HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is giving staff the chance to work a three-day week and get a pay rise from next summer in a move it hopes will improve customer service levels.
From next year, the tax office will be piloting an annualised hours scheme that will see 100 staff members working shorter hours over the summer and longer hours during the winter.
To encourage participation, HMRC is offering a 1% pay increase to volunteers for this 12-month trial. However, participants will need to forgo flexible working hours for the duration of the program.
New Insights and Future Plans
It’s important to note that HMRC already permits staff to work from home up to two days a week, following the government’s hybrid home-office working policy approved in May 2020. Nearly all (95%) of HMRC employees now work remotely at least one day a week, a significant increase compared to the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additionally, a freedom of information request revealed that in the year ending March 2023, two out of five HMRC staff didn’t go into the workplace at all.
An HMRC spokesperson clarified the trial’s purpose, stating, “On an annualised hours contract, colleagues will work the same number of hours over the year, but their working weeks will vary.” There will be six months during which colleagues will work 44 hours per week, and six months when they work 27 hours per week.”
HMRC emphasized that the allowances offered align with its existing policies for flexibility to meet customer demand. Most full-time employees currently work 37 hours per week, which totals 1931 hours over the year.
During the trial, different working patterns will be available, allowing staff in non-peak periods to work between three to five days, depending on the selected schedule. The hybrid office and home working model will remain the same as it is for employees on a standard contract.
Get in touch
At Lanop Business and Tax Advisors, we understand the importance of innovative approaches to financial management, just like the HMRC’s recent trial. We specialize in providing top-notch consultancy in accountancy and taxation, helping businesses navigate the ever-evolving financial landscape. Our team offers tailored solutions and on-demand Virtual Finance Directors, just like the ones in HMRC’s trial, to support companies in achieving their goals. Get in touch with us, we’re here to help your business succeed in today’s changing world.