A moment I remember from the beginning of my trainee summer with Group Tax. It was new and exciting and it all seems a bit blurry looking back after these four months. Summer is almost over which makes me a bit sentimental for having to leave this place, and proud for having learned so much.
I spent the spring abroad without schedules or more than tiny responsibilities and jumping into this huge corporation made me remember how I enjoy challenging myself. I didn’t love waking up at 6 am but I loved riding the bike to work before the morning traffic (and the July’s heat) hit the hardest and leaving work with the feeling I’d accomplished something and that I was closer to my career goals whatever they may be.
Working in such an international environment made me realize how little I know and how I will never have the time to learn everything. With this comes the understanding of how important good relations with people around the world are and how much this field is about sharing the knowledge you have and getting advice from experts on their own field.
VAT and Transfer Pricing were the main areas I was engaged in during the summer and I am happy to say this might be just what I want to be doing when I grow up. On transfer pricing I learned a lot as I didn’t have much knowledge of it beforehand. It was a surprise for me how much work corporations have when following the compliance regulations. The requirements are getting stricter and transfer pricing is becoming one of the biggest issues for multinational corporations.
As an example of the many aspects of VAT, I learned the regulations have a lot to do with logistics and figuring out how to arrange transportation of goods in certain chain transactions is one of the things I was engaged in during my summer. This got me thinking about how I would save the world by becoming an OECD officer and changing the regulations so that both the corporations and the environment would benefit from it. Time will tell what I’ll become and I am not closing any doors just yet as I still have time, although my 25th birthday and the mid-50’s crisis are hiding just around the corner.
One of the important things I realized was that tax is not only something I have to thoroughly know myself but that I also need to be able to explain others how important these issues are and how they affect the whole business. Even with the “Trainee” on my e-mail signature I needed to convincingly advice people on what they should consider on the taxation point of view. Communication is the key. Because taxation is connected to everything.
This was my summer at the Head Office Tax Team and my first summer in Helsinki. Soon I’ll return to my studies having this amazing experience providing another perspective to the theoretical approach of writing a thesis at the university. I would like to wish you all an inspirational rest of the 2018 and challenge everyone to come to work every day as eager and open minded as a Summer Trainee!
Written by Tanja Väisänen, Trainee, Group tax