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Tax value of robotic process automation (RPA)

Understanding tax RPA use cases

When you consider the labor-intensive, repetitive tasks tax departments often complete – for instance, gathering/validating data, running reports, calculating adjustments, populating work papers and returns, etc. – you can see the potential for robotic process automation (RPA) to transform the way tax departments operate, and in some ways reshape what it means to be a tax professional. With RPA, it’s possible for tax departments to rely on technology to replicate routine, predictable tasks and free up skilled tax professionals to focus on more high-value work. Learn more below.

Understanding robotic process automation for tax

What is robotic process automation (RPA)? 

RPA is:

  • Computer-coded software configured to operate other software
  • Automation to perform repetitive tasks
  • Able to operate any software on your computer

RPA is not walking, talking auto-bots, physically existing machines processing paper, or articifial intelligence or voice recognition and reply software. 

What can RPA for tax do?

RPA for tax is delivered through software that can be configured to complete rules-based tasks such as: copy and paste, open email and attachments, move files and folders, connect to system APIs, extract structured data from documents, log-in to web or enterprise applications, make calculations, collect social media statistics, scrape data from the web, fill in forms, read and write to databases, of follow "if/then" rules. RPA for tax can be easily deployed and managed from a central controller to interact with a wide range of business applications.

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Videos: Tax Bots in Action

Bots can help tax departments become more efficient. Click on the short videos below to see how bots are simplifying the following routine processes and enabling tax professionals to focus on being a strategic advisor to the business.

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How Deloitte can help

Deloitte engages with our clients to deliver a sustainable tax automation solution:

  • Implementation & COE: We manage tax automation process optimization and exit after stabilization; the vendor-client relationship continues.

Benefits of RPA for tax

  • Transformative Change: Re-engineer core processes while automating the function.
  • Flexibility: Rapidly scale up or down depending on the nature of the business issue.
  • Cost Reduction: 15-90 percent cost reduction opportunity depending upon the characteristics of the activities selected for automation.
  • Efficiency and Quality: RPA for tax streamlines, standardizes and optimizes the processes. Robots perform tasks with a high degree of accuracy and operate 24x7 leading to high-throughput.
  • Competitive Advantages: RPA for tax provides high potential ROI which can be leveraged to drive critical initiatives and has a short payback period since robots drive existing applications with low integration costs.

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