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Customer, Strategy &
Tax Design:
Our directorates

Our structure

Customer, Strategy & Tax Design (CS&TD) is made up of separate directorates. These are groups within HMRC that are responsible for a specific area, or department. Each play a part in the delivery of our vital work.

woman sat at desk working on laptop

Directorates and the linked professions

Many of our directorates are linked to more than one of our professions.

Here’s more insight:

Business Architecture

The Business Architecture Directorate is a critical function within a combined strategy, architecture & design service, facilitating change and transformation across HMRC and wider government.

We partner across the organisation to influence the enterprise wide vision for HMRC, helping translate strategy into what it means across the organisation in a shared language; being specific about the capabilities that will change or be needed to deliver the outcomes.

We maintain the helicopter view of the major design elements, providing the link between Strategy, Planning and Delivery teams. From this we help guide business options for change and how we should measure success.  We use these viewpoints to provide guardrails and assurance to our change programmes, improving the transition from business ambition to technical implementation; making sure the sum of the parts of our change portfolio move us towards our strategic ambition. 

To do this we take a structured approach and have a broad set of services, methods and tools based on the industry recognised profession of Business Architecture.  Collectively we make sure we are doing the right things, not just doing things!

Business, Assets and International

Business, Assets and International brings together policy and technical work on direct business taxes. We develop and deliver policy measures, while also contributing to wider government objectives.
This directorate is involved in a wide range of international tax work, including:
·       continuing to strengthen global relationships
·       sharing of information across borders
·       tackling multinational avoidance by delivering measures resulting from the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting project
·       tackling offshore evasion through the “No Safe Havens” strategy
We’re linked to TaxOperational Delivery and Policy professions within HMRC.

Customer Insight and Design

We continuously guide HMRC by customer centricity and process excellence principles in becoming a modern and trusted tax and customs authority.​​
Strategic – We maintain the departmental process and customer strategies, set out departmental standards and implementation plans, influence strategic design and provide assurance that “continuous improvement” and “change” activities comply with our standards. ​
Enabling – We develop and utilise industry standard customer insight, data, research, and design governance to influence strategies, operational service delivery, compliance and “change” activity for the benefit of HMRC’s customers.​
Delivery – We deploy design and journey expertise to influence change and innovation; shaping transformational service improvements for customers and a modern society.​
We’re linked to Operational DeliveryPolicy and Project Delivery professions within HMRC.

HMRC Strategies

HMRC Strategies lead on setting the strategic direction of HMRC. This includes establishing and maintaining a core set of strategy products that support the department’s vision and purpose, and which shape the delivery of HMRC’s strategic objectives.

The directorate works with colleagues across HMRC to develop robust strategies, factoring in future trends, covering every aspect of what HMRC is here to do, and its capability to do so. Our work is based on sound evidence, insight and knowledge of developments around the world.
Turning strategy into a reality for HMRC involves collaboration with colleagues at all levels. It involves communicating and embedding our strategies across business groups, directorates, teams and individuals. This allows:
·       the whole department to be strategically aligned to its goals
·       the potential for everyone to play their part in delivering them can be realised

We also work with colleagues to test strategic concepts and issues and help them plan delivery.
We’re linked to PolicyProject Delivery and Operational Delivery professions within HMRC.

Indirect Tax

Indirect Tax is responsible for the policy oversight of several VAT, Excise & Environmental regimes including VAT, Insurance Premium Tax, Environmental and Transport Taxes, Alcohol, Tobacco and Gambling.  We play a key role in delivering significant revenues to the UK Exchequer, contributing to the funding of vital public services as well as having a fundamental role following the UK exiting the European Union.
Our taxes sit at the centre of the tax system, delivering a trusted, professional service that improves the health of the tax system and supports delivery of wider government objectives – such as boosting economic growth; providing help with the cost of living; simplifying the tax code and contributing towards the wider social, health and environmental objectives.  
We empower our people to develop well-designed indirect tax policy. 
We’re linked to TaxOperational Delivery and Policy professions within HMRC.

Individuals Policy

The Individuals Policy Directorate brings together all the policy and technical (and some of the process ownership) aspects of taxes and benefits that impact individuals. If it has an impact on your pay check as an employee for HMRC or any other employer, then it’s likely to sit within Individuals Policy Directorate.
We’re responsible for ensuring these taxes and benefits are applied consistently across HMRC.

Our aim is to develop a more themed, customer-focused and forward-looking approach to policy making and problem solving, by being innovative and creative in our policy design, acting on customer insight and information, building in upstream compliance where appropriate.
We’re linked to TaxOperational Delivery and Policy professions within HMRC.


The purpose of the Intermediaries Directorate is to deliver on the Tax Administration Strategy commitment to build trust in the tax administration system, by ensuring that intermediaries operate effectively and fairly for customers and HMRC.

The Intermediaries Directorate will shape and drive the development of the role of intermediaries, leading the implementation of our strategic approach. The aim is to balance ongoing development and delivery, for example on the agents standards agenda, we are building our evidence base to help us select the most effective intervention models.
Intermediaries is structured as follows:
·       Agent Policy team – responsible for end-to-end policy work and initiatives for Intermediary Agents.
·       Strategic Approach team – responsible for end-to-end policy work; setting the strategic direction for intermediaries overall and for discrete intermediary sectors, including crosscutting intermediary issues (e.g. customer protection).
·       Intermediaries Hub – responsible for leading and running the governance of the Intermediaries Business Plan, including a research and insight resource, as well as leading Partner Engagement for CS&TD.
We’re linked to Operational Delivery and Policy professions within HMRC.

Knowledge, Analysis and Intelligence

Knowledge, Analysis and Intelligence provide analysis, research and statistics to inform policy and operational development. We have a key role in the Budget and Spring Statement process, working closely with policy partners in HMRC and HM Treasury, as well as the Office for Budget Responsibility.

We also support Corporate Finance in producing HMRC’s Annual Report and Accounts and Trust Statement which are audited by the National Audit Office.
We produce a wide range of official and national statistics that supports the government’s transparency agenda, improving the public’s understanding of the economy and the tax and benefits system. We are one of the largest analytical teams in government with around 620 staff members in locations across the country.

Strategic Policy into Delivery

Strategic Policy into Delivery is a directorate that works across CS&TD and wider HMRC. We lead on the development of strategic and crosscutting policy in line with wider government and departmental objectives.
Working closely with HM Treasury colleagues and ministers, we:
·       coordinate HMRC’s input into the Budget and Finance Bill
·       oversee the process of policy making across the organisation
This involves working with colleagues from across the department, with other government departments and with the devolved administrations. This allows us to build strong and diverse networks and work together to deliver effective policy.

We also lead projects to deliver the policy change required through our Policy Driven Change programme. This makes sure that the department meets the commitments made to ministers and the public. Alongside this, we lead HMRC’s strong investment in building policy and tax capability for the directorate and beyond.

Working in partnership with government’s central Policy Profession Unit, we set the direction for the standards and expectations for our policy professionals, providing excellent learning and development opportunities for all.

None of this can happen without excellent people. We’re committed to supporting personal development and talent management. This builds the capability needed to make sure the work we do supports HMRC to deliver an excellent, modern and trusted tax and customs authority.
We’re linked to Operational DeliveryPolicy and Project Delivery professions within HMRC.

Tax Administration

The Tax Administration Directorate is responsible for legislation, policy and guidance that enables the effective administration of all the taxes for which HMRC is responsible.
We work closely with teams in HMRC and the Treasury to develop policy and legislation and provide expert advice to colleagues across HMRC on policy and technical aspects of tax administration, including litigation.

We make sure that operational teams have high quality, up to the minute guidance to support customers. We also maintain over 10,000 pages of guidance on GOV.UK, continually driving improvements that increase customer satisfaction, reduce customer contact and improve compliance so our customers are able to self-serve and stay in the digital channel.

We lead Customer Strategy and Tax Design’s contribution to HMRC’s overall strategy and strategic design for Income Tax.
Our key objectives are to develop a policy and legislative framework that is appropriate for the digital future of tax administration and to continue to transform the way that HMRC provides guidance for operational teams and customers.
We’re linked to TaxOperational Delivery , Policy and DDaT professions within HMRC.

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