Sales tax automation software ⁠— do you really need it?

Published on
Feb 6, 2024
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Sales Tax Automation Solutions

While there are a variety of sales tax automation solutions, CereTax has gone a step beyond the rest with the newest technology, highest security level possible, a highly flexible API, and scalability not found in other systems.

Today, most sales tax software is delivered in the cloud via a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service). These tools automate the sales tax calculation process by integrating with the invoicing or ERP system typically via an API (Application Programming Interface).

How do these solutions work?

When it comes time to create a customer quote or invoice, the ERP system will pass certain data elements (customer location, product, sales amount, etc.) to the sales tax platform which will then calculate the sales tax and pass back to the ERP system the applicable sales tax. This is generally done in real time in sub-second intervals.

There are two pieces of information required to calculate the applicable sales tax –

(1) Tax rates

(2) Taxability rules

These rates and rules can be managed in some situations without the need for a sales tax automation platform. For example, if you’re selling tangible personal property (generally taxable) in a few jurisdictions where the tax rates are easily accessible then a sales tax platform may not be necessary. However, if you are selling telecommunications services on a nationwide basis then a sales tax automation solution is a must.

When do you need a tax solution?

Now, if you fall into the camp where you need a tax calculation solution, there are 5 specific areas that we invite you to explore as you navigate the tax calc landscape.

These are:

  1. Speed
  2. Dependability
  3. Scalability
  4. Accuracy
  5. Support

These are areas you can “poke and prod” your current sales tax solution provider on and see how they respond.

Speed:

At CereTax, we wanted to offer the fastest transaction speeds and the highest volume throughput without disruption.  To do so, we abandoned the old cloud infrastructure paradigms and built CereTax in a whole new way.

If you have ever...

  • Been asked to pay for a “dedicated instance” to meet your throughput demands.
  • Been told you need a “high performance code environment”.
  • Had your system slow when your tax platform is experiencing high demands from multiple customers.
  • Had invoice processing time out.

If you’ve ever heard any of this kind of language or dealt with these issues from your current vendor, then it may be time to look into making a change. CereTax is built to meet the highest volumes and exceed the expectations of even the most demanding businesses.

Let us prove it to you — reach out to us about setting up a free Load Testing Environment.

Dependability:

You have built your business based on dependability and now you want to scale -  but is your tax vendor keeping up with your needs?

  • Do you want to be sure your customers never time out when trying to buy something online?
  • Does your enterprise have thousands of invoices or charges that have to be generated at months end?
  • Do you want to be sure you never lose your data when a transaction or a set of transactions times out?

If your answer is "yes" to any of these, then you need CereTax. We solved these challenges and many more by:

  • Utilizing an always-on, auto-failover, multi-regional cloud solution.
  • No longer relying on limited allocated infrastructure.
  • Decreasing internet latency by automatically pointing transactions to the nearest host.
  • Not simply migrating outdated legacy solutions but engineering a new solution from scratch built for the cloud and built to scale.

Scalability:

CereTax is the only solution built to automatically scale to meet your growing needs, when you:

  • Move into completely new vertical markets.
  • Add new products or services.
  • Need visibility into multiple business units or invoice out of multiple systems.

At CereTax we did this by:

  • Creating a sales tax and consumer use tax solution, all built into one system.
  • Utilizing specialized vertical focused APIs, that never require different series or versions to be installed.
  • Connecting all of your POS, eCommerce, invoicing platforms or ERP’s, to one master account that can be managed through one portal.

Accuracy:

Other tax systems:

  • Say they point a transaction to a rooftop, but the underlying tax boundary data is sourced to less precise information like ZIP+4.
  • Use address components to determine the applicable taxing authorities which makes their jurisdiction identifiers or geocodes even less precise given the ever changing shift in boundaries for municipal annexations or special districts.
  • Require constant updating of their jurisdiction identifiers or geocodes.

CereTax ensures your accuracy:

  • We have developed a secondary location system not dependent on address data to drive to a latitude/longitude level of precision.
  • Whether we are provided with address data, partial address data, or lat/long, all locations are assigned to a pinpoint coordinate which is identified by a CereTax Plus Code.
  • Tax decisions are driven by geospatial coordinate, not the address data.
  • Clients can utilize the CereTax Plus Code to store the pinpoint location.
  • As boundaries shift, the CereTax point never does so you never have to update geocodes again.

Support:

At CereTax we believe the measure of success of the business is not the top line or the number of customers, but rather success is the percentage of your customers who are raving fans.  Here is how our approach is different:

  • You will have a CereTax team member assigned and accountable for your account success.
  • You will know their name, and they will know yours, and you will be able to reach them directly.
  • Your needs and requests will always be fulfilled swiftly and accurately.
  • You will have access to knowledgeable tax professionals who have years of sales tax experience.

At CereTax we handle customer success differently than the others. Oh, and one more bonus point…

Security:

Nothing short of the highest level of security is even an option.

With the constant threat of malware intrusions, cyber-attacks, and just everyday risks to any of your cloud-based solutions, security should be of primary concern. The 5 keys to our security protocols are:

  • Continuous Security Control Monitoring
  • Employee Trainings
  • Penetration Tests
  • Secure Software Development
  • Data Encryption Vulnerability Disclosure Program

Take a look at our comprehensive security protocol and compare how your vendor stacks up when it comes to speed, dependability, accuracy, support, and security.