Most tax managers hold at least a bachelor's degree in a finance-related field, sometimes highlighting concentrations including management or tax law. While often not required, some tax managers hold an advanced degree in their field.
Tax Manager Career Overview
What is Tax Management?
Tax management deals with tax compliance and reporting for an organization, considering local, state, and federal tax laws. Tax managers handle tax filings for their company, focusing on providing accuracy to minimize audit potential. Tax management requires professionals to pay close attention to detail, noting any problems with financial documents or records for their company and suggesting effective solutions to minimize the risk of penalty.
Tax management emphasizes abiding by tax laws and regulations. Often, organizations are not equipped with the level of understanding they should be to effectively obey all tax laws put in place, so tax managers make sure the organization is not breaking any laws, preventing it from being at risk for audit or penalty. Tax management also encompasses leadership, with tax managers serving as the head of their department.
What is a Tax Manager?
Tax managers focus on providing direction for the financial and tax activities involved with their organization or company. Managers examine data for budgets and costs to understand their organization's tax outlook. They lead their department's team, listening to their employees and providing them training and guidance during their career. They deal with mergers and acquisitions and are often required to hold CPA certification.
What Does a Tax Manager Do?
Tax and financial managers coordinate and direct the financial activities of workers in a company including brokerage firms, credit departments, and branch banks. They create and maintain relationships with businesses and individuals to help them resolve tax and finance issues and conduct risk reports for management analysis. They also recruit and train staff members. These managers review data on costs and budget plan to gain a clear picture of an organization's tax and financial situations.
Tax managers must have the technology skills necessary to use the software their daily job responsibilities demand.
Tax managers must have the technology skills necessary to use the software their daily job responsibilities demand. Software includes accounting software such as Intuit QuickBooks, fund accounting software, and tax software. These managers also must have experience using business intelligence and data analysis software such as MicroStrategy and IBM Cognos Impromptu, and financial analysis software like Oracle E-Business Suite Financials, database user interface and query software like Microsoft Access, and enterprise resource planning software such as NetSuite ERP.
Along with tech skills, tax managers should exhibit strong critical thinking and strong monitoring and supervision skills. Effectively handling issues with the daily functions of the company is often a key component of the tax manager's job function. Tax managers should also exhibit solid active listening skills. Since they serve as leaders in their role, they should be able to listen to the questions and concerns of those in their department to ensure efficiency within the team.
Professionals in this role should be able to pay close attention to detail and be dependable, since their employees must be able to rely on them for anything they need and they should trust them to oversee the operations of the tax department.
Tax managers work independently in their role as the department leader, and they collaborate with others in order to carry out essential job functions including human resources and compensation. Professionals in this role should be able to pay close attention to detail and be dependable, since their employees must be able to rely on them for anything they need and they should trust them to oversee the operations of the tax department.
In addition to tax and financial managers, professionals in this sector can pursue careers as marketing managers, financial services sales agents, securities and commodities sales agents, public relations and fundraising managers, and sales managers. The tax management profession combines professional's knowledge of tax law and accounting with their abilities to function as a productive leader, so these professionals can translate their skills into a variety of other management positions across areas of discipline and industries.
Some of the key soft skills tax managers must possess include the ability to express themselves verbally, deductive reasoning abilities, understand information presented to them across all modes, work with technology, and communicate through writing and through email specifically.
What Are the Responsibilities of a Tax Manager?
What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Tax Manager?
|Reading comprehension||Tax managers should be able to understand written documents, sentences, and paragraphs across their job functions.|
|Critical thinking||Tax managers encounter problems throughout processes of business and need to make suggestions on how to effectively resolve them.|
|Active listening||Good leaders know how to listen to the concerns and questions of their employees and coworkers to provide the most accurate response possible.|
|Deductive reasoning||Tax managers must be able to apply rules to specific problems to create solutions that make the most sense for their company.|
|Problem sensitivity||Effective tax managers should be able to notice problems that other employees might overlook and offer effective solutions and preventative methods to decrease the risk of additional issues.|
|Communication||Managers of all disciplines must be able to communicate effectively with others, conveying their points, explaining their ideas, and providing useful feedback to subordinates.|
|Customer and personal service||Tax managers must have a strong knowledge base of customer and personal service to meet quality standards.|
|Administration and management||Understanding how to deal with administrative and managerial tasks is an important part of being a tax manager.|
|Mathematics||Since tax managers work with aspects of tax, accounting, and finance, they must hold strong mathematical skills.|
How are Tax Managers Employed?
Tax and financial managers primarily work in the finance and insurance industry, working closely with chief financial officers and financial executives, ensuring the efficiency of their organization. Tax managers typically work a normal full-time schedule although they do occasionally work more than 40 hours a week, especially during tax season.
Tax and financial managers also work in government, management of companies and enterprises, manufacturing, and professional, scientific, and technical services. Many employers require tax managers to hold a CPA before they can hire them. Tax managers can develop into more advanced roles within their position including chief financial officer and top executive positions. Most tax managers hold at least a bachelor's degree in finance or a related field, although many choose to pursue graduate education, earning a master's degree in finance, accounting, or business management.
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Professional Organizations for Tax Managers
- National Association of Tax Professionals The NATP provides research services, support, and education to tax professionals across the United States.
- National Association of Enrolled Agents Functioning as an organization of enrolled agents in the United States, the NAEA serves more than 11,000 enrolled agents in the tax field.
- Association for Financial Professionals AFP is a professional society dedicated to advancing the success of its members and the organization as a whole.
- Chartered Institute of Management Accountants Offering training and qualification in management accountancy, CIMA focuses on management accountancy and related topics.
- American Management Association A nonprofit educational membership organization promoting management, the AMA serves management professionals across industries.