Deloitte Tax teams up with Thomson Reuters to help legal departments with digital transformation

Strategic alliance aims to advise clients on shift away from reliance on ‘outdated legacy systems’
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Deloitte’s tax unit, Deloitte Tax, has formed an alliance with Thomson Reuters to assist corporate tax and legal departments with digital transformation and adoption strategies in order to keep up with global compliance and regulatory demands. 

The new alliance will offer a combination of Thomson Reuters’ software and technology solutions with the Big Four giant’s international consulting and tech implementation expertise to industry clients vying to become more efficient through digitally enabled strategies, the two firms said on Thursday. 

By joining forces, the firms said they intend to help tax and legal departments ‘reinvent their foundational operations’ by shifting away from a reliance on ‘outdated legacy systems’ and manual business processes and moving towards enhancing efficiencies, aligning data, creating economies of scale and improving transparency throughout end-to-end tax processes. 

The move continues a drive by Deloitte to target legal department consultancy work which saw it launch a Legal Business Services arm in the US last year. This was followed up in August with the hire of Oya Solutions founder and CEO Teju Deshpande and her specialist team of contracts management consultants.

Steve Kimbal, chairman and chief executive of Deloitte Tax, added: “Now more than ever, digitization is becoming crucial to the effectiveness of tax and legal departments. Through this alliance, we will deliver tailored technology implementation solutions to help position our clients to focus on what they do best — deliver enhanced value in their organizations, leveraging robust data for decision-making and cost control, backed by the unmatched global breadth and depth of Deloitte and Thomson Reuters.”

Sunil Pandita, president of Thomson Reuters’s corporate division, said the alliance builds on the two firm’s long-standing relationship with one another in supporting corporate tax departments through the ongoing era of digital transformation while adding a new focus around corporate counsel. 

“We continually see in-house tax and legal departments under immense pressure to always be fast and accurate, while combatting constrained resources and an ever-evolving business landscape,” he said, adding that the alliance will allow for the chance to “help our customers solve their biggest pain points through content-driven technology solutions”. 

Tax departments will specifically benefit from Deloitte Tax’s utilisation of ONESOURCE, a digital corporate tax platform used to enable tax compliance and reporting in 180 countries, to target global compliance, reporting and risk management for corporate and transactional taxes, the firm said. 

Digital transformation has been a major area of focus across all corners of the legal industry during the pandemic with lawyers and legal professionals increasingly relying on technology to do their jobs remotely.

Earlier this year, a survey conducted by EY Law and Harvard Law School revealed that fewer than a third of in-house counsel globally believe they have the technology they need to do their jobs effectively, with nearly all legal departments facing challenges to secure budgets for tech investment. 

The survey’s findings came a month after research by Thomson Reuters found that nearly a third of legal departments globally are upping their spend on technology, with 44% increasing their use of tech tools against a backdrop of frozen or declining overall budgets and rising workloads, both as a direct result of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

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