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Revenue and Customs

Volume 505: debated on Wednesday 10 February 2010

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if HM Revenue and Customs will publish its roadmap to show how component programmes contribute to the achievement of its strategic objectives, with reference to paragraph 3.6 of the National Audit Office's 2008 Report on HM Revenue and Customs Transformation Programme. (316115)

HM Revenue and Customs' (HMRC) Business Plan for 2009-10 was published on April 2009, and is available at:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/about/business-plan-vision.pdf

The Business Plan sets out how the Department intends to deliver its corporate Vision and to achieve the six strategic objectives that underpin it. It also sets out details of HMRC's major change and transformation programmes and explains how these contribute to the delivery of both the strategic objectives and other legislative and policy commitments.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether his Department has carried out research to establish the reasons for the reduced demand for face-to-face interviews at HM Revenue and Customs enquiry centres; and if he will make a statement. (316250)

HM Revenue and Customs' (HMRC) analysis suggests that a range of factors are leading to a reduction in customers using the face-to-face channel. These include:

increasing take-up of online filing services (around 75 per cent. of self assessment customers filed online this year); and

increasing use of HMRC’s website (with over 80 million hits in 2009-10 compared to around 44 million hits in 2006-07).

HMRC has supported this trend, for example by encouraging customers to renew their tax credits over the telephone and by pointing customers who are able to do so to use the telephone and online services as their first point of call for advice.