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.

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Hotseat III - HMRC Backpedals

Hotseat 2

I am advised by a loyal reader that HMRC's Hotseat Question 23 briefly disappeared from the HMRC intranet, only to reappear with this addendum.

Could that sound we hear be the sound of furious backpedalling from HMRC "management"?

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. Sir.

    I read the clarification as to what Mr Lamey means when he talks of “engagement” with some interest. He appears to have two different meanings for the same word and, whilst this is not uncommon in modern English, it does cause confusion in cases where context does not clarify meaning.

    With this in mind perhaps I may post a possible solution on the off-chance that Mr Lamey reads it.

    Where “engagement” relates to engagement as in; “Sweet Mother of God! I didn’t think that the engagement figures could possibly get any worse.” Then perhaps he may consider replacing it with the term: “Staff engagement”.

    Where “engagement” relates to engagement as in; “If those motherless sods keep complaining I’ll close their offices and they can shove their failure to engage up their a*$£s.” then perhaps he may consider replacing it with the phrase: “Agree with me completely”.

    Happy to help.

  2. 10:36, My partner who works for HMRC read this on the Intranet and their take on it matches you fully.

    I think it is very clear that the management are not capable of engaging with staff and that is a reflection on them and not the staff below them.

  3. So (lame brain) Lamey strikes again! You couldnt make this suff up, and if you you would accused of hyperbole.
    Of course the twat was making threats, he just thought he had a tame audience who could be cowed into 'thinking again' when next years staff survey comes round.
    HMRC and one or two other public authorities have been placed on 'special measures' by the Cabinet Office. I wonder if like a school that comes into this category and fails to improve, and is subsequently closed down, will happen to this benighted pile of shit called ExCom. One can only hope and pray it is so.

  4. You would think that all of a sudden that the solution to the HMRC mess is for “open and honest conversation” for people to engage in communication with Management.

    The mess didn't start last week with Mr Lameys bolt of lightening idea. Its been going on since 2005.
    As an AA, along with other junior grades in our office we raised concerns, right from the start. Concerns over the service to the tax payer, micro and aggressive management, favoritism, development, a sudden increase in people phoning in sick resulting in objectives not being reached.
    Some of the things that went on were beyond belief.
    But rather than engagement from people, who no disrespect to them, for the grades they were at, couldn’t spell Engagement and Openness. A dummies meeting ensued. HMRC never engaged with anyone. They went outside to talk to others, or spoke among themselves at Senior management courses.
    Myself and several others over the space of two years managed to get out of the place all together.

  5. 10:53 The special measures analogy is very appropriate for HMRC. As I have pointed out on another thread the department will live or die with the RTI PAYE system particularly as this is fundamental to wider benefit reform with the implementation of UTC). If that proves to be an administrative fiasco or suffers massive overruns then they are finished. Given that the new system will have to process 300,000,000 employee records a year rather than the current 25,000,000 then the omens are not good. Failure will almost certainly mean HMRC being smashed back into its component parts

  6. Can't wait for the dissolution of HMRC trouble is the crap excom and scs wallahs will escape with huge pay-offs and inflated pensions while those left at the bottom will suffer.

    And as for sorting out the current and future mess that any inland revenue and customs & excise systems will have to contend with heaven help us.

    Its about time something happened, I would love to know what lead to HMRC being placed on "special measures" and what they are?!
    Anyone able to enlighten us?

  7. Touch, pause, engage!
    That's what the referee says prior to the 2 sides scrums engaging during a rugby match.
    Engagement in la la land or hmrc runs to 2 options:-
    1. Management dictate (manage) the business and fail to heed the feedback from the front line because it doesn't fit the "plan", "bigger picture" or "pile of crap" that they are dumping on the staff constantly, or,
    2. They "engage" via pacesetter which as everyone except SCS/Excom and above agrees is simply not happening and just go through the motions ignoring reality.
    C'mon you glorious 103rds, who are we? who are we?

  8. Anyone who feels the need to engage in a more personal way with a government mong,here is a link to a list of email addresses for everyone from cameron down to the idiot in charge of your local council.
    The other lists on that website are also good for getting private businesses to listen and sort out problems/complaints when you get nowhere with the call centre idiots.

  9. Anonymous at 19.14.

    The call centre staff are not idiots. They are people needing a job, who have no experience of working in a tax environment, who are recruited by HMRC & given scant training, made to follow set instructions (one size fits all) are timed on all calls, timed and restricted on loo breaks and have a red light come on to alert their supervisor if the phone is off the hook too long before calls and take a lot of flack & abuse for cock ups that have not caused. They are far from idiots, I admire them, not sure I could do it, could you?

  10. I think they were referring to call centre workers in general. Not specifically HMRC. They were wrong about them being idiots but they weren't talking about HMRC.

  11. I think they were referring to call centre workers in general. Not specifically HMRC. They were wrong about them being idiots but they weren't talking about HMRC.

    Well this whole blog and conversation is about HMRC, are they posting in the wrong forum then?

  12. Watch out, there are a number of posts which are deliberate attempts to send blogs off course.
    Its been happening for a while now but they are not subtle enough to work consistently.

  13. I'd like to engage my foot with Lameys backside

  14. 12:43 refers to 'special measures' as an analogy.
    It is not just an analogy it is real, though unpublisised by any of the public authorities who are subject to it (for obvious reason)and the Cabinet Office who put it in place (in case it goes wrong and their 'measures' dont work, they have plausible deniability).
    The measures have resulted in all the crap 'tick box' initiatives to improve staff engagement (the main criteria being 'assessed' by the Cabinet Office).
    Lame brain Lamey's speech to the troops was but an example of how directors have been instructed to 'get out and meet the workers, listen to their concerns, and then pretend to instigate changes for improvement. It appears from Lamey's gaff he was not quite on message and probably got his nuckles rapped by the pantomime dame. O well, role on retirement!

  15. Its been happening for a while now but they are not subtle enough to work consistently.

    Like most of HMRC's attempts to use IT.

  16. Still like to know what are these special measures.
    For example, does LGD have to log-off IT for a loo break?
    Is that dastardly part-timer still on the books?
    Does hairnet have to pass everything before the cabinet before he is allowed to open his ar@e and put his foot in it?

  17. I should add to the general tone of disquiet here. Something is definitely going on at HMRC behind the scenes. There has been a marked difference in attitude of the SCS crowd that is not being matched by the muppets at G6/G7 and SO levels. (HOs are by and large a complete waste of space anyway).

    There is a capability review going on of SCS and some G6/G7s that should be concluded by June. I for one am expecting a lot of shuffling of the deckchairs on the HMS HMRC (I know, it sounds awful) as it heads towards the iceberg.

    I think Ken should write a blog on the capability review. There seem to be people here "in the know".

    I work in Personal Tax and we have lost (I weep, I really do), Bernadette Kenny and Simon Smith.. I can not believe it will be the end of the matter there. Personal Tax is where most of the bigger problems are, for those who do not know.

  18. Eagerly awaiting developments
    Rearranging the deckchairs didn't work after the Tit hit the iceberg
    so shuffling this lot around is only going to make a bad situation worse
    The Glorious 103rd have management that will stay until they are forced to depart wherever they are now or when the deckchairs have been restacked
    Trouble is the UK's tax is disappearing quicker than ever into a growing black hole
    How can you have a capability review for the incapable?