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IRD focuses on 22 software fixes as staff morale remains in the pits

IRD focuses on 22 software fixes as staff morale remains in the pits

IRD works on system fixes, aiming to have them cleared by the end of the month

IRD's transformation hits some roadbumps.

IRD's transformation hits some roadbumps.

The Inland Revenue Department has identified 22 focus areas that needed fixes in its new tax administration system, but plans to have these addressed by the end of the month. 

Work on three areas has already been completed, according to answers to post budget questions asked by Parliament.

IRD went live with Release 3 of its Start software system on April 26, but bugs have since emerged, particularly in communications with tax agents and in the treatment of "look through companies" (LTCs) and qualifying companies, which get different tax treatment from ordinary companies.

IRD told Parliament the 71,203 LTCs had been correctly classified in the new Start system but 911 of them that had been revoked before 31 March 2019 had received partnership returns instead of company returns. 

The issue has now been fixed, IRD said.

IRD has set up a web page so tax agents can track progress in fixing issues and call wait times, here. When checked this morning, agent call wait times were "more than one hour and fifteen minutes".

Meanwhile, staff morale has remained in the pits since Reseller News revealed low morale through an official information request last year.

Staff engagement was rated just 27 per cent in 2017. A survey released in January put that at 31 per cent but an even more recent survey, from May, has it down again at 29 per cent.

Inland Revenue said the department is undergoing major change and with that comes uncertainty that can lower engagement levels. Senior staff were working hard to improve engagement.

Inland Revenue expects to shed around a third of its overall staff by the end of its transformation next year.



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