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.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Building Our Future - Touchdown Sites

The Daily Post reports that HMRC is looking at the possibility of axing its site at Wrexham Technology Park, with the 383-strong workforce potentially moving to a centralised office in Liverpool or Manchester.

Plaid Cymru MP Hywel Williams wrote a letter to HMRC last month asking questions about future plans for the service in Wales, and has now received a response detailing proposals for new regional centres.

As part of its ‘Building our Future’ programme, HMRC has earmarked Cardiff as the centralised base for Wales with services at Wrexham being moved to England. It says more detail will be available by the end of this year.

An HMRC spokesman said:
HMRC is seeking to transform our shape and size. We’re bringing our IT and infrastructure right up to date and want to draw most of our teams closer together in a smaller number of large, modern, adaptable regional centres. These centres will be supported by a UK-wide network of smaller specialist and touchdown sites.

We have already shared our early thinking that Cardiff is the most suitable location for a regional centre in Wales. As far as Wrexham is concerned the nearest regional centre is more likely to be Liverpool or Manchester depending upon where individuals live but no firm decisions have yet been made. 

Initial details were sent to MPs and Assembly Members in October last year and we will be continuing to keep MPs and Assembly Members informed as this work progresses.

Ultimately, the changes that we are making mean we will be able to deliver even more for our customers, for the taxpayer, and for the UK.
What pray tell is a "touchdown site"???


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  1. A touchdown site is when you work out of the office most of the week and only visit your office rarely as you are meeting clients most of the time.

    1. Thanks:)

      When I was with KPMG these were called shared desks, how very "old fashioned" of KPMG not to have used such a fancy buzzword for it:)

    2. A shared desk or hot desk is different, a shared desk is where you work when you are in that building doing a specific job if someone else is off, a touchdown is specifically when you will spend most of your time out of the office meeting people and may only come back to the office to do maybe update your leave or read emails etc.

      A shared desk implies when you are at work you work in your office but not necessarily at the same desk each time a touchdown you work out of the office.

  2. 'Touch down' = have laptop will travel, just an office with a spare desk so mobile staff can pop in to the most convenient HMRC building when they need to.

    It isn't just Wrexham, or even just Wales, that is effected by this issue, there will be plenty more offices going when they finalise the 14 strategic sites across the UK, this is only news and not other areas, because their MP is making noises.

  3. Q: What is a 'touchdown site'?
    A: More managerialist bullshit.

    There's no possibility that anything more than about a third of the people working in Wrexham could transfer to Liverpool or Manchester because of transport issues, childcare issues, health/mobility problems, etc. On top of that, a fair number have not long moved to Wrexham from the closed offices in Oswestry and Welshpool, and some of them have a thirty-odd mile commute each way as it is.

    What the wankers will do, of course, is to fiddle the 'Reasonable Daily Travel' rule so that they could force people either to move to sites where they have to travel 90 minutes each way to get to (and that's not working time, remember?) or resign. That way they not only get rid of committed and capable staff (giving their work to straight-off-the-streets call-centre jockeys), but they do it on the cheap as well.

    (PS. To Anonymous at 12:40: It isn't Wrexham's MPs who are making the fuss - the only noises they make tend to be the grunting kind that you'll find at any pig trough - it's the Plaid Cymru MP for Arfon, who has already seen what happened after HMRC closed Bangor a couple of years or so back).

  4. As above....Excom don't give a flying fook about's all a numbers game....which they fiddle...we are so far behind with our post figures that management are frantically thinking of any way of getting rid of the post bar burning it !!

    You can kiss your customer service's long dead...a disgrace !! As for the staff...we are an inconvenience.

  5. HMRC and the civil service as a whole seem to have forgotten they are a PUBLIC SERVICE and not a private company trying to make the best return to share holders. You are here for me, a taxpayer with no other choice but to pay you. If I can, as your IT system is rubbish and your telephone service is worse that any private company I deal with. An absolute bloody shambles.

    1. A little naive methinks, Hmrc's primary customer is HM government and its main goal is to achieve the budget cuts imposed by its political masters. Individual taxpayers are a long way down the list!

  6. Ken,
    The stated aim is for HMRC to move to around a mere 14 sites around the company with perhaps 1500 people in each . This is is supposed to produce economies of scale.The theory is that the general public will use "digital " to deal with us, and even investigations will be carried out "digitally" because businesses will share their records with us online.
    However to reach this nirvana excom realises that it cannot simply move everyone to the shiny new sites... so touch down sites are likely to be those that remain because as others have said it may be inconvenient to lose a particular line of business in an outlying site overnight. So in the interim it becomes a "touchdown " site which may be convenient for those peripatetic staff still left doing conventional visits.
    The supposed vision is to achieve by 2020..but of course there is the little matter of an election to sort out before these plans are ratified. I would guess that excom is assuming politicians of whatever colour want to cut costs above public service.

  7. HMRC chaos, tax not collected, bring it on. Trust HMRC to fuck up the fuck up !!

    1. You haven't seen the half of it yet. In years to come HMRC will be in more of a shambles than it is now with all this BOF crap happening. I only have a few years left and can't wait for that magic day when I can walk away for the last time.

  8. 13 March 2015 at 15:24: Inland Revenue has set fire to post in the past, admittedly about 20 years ago, but I assure you any post over 3 weeks old was once all burned on at least one occasion.

    Now a backlog of work is just an excuse to privatise as they are currently doing with the NHS.

    Look at how much of HMRC is aready privatised: First there was the setting up new employer PAYE schemes by NESI, that has been going on for about 15 years. Also there is the scanning of short tax returns at Netherton, that has been going for a long time too. Two years ago we had most of the banking part privatised to a company called BankTec, I don't think many tax payers realise that it is not HMRC who process most of the payments. Now we have the incoming mail digitally scanned by a private company. Not to mention, just coming in, we have the remote printing and dispatch out of letters out to tax payers, Have I forgotten anything?
    I don't give it long before the calls centres are in India

  9. why do you think HMRC are hiring in industrial shredders!!

    1. Nah, they just pay a private company to scan all the mail, then it sits ignored in cyber space because there are not enough staff to work it.

  10. Bringing our IT upto date ?

    Don't make me laugh.

    They have struggled to deploy Windows 7 at least 5 years after the product first became available.

    The Cloud CAFs are down more often than a tarts knickers

    Much of the legacy infrastructure is running on systems and software that are no longer in support with the suppliers.

    Most of the brave new IT world being promised is currently little more than vaporware that only exists in documents and Power Point presentations

    It does not really matter how often Ex Com arrange the Office Infrastructure Deck Chairs since the HMRC ship is finally going to sink in the next 5 years with all hands.