Tax managers are responsible for creating and implementing taxation strategies for their clients. They support businesses and individuals to ensure the accuracy of tax responsibilities as well as compliance with all applicable tax laws.
The Online Master of Science in Taxation degree from Northeastern University’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business can prepare working professionals for the next stage of their career as a tax specialist, including work as a tax manager.
There are several career paths available to professionals interested in tax management, each with similar obligations but varying scopes of responsibility. Some managers work for a single company, while others may work as consultants, helping many businesses and individuals. In addition, managers may specialize in specific types of taxes, including property and business taxes.
Career path: In-house tax management
In-house tax managers are typically senior leaders within a company. They may be responsible for achieving the organization’s tax objectives. In addition, they may support several other clients in a consulting role.
Tax managers will prepare tax documents, conduct audits to ensure the accuracy of their information, and work with company stakeholders to solve complex tax-related problems. For instance, a senior tax manager will often work with the chief financial officer to make sure the company’s financial goals align with its tax responsibilities.
Key duties of an in-house tax manager include:
- Compliance: The tax manager must guarantee that the company complies with local, state, and federal tax regulations.
- Strategy: Working with company leaders, the tax manager will develop strategies to maximize profitability.
- Reporting: Tax managers generate reports that document the company’s tax obligations.
Career path: Tax consulting
Experienced tax professionals often go into business for themselves. As freelancers, they serve the needs of individual taxpayers as well as businesses not large enough to employ their own tax manager.
As consultants, tax managers are responsible for the same types of duties as in-house professionals. The main difference is that, in a freelance capacity, the tax manager has more authority and final decision-making powers. Their clients choose them for their established expertise.
Career path: International tax management
Taxation is a global concern for many businesses, and they need highly skilled people to manage any risks that may arise related to tax policy in multiple countries.
International tax managers are employed by multinational corporations and public accounting firms to oversee and authenticate tax information on a global scale. They are generally in charge of ensuring the company is in compliance with tax regulations enforced by the international community. This is crucial for organizations that conduct business in multiple countries, as well as those that earn income from foreign investments or other corporate activities across borders.
Most international tax managers start their careers as accountants in one form or another. They tend to specialize in tax law and tax planning, but are generally familiar with the structure of modern corporations and global financial markets.
The defining characteristic of international tax managers is their worldwide focus—they may be specialists in the tax regulations of a single foreign country or broadly familiar with the most important international trade laws as they relate to the company in question.
Typical responsibilities of an international tax manager include:
- Overseeing compliance with tax regulation as it relates to specific business lines, products, or another concern of the organization
- Delivering value in terms of calculating accurate projections of tax liabilities, filing reports on time and within the requirements of the law, and other things that advance the firm’s interests
- Participating in year-end reporting and analysis of past projections, performance, and other metrics critical to successful tax planning
- Staying up-to-date on changes to international tax laws or accounting standards
- Advising stakeholders on strategic tax issues, emergent risks related to international tax regulations, and more
Before moving from general tax practice to a more specialized role in international taxation, achieving success as a tax manager should be a top priority for professionals who want to break into this career.
Building credibility, serving as a trusted advisor, embracing technology and innovation, enhancing technical and interpersonal skills, and building relationships with stakeholders can go a long way in smoothing the path to this next tax-based promotion.
Tax manager salaries
Tax manager compensation rates can vary depending on location and skill level. As professionals demonstrate their ability to add value, they can command higher wages.
According to PayScale, the senior tax managers earn between $95,000 and $169,000, with average compensation falling around $128,500.
Senior international tax managers earn between $111,000 and $196,000, with an average of approximately $154,000.
In-house positions typically offer cash bonuses, with some individuals earning an additional $40,000 in performance-based compensation. Some companies also offer profit-sharing opportunities.
Meanwhile, freelance tax consultants have the freedom to set their own rates. An experienced tax manager can charge $50 per hour or more for their services.
How an Online MST helps you become a tax manager
The Online Master of Science in Taxation program from Northeastern University’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business can work as a stepping stone to careers in domestic and international tax management.
The Online MST not only provides deep insights into essential tax concepts, but also offers the flexibility you need to succeed. Courses delivered online are ideal for working professionals who want to reach the next stage of their career.
An online master’s program gives you the freedom to access course materials from anywhere with an internet connection. This provides the flexibility to study and review lessons on your own time. In addition, you’ll have access to many networking opportunities with like-minded students and working professionals.
Check out the full curriculum and get started today on the next chapter in your tax career.