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Big Data And Its Potential To Help Tax Compliance

By Author: Rahul Sutraj
Total Articles: 61

The soon to be rolled out Goods and Services Tax (GST) will see an upload of nearly three billion invoices each month from companies of all sizes on the GST Network (GSTN). Apart from changing the way Indian businesses are conducted today, GST will enable the Government authorities to use big data analytics and gauge sectoral and economic trends and use them as aids in policy making. It is, therefore, no exaggeration to state that GST will also bring with it a big data revolution in tax administration.

Data-driven approach to tax compliance

With tax authorities becoming more sophisticated with their tax analytics, a massive change in tax compliance is inevitable. At this conjecture, when tax compliance will mean going digital from day one, businesses are left with little choice but to overhaul their enterprise-wide financial systems to be GST compliant.

Many businesses are thus employing GSTN appointed GSPs or GST Suvidha Providers at this stage. GSPs are providing customised cloud based solutions for businesses that are proficient at collecting all the relevant data and presenting it in a manner to make tax compliance hassle free.

First, data is extracted from various sources of the master data, such as finance and inventory management. Next, the data is validated against a series of tests to identify the unique circumstances of the organisation and the best way forward to thoroughly tax compliant. Apart from tax compliance, these sophisticated tax solutions are capable of translating data into value. A data-driven approach provides a range of benefits such as:

Discovery of anomalies

A data-driven approach to tax compliance under the new GST regime, will provide any tax paying organisations with an insight into their compliance trends and uncover anomalies at stages of their business processes if any. Once discovered, appropriate steps can be taken for the resolution of anomalies and rectification of processes wherever necessary.

Possibilities of pre-empting challenges and opportunities

Modern data analytics allow organisations to achieve a single view across cloud-based platforms to know their exact compliance position at any given time. Juxtaposing it across various markets or locations can help taxpayer organisations to pre-empt challenges or opportunities in different situations. This kind of knowledge comes in handy in a fast changing business environment and lead to enhanced efficiencies in the decision-making process and can lead to building efficient risk mitigation strategies.

Developing a clear audit trail

Finally, a data-driven approach to tax compliance leads to a clear and accurate compliance record that can be archived and recalled as and when necessary. Pro-active organisations can, therefore, be well equipped to provide compliance records readily if and when required by tax authorities. In the new GST regime, a clear audit mechanism may even lead to better compliance ratings and enhance business prospects in the future.

The centralisation of tax administration has led to the need for improved data reporting more frequently on a real-time basis. Efficient data management, data analytics and harnessing the potential of big data can help businesses minimise risks by recognising challenges in a timely manner, identifying new revenue and innovation opportunities and improving overall organisational efficiencies.

To know more about GST visit: www.exactgst.com

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