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01 Aug 14 On Standard Business Reporting

MEMBER 107 writes:
"I have noticed that a few ATO senior executives in talks/presentations/updates refer to the Standard Business Reporting (SBR). It is being touted as the wonder drug for TAGs and business, make our life so much easier, etc etc.
It sounds a bit too much like the wonder drug touted previously, the Change Program/new processing system. That one was to offer wonderful improvement in services and functions for ATO and TAGs.  It should have shown big improvements with dealing with the ATO. It simply did not/ has not delivered, and the implementation was a fiasco, not to mention years late and cost millions. I hope the senior officers of SBR take a very close look at the Change Program and ensure the same does not happen again. The SBR needs a reality check before being forced upon us, to ensure it is actually going to deliver, and not be a fiasco in its implementation.
Also, I noted on a recent transcript the ATO said how '86% of respondents said the Portal doesn’t have all the features and response times tax practitioners need.'. So, there is the admission the Portal is not delivering. The ATO's conclusion is that SBR is going to fix this. Wouldn’t it have been sensible if the ATO maintained and upgraded Portal functions each year, rather than let it deteriorate. If every year for the last umpteen years a few features were added and the system upgraded for response times then the Portal would be fine. Neglecting the Portal year after year, then use it to help justify the introduction of the SBR, is a very poor, disingenuous response.
They might also think of some older wonderful improvements, that cost millions, promised but simply did not deliver. The Modernisation/Decentralisation is a good one to remember, practitioners did not see much modernisation and the ATO offices are now back centralised. The massive amount spent on the 1997 ITAA re-write was hailed at the time as a saviour to TAGs, but achieved little."