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What is a VAT manager?

VAT manager jobs are crucial for businesses as they can really impact their overall bottom line. We look at the role in more detail.

What does the role entail?

In a nutshell, a VAT manager provides advice to their business on general VAT liabilities, specifically on the VAT implications of any transactions they are undertaking.

What are the main responsibilities?

The job varies depending on organisation but some typical responsibilities include:

  • Delivering VAT reporting, ensuring VAT compliance and identifying risk.
  • Minimising VAT liabilities and compliance issues.
  • Identifying potential tax planning opportunities.
  • Ensure all month end processes are actioned on a timely basis.
  • Liaise with and manage the working relationship with HM Revenue & Customs during routine audits and ad hoc enquiries.
  • Maximise efficiencies in working and reporting systems to reduce the VAT/Duty liabilities where possible within the legislative framework.
  • Inputting into the group’s tax strategy.
  • Managing the relationship with the HMRC and assisting them with any enquiries.


What key skills will I need?

Employers generally look for a finance qualification so you’ll need to be a CTA, ACA or ACCA (or equivalent). Depending on the level you’re being hired at, you will most likely need some experience of VAT certainly in the UK and more often than not, in Europe too. Specifically, you’ll need expertise in Intrastat and Customs Duty.

A VAT Manager provides advice to their business on general VAT liabilities and on the VAT implications of any transactions they are undertaking.

From a systems perspective, most employers will look for someone who is an Excel expert. An excellent attention to detail is imperative.

What type of personality will I need?

VAT manager jobs suit a ‘people person’. On a day-to-day basis, you’ll receive lots of calls and emails from colleagues asking for your guidance. So you’ll need to be comfortable providing advice on complex issues to people who do not have the same understanding as you.

Gaining their respect quickly is crucial so you’ll also need to be confident and have some gravitas about you. An interest in VAT will also be advantageous as it is ever changing and you’ll need to stay on top of any developments.

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