The High Value Of Corporate Tax Executives Today

The High Value Of Corporate Tax Executives

Having the opportunity to work with thousands of corporate tax executives over three decades has provided insightful information many people are unaware of in running a corporate tax function. There are three topics that will be discussed in this article that are important to know. A corporate tax executive may not have the opportunity to communicate this information to top management teams. However, it is important to know this information and what we are privately hearing from corporate tax executives.

Lead tax executives are under more pressure in running a corporate tax function than ever before in history. With multiple tax revenue authorities increasing their activity investigating corporations today to generate revenue, corporate tax organizations are experiencing an increase in audit activity from Federal, State, and Foreign tax revenue authorities. As a result, corporate tax executives have a heavier workload as they manage increased risk for corporate organizations. While many corporate executive teams are searching for ways to cut costs, the tax department needs an increase in its budget to support their growing workload. Note To CFOs and Human Resource EXecutives: Ask your Tax Executives what they need to be more successful for your organization? Then give them the financial support they need.

Over the previous two years, we have experienced the highest amount of turnover in corporate tax departments we have seen in decades. Allow me to share a truth with you most corporate executive teams are unaware of. The impetus of the great exodus and early retirements in the tax profession has a lot to do with the complexity of the tax executive workload. Tax work is a high risk job, demands substantial technical knowledge, has greater complexity nationally and internationally, and many tax organizations are working with understaffed tax teams with an increase in workload. Tax Executives will not tell you they do not know the answer to all your technical questions. However, they know how to find the answers from selected industry experts. Therefor, give them the budgets they need to access industry specialty experts. It is technically very complicated in the world of tax! A tax executives technical knowledge is as sophisticated as a pilot driving a jumbo jet! We are talking about a highly trained and educated group of tax professionals.

Another factor affecting corporate tax organizations today is the difficulty finding staff for their tax departments. In the year 2020, public accounting firms were not hiring staff level tax professionals. The staff who were fortunate enough to be hired were working from home with little mentorship available to them while working alone from home. The pandemic had a devastating effect on training in your children’s schools; it also had an impact on training tax staff. I have personally spoken with corporate tax executives who have looked for over a year for qualified tax staff. Many tax departments are hurting for tax staff support. My recommendation is for corporations to hire and train tax staff themselves as interns and rotate the staff among their tax team so tax staff receive more exposure to how a corporate tax department operates over multiple tax jurisdictions.

The Big Four are burning out their tax staff as many leave due to the stress of extraordinary overtime demands on them in these firms. Unfortunately, the experience has motivated many tax staff to leave the tax profession altogether at the three to five year level. This contributes to the lack of available trained tax staff talent for hire today. In the old days, you knew if a tax staff was trained by Arthur Andersen (who ceased operations August 31, 2002 from the Enron debacle), the tax staff went through a rigorous training program. Nowadays, you put tax staff on zoom call in front of a computer and hope they understand the highly technical concepts.

Another issue privately discussed with tax executives that corporate management teams are likely unaware is the increasing demand of technical expertise required by tax executives today. Tax legislation is changing rapidly across multiple tax jurisdictions. The changes are evolving at a pace impossible for any human to keep up with and take time to identify, assess, and select the best solution for the company. I would certainly not leave the solutions to A.I. as it would likely be favorable to tax revenue authorities. There are often several ways tax planning can be utilized so it is best to have the experience of a tax expert who also understands the issues and corporate business objectives. Give your competent tax executive the support and the budget they need to get the job done properly.

Companies need to understand that many organizations make mistakes which cause them to lose great tax talent. Tax Executives are very valuable to corporations today as they save companies enormous amounts of tax revenue that would otherwise be lost forever. One situation I often see is human resources making the mistake of thinking tax salaries and accounting, and finance salaries are in the same pay range. This is not the case as companies often find out when making offers to new tax executive hires. It is a very sensitive subject and best handled in the hands of a professional who has deep knowledge of the subject matter about tax compensation. Having placed more than one thousand tax executives over three decades and negotiated some of the largest tax executive compensation packages in the tax profession, I know how to help companies get the talent they need that will save companies millions (and sometimes billions in tax revenue over a ten-year period just on the way they structure their IP). Technically talented tax executives are one of the most valuable assets a company has these days. Treat your tax executives with the respect they deserve by supporting them with what they need.

Do you have a need for a tax executive currently or anticipate a need in the future? As an internationally proven expert in completing multiple tax executive searches for corporate clients, please be comfortable contacting me with your questions or needs:

Contact or call 858.999.0053 or text 858.232.4415. Available to speak with you 7 days a week. Call me if you have questions on tax compensation.

Contact me if you would like to participate in our year end 2023 private corporate tax compensation study.

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 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.

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