AvaTax - Turning Complexity to Simplicity. Filing sales tax, by state, by month, quarter, and annually was a complex process, time consuming, and prone to human error. We use both AvaTax and the Exemption Certificate Management System (ECMS). The sales tax is now added at the sales order level, and helps us communicate to the customer what they can expect to pay for sales tax. If the customer is exempt, the ECMS looks for an active certificate on file. It helps us alert the customer when the certificate is going to expire, and gives them a tool for updating their information. With the number of states that we file in, along with the complex rules and risk of penalties and fines for incorrect filings, we have peace of mind by having AvaTax as our solution.
We have been using Avalara for our sales tax needs for over 8 years now. The SuiteApp is extremely simply to install and even easier to update providing us with the latest version within a couple minutes at most. We have multiple locations around the US and this software helps insure that we are charging and paying the correct sales tax percentages on all of our transactions nation wide. It also helps us verify and log customer's tax ID numbers which is extremely useful. I would highly recommend Avalara to any NetSuite user.
Avalara is an extremely powerful tax compliance tool. We file sales tax returns in over 35 jurisdictions and Avalara integrates seamlessly into NetSuite to make the compliance process very efficient and manageable. I can't imagine trying to manage the monthly sales tax reporting process without it.
I think it's important to give fair and impartial reviews in the hope that truly good feedback can illicit change for the good. In my organization we take customer service as the lifeblood of the continuation of our company, without it we will lose customers forever. We are a online e-tailer of women's beauty products. We sell strictly online B2C through our website. We also sell through Amazon, not because we want to, but because we have to, you can't ignore the gorilla. We have a Sales tax Nexus in Three States, AZ, CO, IA, and within CO we have a Nexus presence in Two different counties. Sales tax in CO is more complex and thus we have some complications related to CO I will go into further detail in this review. Our structure is not overly complex from a Nexus standpoint but for Review purposes it's important to understand. One thing that complicated the CO setup was the timing of the State of CO granting us Nexus and the installation/setup of Avalara into Netsuite. Prior to deciding to use Avlara we had applied for our second location Nexus with the State of CO, and thus because of the application we had to start collecting Sales tax in October. However, because they had not issued our location number we couldn't complete the setup in Avalara or do the reporting until we had the state issued number. We have been using Avalara for 9 months now and this review takes into account all of that history. Recommendations: 1. Start using Avalara at the beginning of the year 1/1 (best case scenario for certain Sales tax reporting purposes), or at least convert at the beginning of a quarter (second best scenario) you will still have to work to do the correct annual filing in some states. 2. Try using their paid setup experts, I did not and I'm left wandering if it would have saved me tons of time, headaches and frustration for not getting it right the first time. 3. Really, truly, thoroughly test for every conceivable scenario, refund, crazy thought you have ever encountered with your customers to see how to handle that in the system before going live. 4. Understand you will have problems with the Amazon/Netsuite/Avalara rates. The Good: Five Stars ***** 1. There are several reasons why my overall rating is a four based upon the overall experience but the Good far outweighs the bad. The Avatax software engine does it's job very well when it comes to accuracy of rates. I can only speak to my experience and the state of CO has it's own challenges. The main reason we chose Avalara was because of the ability to integrate with Netsuite and solve the issues related to our county specific location Nexus. The Avatax engine has the ability to geographically locate our customers and returns the latest up to date tax rates for that customer address. It is very precise and accurate and that is what I strive for. 2. The Avatax admin console is a very good site and is easy to maneuver around and provides easy access to transactions. The reporting is extremely good and you can slice and dice information in so many ways. I also really like the ability to download the full data-set of transactions in CSV format if you ever wanted to or need to. 3. Customer Service Representatives, I am giving them a five star rating here for their CSR's in relation to the friendliness, courtesy, and responsiveness when you call. I have spoken with or interacted with probably 15 - 20 different company representatives and they all genuinely care about trying to help solve your problems. They are always very nice to deal with and really work to get you answers. The Bad: *** 1. Customer Service Representatives, I am giving a three star rating here because I have dealt with so many customer service representatives and they all have their own area of expertise. I have been struggling to get reporting completed for my Second CO location since October. Almost all of my CSR interactions have been related to the setup and reporting for this second location.
With our annual transactions exceeding 100k, we can focus on expanding our business instead of taxation. A great tool to keep us current with ever changing tax rates and it is done automatically.
We have been using Avalara and NetSuite since 2009. Using Avalara has saved us so much time and has helped us feel confident that our tax rates are accurate and up-to-date. I have no worries we are in compliance with every state. We were audited by the State of California last year and passed with no exceptions.
Avalara has been wonderful to work with and has been a great addition to NetSuite. Avalara can get the detail and provides great user reports. Ava Cert is also a wonderful program to help track the sales tax exempt certificates. We just went through a Minnesota state sales tax audit and it was nice for Avalara to back up the NetSuite information. I would recommend using the two together.
The investment in Avalara pays for itself. It was the best decision to have Avalara handle our sales tax calculations and filing as it allows my team to focus more effort on running and growing our business day to day. We could never assess, file, and remit sales tax in 41 states without the sales tax compliance and automation Avalara provides.