Resource website for payroll professionals no longer ?fit for purpose? according to the CIPP

30 March 2015

The Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals (CIPP) is today calling for an overhaul of a leading government website designed to help the UK “customer” find information they need from any government department. This includes payroll and accountancy professionals who solve complex tax problems.

The CIPP has been contacted by a number of its members stating that they are finding the website difficult to use with some payroll professionals claiming they are not able to find answers to complex legislative questions due to its current design.

“We all know that when it comes to renewing car tax or browsing for general advice to solve everyday problems, the website is undoubtedly an excellent research tool,” said Associate Director of Policy, Research, and Strategic Visibility, Karen Thomson. “However, when it comes to trying to find guidance to help solve complex payroll and accountancy problems, the information is far too simplistic and we’re concerned that key bits of information needed by payroll professionals and small businesses are being missed due to its current format.”

The website was initially created to provide more accessible and streamlined usability to important information released by government departments.

However, Ms Thomson says the CIPP is becoming increasingly concerned by the website, with one of the biggest areas of concern that of calculating maternity payments.

Karen added: “At the moment, the interactive tool on the website is only using the maternity rates for this tax year. It is not recognising that this goes beyond 5th April, therefore it is a new rate. And far worse is the lack of warning to say if you are going to use this for maternity payments beyond 5th April, please note it is not yet up to date. There is no warning, there’s no nothing and it has been this way for months, even after reporting it. This could result in a penalty and in many cases an appeal process.”

The CIPP is now calling for the website to be overhauled as a matter of priority regardless of the election outcome on 7 May.

“This needs to be resolved urgently regardless of the general election and we’d like to ensure that all of the information is relevant and accurate for people using the website.”