People in tax manager jobs are advisers who have progressed to a senior level within their role. As such, they work with clients to help ensure that the correct amount of tax is being paid on their earnings and investments. They may also take on planning roles whereby they help clients to look at the future and help plan their assets accordingly.
This is a role that is particularly good for numerate individuals combined with an ability to communicate to individuals on all levels. By breaking down the often complex nature of financial advice, a good tax manager will help clients understand their true financial potential and make the best of the future that is to come.
Tax manager job activities.
The primary role of a tax manager is to ensure that clients are paying the correct amount of tax on their earnings and investments. Added to this is the responsibility of managing a team of advisers beneath them. For the most part, these teams tend to be rather small and manageable for most without prior backgrounds in management, but those who do come equipped with managerial experience are usually shown preference at the interview table.
Tax managers tend to choose a speciality right away when they are getting into the role. As such, they may choose to provide advice on corporate matters, VAT, international taxation (double taxation), personal taxes, and inheritance taxes and trust funds.
A typical day would involve meeting with clients to discuss their current financial situation along with gathering information related to calculating their tax rate. Many tax managers are tasked with the completion of tax returns or may delegate this task to an adviser, but will usually be responsible for the auditing of tax records and explaining tax laws to clients in aims of reducing their liabilities to HMRC.
Particularly skilled or senior managers will be empowered with the ability to negotiate with HMRC officials when representing a client. This could be in the case of reducing tax liability or reclaiming overpayments. This is a position that usually follows experience and academic qualifications, which are granted by the ATT.
For the most part, tax managers work a standard office work week with some overtime being made available during the end of the tax year. Much of the work is conducted within an office, but managers will sometimes be required to travel to their clients. A full driver's license and access to a vehicle is sometimes given preference if it is listed as a preference; it is rarely seen as a hard requirement.
It is not unusual for starting salaries to be in the range of £18,000 and £25,000 a year for tax managers. Part-qualified managers who hold accountancy credits will usually command higher salaries within this range, which is followed by £35,000 to £50,000 a year for chartered accountants entering tax management.
There are several modes of entry for tax managers. Those who are working in financial services can likely stem into tax management based on availability and need within their business. However, those wanting to become more dedicated tax managers will do well to gain professional certification in taxation. For example, like those offered by the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) or by the Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT).
Careers usually begin immediately after certification and tend to start as trainee adviser roles, but candidates can sometimes progress to tax management status through a graduate training program immediately after university or by completing a Higher Apprenticeship in Professional Services.
Tax managers will need to have exceptional communication skills, as the position is largely customer facing. They will need to utilise these communication skills to break down the complex jargon that is typically associated with taxes and returns, and make the entire process more accessible to clients. Similarly, they will need to know when to “upgrade” their speaking skills to suit more professional circumstances, such as when discussing matters with HMRC.
They will also need to be strong in both maths and IT. While the former is a given, many tax managers are choosing to gravitate towards IT software packages to help automate their roles and are sometimes assigned to use them by default. This means they will need to have quite a strong working command on applications like Microsoft Access and Microsoft Excel. Qualifications demonstrating proficiency in these suites are offered by Microsoft itself and can be gained through the MOS qualification.