The data dilemma: Tax reform’s new demands on life sciences

Understanding tax reform implications and investment needs

New tax reform provisions are increasing the scope and complexity of data requirements for life sciences firms. The digital transformation of business processes is key to sustainably producing the data you need. Our five questions can help you build the business case for investment.

The data implications of tax reform on life sciences companies

As life sciences companies finish round one of US tax reform guidance to shareholders and analysts, many realize the need for near real-time, data-driven insights for tax-related decisions and guidance going forward. This may present a dilemma: how to digitally transform business processes to sustainably produce data necessary to provide those insights. It is a challenge with multiple dimensions, including:

  • Transforming existing, largely manual, spreadsheet-driven processes for data capture, aggregation, and calculation.
  • Adapting to a changing information technology (IT) landscape.
  • Paying for these initiatives, which could be costly. It will require a comprehensive business case that captures both tax savings and operational efficiencies.

Building the business case for the investment is a critical step forward. The answers to five key questions can help.

Building the case for investment

Five key questions can help life sciences companies address the tax reform data dilemma through planning and investment.

Meeting the data demands of tax reform: Our take

Life sciences companies have potential opportunities with the passage of US tax reform. However, the potential benefits aren’t free: increased complexity and risks are part of the new tax environment, with significant new demands for data from across the enterprise.

A business-led campaign can educate decision makers about the data demands of tax reform, its possible financial, operational, and business model implications, and the value that IT system and process changes might create in addressing reform. Fundamental to such a campaign are a structured approach to identify and close data and process gaps, a defined roadmap toward a digitally transformed future state, and a compelling business case that articulates the initiative’s potential investment returns.

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