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We caught up with Stanislava to understand more about her vocational background, what first drew her to Unifiedpost Group and what a typical day looks like in the ever-changing world that is global tax and e-invoicing compliance.
Firstly, a bit about Stanislava and her compliance background
Stanislava’s background is all about finance and accounting. Before joining Unifiedpost Group, Stanislava worked for an outsourcing company in Bulgaria (her home country), where there was a strong focus on outsourcing the financial and accounting processes for different companies. After this role, Stanislava moved to Germany, where she has been working for the past 10 years in accounting and finance. She joined Unifiedpost Group in August 2020, based out of our Frankfurt office.
Stanislava’s linguistic background has enabled her to move all around Europe and have a variety of international roles. By attending a linguistic and international school from a young age, she is fluent in English, German, Spanish and of course her mother-tongue Bulgarian.
Stanislava, when did e-invoicing and e-reporting first come on your professional radar?
“While working for the outsourcing company in 2008, my role was within the Support Team as a result of being multilingual. This is where I first learned the basics of electronic invoicing.”
Stanislava adds, back in 2008 electronic invoicing (e-invoicing) was quite different compared to how it is perceived now. Then, e-invoicing was not regulated by any European country or its tax authority.
Stanislava explained, at the time, e-invoicing was very much at the demand of the customer. Large customers used electronic invoicing to digitalise their accounts receivable (AR) processes to improve efficiencies and ways of working, while their Accounts Payable (AP) counterparts used it to streamline internal processes to improve straight-through results from an invoice processing perspective. They required their suppliers to also follow suit, and only send electronic invoices in the business’ chosen format.
How did Stanislava’s expertise lead to a tax compliance role?
Having worked in invoicing for over 10 years, compliance comes naturally to Stanislava.
“I had great experience in finance and accounting, and although you may not realise it, compliance in finance and accounting is essentially tax compliance. You have rules to adhere to, certain data you must input, booking processes you have to follow and regulated mandates that are vital to understand.”
In 2020, Stanislava was headhunted for an international opportunity with Unifiedpost Group, an opportunity that allowed her to work on the opposite side of her previous accounting and finance roles.
No longer would she be the one inputting and ensuring the data complies, instead she would become the expert on compliance to help businesses understand the processes they need to follow.
How did this all start when she joined Unifiedpost Group?
“There was definitely a lot to learn. Previously I only had to follow the compliance rules, but now I had to understand a lot more about technology and how compliance and technology goes hand-in-hand”.
Compliance was natural to Stanislava, but technology was another thing. Learning the technological part of compliance meant understanding APIs (Application Programming Interface), AI (Artificial intelligence) and other technical terms that Stanislava had not previously come across.
Stanislava had the experience and expertise to understand the challenges businesses face when it comes to compliance and ensuring the right processes are followed. Now with her growing knowledge of compliance with technology, she is able to understand compliance regulations, and interpret them in a way that works for both customers and Unifiedpost Group’s solutions.
“My role definitely became more challenging with a lot more countries and technology in focus, but in parallel, it became much more interesting too! My role is very dynamic, as e-invoicing is never just e-invoicing. It always changes, it varies per country, and so does the technology too.”
With a vastly dynamic role, is there such a thing as a typical day?
Each morning, Stanislava looks through her compliance sources and with the help of her team notes relevant regulation changes for our business’ and our customers’ countries of focus. She then puts a plan of action forward, depending on the compliance details and the teams involved.
She works with a range of Unifiedpost Group teams. Ranging from Product Management to ensure our products are compliant, to the Sales Teams to help interpret changing regulations for customers, through to the Marketing Teams to aid creating the right information for potential customers and making sure it’s detailed in the right way.
“I also work with the business stakeholders, as in some ways, we are directed by the mandates and may have to shift a business focus if a certain country announces regulation changes. This may affect the business strategy, therefore I am always making sure everyone remains informed.”
What would you say are the most rewarding aspects of your day?
“Definitely working with our customers. I feel proud when I see that a customer has taken our information, understood it, and put the next relevant steps in place. Our customers are always very thankful of the services and solutions we implement, and this is definitely one of the biggest rewards of my role.”
As a service provider, it’s our responsibility at Unifiedpost Group to turn the complicated data and information into a way that is clear for the average business. Regulations mean different processes for different businesses, depending on their size, location and business scope. It is our job to ensure each business understands the regulations so that we’re able to put the changes in place with as little disruption to the business as possible.
How do you see your role changing between now and one year?
“The regulations are hitting Europe at a fast rate. So it’s crucial our products and our customers are up-to-date and compliant.”
Stanislava explains, “compliance in general, not just tax compliance, is evolving as well. Tax compliance goes hand-in-hand with payments and identity compliances. The world of e-invoicing, e-payments and e-identify is moving at a fast rate - three areas which become more and more dependent on each other and which businesses should start paying attention to”.
Paying attention with Unifiedpost Group
Stanislava is one of the many e-invoicing and e-reporting experts at Unifiedpost Group. We are currently tax compliant in over 60 countries around the globe because of team members such as Stanislava who ensure our solutions and products meet the needs of our customers and their tax authorities.
We pay attention, so that you can understand the regulations without needing to interpret the complicated information for yourself. To ensure you have the information you need sign-up to our tax compliance monthly newsletter, and follow us on LinkedIn for even more regular updates.