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Agent Online Self Serve - Alpha Assessment

This is a new service for tax agents to work with HMRC online. It will let agents register to act on behalf of, and see information about, their clients, and to control a range of transactions on their behalf. These will be built on a new digital tax platform which will eventually replace the current HMRC Portal and be the default platform for new user-facing services.

Department / Agency:

Date of Assessment:

Assessment stage:
Alpha Review

Result of Assessment:

Lead Assessor:
J. Hughes

Service Manager:
S. Brodie-Rendon

Digital Leader:
M. Dearnley

Assessment Report

The Agent Online Self Serve service has been reviewed against the 26 points of the Service Standard at the end of the Alpha development.

Outcome of service assessment

After consideration the assessment panel have concluded the Agent Online Self Serve service is on track to meet the Digital by Default Service Standard at this early stage of development.


The product meets the requirements of the standard for alpha.

Particular areas of strong performance against the standard included:

User research
The team has carried out user research and has been prepared to re-examine fundamental assumptions and the scope of the project.

Empowered service manager and skilled team
The team is clearly very highly skilled and empowered to make decisions based on evidence.

Iteration and improvement
The team has already shown its capacity and appetite for improvement and iteration.

Assisted digital
The team has carried out research to gather evidence and develop a good understanding of assisted digital user needs (although the service is exempt from the assisted digital requirement because the users are all paid intermediaries).

Visual design
The standard of design is high and consistent with GOV.UK patterns.


Reliance on the tax platform
For the beta assessment the assessment panel would expect to see a comprehensive, clear and detailed explanation of which aspects of the service and its management will be provided by or reliant on the tax platform, and how these will be integrated with the service.

User research
Where users have difficulties using the service, the team should try alternative designs rather than adding explanations to support users through the existing design.

The team should continue to seek the simplest, most straightforward way for users to achieve their aim in the user journey, and to make it clear within the journey what the user needs to do.

The team will need a dedicated skilled person to identify actionable data insights during the next phase.

Digital by Default Service Standard criteria

Criteria Passed Criteria Passed
1 Yes 2 Yes
3 Yes 4 Yes
5 Yes 6 Yes
7 Yes 8 Yes
9 Yes 10 Yes
11 Yes 12 Yes
13 Yes 14 Yes
15 Yes 16 Yes
17 Yes 18 Yes
19 Yes 20 Yes
21 Yes 22 Yes
23 Yes 24 Yes
25 Yes 26 Yes