Editor in Chief (interim) AccountingWEB
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HMRC PAYE crisis poll surprise

28th Sep 2010
Editor in Chief (interim) AccountingWEB
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You surprised us! This week’s HMRC crisis poll came up with some interesting feedback. From the tenor of comments on the site during recent weeks we assumed there would be a landslide vote in favour of making Dave Hartnett and his senior colleagues walk the plank.

As expected, the “unfit for purpose” option has the biggest vote (27%). But as voting stands now, a small minority chose more conciliatory and constructive responses, ranging from letting the new NPS computer bed in and working with HMRC to improve its service (22%), to support for real-time PAYE information (16%), to a call for more investment (15%).

One-fifth (including me), felt that the PAYE reconciliation fiasco was yet another chapter in the department's long history of IT ineptitude. Not only does the tax system require radical simplification, the commercial and project management arrangements behind HMRC's IT infrastructure also need to be greatly improved.

I'll have to put my hand up here and acknowledge the slightly ambivalent results, with a relatively even spread of votes across all the options. Part of the reason is that we all encounter different aspects of the HMRC elephant at different times and often hold multiple opinions about the organisation and its various difficulties simultaneously.

As one member put it, “Please can I vote for all options as I think they are all statements of the truth!” That's becuase we formulated the different options around previous comments on AccountingWEB.

Since we don’t have the capability to support the single transferrable vote, we asked members to pick the option that most closely reflected their feelings at that time. The poll closed last Friday, but in a few months we'll come back and run it again to see if we can spot any improvement in agent-HMRC relations.

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By Gina Dyer
28th Sep 2010 14:44

Payroll professionals cast their votes

The Institute of Payroll Professionals ran the same poll among their members to see if the opinions of the accountancy world were different to those of payroll professionals.

There was a little more faith left in HMRC among the payroll professionals. Read the full results here.

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