Looking For A Tax Executive? The Cost Of A.I. Versus Human Intelligence Is Greater Than You Think!

Looking For A Tax Executive? The Cost Of A.I. Versus Human Intelligence Is Greater Than You Think!

Anyone with their eyes on a computer screen today will notice we have literally been taken over by bots and A.I. searches and connecting us these days. I recently did a search on a competing site and discovered A.I. bots wanting to communicate their results. The results were not what I expected. These days when you are searching for a tax executive on sites using A.I. which wants to identify the professionals they chose for you. You may not get what you want, you may only get what you can see, and there is a lot you do not see or hear when searching for a tax professional for your organization.

What is a bot? According to the TechTarget website:

“A bot — short for robot and also called an internet bot — is a computer program that operates as an agent for a user or other program or to simulate a human activity. Bots are normally used to automate certain tasks, meaning they can run without specific instructions from humans.
An organization or individual can use a bot to replace a repetitive task that a human would otherwise have to perform. Bots are also much faster at these tasks than humans. Although bots can carry out useful functions, they can also be malicious and come in the form of malware.

Bots are made from sets of algorithms that aid them in their designated tasks. These tasks include conversing with a human — which attempts to mimic human behaviors — or gathering content from other websites. There are several different types of bots designed to accomplish a wide variety of tasks.”
Have you visited a site recently only to describe the issue in detail only to have it respond to you “ I do not understand?” (3 Times) Has anyone informed you that bots can conduct malicious activity on your computer? For instance, bots can harvest your email addresses; install keylogger bots that track every keystroke you make on your keyboard, and bots can gather highly sensitive information from your computer. You really do not know what programs are built into the bot systems now being forced upon you.

What do you think when sites tell you they can find tax professionals cheaper and better than a human recruiter? I will share with you what I am learning directly from corporate clients behind the scenes who decided to do it on their own to save costs of a human resource recruiter.

Case Study One:
After interviewing several search firms, a company decides they have completed research using A.I. to attract candidates on their own. They told me the name of the person who they made an offer to. I told them this is a candidate who did not have the skills they requested, I knew the person, and would not have presented them since they did not have the technical skills they needed in the role. Nevertheless, they hired a tax professional they found on their own and the candidate did not work. In fact, it was a very costly experience for them hiring a technically underqualified person for the role. What I did not share with them (and which I knew about the candidate they already hired) is this tax professional would be a personality nightmare for them. After they hired the individual, the turnover in the rest of the tax department was 100% in one year. A lot of company history walked out the door and the person they hired created a nightmare tax situation for them. When conducting a search in the technically sophisticated world of corporate tax executives, you need to know the right questions to ask. You also need to have built a reputation that makes it easier for highly competent tax professionals to trust you enough to tell you about strategies they utilized that saved the company millions(billions) of tax dollars. Technically talented tax professionals typically do not brag about their strategies; however, they do talk to people they trust about their successes. Highly experienced tax recruiters search for this information.)

(Special Note: a bot will not have history on personality disorders of candidates. You will only get the real scoop from a human recruiter gathering this information in the trenches regarding consistent personality patterns displayed. The company was so focused on saving a recruiter’s fee they lost one hundred million in taxes. A highly trained recruiter will find out who they are working with long before the client.)

Case Study Two:
A company had their human research division source tax candidates. Human Resources are great professionals; however, they are often tasked with an impossible job (i.e. find 10 candidates for each open role in the company in 10 different departments: tax, accounting, marketing, development, programming, sales department, cook and bottle washer). They do not have superpowers even though many come close! They are often given a workload that would stress the best human resources professionals. Tax is another search field all together and you need to know what you are talking about when speaking to the best of the tax profession. Tax professionals are super smart and technically sophisticated. Key decisionmakers are calling their HR professionals wondering where the candidates are to interview for their open positions. The HR recruiter may see one or two possible candidates come through their ad portal but do not really understand most tax professional candidates will no longer send their resumes through an HR portal. The bots are turning up H&R Block tax candidates for a Tax Director, Provision tax role. The bots are spitting out junk matches wasting time on a sophisticated tax executive search. Conducting a tax executive search with A.I. bot technology creates lack of connectivity with an entire underground of prospective tax candidate’s companies do not have access to on a tax search. LinkedIn Glint Services 7.0 now sells the amount of engagement employees have with employers. Who wants to risk an employer discovering you are looking at another tax job? Many tax professionals are still unaware of their lack of privacy on LinkedIn using A.I. which places every tax professional at a much greater risk of being discovered they are looking at tax jobs and can lose their job because they are spending time looking at jobs on LinkedIn. We always provide our Tax Professional Member’s a secret strategy and best way to gain access to these tax jobs AND we never track people searching for a new job and sell the data and information.

(Special Note: A.I. bots are tracking your daily activity on sites like LinkedIn and selling this information back to big corporate employers. Most of my corporate clients work to establish a professional relationship with us over the long term and we love working with them to keep them properly informed. There is great value in establishing these personal channels of communication. The tax professionals that work with me directly know they can call anytime throughout the year for information on market trends, how to retain their tax teams, how to smartly raise their professional visibility to be chased by recruiters, what should they pay their tax professionals to keep recruiter from engaging them, and some even call to see how they can help their number two person get a lead tax role.

Yes, there are tax leaders looking out for others on their tax teams because they plan on staying in their current role for many years and do not want to hold their second person in command back from more success. They selflessly want to help their second in command promoted to their own lead tax executive role. Yes, there are outstanding, caring, and supportive tax executive leaders in corporations today that are amazing leaders. These extraordinary leaders spend more time training (ask management to increase budget on training and education) and retain employees longer. These tax leaders build a highly motivated tax team that supports each other and the organization. We love working for these clients on tax executive searches.
(Special Note: Relying on an HR team to source all tax candidates from advertising on platforms utilizing A.I. and bots leaves out a highly valuable population of technically qualified tax professionals who are never interviewed. Most of the tax professionals we work with will never risk sending their resume to a company portal. The only way these tax professionals are comfortable coming forward is through a professional recruiter who will protect their privacy. TaxConnections is based on building caring, human relationships and connections, not artificial intelligence, or fake bot connections. You are merely an algorithm data point in A.I. , there is no care or feeling of you as a human being with individual needs and interests.)

Case Study Three:
The third point important to make is that September through December is the busiest time to look for a tax executive. Our three decades in tax executive search has taught us the months of September through December of each calendar year. If you have waited until this time of the year to conduct a search for a tax executive, you will need to learn what obstacles you are faced with this time of the year. Corporate tax executives have returned from their summer vacations, graduations, conferences and are very busy now with September, October, and December filing due dates. Tax executives are more challenging to reach and less likely to pay attention to outside distractions such as considering another tax job. Recruiters must work extra time to get the attention of high performers as they focus on their work and tax due dates. Another issue is if a company is looking for an expert on the tax provision, prospective tax provision candidates will not leave until they finish the year end tax provision which makes it challenging to attract tax provision candidates until they finish up the year end tax provision for their current employer or multiple clients if they are coming out of a public accounting firm. This tightens up the candidate pool greatly; therefore, you benefit from a recruiter who is in constant contact with the pool of prospective candidates.

(Special Note: Bots and A. I. will not build the human relationships required to connect you with the pool of underground, not actively looking, highly talented tax professionals who will save your company millions) in some cases billions of tax dollars lost to government tax authorities around the world). Building strong relationships with experienced recruiters skilled in developing human relationships is a huge advantage while navigating the tax executive search process. Human connections make private introductions to underground tax candidates( people who are not out actively looking for another tax job), and this makes a world of difference in your search results. I am telling you this because it is true. I have personally observed the poor results of companies who interviewed from a smaller population of candidates. The best results occur when you research the broader market to identify prospects who are not out actively searching but they will consider opportunities you bring to them privately.

Case Study Four:
Over the past year, we have conducted multiple searches in tax and technology. There is an increased demand of tax experts who go on to grow tax technology companies. After spending years in a technical area of tax they often cross over into an organization to build software around the new tax laws. These tax professionals enjoy researching tax laws, and testing the software to ensure it is working in accordance with rules and regulations in multiple tax jurisdictions. What we learned during these highly sophisticated searches is the best candidates could not be easily recognized by looking at the information or titles on their resumes. The only way we were able to identify what the tax technology candidates were really doing was to speak with them directly and ask a lot of questions. The people we placed with our clients, each with specific tax technology needs, would never have been identified by what was on their resumes. There is no way a bot or A.I. would have identified this talent by doing a text resume search. Human intelligence was the best way to identify what tasks they were responsible for in their technology roles.

(Special Note: Companies are losing great tax candidates due to publishing compensation ranges that will not attract the candidates they seek.. Salaries for tax professionals have risen across the board over these past twenty-four months. Posting a beer budget salary and expecting a highly educated champagne candidate does not help your search. Ask an experienced tax recruiter if your salary range is acceptable before you ever post it. We provide our clients with current market salaries on each retained search so the client can be competitive. We advise clients to look at the range of candidates we present on a search and determine from the compensation information we provide what candidates will fit their budget. There are a variety of ways to structure compensation packages to attract the top talent.

Need to conduct a search for a tax executive? Contact kat@taxconnections.com 858.999.0053

Kat Jennings, TaxConnections, CEO and Founder and Advisory Team provides three areas of services: 1) Internationally recognized, retained executive search services for multinational corporations, public accounting firms, and law firms; 2) Introductions of sellers to buyers of small and medium size accounting firms; and 3) Provide brand building and education services that support and prepare accounting firm owners to buy/sell an accounting practice. We focus on educating the journey to sell a practice and how to increase firm revenue prior to any sale. Our program ensures you start years prior to a sale by learning what is expected of you during the selling process, and introducing firm Partners to cross selling opportunities that are easy to implement and reduce your workload at the same time. We introduce you to value added connections to smartly grow revenue in your accounting practice.

Kat Jennings has been retained by organizations worldwide to locate tax professionals with highly specialized tax knowledge and expertise. She has a thorough understanding of the tax business community, with a proven record of stellar performances matching professionals with organizations. Bringing two parties together to work successfully is the art of understanding personalities, cultural fit, expectations by both parties, flexible or inflexible work environments, understanding what drives and motivates each party, and revolves around the personality and ethics of each executive team.

Kat is a widely recognized expert in high level, tax executive search, as well as connecting buyers and sellers of accounting firms. TaxConnections provides and educates small to medium size accounting firms owners and Partners how to prepare and sell their firms so they can build a succession plan for their retirement. With larger firms seeking to acquire smaller accounting practices, there is a real need to help firm owners prepare to be acquired. Most firm owners are unaware they are not ready to sell when they decide to retire. TaxConnections educates firm owners’ what they need to do years in advance of selling an accounting firm practice.
Senior tax executives expect the utmost privacy when being introduced to multinational organizations about a new tax opportunity under consideration. Having said that, companies searching for a new head of tax expecting tax executive candidates to submit their resume through a resume portal, will never see a full slate of outstanding tax executives available due to a candidates’ desire for greater privacy. This is why privacy focused Uber Tax Recruiters consistently outperform in-house recruiters on tax executive searches.

We offer our clients a Performance Retainer Agreement arrangement so their HR department can still recruit and compete with the tax candidates we present on Head of Tax searches. The client pays us a partial fee upfront, and if they find a candidate they deem better than we introduce to them, we forfeit the final fee. Most of the time, they love and prefer our private introductions to tax executive candidates better than what they source through their own resume portals.

When we represent selling/buying small to medium-sized firms, firm owners/partners also demand greater privacy when considering the sale of their practice. TaxConnections provides a safe place to discuss their business needs, elevate their practices’ online reputation, and increase revenue through new streams of business development by outsourcing work and partnering with other firms. Over three decades, we have worked tirelessly to build relationships between firm owners most organizations rarely have access to in the world of tax. There are numerous possibilities you may never have considered previously to bolster the value of your practice and service offerings.

As a globally recognized consultant to multinational organizations, accounting firms, and law firms searching for tax expertise, Kat has been retained by public accounting firms, law firms, and corporations worldwide including Apple Computer, AC Neilson, Accenture, Agilent Technologies, Allergan, Alza, American Express, American Media, Aon, Baker & McKenzie, Barclays Bank, Bechtel, Cargill, Carl Zieuss Vision, Century Aluminum, Chevron, Clorox, Citigroup, Commercials Metals, Constellation Energy, Countrywide, Del Monte, Deloitte Touche, DFS, DLA Piper, E&J Gallo Winery, Electronic Arts, Ernst &Young, Fox Entertainment, Fremont Investments, General Electric,General Motors, Herbalife, Hewlett Packard, Hyatt, Intel, Jones Lang LaSalle, Kimco Realty, KLA Tencor, Koch Industries, KPMG, Levi Strauss, Liberty Mutual, LKQ, Loews, Logitech, Lucas Film, Maersk, McKesson, Nalco, Newell Rubbermaid, Nissan, Oracle, Orbitax, Pacific Gas & Electric, PwC, QAD, SAIC, SanDisk, Sanmina, Sempra Energy, SONY, Synopsys, Ticketmaster, Trimble Navigation, Toyota, Univar, Wal-Mart, Wells Fargo, Vertex, Yahoo, Xilinx, and many more not listed here.
Contact Kat at 858,999.0053 Office/858.232.4415 Cell or kat@taxconnections.com to request a private consultation regarding the sale of your practice, adding top talent to your organization, or merging your practice with another firm owner with a book of business. The possibilities are endless; if you have a dream of a new vision for your professional life; we will scout opportunities throughout the market to make it happen.

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Flickr YouTube Vimeo    

Subscribe to TaxConnections Blog

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.