We caught up with Tax Trainer at TaxBanter Robyn Jacobson, CTA at the 34th National Convention.
With more than 25 years in the tax profession, Robyn has a public practice background in tax consulting and compliance, audit, superannuation and litigation support. She has been a professional tax trainer for more than 21 years.
“I'm very passionate about tax,” she says.
“I still love the challenge of taking this highly technical material and breaking it down into understandable information.”
Tax is constantly changing. More than ever, practitioners are relying on trainers like Robyn to explain the changes and understand the implications for their clients.
“The demands on practitioners today are increasingly more difficult,” she says.
“The rate of technological change, the products available. Even today the ATO's talking to us about ATO online services and this is going to be a new way that practitioners will interact with the tax office.
“So constant demands on practitioners having to keep abreast of it.
“You've got to look around. You've got to be aware.
“You need to know what's right for you and try different systems, but the best thing is to talk to people and get information to make the right decisions for your practice,” she explains.
Advice for new practitioners
For anyone joining the profession, Robyn would suggest two things.
“One is access good technical resources,” she says.
“Now whether that be online, webinars, face-to-face training, attending conferences, having access to good written materials or resources, very, very important.
“The second thing I would suggest is that they build good networks and there are so many different ways you can do this.
“Conferences is the obvious one but there's an awful lot of opportunity that can be gained by getting involved in the profession and in The Tax Institute,” she continues.
Membership: yields so much more in return
Robyn says, “I'm on a number of The Tax Institute’s committees and as much as I give time and hours and effort to those committees, I've always felt I got much more back in return.”
“The opportunities it creates by expanding your network and meeting new people, you never know where it's going to lead.
“I think there can be much gained for new people joining our profession to look into some of these committees.”
Robyn says being a member has been integral to her career.
“The Tax Institute has been a really important part of my career,” she says.
“For many years I have been involved in committees. I have also been involved in consultations.
“I've represented The Tax Institute at Treasury and ATO consultations and I've been a regular speaker at events over the years.
“So, for anyone who is thinking of putting their hand and getting involved, I'd say it's a wonderful opportunity.”
The Tax Institute is dedicated to supporting the career progression of women in the tax, accounting and legal professions. As the leading forum for Australia’s tax community, we are committed to representing our 12,000 members and the continuous improvement of the tax system. Find out more about the benefits membership of The Tax Institute can deliver for your role