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HMRC doesn’t know how much it spends on training

HMRC doesn’t know how much it spends on training

HMRC might need to consider changing the way it balances its books after the National Audit Office reported that the government department has no idea how much it spends on training.

The NAO has estimated that the Revenue spent £96.5 million on staff training in the financial year ending April 2011, but said that spending is not systematically directed on top-level business priorities.

£6.3 million of the total spend went on external training, and since 2006, £19.7 million has been spent on the development of the tax professionalism programme. However, there is no direct evidence to link results and training activities.

The NAO also reported that 46% of HMRC employees were unable to access learning and development programmes when they needed to, whilst 62% thought training had not improved their performance.

The report went on to say that the Revenue does not fully comprehend its skills gaps and requires better information to help it develop a more strategic approach. 20% of key Revenue staff will retire within the next 10 years and there is a risk that skills will be depleted as a result.

Furthermore, HMRC has ignored previous NAO advice and still not implemented any governance arrangements to hold the department to account for its training spend.

NAO head, Amyas Morse, said HMRC has not implemented a strategy to manage the amount it spends on training. Although it is working to ensure it has the requisite skills, the department needs to be more systematic in its approach to training and directly link its spending on training to the overall business objectives of the organisation.

© 2011 All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

Image: Beans & Bugs by Georg Scholz

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