Vertex tax technology: How Siemens sought (and found) a tax calculation engine built for growth

Siemens' US Head of Indirect Tax explains why the company chose Vertex as its new tax calculation engine provider


“When you’re processing 20-25,000 tax returns and 146 audits a year, it’s extremely important to have a partner like Vertex that you can rely on,” says Sandra Blair, Head of Indirect Tax for Siemens in the US.

Sandra Blair: I’m head of indirect tax for Siemens in the US. We are a global conglomerate in the top 50 throughout the world. We have locations in every country in the world.

We were seeking a new tax calculation engine provider. In conjunction with the Vertex consultants, the DMA alliance partner, we were able to move seven SAP systems off of our previous provider, onto the new Vertex tax calculation engine. Move 3.5 million tax exemption certificates, and set up our use-tax accrual program in less than six months.

After a bit of stabilisation, we then moved our Oracle system in three weeks from our previous provider, onto the Vertex solution.

One of the big benefits that we have been able to obtain from Vertex is putting our destiny in our control. We are no longer having to reach out to IT to make changes once a configuration is identified, or an overpayment, or an over-accrual on the use tax, we’re immediately able to go into Vertex, test our solution, correct it, and get it rolled into production. So a five to six month process has now been taken down to a day, if needed. So it’s been a huge benefit, cost reduction, savings.

We have also had a report customised, so any of these changes that we have made because of Vertex, we were able to identify down to the penny how much we’ve been able to save. So it’s setting us up to take us into the future, into the digitalisation environment and economy. And Vertex, with their content, has given us a broader range to handle our conglomerate and all the service lines that we sell.

When you’re processing 20-25,000 tax returns a year, and 146 audits a year, it’s extremely important to have a partner through, like Vertex, that you can rely on. Their tax calculations, you know they’re right. That provides the right answer when it comes back in to your system.

Working with Vertex has enabled my shared service organisation to take on additional work without additional headcount. It has allowed us to increase our accuracy on our consumers use-tax filing, our accuracy on our customer billings, which has led to helping us increase our customer satisfaction scores from a tax department perspective: making sure that everything is compliant, and that we’re responding in the most efficient and effective manner.