Avalara Review

Ensures customers with valid exemption certificates are not charged tax

How has it helped my organization?

Much less time has been spent on sales tax.

What is most valuable?

Avalara AvaTax:

  1. Automating the calculation of the tax charged on invoices. AvaTax interfaces with our accounting system, Workday. With AvaTax, we are confident that we are charging the correct tax.
  2. AvaTax files our returns. We usually do not have to do anything except to ensure the sales information is in by the deadline and enter "multiple points of use" credits.
  3. Record keeping: Avatax has all the returns that they filed available online, complete with back up detail, invoices, which clients had exemption certificate, etc.
  4. When we have filed VDAs, AvaTax allows us to calculate correct taxes even for periods before we began using it, such as in cases where errors (e.g., incorrect tax codes) were made.

Avalara CertCapture:

  1. Keeps electronic copies of the exemption certificates.
  2. Interfaces with AvaTax to ensure customers with valid exemption certificates are not charged tax(es).
  3. Warns of expiring certificates.

In addition to saving a lot of time in day-to-day operations and return filings, both these products can be very helpful in a sales tax audit.

What needs improvement?

Avalara does not yet have an automated way of handling "multiple points of use", at least the way we have it installed.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is excellent. However, some of the issues can be quite complicated. The first line of support personnel may not always know the answers (e.g., Chicago Lease Tax).

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Not applicable.

How was the initial setup?

I was not involved in the initial setup.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The products are worth considering, especially when doing business in a lot of states. Once it is functioning correctly, it can save a lot of time.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Not applicable.

What other advice do I have?

Pay close attention to detail. It can only give you good results if you put in the correct information both in setting up the system and providing the sales and exemption information (jurisdiction nexus type of tax, dates, etc.). Use their support as they are very helpful.

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

AvaTax; CertCapture
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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