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Departmental Telephone Services

Volume 468: debated on Thursday 29 November 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what information his Department collects and monitors in relation to the telephone contact centres for which his Department is responsible; (166542)

(2) which telephone contact centres are the responsibility of his Department; what mechanisms are in place to monitor their effectiveness; and how many people have been employed in each of those centres in each year since they were established.

HMRC currently operates 21 contact centres through its centrally managed customer contact directorate. These handle the bulk of inbound customer initiated telephone calls. Additionally there remain a number of helplines and back office telephony services that are operated outside of this contact centre network.

The effectiveness of the HMRC contact centre operations is monitored through standard departmental management arrangements, through customer satisfaction surveys, through membership of the industry-wide Contact Centre Association and by active participation in the recently established Contact Council, set up following publication of Sir David Varney's report: “Service Transformation: a Better Service For Citizens and Businesses, a Better Deal for Taxpayers” published alongside the 2006 pre-Budget report and available at

With regard to staff numbers, I would refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 26 July 2007, Official Report, column 1453W.

HMRC collects and monitors a wide range of information in respect of its contact centre operations including call volumes, caller demand, service levels achieved and customer satisfaction survey results.