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HMRC announces £45m to improve customer service

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angry-Homer-phoneHMRC has announced today that it is allocating £45m to improve customer service, as it released statistics  indicating a prolonged decline in the quality of its call handling.

The allocation will pay for around 3,000 additional staff to join customer service teams, alongside around 2,000 staff who are being moved over from other parts of HMRC to help with the tax credits deadline and letters and forms.

HMRC stats show that the Revenue received more than 64 million calls between February, 2014 and March 2015. The volume noticeably peaked around key dates such as 31 January for self-assessment, and the 31 July tax credit renewal deadline.

January 2015 saw only 65.4% calls answered, well short of the HMRC’s 80% target. The figures show that in some months as many as one in three customers could not get through.

In a statement, Lin Homer of HMRC said, “Despite our best efforts, our call performance hasn’t been up to scratch and we apologise to all those customers who have struggled to get through to us.

“Good customer service is an absolute priority for HMRC. We set ourselves the target to answer 80 per cent of calls, to provide a more consistent level of service across the year and to reduce peaks and troughs in service levels between busy and quieter times.”

Homer also added that HMRC have invested in new telephone equipment, which will allow them to “switch calls to many more offices, not just take them in contact centres, so more of our staff can help customers at the busiest times”.

 

(From AccountingWeb, 26 June 2015)

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