New FERF Research Reveals Finance Executives are Turning to Process Automation

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Process Automation Helps Companies Alleviate Income Tax Reporting Problems; Improves Data Transparency & Internal Controls

With the widespread globalization of business, many companies are now operating multinationally and are subject to multiple currencies, accounting principles, regulatory environments and taxing jurisdictions

Longview Solutions today announced that Financial Executives Research Foundation (FERF), the research affiliate of Financial Executives International (FEI), has released a new research paper that reveals senior executives' experiences with automating the tax function. Entitled "Trends in Income Tax Reporting Automation," the report presents findings from interviews conducted with senior tax executives of public and private companies across multiple industries in North America, and explores the potential benefits of tax reporting automation, as well as the factors driving and/or hindering its implementation. FERF conducted the research in partnership with Longview Solutions.

Key research findings include:

  • Finance executives are turning to automation to integrate the tax process with other corporate finance processes for improved transparency and controls, while ensuring data integrity and consistency through use of a single, common set of data;
  • A major obstacle to automation is the lack of process standardization across multi-entity or multi-country organizations;
  • Automation success indicators include reduced hours/overtime, fewer staff morale issues, lower process costs and fewer Sarbanes-Oxley Section 404 deficiencies;
  • Along with improved data accuracy and greater process visibility, automation allows a shift in tax department resources from data collection and validation to planning, analysis and compliance;
  • The shift to International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), which requires even more detailed disclosure of tax information, further supports a decision to automate the income tax reporting process;
  • While there is still a distinct need and place for spreadsheets in the tax function, over-reliance is leading to data integrity concerns.

"With the widespread globalization of business, many companies are now operating multinationally and are subject to multiple currencies, accounting principles, regulatory environments and taxing jurisdictions," said Marie Hollein, President and CEO, Financial Executives International and FERF. "Financial executives must adapt to the prevailing business conditions and the wide array of challenges facing them. Our report reveals that automation is emerging as the standard for many companies who are committed to improving the financial transparency and internal controls in their tax function."

"This latest research reinforces what we are hearing from our prospective customers," said Marc Seewald, VP of Tax Products for Longview Solutions. "Companies are still grappling with weaknesses in the accounting for income tax process, and one of the most common reasons is a lack of automation of repeatable processes."

Companies are responding to these challenges by automating their income tax reporting processes, as many have done previously to streamline and improve other corporate finance functions such as statutory reporting, consolidation, and planning, budgeting and forecasting. In fact, more and more finance executives believe that global tax reporting should be considered when evaluating the tools that measure the overall performance of a business.

The report, "Trends in Income Tax Reporting Automation", can be downloaded at: http://www.longview.com/feiresearch

About FEI and FERF
Financial Executives International is the leading advocate for the views of corporate financial management. Its 15,000 members hold policy-making positions as chief financial officers, treasurers and controllers. FEI enhances member professional development through peer networking, career management services, conferences, teleconferences and publications. Members participate in the activities of 85 chapters, 74 in the U.S. and 11 in Canada. Visit http://www.financialexecutives.org for more information.

Financial Executives Research Foundation (FERF) is the non-profit 501 (c)(3) research affiliate of FEI. FERF researchers identify key financial issues and develop impartial, timely research reports to FEI members and non-members alike, in a variety of publication formats. For more information, please visit http://www.financialexecutives.org

About Longview Tax
Longview Tax streamlines and automates tax data collection, tax provisioning and tax planning for today's global organizations, employing best of breed data management and global collaboration capabilities. Using Longview's open technology, information is automatically collected from any source system in any currency, yielding a single repository of financial information. For more information, please visit http://www.longview.com/tax

About Longview Solutions
Longview Solutions provides corporate performance management (CPM) software that leading companies such as Trustmark, Time Warner, Home Depot, Ingersoll Rand, JC Penney, and GE Healthcare use to drive performance with speed, visibility and financial integrity. Since 1994, many of the world's most respected companies have been using our technology platform to create a single repository of financial truth from which statutory consolidation, management reporting, financial planning, modeling, analysis, budgeting, forecasting and tax reporting can be performed quickly and accurately, enterprise-wide. Longview is an Exact Software company headquartered in Toronto, Canada with additional offices in Philadelphia, Chicago (USA) and London (UK). For more information, visit http://www.longview.com.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Jennifer Bentley
for Longview Solutions
905-513-5210
jbentley(at)longview(dot)com

Nicole Madison
for FEI/FERF
212-850-5647
Nicole.madison(at)fd(dot)com

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Jennifer Bentley
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