As CPAs it’s important for us to understand all aspects of the business, specifically the tax function, and we may work in a multitude of different ways … so whether it’s back-office supporting our own organizations as taxpayers, or in a client-facing capacity, which could be either as a tax preparer for a business or a personal small business, people, individuals. Also, we need to understand tax operations because we may be required to advise on that. Oftentimes in the audit function, we have to understand how taxes are being prepared, the technologies that support them, and all of the operational components that go into producing that result. So that we can be appropriately looking at the results, auditing them, attesting to them, and understanding all the nuances that created them and whether it was done properly and with the correct level of risk mitigation.
The field of Tax Information and Operations Management is actually very much outside of the comfort zone for most CPAs right now because it represents a complete paradigm shift and about a 180-degree turn from how tax used to be performed, addressed, and thought of within the CPA profession. And to elaborate a little bit on that, what we mean is that tax historically has been an area and focus for compliance. We as taxpayers or our clients as taxpayers are required to produce a tax result and file that result with the appropriate governing authority or regulatory body. Beyond that now, tax has taken a complete shift from just compliance-oriented to strategic. Tax is usually in most companies the highest area of risk. It is also an area that’s very exposed from a financial statements standpoint whether it’s in the controls and exposure to significant deficiencies or material weaknesses. It also works above the line and below the line, meaning it can have an impact on the results, the bottom line of the organization and how much money from an operating standpoint they make. It also can be very core and key as it pervades every single area of the business and requires more data and information than any other area of the business.
The AICPA Tax Information and Operations Management (TIOM) Task Force strives to educate and bring needed focus to the areas of tax operations, including information management, process optimization, and the technologies and strategies that support all tax professionals.
The members of this task force are senior-level tax professionals from diverse backgrounds (public practice, consulting, and business and industry) who have built their careers by fostering innovation—constantly working to enhance the future of tax-related processes and technology in an age where business interests are increasingly taking on global dimensions.
We write articles, speak at high-profile conferences, host webcasts, and publish other guidance to help businesses and firms—of all sizes—improve tax-related information management and processes and, as a result, maximize their bottom line. We promote the CPA name and the esteemed CITP and CGMA credentials, and ensure CPA tax professionals remain the premier provider of tax services.