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HMRC moving to GOV.UK

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: API, Content, HMRC Manuals, Tools, User research

Over the next year we'll be moving more than 100,000 pages of HMRC content to GOV.UK. Here's a summary of what we're doing and what we're not doing.

What we're doing

We're working closely with HMRC to move all the public-facing web content including tools, calculators and manuals onto GOV.UK.

Don't worry though, we'll make sure that every page on the HMRC website redirects to its new location on GOV.UK, or to a copy of the content in The National Archives

What we're not doing

As part of this project, we won't be moving the HMRC online services that require you to login, e.g. when filing your tax return. These services are being transformed by HMRC as transformation projects.

We also won't be editing HMRC manuals and other content from the HMRC library. These will move across to GOV.UK and will be repurposed into a format that is easier to search, easier to browse, easier to view and easier to print.

When we're doing it

We've started now and will be working through summer 2014. We'll have a clearer idea of when particular pieces of content and tools will move across as we get further into the detail of the project. You can better understand our approach to managing the project by reading the Government service design manual.

What we've already done

HMRC's corporate publishing has already moved onto GOV.UK. This means that any news releases, speeches and HMRC consultations are now published on GOV.UK.

We've also been adding new content to various topics on GOV.UK in the citizen-facing section we call 'mainstream'. You can see many examples of this ranging from how to Claim Income Tax Reliefs to the Child Benefit guide  (with High Income Child Benefit Tax Charge and calculator) to VAT on building a new home. Some of this content was created as part of the work to close Businesslink and Directgov prior to launch of GOV.UK in October 2012.

A new trade tariff tool was also built on GOV.UK to replace the old Businesslink tool.

We are currently working on designs and early development on a range of tools and functionality for GOV.UK such as building a system to display the HMRC manuals.

GDS and HMRC are also talking to representatives of the tax professional bodies about the transition of content from HMRC’s site to GOV.UK and about content specifically aimed at tax agents and advisers.

How you can get involved

We will be getting a wide range of users of the HMRC website involved in the project  to help us make sure that the content and tools we develop meet their user needs.

Whether you are an experienced tax professional or a member of the public who knows nothing about tax, we will be looking for users we can test our products on as we develop them.

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  1. Comment by Nick Prince posted on

    Will the HMRC content also be reduced in deatil as has happened with other areas? it is very difficult for example to find guidance on operation of statutory sick pay ( daily rates) for example.
    When Businessslink was put on GOV.UK, masses of good helpful information such as decision trees was lost. New users wont know what they could have had help with such as business struture and liabilities arising. I am aware of people starting in business who struggle to get objective advice because information on is too general. no accountant/business advisor being paid for their advice is neutral. .

    • Replies to Nick Prince>

      Comment by Nick Cammell posted on

      Thanks for your comment.
      My name is Michael Howes-Roberts and I am the GOV.UK Business Change Lead. We currently only have a few hundred guides on the GOV.UK website right now and the big task to transition guidance from the HMRC website to GOV.UK has only just begun in earnest. 
      You may have seen our newsboard message with some links to background material on the transition? If not it’s a good place to start.
      As you know, HMRC has a huge amount of customers from various audiences (individuals, businesses, Agents etc) and our guidance can be complex. We are working closely with Government Digital Service (GDS) colleagues (who run and manage GOV.UK) to make sure that the guidance we move across is accurate, easily findable and appears appropriately in search engines. Anything that is rewritten will be checked by HMRC subject experts to ensure it’s technically accurate and of course complete.  All of this work is grounded firmly in what our customers need from us.
      GOV.UK is constantly changing based on user feedback – it looks very different now from when it launched in October 2012 – and it will change again to ensure it can support all HMRC customers. For example, the site does not cater for specialist HMRC users right now such as accountants and tax lawyers and current tax guidance is (mainly) aimed at the non-professional audience.  We will be addressing that along with other gaps over the coming months as we create and add new content and tools.
      Plenty of work is planned and we will be very busy over the next 6-9 months to make this work. Thanks you for showing an interest and please check our intranet pages and the blog regularly to keep up to date with events. You can also feed back thoughts and comments to our team through your Transition Lead Contact for Local Compliance.
      Hope this is helpful.