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Best Practices For ERP Implementations
There is no greater opportunity than during an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementation or enhancement for the tax department to lay the foundation for achieving significant improvements in quality, time and cost - but only if the tax department is integrally involved and not left behind when the ERP implementation/enhancement 'bus' leaves the station. Taxand USA takes a look at ERP implementation best practices for tax departments.
In some ERP system implementations, the tax department plays a key role and is involved in all of the phases. But, unfortunately, as can be repeatedly seen during tax provision and income tax software implementations, either the tax department was involved but not fully aware of all the best practice possibilities available or, most likely, the tax department was rarely, if at all, consulted during the ERP system implementation.
From a direct tax perspective, the most crucial task for the tax department during an ERP system implementation is to ensure that the tax provision and income tax compliance processes can continue to be done timely and correctly after the go-live phase and that they will take less time than past efforts.
The second most crucial task from a direct tax perspective is to make sure that the ERP system implementation anticipates the future needs of the tax department (eg implementing a provision software and a compliance software) so that costly and time-consuming rework, manual workarounds and subpar solutions won't need to be done when the time comes to move from the current state to the desired future state.
The third most crucial task is adequate training to best use the new ERP system and to achieve self-sufficiency.
An ERP system implementation or enhancement is both a potential risk and a change enabler for the tax department. The core data a business depends on to prepare the tax provision and compliance is being touched and changed, and companies need to be prepared for the issues that may arise, as seen during any system crossover.
At the same time, the opportunities to lay the foundation for driving through best practice savings in time and money and improvements in quality are at their peak. Most corporates are switching to ERP systems, therefore company's should ensure they aren't left behind the competition.