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TP Minds: Tax Transformation and Technology

Ahead of ARKK’s panel at next weeks’ TP Minds International, we’re giving you a quick preview of some of the content we’ll be focused on and answer three key questions you may have before the day.

When: TP Minds International Day 1, 16:15

Where: Stream D

What is tax transformation and why is it important?

“Tax transformation”; a phrase many will have heard over recent years but few have seen successfully executed. Whilst many UK indirect tax teams used the recent HMRC Making Tax Digital mandate to review their approach for VAT returns, Transfer Pricing has moved slower into the digital era than other areas of finance – at least until now. Many firms have been using the same techniques and assumptions for decades, or are settling for slow and siloed solutions as ‘that’s the way it’s always been’.

When it comes to Transfer Pricing, transformation is not just about leveraging technology to work faster, but to give more business insight. Articulating value and setting pricing is impossible if the transformational focus is solely on automating spreadsheets for posting journals and it can’t be realized fully by having out-of-the-box software installed and moving on. With TP's impact on the full business, “transformation” means unlocking data business-wide to create useful information, for example allowing TP experts to recommend the ideal pricing methodology to support growth.

Why am I hearing ‘tax’ and ‘technology’ together so often?

Being tech literate is now a must rather than a nice-to-have skill, and tax experts are on the front lines of this shift. This move towards a tech-focused skill set will inevitably change what a TP role requires. Implementing and maintaining the right technology will result in a sustainable approach to Transfer Pricing, one that allows professionals to take on a more strategic role on how to execute, control and adjust transaction pricing to benefit the whole business.

But this doesn’t mean abandoning the core skills of the tax function – in fact being a tech-conscious tax professional is less about the data-processing and coding that has recently become such a large part of the role, and more about seeing how technology can fit in to act as support for your team. Whilst any implementations require short term additional work, in the long run it allows tax professionals to keep up with the daily changes in the digital world and focus on what they do best.

Why is automation the solution?

At an event like TP Minds with experts from all over the globe coming to share their knowledge and experience, it’s worth remembering why professionals go into Transfer Pricing in the first place. Those who choose to focus their careers on TP are rarely interested in the operational work and spreadsheet management; it’s the exciting intellectual challenge and genuine business improvement aspects that makes a professional role in Transfer Pricing enticing.

Reaching the full potential of a TP role with it’s current and future demands means considering the true value of automation. In 2022, we all know that automation can save time by running manual tasks in seconds, not days, but the real benefits can be seen when you consider where time could be spent if technology took on the less interesting part of your role. When considering your work in Transfer Pricing, what % of time do you spend setting pricing and planning for business strategy vs the operational 'doing' of TP? And more importantly, is this the % split you hoped for?

With transformation at the heart of the panel, we will be tackling what the future holds for Transfer Pricing, and you’ll have to join us on Tuesday 14th June to find out more. One point our panelists all agreed on – let’s make sure we’re not having the same conversation again in five years.

With practical tips from the TP experts, advice on what to do differently, and interactive polling, our Tax Transformation & Technology panel is not one to miss.

Join ARKK’s CEO Laurence Kiddle on Day 1 of TP Minds at 16:15 in Stream D with our expert panelists including:

  • Jonathan Bernsen - Global Head of Transfer Pricing, A.P. MOLLER - MAERSK
  • Brandon de la Houssaye - Transfer Pricing & Tax Transformation Leader, WALMART
  • Ali Conway - VP, Tax & Treasury, INMARSAT

If you’ve still not registered, click here to join us next week and use our code FKW54452ARE for a 50% discount.