THE COMPLEXITIES OF COMPLIANCE • 5 their invoices rubber stamped, but also from exactly what needs to be included for that to happen. For example, in one country it might be enough to show the name of a company and where it is based, while in another, the type of business also needs to be written clearly for an invoice to be deemed legal. Digital signatures also prompt different requirements. In some countries they are an absolute necessity, while in others they are a nice to have. The following pages discuss this in more detail, but below is an example. Information that must be included on a VAT invoice in the UK • Unique invoice number that follows on from the last invoice • Your business name and address • Your VAT number • Date • The tax point if this is different from the invoice date • Customer’s name or trading name, and address • Description of the goods or services • Total amount excluding VAT • Total amount of VAT • Price per item, excluding VAT • Quantity of each type of item • Rate of any discount per item • Rate of VAT charged per item – if an item is exempt or zero-rated make clear no VAT on these items Overcoming complexities According to The Accounts Payable Network’s white paper How Electronic Invoicing Networks Streamline Global Tax Compliance, paper-based invoice processes make it difficult, if not impossible, for businesses to ensure compliance with tax laws and other rules. It is easier to achieve compliance with electronic invoicing: invoice history and data fields are tracked; pre- configured workflows and assignment of duties ensure that employees adhere to approval policies; chain of custody is assured; audit information is readily accessible; there are controls for Sarbanes-Oxley and Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI/ DSS); and there are controls to preventinvoicesandotherdocuments from being discarded or destroyed ahead of deadlines set by regulators or auditors. Insum,e-invoicingtechnologyenables businesses to easily comply with the varying country-specific regulations, ensuring fines and sanctions can be avoided. In post-audit countries, we assist businesses in tracking and storing each and every invoice, while in clearance countries it is often a requirement to work with local entities so we partner with companies on the ground to get the job done right. As our clients are liable for any mistakes, we place a huge amount of importance on ensuring they put in place the appropriate procedures within their business and that these are properly implemented in practice. Acting globally, thinking locally As well as supporting large multinational companies to operate effectively in countries across the globe, Tungsten’s technology also offers support to smaller businesses, who are often acting as suppliers. One example of this is through Tungsten Network’s partnership with Payoneer to provide a global payment service. This removes the costs and complexity of being paid by global clients as it means payments from these companies becomes as easy as a local bank transfer, removing difficulties around how to get paid in different currencies. Hear it direct from the experts At Tungsten Network’s flagship industry networking event Insights, we brought together some of the leading figures in invoice management. To hear what they had to say on the thorny topic of compliance, put the following link into your browser: