ADM Closes the Technology ‘GAAP’ to Drive Provision Excellence
The Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) tax team manages approximately 400 controlled foreign corporations in 150 countries. Their decentralized accounting team involved in U.S. GAAP provision comprised 180+ accountants worldwide—many with roles and experience outside of direct tax—and new accountants rotated in every quarter.
ADM performed their U.S. GAAP income tax provision using disparate tax software, consolidating huge volumes of data in Excel. With “very low technology utilization” and without integration across systems, ADM manually entered all data.
The core tax team spent further time:
- Training and managing accountants
- Collecting and consolidating data in different formats from many teams
- Rekeying info and updating numerous tabs in Excel templates
- Tracing and updating several systems and workbooks when amount errors were discovered
To improve the company’s provision process, ADM launched the Income Tax Accounting (ITA) Transformation Project to centralize income tax accounting activities, reduce human resource hours, and automate as many processes as possible.
- Data Exchange imports accounting info into Corptax
- BOTS automates ~40% of tax adjustments based on GAAP balance sheet
- Office loads manual tax adjustments that require more complex support documentation
- Office POV creates data analytics files that support SOX controls, reconciliations, and ad hoc management requests
- Provision posting workpapers execute NOLs utilization and VA entries in tax packages
- Packages and connectors load payments, refunds, and FX rate into the system
Provision is now fully turnkey. When ADM acquires a new legal entity, it’s included in the process and automatically executed.
With fast, easy access to data, the core team can “quickly react to an ever-changing future by making timely decisions that benefit the company.” Increased accuracy and dramatic strides in performance, transparency, and controls improve forecasting and planning analyses.
- 75% of provision is now centralized and automated, a process that previously took ~650 hours per quarter
- 20 provision experts produce the provision vs. 180 accountants balancing other responsibilities
- SOX controls now automatic vs. manual for all entities
- No more rekeying—amounts are imported once, consumed by all reports, and exported to build management reports
With a huge success behind them, ADM isn’t finished yet! They’re currently moving state provision into the Corptax system, automating return-to-provision, building an SAP interface to integrate Corptax-generated journal entries, and much more.