HMRC turns to universities for digital expertise

With the introduction of Making Tax Digital for VAT only three months away, HMRC is looking to recruit tax specialists with digital skills, along with data analysts and digital experts

The tax authority is working with universities and colleges to attract students who are studying towards a digital, IT or computing science qualification.

HMRC says that it already has systems that enable analysts to sort and sift billions of pieces of data to find discrepancies but need individuals who understand digital technology to make the most of it.

Applications for HMRC’s industrial placements will open in early 2019 with placements starting in September 2019.

There are 25 placements on offer in locations across the country such as Newcastle, Shipley, Telford, London, Southend and Worthing. The roles on offer include cyber analyst, software developer, business analyst and architect.

Each industrial placement will be employed for 9-12 months and earn a salary of £24,320 (National); £28,130 (London) pro rata.

HMRC’s 13 regional centre’s will also help to better its digital services, says the tax authority, through better use of technology and modernisation.

The Croydon regional centre opened in 2017 and the remaining 12 sites have all been secured.

The 13 sites are as follows:

  • Scotland – 1 Sibbald Walk, Edinburgh – due to open in 2020
  • Scotland – 1 Atlantic Square, Glasgow – phase 1 due to open in 2021, phase 2 to be confirmed
  • Northern Ireland – Erskine House, Belfast – due to open in 2019 to 2020
  • Yorkshire and the Humber – 7 and 8 Wellington Place, Leeds – due to open in 2020 to 2021
  • North East – Existing site at Benton Park View, Newcastle
  • North West – India Buildings, Liverpool – due to open in 2020
  • North West – 3 New Bailey, Manchester – phase 1 due to open in 2022, phase 2 to be confirmed
  • East Midlands - Unity Square, Nottingham – due to open in 2021 to 2022
  • West Midlands – 3 Arena Central, Birmingham – due to open in 2020 to 2021
  • Wales – Central Square, Cardiff – due to open in 2020 to 2021
  • South West – 3 Glass Wharf, Bristol – due to open in 2019
  • London, East and South East -14 Westfield Avenue, Stratford – due to open in 2020 to 2021
  • London East and South East –1 Ruskin Square, Croydon – opened July 2017

HMRC is on track to deliver savings of around £300m up to 2025. It will deliver annual cash savings of £74m in the tax year 2025 to 2026, rising to around £90m from 2028.

Report by Amy Austin

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