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, 27 June 2011

Morale Boosters

My thanks to a loyal reader who dropped me a note few days ago about an internal communications "initiative" that is apparently underway within HMRC.

It seems that HMRC leadership are having trouble understanding why the staff survey results are so bad (could it be that the upper echelons have, in the past, been fed a false picture about morale within the "glorious 103rd" by their front line management teams?).

Anyhoo, I am given to understand that groups (3 in at least one group) of directors are conducting site visits with the purpose of trying to convince staff that HMRC and the staff of HMRC are in safe hands.

During one hour of the visit 500 members of staff were taken away from their work to participate in a little quiz, and to listen to HMRC's Customer-centric (they actually used that phrase) propaganda. At the end of the meeting each staff member was given a sweet.

These visits are going to take place every 6 weeks or so.

All very nice, maybe.

However, this exercise seems to be missing the point of trying to understand why the survey results are so bad. Instead it appears to be trying to manipulate morale, in order to provide a less than dreadful result in the next survey.

Feel free to post your experiences/views of these visits, either in the comment box or directly to me.

Oh, and by the way folks, never accept sweets from strangers!

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. Have the staff that attended these meetings been seen since?

  2. "Look"
    For been such good little boys and girls you can have a sweetie.

    "Now get back to class and get on with your work.:)

  3. "a little quiz" and "given a sweetie"

    A stroke of genius from the 103rds upper echelons.

    HMRC is Shite? Not anymore it isnt! Woohoo.

  4. My morale is getting better already. Just the idea that one of the people responsible for this mess would come and speak to a group of hand picked staff to give them their "vision" is making me feel better.

    That and the fact that I'm on holiday today :)

  5. Just another arse-kissing exercise from some nomarks at the top!

  6. LOL a comedy farce rolled into one.
    Trouble is some of the staff are so gullible they will believe anything and the 103rd are shaking the trees to get as many people as possible in a feely good frame of mind.
    Every Directorship is trumpeting the good things it has done to right the wrongs of the past, say it once, say it twice, say it thrice and lo and behold it must be true.
    The sweetie thing might have worked with less cynical/downtrodden staff but putting the wrappers in empty printer paper boxes with tatty paper labels on was pure genius in the circumstances.
    The best bit was listening to them trying to convince the troops what a grand job HMRC is doing, even more LOL - "We collect £XBn tax" - yes you idiots thats the reason we exist, how much do you give away by default?
    There seems to be a touch of panic about things bubbling just under the surface, any more PR disasters and surely the edifice will tumble?
    Time for an enquiry shurely get someone involved with no political baggage and give them a broad remit.

  7. Didn't their mothers tell them to refrain from taking sweets from dodgy people.

  8. we didnt get a bloody sweet!!! all we got was two directors spending half an hour talking about there own career history then a few platitudes that they even understood what different parts of the department do. At least if they are out and about they cant be doing any more damage.

  9. Why is everything these morons do so patronising and belittling.
    God forbid they actually admit the departments moral is in such a mess through their mismanagement/ incompetence and policies of systematic staff persecution.
    Collecting billions in tax is nothing new - thats what the dept is supposed to do after all.
    The amount of time and money wasted on their hair brained schemes is scandalous.

    I,d like to see a pacesetter graph of what time & money is wasted on corporate gamesmanship which quite frankly just end up with them looking more and more out of touch with reallity.
    I dont think a mint humbug is going to get excom out of the freefall theyre in.

  10. Best way to improve morale would be to allow staff to do some kind of a 'supermarket sweep' exercise through some of the customs seized goods lockers.

    PS I'm joking!!!!! Aaaaah memories of Ali G indahouse...... "We is experts".

  11. Why this absurd belief that application of Pacesetter principles is a cure all?

    It speaks volumes that Excom and co have not got the will and ability to chuck this particular baby out with the bathwater, they don't understand the opportunity they are missing out on - most of the staff would raise a cheer if this actually happened and so would a fair few real managers.

  12. 19:47, a query;
    Who is actually looking for contraband at the frontier these days?
    There are no longer any Customs Officers as such, although SOCA and UKBA can obviously act as such, trouble is SOCA ain't really set up to deal with smugglers unless its drugs, and UKBA is so anal about immigrants that anything else is open house.
    The borders aew porous and not many care.

  13. @27 June 2011 20:09

    Good question.

    It's been a while since I travelled abroad. I came back from Dublin a few years back and was simply asked by an airport employee "have you just come off the Aer Lingus flight?" 'Yes' I answered. "Well come this way..." no immigration control/customs check.

    There doesn't seem to be a lot of interest from Customs in inspecting what arrives in peoples personal luggage - although I did witness a huge stuffed bear being sliced to pieces in the red channel one time when I came back from the US about 4 years back.

  14. Our office is scheduled for a visit in july - luckily I'm on holiday , as i've got quite a week stomach and too much bullshit makes me puke.

  15. Agree with Anonymous (27 June 2011 19:48) - they don't understand the opportunity they are missing out on to get rid of PaceSetter.

    Unfortunately as so much money has been spent on it, and as ExCom are the ones who've have been pushing it as the cure to all problems (inc. £205k pa Steve Lamey) then it's never going to happen. Not with the current lot in charge anyway...

  16. Our office is scheduled for a visit in August - unfortunately I shall have to miss it as I will be attending a funeral that day.