Deloitte is the largest professional services firm in the US and Deloitte subsidiaries offer services in audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management, tax and related services to clients. Much of that work takes place within the context of heavily regulated environments where adherence to rules and policies is essential. Deloitte takes this responsibility seriously and invests significantly to ensure it delivers services with the highest levels of integrity possible. “What’s in a name?” was never a more valid question for a professional services organization where failure to adhere to rules and regulations could have severe consequences.
One area of compliance that impacts the more than 70,000 Deloitte professionals is the requirement to ensure the accuracy of tax jurisdiction information entered on time and expense transactions. With millions of time and expense transactions processed every year, the task of auditing and validating those tax jurisdictions was daunting for Deloitte’s Policy and Compliance team. To ensure the accuracy of tax jurisdictions reported by Deloitte professionals, the Policy and Compliance team built a business process many years ago to compare all time transactions for a professional against hotel stays for the same period by the individual, looking for cases where the tax jurisdictions between the two did not align. In the cases of a mismatch, a professional would be notified and asked to validate and then correct their time or expense. The audit process was extremely time-consuming and in recent years grew to a point where the Policy and Compliance team was extremely challenged to audit 100% of the transaction volume. For example, auditing a two week period of time and expense transactions would take an individual in the Policy and Compliance team 4 to 5 business days.
This critical business process presented an ideal scenario for the Analytics and Reporting Studio team within Deloitte’s Information Technology Services organization to demonstrate the value of using the SAP HANA platform. Over the course of a few weeks, the team built the processes to replicate hundreds of millions of time and expense transactions to the SAP HANA database and built calculation views to execute the business logic necessary to identify the tax jurisdiction mismatches. The team also made significant enhancements in the business logic that were simply not feasible in the original process. For example, the team implemented logic that would ignore false positives where a professional would work all day in one tax jurisdiction but then travel to a new tax jurisdiction at the end of the day and get a hotel room for the evening. Once the data acquisition and data modeling work was completed in SAP HANA, the team built the front-end of the application using SAP Business Objects Crystal Reports.
The result of the effort was the creation of the Tax Jurisdiction Compliance application that can now validate two weeks of time and expense transactions for the entire firm in real-time and ensure 100% validation of all time and expense transactions on a regular basis. There was obviously significant cost savings thru the implementation of this application but that’s a fraction of the value returned thru the reduction of risk and regulatory liability and the consequences of failure to meet compliance requirements.
Note: As used in this document, “Deloitte” means Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Please see www.deloitte.com/us/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting.