Career focus: work as a tax advisor



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Tax advisors are the walking talking tax calculators of the accounting and finance world. They are the pros clients and individuals run to when it comes to figuring out exactly how much they need to pay.

They can either be based in a consultation role to advise clients, or they can be employed to calculate and file tax returns on their behalf.

Tax advisors generally set out by working for an accountancy or professional services company, which could include one of the big four – Deloitte, KPMG, PwC or Ernst & Young. HMRC also provides a way in with its graduate programme.


Tax advisor qualifications and salaries

Tax consultants lend a hand to businesses by helping them lay down strategies for complying with tax laws in corporate situations, like restructuring or merging. This is why expert tax advisors must have an intimate knowledge of the industry.

You can expect to earn an above average salary from the word go if you become a tax specialist. Graduates can earn around the £30,000 mark, which will increase after a few years’ experience and qualifications gained from the ICAEW or Chartered Institute of Taxation.

Once you’ve aced your exams and made it as a chartered tax advisor you could pull in anything from £50,000 upwards. Seasoned advisors who go on to become partners or start their own company stand to earn hundreds of thousands.


Magic weaved by tax advisors

Tax consultants also work with individuals to help them pay the right amount in order to not over or underpay. This could entail income tax arrangements, inheritance or savings and helping clients work out their capital gains tax, as well as helping with tax returns.

Businesses both large and small require the expertise of tax whizzes to help them work out how much they need to fork out in VAT, international and corporation tax.


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Develop your career skills

Whether you’re working for HMRC, for an accounting company or as an independent advisor, you’ll need to be at ease meeting clients, current with developments in the exciting world of tax and happy analysing and presenting data.

Working as a tax specialist will help you sharpen many abilities that are relevant not only to a finance career, but also sectors like law and consultancy.

These include dazzling maths skills, computing skills, ability to communicate and work well with others and handle large quantities of statistical data.

You could also gain exposure to working with one of the world’s leading professional services organisations, adding real gravitas to your CV.


Become a specialist tax expert

If you apply for a graduate job or training with an accounting and finance company you’ll be expected to have a solid degree under your belt and a hefty amount of UCAS points (e.g. a 2:1 and 300 points).

At some stage of your career, whether it’s at the start or after a few years, you’ll probably be given the chance to become a specialist in a certain area.

That could mean choosing to assist certain types of clients, such as financial companies, or on certain types of tax and business deals, like VAT, takeovers and mergers.


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