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Owing to the accelerated need for digital transformation across sectors, hyper-automation was among the buzzwords of the year, and will continue to drive conversations well into 2021. At its very core, hyper-automation brings together multiple components of automation technologies and tools that enable greater automation of work.

Hyper-Automation Powering Tax Technology

Just as is the case with all business processes, it would be prudent to include tax technology as part of the functions that have been hyper-automated. In keeping with the Government’s mission of bringing in transparency to prevent tax terrorism, technology through digital twins will lead the way.

Albeit seemingly futuristic, digital twins have been in existence for close to two decades, but their use has only gained popularity in recent times. As a means of hyper-automating tasks, digital twins can be used across business processes like Record to report, Procure to Pay, Order to Cash, Machine to Machine and many more. What this does is, creates opportunities to explore decision modelling on AI based inputs, stream analytics and machine learning tools.

In the tax technology scheme of things, there has been an emergence of GST compliance platforms, audit reconciliation, procurement to payment, vendor invoice reconciliations, and credit assessment tools for banks and NBFCs. Hyper-automation has also taken over the GST accounting system, and as developments in the sector continue, soon we can expect to see Digital Transformation and Automation across various industries in this domain. Through hyper-automation, which creates a layer across the organization thereby creating a Digital Twin of the Organization (DTO) it makes it possible to visualize the wear and tear in various processes that needs to be automated. This can also help ensure limiting penalties while auditing.

The Importance of Having a Digital Twin

In fact, what businesses need to know about digital twins in the tax sphere is that the earlier these are adopted the better advantages they can avail. To put this in perspective, the sooner a company digitizes its data, the sooner AI can work with it to derive measurable results that can be used to increase business efficiency.

Bearing in mind that during the pandemic, a lot of businesses focused on cash recovery, the inception of tax technology as a part of processes made sense. Additionally, taking cognizance of the copious amounts of data involved in tax processes, enhancing AI systems with ML tools will allow these to take real time decisions with ease. This efficient analysis of data will go a long way in aiding companies to identify opportunities for tax saving and recovery.

Of course, before organizations can get to this stage completely, there needs to be increased and consistent awareness about the benefits of hyper-automation and tax technology. As we move into a year that is poised to be characterized by trends that will transform the tax environment, this awareness about the need to embrace the new normal, will become imperative.

The Clear Advantage for Early Adopters

Unlike previous years, tax professionals will be impacted in almost every sphere. More transactions will be accounted for in the cloud, sharing of information will increase, and through the use of digital technology, early adopters can look at gaining an edge over their competitors.

Through digital twins, which are designed to bring in efficiency in operations, as we move forward, we can expect our systems to have the reliability of a well-oiled machine. And while its use might still be in the nascent stages, one thing is for sure, hyper-automation is here to stay.

Niraj Hutheesing

Niraj Hutheesing is the Founder and Managing Director of Cygnet Infotech, an IT company that offers automated GST compliance solution for E-invoicing, E-way bill generation, and GST returns filing. Any opinions expressed in this article are strictly that of the author.

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