Taxman holds hands up over online filing

There is still a ‘long way to go’ for HM Revenue & Customs before its
online systems are up to scratch, chairman Paul Gray has admitted.

Speaking via an HMRC podcast, Gray said the department ‘had learned a number
of lessons’ following the filing deadline for PAYE returns last month.

‘There were examples of conflicting advice coming from different local
offices and we need to sort that out and be more consistent. Our search and
navigation facilities on our website still aren’t as good as they should be and
the process for when there was a need for people to resubmit returns wasn’t as
clear as it should have been,’ Gray said.

The HMRC chairman emphasised that, unlike retail banks and online retailers,
the taxman faced the difficult challenge of receiving millions of filings all at
once as taxpayers waited until the last minute to file.

‘I am not sure we are completely behind the game. We face particular
challenges around the peakiness of our processes.

‘Of necessity we have timescales and deadlines for when returns have to be
submitted and it is human nature to leave everything to the last minute,’ Gray

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