HMRC Is Shite

HMRC Is Shite
Dedicated to the taxpayers of Britain, and the employees of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC), who have to endure the monumental shambles that is HMRC.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Close To Failing


Andrew Tyrie, Chairman of the Treasury Select Committee, issued a warning last week that will ring true to many who visit this site; namely that HMRC is close to failing.

He is quoted by the Press Association as saying that HMRC "in some areas is close to being a failing institution", and noting that there is "absolutely no point" making cuts if it led to increased costs for business.

He quoted written evidence from the Chartered Institute of Taxation:

"Ten years ago the Inland Revenue had the reputation of being one of the best-run departments in Whitehall. Today HMRC's reputation is in tatters as one disaster follows another."

Mr Tyrie warned:

"HMRC will become dysfunctional unless action is taken to bring to an end the string of disasters that have befallen it."

Regarding the ongoing restructuring within HMRC, he said:

"Can that reorganisation now be completed while cutting so many more staff?

I hope it will but you have to say it could be a triumph of hope over experience if you look at other Whitehall departments and their reorganisations

It sounds as though the politicians have all but given up on HMRC. This of course is not encouraging for either the staff (who are also taxpayers) and taxpayers who are not staff.

As I have noted before, the internal chaos within HMRC is a product of:

- Political interference

- An excessively complex and unwieldy tax system, created by politicians

- A botched merger, imposed on it by Brown

- Inept and incompetent senior management, appointed by politicians

It is the politicians that have created this mess, and it is up to the politicians to resolve it (instead of acting as Pontius Pilate and trying to wash their hands of it).

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. HMRC will become dysfunctional unless action is taken to bring to an end the string of disasters that have befallen it.

    WRONG tense - HAS BECOME!

  2. Sorting out the mess in HMRC is no different to trying to organise a rubbish tip which is quite absurd.

    Solution? De-merge, new management, light a match and have a funeral?

  3. If the current situation equates to "failing" in his eyes where will it be when it gets to "failed"?

    The only other point I feel the need to comment on is:

    "- Inept and incompetent senior management, appointed by politicians"

    I think the "Inept and incompetent" bit relates to most levels of management and in some cases frontline staff as well.

  4. Don't forget to mention all the vultures who have grown fat feeding on the carcass of what were once two of the best run departments in the British government. The management consultants, particularly Mckinsey, who came up with HMRC incomprehensible new business organisation, and the IT outsourcers who have produced the software that seems to have been specifically designed to ensure that it failed from day one.

  5. Agree with above.

    I asked a visiting Senior manager once at a team meeting about the cost of consultancy over recent years and the atmosphere turned to ice. It was like who does he think he is. But I asked it becuase I knew the answer.
    Needless to say, there would be no further development for me in the section, and any challenging tasks I was responsible for, were soon removed from my in tray.
    They just want machines and vegatables to perform the mind numbing tasks rather than people who have incentive and imagination.

  6. 7 March 2011 22:56, you have a good point but your point also reflects on HMRC management.

    Consultants and software companies are used regularly by many organisations but they do not all end up with the same results HMRC does by using them.

  7. @ 08:26

    What you have stated in your comment speaks volumes about the dire situation over there. No wonder its failing if HMRC's own people are treated with contempt.

    Seems to me that its a matter of time before the HMRC dictatorship is served justice. People are rising everywhere (including here)

    Stay strong and stand firm people. Their time will come.

  8. Stay strong and stand firm people. Their time will come.

    Don't hold your breath.

  9. The root cause of all these problems is that the old Inland Revenue and Customs departments were merged into HMRC not to improve customer service but to reduce headcount and save money.

    Faced with a 30% cut in processing staff HMRC signed up to the Cult of Pacesetter flogged by the snake oil salesmen at McKinsey as a way of de-skilling, micro-managing and bullying staff into working harder so the gutless wonders at ExCom could assure Gordon Brown that HMRC could still do the same volume of work with the staff they had left.

    And the rest is history...but if you think its been bad before, just wait until 2014 when another 10,000 FTE posts will have gone.