I’ll give you 15 seconds to think of one process area that is well known for being hard – if not impossible – to standardize, transform, and make efficient?
Got it yet? Yes, you’re right – Tax!
Using a very popular technique called “STAR” – Situation, Task, Action, Result, I’d like to explain how the team I lead achieved successful transformation of tax processes for an old-fashioned, ultra-traditional Financial Services organization in the US.
A first-time “buyer” of F&A outsourcing services; thousands of employees, most of which have been around for over 25 years and are used to using “paper”; resistance towards making their processes more efficient, evident across a range of taxes, including Sales & Use, Property, Income (state and federal), FATCA, and many other sector-specific taxes.
I know that you know the kind of organization we’re talking about here, don’t you?
The challenge in this situation was to bring all of the organization’s people “out of the box” and convince them that complex, sensitive, high-dollar-value, tax processes are just like anything else in modern business and the corporate world – steps and activities.
The Task and Action
The goal was to analyze the client’s processes using certain Capgemini methodologies to permeate their employees’ daily routines and show them how efficient they could become if they let technology and standardization give them a hand.
Sounds simple, doesn’t it?
The reality was walking the client through hundreds of activities, enlightening them with various methodologies, which when correctly deployed become a powerful yet simple way to bring all those inefficiencies – a.k.a. – “opportunities” to the forefront. It took weeks of hard work, oodles of information and data, analysis, and tons of discussions and change management.
Coupled with our technology and methodologies, my team overcame all of those “internal walls” of experience, and humbly dived into the client’s traditional ways of doing things. My 30 years of experience helped here, but it really was the team’s willingness to learn and experience new things that enabled us to successfully transform the client’s tax processes, working together with the client’s highly-skilled tax masters (or tax “gurus,” if you like).
The business outcomes we delivered in this particular project were achieved by deploying Capgemini’s ESOAR tools and methodologies:
- The design of over 20 tax-specialized process maps, the umbrella for over 300 tax activities involving over 2,500 tax returns each year.
- The implementation of 10 new systems, most of which are cloud-based in pursuit of reduced cost, fast deployment, and enhanced security.
- The standardization of over 200 processes.
- The introduction of robotic process automation (RPA) through 80 transformation robots.
… all of which is being implemented for the client “as we speak.”
But do you want to know the best part of it?
We’re doing this in collaboration with the client, working together each day, looking at what we’ve designed, developed, and implemented, as a single, combined team of professionals.
To learn more about how Capgemini’s ESOAR (Eliminate, Standardize, Optimize, Automate, Robotize) can standardize and streamline your tax processes in preparation for automation, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn more about how Capgemini’s robotic automation solutions can deliver enhanced value for your organization, by providing a virtual workforce of robots and platform delivery to power your business operations.
Guillermo Quiteno is a qualified accountant with over 25 years of experience at global, multinational companies, that helps clients in the Financial Services and fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sectors along their transformation journeys.