopefully, this article has provided you with an insight into the benefits gained from working within the Big 4. Always remember that when you are deciding on your next career move, you should always research the firm to ensure it is the right environment for you as it is your career. If you would be interested in learning more please do not hesitate to contact me. Reference :http://www.big4guide.net/who-are-the-big-4/pros/

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The 6 Biggest CV Mistakes

Writing a CV can be a daunting task on the face of it. You have to concisely summarise your entire working life into a few short pages and hope that your personality shines through enough that the HR manager will pick up the phone. With so much time and effort going into covering every single detail and crafting that perfect paper representation of you, are you missing the bigger picture? Our expert recruiters breakdown the six most common CV mistakes that may be killing your chances at success. 1. “I have good attention to detail” Ahh, one of the most frequently used terms in a CV when describing personal attributes, and what a great attribute to have! However, word of warning, if you are going to use this term make sure there are absolutely no typos in your CV. There’s nothing worse to be claiming to be something you’re not when it comes to applying for jobs. Always proofread your work, then proof it again and then get another set of eyes over it. Simple mistakes say a lot about a person and a huge 43% of hiring managers said they dismiss a CV because it contains typos! 2. Order, Order! It’s always a great idea to put the order of your previous jobs in chronological order, even better when you date them so it’s obvious where you worked, when and how long for. What’s confusing is when there is no order or reason behind the ordering of the past experience. It instantly sends out a bad message and reflects badly on your organisational and communication skills and almost immediately disqualifies you from progressing further. 3. Me, Myself and I One of the biggest bugbears that hiring managers have when looking at CVs is the use of I. Your name is at the top, it is implied that the document is about you and nobody wants to go through the repetition of “I did this” or “I did that”. It’s a surefire way to getting the reader to dismiss your CV almost instantly. Your CV is a factual representation of you be sure to keep it impersonal, concise and accurate. Instead of using “ I automated the hiring process...” opt for “Automated the hiring process…” 4. Tailor Made When writing a CV it’s always a great idea to tailor it to the role or firm that you’re applying to. Unfortunately, when it comes to CVs, one size doesn’t fit all. Whether you’re using a CV template or writing a CV from scratch, to really maximise your chances you need to really spell out the reasons why the hiring manager should choose you and the best way to do this is to match your experience up with the ideal candidate specification. Although it may seem like this may take a long time it is definitely time well spent. 5. OTT While it’s fine to show a bit of personality in a CV do not go over the top. Nearly 40% of respondents in a YouGov poll put poor design down as a reason to disqualify an applicant. So what counts as over the top? Unusual fonts for one. Stick with Arial, 11pt in black. Easily read, smart and formal it’s always a winner with recruiters. What paper should you use? Easy, white A4, that’s it. Do you need any snazzy borders to jazz it up? Absolutely not. Remember this is a professional document with the aim of selling you in a few seconds. You’ll definitely stand out using unusual formats, fonts and colours but not in the way that you want. Bullet points are your friend here. They’re to the point (no pun intended), easy to read and are great for people who are reading in a rush. 6. Honesty is the best policy Nobody likes being lied to. However, with one-third of CVs and job applications containing falsifications, it seems that the majority of applicants feel it is permissible to embellish their experiences to some extent. Now, by no means are we here to judge you, no, no, no we would just strongly advise against it for these reasons. Applicants tend to big up their CVs out of fear that their experience is not impressive enough. However, dishonesty is always risky, whether it is a small fib or a whopping great lie, chances are you will get found out. Companies usually carry out their due diligence and more often than not your white lie is uncovered and your reputation is left in tatters. Who wants to hire an ousted liar? If by some chance you don’t get caught out and get the job you now have to perform at the standard you perpetuated on your CV. This can get extremely awkward and embarrassing… There we have it if you are already avoiding these mistakes you're a CV superstar. If not, then why not? If you’re able to follow these simple steps your CV will be infinitely better. Remember if you need help or a professional point of view then our expert recruitment consultants are always happy to give you a few pointers.

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Christmas Tax Facts and Trivia to Raise a Seasonal Smile

Are you a Tax Manager, Tax Director or tax professional? Do you think you know all there is to know about tax? Well, with Christmas around the corner and the festive party season underway, what could be more appropriate than Christmas tax trivia and facts? Who knows, it may even be a topic of conversation around your Christmas dinner table this year… Let the Trivia begin! Christmas shop: · The average home will splash out £809.97 at Christmas; on food and drink, travel, decorations and presents, with the latter accounting for 58.5% of the budget. · Tax accounts for more than half of the total cost of the average family’s Christmas alcohol shop, a study by the wine and spirits industry has found. While alcohol duties are typically higher per head in Finland, Ireland and Germany, British consumers pay more alcohol tax than the citizens of most other European Union member states. Decorations: · The cost of decorating your office is tax deductible as running costs of the office. Candle Taxes: · From 1709 to 1831 Great Britain had a candle tax and forbade people to make their own candles without a licence. This tax condemned generations to rushlights (candles made from dipping rushes in animal fat) or darkness, not just at Christmas but throughout the year. You could light both ends at once but rush lights burnt quickly - hence the term ‘burning the candle at both ends’. The unpopular tax helped to ensure that the means of candle production was controlled. Snowballs: · A VAT tribunal found that a Snowball (the marshmallow variety you eat) is, in fact, a cake, so just like Jaffa cakes, Snowballs are zero-rated for VAT. The Christmas day service: · 13% of families in the UK always attend church on Christmas Day, a number of countries in Europe have a church tax including Austria, Iceland and Germany Christmas turkeys: · 10 million – The number of Turkeys cooked in the UK every Christmas. It is often traditional for some employers to provide their employees with a small gift of a Christmas turkey, a bottle of wine or box of chocolates. The tax rules are that if employees earn at the rate of £8,500 per annum their benefits must, therefore, be declared on form P11D and they are taxed at the cost to their employer. Christmas Day tax filing: · While millions of people are exchanging presents, feasting on turkey, and nodding off in front of the television, 1,600 people are expected to take time out from the yuletide festivities and do their tax return online. Hopefully, this stockingful of tax facts and trivia have been of interest and that you enjoy the festive season to come! For more information about this article, or to speak to Jennifer about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact her on jennifer.nelson@pro-tax.co.uk

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Create a culture where everyone has equal opportunities

There has been a growing recognition of the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace over the years. This year it has been very refreshing to learn how firms are promoting a positive integration between work and life, to create an environment that influences career development and that empowers everyone. Furthermore, promoting an environment regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, disability, religion or sexual orientation, encourages individuals to feel valued for being the person that they are. Take some time to read some examples of how the Big 4, Mid-tier firms promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace: Big 4 PWC EY Deloitte KPMG Mid-Tier Grant Thornton BDO RSM Encouraging diversity at Pro-Recruitment Group: Here at Pro-Group, recruitment consultants are trained on diversity and inclusion and for each individual piece of recruitment we do, we will ensure that we present a diverse pool of candidates to our clients that match the brief. We have strict guidelines on equal opportunities and diversity and pride ourselves on ensuring our attraction methods reach as diverse a pool of talent as possible in-line with our client’s own policy. Some examples of this include: - GDPR compliant recruitment website & CRM system. - Drafting advertisements in a way that encourages applications from all suitable backgrounds. - Support for the unemployed – offering interview training and coaching free of charge for those in long-term unemployment. We also provide business attire and dry cleaning in preparation of interview as well as working with a firm who work exclusively with ex-service personnel looking for employment. - Engagement with colleges, universities and schools. An example of this is when Tom Eagle, Associate Director, recently presented to students at LSBU about a career in tax and finance and provided key interview tips and guidance. - Engagement with groups such as LGBTQ, disability, communities and BEME groups. This is an ongoing progress and championed by our own diversity and LGBTQ champion here at Pro – Matt Davidson – Principal consultant in our Not-for-profit team. - Women in Tax – Alison Keogh, Director, is part of a network for women in the profession to raise the voice of women. We have also chaired an event with Sue Kukadia (Global Immigration Specialist) on diversity and inclusion and an event with BDO challenging views on disabilities and those facing long-term unemployment. - Our Not-for-profit and charities team have key relationships with many charities that exist to serve the disadvantaged and a wide section of the community and society. We regularly engage with our contacts in these organisations when searching for talent both for specific pieces and on an ongoing basis. - Our CRM system has over 90,000 candidates on it from a wide range of industries and backgrounds. Example of our own Findings Below is our analysis of that last six months placements around D&I and gender: - Out of the placements we have made this year in tax across both in-house and consulting, 65% of them have been male. - Out of 22 placements that we have made in-house 12 male and 10 female. - Out of 111 placements that we have made in consulting 64 male and 47 female. - Out of the 22 placements that we made in-house, from consulting firms only 3 were female and 5 were male. - Out of the other 14 people that we placed in-house they were all from in-house tax teams 7 were male and 7 were female. - In terms of advertising, 53 of the 111 were from advertising the rest were from pro-active approaches on our database and LinkedIn. - Out of the 53, 24 of them were female and the rest male but its about 50/50 from in-house and consulting. - Diversity and inclusion have a big influence towards my role and the relationships that I have with my network, to ensure that I can deliver the needs of both my candidates and clients that I am working with. For more information about this article, or to speak to Dominic about opportunities that promote diversity and inclusion, contact him at dominic.watt@pro-tax.co.uk

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5 Things You Must Know Before You Take The Job

Are you a Tax Manager looking to move jobs within the new year? Taking a new Tax job, whether it be a Tax Senior Manager to a Tax Director, can be exciting but also an overwhelming experience. Besides using a Tax recruiter to ease you through the process, there are a number of things you should think about before committing to a role. In this short article, I'll give you my top five considerations when deciding on whether to accept a job offer or not. Why do they do what they do? Whether it’s a Big 4 firm, a commerce or industry business, a Top 10 or a boutique firm, it is important to understand exactly why they do what they do. The passion behind the senior stakeholders in the business will directly affect how they work and how they work with you, as well as how the entire business operates. It is also important to join a business that has beliefs aligned to your own. If your work ethic is different to the company you join, you may find it difficult to adjust. Culture and Office Environment There is nothing worse than going through the entire interview process, meeting colleagues and feeling assured that this was the right place for you, to then find on your first day a culture you are just not happy with. Always ask in your interviews what the culture is like. Do they have nights out with the team? Do they have regular sporting activities? How do the team deal with another member being sick? What are the company values? These questions and the responses will allow you to evaluate the company’s culture. The discussion about the office values will also help clarify the position’s work-life balance and will allow you to fully understand how the team support each other. Workload Would you want to go into a job thinking you will have a few small projects to start with, only to find out that there is a huge job that you will be working solely on for months? It is important to know what your workload will be before you join so that you can prepare yourself and efficiently manage your time. Are you ready to take on the challenge of restructuring a tax team, or would you rather join a firm that is more established for you to develop in your own role? Current Events You should research the current events before going for an interview. It is even more important that you know exactly what is going on within the team you are joining so that you can hit the ground running. Every industry has sources to keep you abreast of the news in both your sector and your company depending on which organisation you are looking to join. The past & the future How long has the company been around? What were the major events that lead the company to be the way that it is now? What are their successes and failures? The way a company and senior stakeholder team learn from mistakes will tell you everything you need to know about how they will manage you and your team. A senior leadership team that takes the time to train and develop a team who have mistakes may suggest a better attitude towards their people, whereas a leadership team that let go a team that makes mistakes may allude to their priority for excellence only. As for the future, while all companies will be focused on growth, it is how they plan to grow that can tell you a lot about the business and how that business will run with you. After taking the time to assess the above points and talking them through with a tax recruiter, you should not only have a better understanding of the company but also a better idea of exactly what you want to get out of this new opportunity. To speak to Kevin about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact him on 02072696321 or kevin.racher@pro-tax.co.uk

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10 Things You Didn't Know About: Sue Lucas, Partner at Moore Stephens

Described by clients as the ultimate professional, Sue Lucas has advised a large portfolio of large and small companies, developing areas of expertise including the construction sector and corporate structuring. What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago on how to make Partner? To identify new business opportunities, know your own strengths and weaknesses and work on them, continually develop technical ability, and understand how to manage change and people. Most importantly ensure your contribution to the whole firm is positive and profitable. What do Moore Stephens do well? Offer consistent and effective high-quality solutions to both our clients and our team whilst staying true to our values. What is your biggest bugbear about CVs? None really. Everyone communicates differently, however good structure, clear detailed explanations and of course an ability to spell is always desirable! How would your team describe you? Passionate, driven and approachable. If not in tax, what would the dream be? I have a mixed client base who always require tax solutions, the variety keeps me engaged and interested so I have no desire to change other than perhaps running an OMB. Biggest superstition/fear? Nothing really frightens me other than the terrible horror movies my teenage sons' watch! What is your morning routine before work? Walking through the woods to the river with my 10 year old black Labrador. Skiing or beach? Both, the more holidays I take the more effective I become. Who is your hero? Derek Corke, he is the partner that mentored and promoted me 25 years ago, a wise and empathetic individual who empowered myself and some of my current partners to think about an accountancy practice in a different way! What is your life hack/top tip? Be happy, family first, know who you are and stay true to your personal beliefs. For more information about this article, or to speak to Ashleigh about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact her on 02072696324 or ashleigh@pro-tax.co.uk

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The Pro-Group Christmas Quiz 2018

On Tuesday 4th December, Pro-Recruitment held its infamous annual Christmas Quiz, and what a night it was. With the best and brightest from across the worlds of HR, Tax, Finance and Legal, 26 teams went head to head for the much-coveted title of Pro-Recruitment Christmas Quiz Champions 2018. The competitive streak in some of the teams was evident from the outset and with company rivalries and reputation at stake, the night promised to be a hotly contested one. With Directors Pat and Ali compèring, the first three rounds flew by. Who knew the USA won the boomerang throwing championships in 12 out of the first 13 years when it was introduced in 1981? The picture round proved to be a point of contention for many teams and “Ohh that’s what’s his face” and “I know her but I just don’t know her name” were heard up and down the room. With the first half of the quiz out of the way, it was time for some well-deserved food. Whilst the room was happily munching away and assessing their individual performances the scores were being totted up by our expert markers. Scores at halftime showed that it had been a very tight half, with a mere three points separating the top five teams. With the food cleared away, the quiz was underway again with everything to play for. The Science, Christmas and What Comes Next rounds really put the teams to the test and threw out some curveballs such as, Who played the character Lee Christmas in The Expendables series of action films? The final (and most popular) Music round was undoubtedly one of the highlights of the quiz. We had Director Alison rapping the lyrics of the hit song In My Feelings, Drake eat your heart out is all we can say! We found out that Paul McCartney’s middle name is actually... Paul, go figure. To top it off we had the whole room singing along to the Lighthouse family trying to figure out the next line. The quiz concluded with the revealing of the answers to the picture round, Elon Musk makes a very convincing Santa. Pat was responsible for the big reveal and coming in a very respectable third were PWC’s We Are The Quiz Wells hot on the heels of Elman Wall’s Penny Patrol in second. The undisputed champions of the Pro-Group’s Christmas Quiz 2018 were Kingston Smith’s We Count Ants who now have bragging rights going into 2019’s quiz. Thank you to everyone who came and participated, we hope you all had a fantastic evening. Special thanks to all the staff at Pro who worked so hard to make the event such a success. We all look forward to seeing you again in 2019. To find out about upcoming Pro-Recruitment events or to speak to George about your recruiting needs contact him on 02072696318 or george.tatnell@pro-finance.co.uk

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Why You Should Start Your January Job Hunt Now

Although Christmas is just around the corner you may want to consider starting your January job hunt now. According to Indeed, there was a 64% increase in Britons hunting for jobs in January compared with the previous year. Competition can be fierce, so whether you're in the Legal, Finance, Tax or HR sector why not get ahead and start your job search now. This quick read will give you some tips on how you can make the most of your time in December so when January comes around you'll be in the front running for that dream job. Whilst there are few people who can muster excitement at the thought of returning to their 9 to 5 these blues can often be masking a deeper issue – you aren’t fulfilled at work. Every year we experience our highest volume of applications in January (and our highest volume of vacancies) – this year make sure you’re doing all the right things to cheer up your new year: Ask the important questions; Why aren’t you happy at work? Does your year ahead look identical to the year just gone? Are you still waiting for that ever-promised promotion? Do your colleagues keep asking to “touch base about your blue-sky thinking to get your ducks in a row”? Is the Central Line drudge getting too much? Whatever the reason, make sure you identify what it is making you unhappy. Make a shopping list; What is essential for you in your new role? As recruiters, we hear the same things every day: Better work-life balance, a new challenge, opportunity for promotion. These are all very valid requirements but make sure you really drill down on what that means. Will your work-life balance come from a move closer to home/ a commute in the car/ flexible hours? Is your challenge to manage a bigger team or to move into a different area altogether? - Update your CV; Whilst there’s no such thing as the perfect CV, a good resume is half the battle. Here are some top tips for when you’re making updates: - Put yourself in your prospective employer’s shoes. What would you like to see on a CV? - Does your CV read like a job specification? If so, add detail – projects worked on, size and scale of clients, volumes and values of work, key achievements etc. - Make it clear and concise – Cut out the casual bar work you did in 2005 but make sure your most recent role is detailed - Avoid the cover letter – if you are considering multiple career options then write variations of your CV instead. The average reader will look at a CV for 5-7 seconds and will disregard a cover letter entirely. - Ask for help – We run regular events and webinars on how to get the most out of your job applications and there is always a consultant willing to provide you with advice. Update your Linkedin profile; Better than having to trawl through job boards and emails, let the recruiters come to you. You can now set your profile to open to new opportunities, allowing recruiters to get in contact with relevant opportunities. As with your CV ensure that your profile is up to date with a professional photo and details on your role and responsibility. Also highlight your career progression – a block on being a manager for five years is far less impressive than seeing that you were promoted every year for years to get where you are today! Speak to us; With over 20 years’ of recruitment experience in the tax market we are more than happy to give you advice on the job hunt – we operate a no hassle approach are happy to update you on the market with no expectations from our side. For more information about this article, or to speak to Dominic about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact him on 02072696310 or dominic.watt@pro-tax.co.uk

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October 2018: Tax Movers & Shakers

Practice Hardwick & Morris LLP has announced that Kevin Offer, formerly of Gabelle, has joined the practice as a Partner effective from 1st October 2018. Kevin is a tax specialist with particular interest in the taxation of high net-worth individuals, sportsmen and entertainers. He is a Chartered Tax Adviser and a Fellow of the ICAEW. White & Case LLP has promoted 41 lawyers around the world to its partnership. The promotions are effective from January 1, 2019, and represent 12 of the Firm’s global practices in 15 locations. Laura Hoyland has been named a partner in the Global Tax Practice in London. Laura advises corporate and individual clients and family offices on direct and indirect tax aspects of financing and corporate transactions including capital markets, securitizations, bank finance, asset and share transfers and restructurings. Kreston Reeves has announced the appointment of Colin Laidlaw as director of VAT and Duty who joins the firm from RSM. Laidlaw is based in the South East and will work across the firm’s Sussex, Kent and London offices. He has considerable experience having previously worked at BDO, KPMG and HM Customs & Excise. He has over 30 years’ VAT experience. KPMG Manchester partner promotions: VAT specialist Sarah Anthony is a member of the indirect tax team and has over 15 years’ experience advising clients spanning the public and private sectors. Rick Nash is a member of the tax team, specialising in mergers and acquisitions, and has over 18 years’ experience with KPMG. Commerce & Industry Mark Feldman has joined Smiths Group from Pearson as Group Tax Director. James Marsom has joined Nuveen from Legg Mason, he is now the International Tax Director. ION have appointed Damien Kieran (previously of Laird PLC and Boeing) as Global Tax Director.

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Technology - the Future Partner in Your Tax Matters?

Are you a Tax Manager or Tax Director seeking to streamline and manage your tax function through the use of technology? With almost daily advancements in technology, it is an exciting time for the Taxation industry. Yet digital disruption needs to be carefully analysed, while it provides many solutions to long-standing issues it also throws many new challenges. As a Tax Recruiter, a crucial part of my role is to observe the current trends in the market and be aware of the factors which will ‘shake up’ the tax industry and its demand for talent. This article looks to bring to light some of the Tax industry's most innovative ideas and predictions and how they'll affect your company, career and the demand for skills and future talent within the industry. PwC has stated that technology is one of its ‘mega-trends’, and emphasises that “successful companies must find ways to bridge the gap between their current capabilities and the future reality.” While Tim Steel from EY confirms that “Digital technology transformation is the single biggest disruptor in the tax profession”. But how is tax technology being implemented by business? One of the best examples of tax technology implementation has to be HMRC. Their Making Tax Digital campaign is part of the governments plan to make it easier for smaller businesses and individuals to stay on top of their tax affairs. HMRC have lofty ambitions to become one of the most digitally advanced tax administrations in the world. With tight resource constraints, the need to streamline and improve efficiency has facilitated rapid growth of their technological offering. HMRC has exploited new digital technologies meaning all of the UK’s smaller businesses and individuals will have access to their own digital tax account. For example, with over 9% of UK households owning a voice-based technology device and the expectation that this will increase to 40% by the end of this year HMRC are trialling ways in which they can use devices such as Alexa to engage customers. Whilst this may seem trivial on the face of things, the aim is to reduce the need for customers to contact call centres. Predictions and Breakthroughs PwC predicts that “more companies will use their enterprise-wide financial systems to prepare tax calculations (e.g. income tax accounting and indirect taxes), thereby replacing spreadsheets and/or traditional tax technology solutions.” In addition, “the majority of tax functions will rely on professional data analysis tools to assist in the decision-making process in areas such as risk detection, planning and overall business support.” With more technological breakthroughs emerging, a successful tax professional will need to focus more on the utilisation of data and technology and companies will be required to re-evaluate their current talent needs against these additional capabilities. Training requirements With technology rapidly shifting the remit of tax functions, it is imperative that any tax professional looking to future-proof their future takes the opportunity to embrace technology. Take advantage of training programmes offered by employers to remain current in the market. Whether you attend seminars, courses or have a professional mentor, look to advance your understanding of how tax and technology can work together and how this can positively impact your current/future firm. Recruitment During the recruitment process is it important for companies to question the candidate’s skillset to ensure that they meet the growing demand within tax technology. Do candidates have a solid knowledge of technological trends and how the tax technology landscape is shifting? Candidates should be able to demonstrate their knowledge of tax technological compliance and the implementation of new systems. These skills have become highly sought after by companies as the industry becomes increasingly reliant on tax technology. Cybersecurity issues According to a UK Government study, over four in ten of all UK businesses suffered a breach or attack in the past 12 months. Whilst firms are ushering in the use of artificial intelligence to streamline their process, hackers are also deploying their own versions of AI to achieve their own unethical end goals. Measures such as the Government backed, industry-supported Cyber Essentials scheme offer industry-leading expert advice to companies on how to protect themselves against cyber threats. It’s important that all companies invest in security solutions to protect their tax technology systems. The introduction of GDPR earlier this year means that firms have an important part to play in protecting sensitive customer data. For so long the issues of data privacy and data security have been viewed as separate entities with differing objectives, the introduction of global regulations has forced business to reevaluate how they gather, process and store their data. While tax technology keeps changing the face of tax functions across the industry it is important for professionals, from Tax Partners to Tax Directors to Tax Managers, to ensure they are keeping ahead of the technological curve. As a Tax recruiter, I have witnessed first hand, the effect that tax technology is having on candidates either coming to the market or already in the industry. From my experience as a Tax Recruiter, those who fare best and excel are those that have embraced tax technology early, follow technological trends and have a full working knowledge of new systems and how to implement them. For more information about this article, or to speak to Rebecca about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact her at rebecca.english@pro-tax.co.uk

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