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.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

HMRC's Digital Journey

HMRC has published Digital Strategy: 2014:
"Every customer in the UK will have their own personalised digital tax account, so we can help make it simpler, quicker and easier to pay the right tax at the right time. 

This will have big implications for our staff, as well as our customers, involving changes to the types of job we will be doing and the skills we will need."
Moving on:
"Our ‘exemplar’ digital projects for individuals have already been launched:

  • PAYE for Employees – making it easier for customers to tell us about changes that affect their tax code
  • Digital Self-Assessment – making Self-Assessment filing a completely digital process"
Beyond 2018 most interaction with "customers" will be automated through digital self-service, and data will be collected and analysed over short periods (e.g. daily or hourly); enabling near real time responses to change.

HMRC states that it is building a new digital platform with a common infrastructure that links existing and new systems. The objective is to be more consistent and responsive. The platform will be secure, reliable, flexible and scalable. HMRC wish to manage customer contact flexibly through a range of communication channels including phone, secure messaging and webchat.
"To ensure that no one is excluded from our digital services, we will provide extra support to customers who need it through our assisted digital and inclusion services."
HMRC will recruit new staff; ranging from experienced specialists to talented graduates and apprentices and form flexible multi-disciplined teams, located together.
"This is our digital journey."

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. Clicked on the link, what a mistake.
    If you detest the reference to taxpayers as customers you are likely to blow a fuse or two, was going to count the number of references to customer but gave up!
    Given the IT track record of HMRC this Digital Strategy as promised is going to be a difficult task to gain momentum. RTI should have given enough warning but this latest promise is sounding more like a political conference speech of empty promises and soundbites.
    A search around the edges gives "cross-functional digital service delivery teams", "customer relationship management", "customer journeys", "joined up cross-government authentication", and then the real issues - transforming (beyond 2018) mentions funding based on iterative business cases, enabling test and learn approaches to delivery. Used to be called try it and see if it works! (it's last bit of 3rd section under Governance and funding) look up iterative business cases and see the new Lean methodology unravel it's mysteries before your very eyes.
    Or better still, don't bother!

    1. There were plenty of warning signs prior to RTI such as NTC, NPS & caseflow to name just a few

    2. A search around the edges gives "cross-functional digital service delivery teams", "customer relationship management", "customer journeys", "joined up cross-government authentication" and we can all see how well the recent DVLA forcing everyone to renew their tax disc online went - and that was only for those whose discs ran out in September!

  2. They should try to get Outlook working properly before embarking on a digital revolution. The Digital Strategy is a pseudo high tech way of replacing as many staff as possible with machines. At the moment, if they found us all jobs, we'd probably all leave willingly, and good riddance. Somehow, I don't think that's the plan.

  3. Reading between the lines it would appear that HMRC are trying to develop its internal IT resources to replace those supplied by external suppliers. To me this sounds suspiciously like the creation of something akin to the the Information Technology Office (previously M3) that used to handle the Inland Revenues IT systems before it was privatised and sold off to EDS in 1994. The question is will they bring back Steve Matheson to run it.

    1. Steve Matheson. There's a name from the past! Gave an interview to the FT in 97 or so telling everyone how many times he had put the phone down on headhunters. Strange interview because aside from his own prospects there wasn't any other reason for it unless he wanted the Chairman's job which he didn't get. It seems that he has vanished off the face of the earth since he retired from Inland Revenue in 2000, so do not count upon his return.

  4. I cam see it now. Taxpayer no longer has a company car in March 2019. "Oh I don't have that car or the fuel any more" *delete*, *removed from tax code automatically because there are only 10 staff left dealing PAYE in the entire country*,*gets tax bill for car he deleted*,*fumes at non-existent staff for own mistake*.

    1. That's exactly what is intended !