After almost a decade, the current design moves aside for a more streamlined, intuitive online service, the Tax Office says.
ATO to launch upgraded website next month
The ATO will launch an updated website next month with an improved search facility, more streamlined navigation and a refreshed design, it says.
The upgrade was designed after extensive consultation with tax agents and arrived almost a decade after the current website was launched, the ATO said.
“This provides us with an opportunity to deliver an improved website making it easier for you to self‑serve and access information,” the Tax Office said.
“We've asked key users for feedback on the current website. Their input, along with research, user consultation and concept testing, has informed the development of the updated ato.gov.au website.”
Key improvements included:
“Clear, intuitive navigation makes it easy for you to find what you need. This reduces frustration and increases engagement and your ability to self-serve. Menu structures have been updated to present information in a clear and logical way.”
“The search functionality on ato.gov.au has been enhanced, allowing you to find information efficiently.”
“We’ve simplified the ato.gov.au home page making it easier for you to navigate to the most relevant content depending on your circumstances.”
The upgrade was flagged most recently by Commissioner Chris Jordan’s valedictory speech to the Tax Institute forum in Melbourne last month, in a move he said would reduce the need for phone interactions.
“As tax professionals, your manual effort is better spent where you can add the most value – which should be providing guidance and advice and making sure your clients are meeting their obligations,” Mr Jordan said.
“In the future, there should be fewer calls from tax professionals coming into our call centres. Today, more than one in five of the 1.4 million calls we answered this financial year – that’s around 220,000 calls – have been from tax professionals. Many of the calls are for things professionals can be self-serving through our online services. We are making the improvements we need to make to ensure you can fully utilise our online offerings.
“I know the onus will be on the ATO to make sure we provide easy access to clear, helpful information and guidance. This is something we are continuously on the journey of doing. We have a whole new website coming later this year, with a much better look and feel which will make it easier for people to find the answers they need.”
Tax agents will be able to sample the upgraded website from November when it will initially run in parallel with the old site.
The Tax Office said the site address would remain www.ato.gov.au and it would retain personal bookmarks, quick codes, tools and calculators.