ATO prepares for digital by default

Tax office seeks input on digital transformation

The Australian Taxation Office has begun a public consultation on its shift to digital by default.

As part of a $130.9 million 'red tape reduction' measure in the 2015-16 budget, the federal government earmarked a shift to digital channels as the default for the provision of information and making payments to the ATO.

A consultation paper released today by the ATO canvases options for a segmented approach for the transition to digital by default.

Potential options include transition by market segment, on a product or interaction basis, a focus on transitioninghigh volume products/interactions to digital, or some combination.

The paper cites research by the Digital Transformation Office (DTO) that found most people and businesses are comfortable with using digital services to interact with government.

A Deloitte Access Economics report commissioned by Adobe and released earlier this year pegged the average costs of face-to-face, postal and telephone government transactions at $19.90, $12.79 and $6.60 per transaction — compared to $0.40 per transaction through online channels.

The DTO was established as part of the government’s $254.7 million 'Digital Transformation Agenda'.

The ATO is accepting responses on its consultation paper until 15 January 2016.

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