Mobile App attracts taxpayers

A mobile application proposal appears to have evinced the interest of many designers and software developers if the registration numbers are any indication.

Inland Revenue Department (IRD) opened its ‘App41R Challenge’ in March and in less than four weeks later, had 240 registrations, a number that ‘exceeded all expectations.’

Chief Technology Officer Myles Ward said that the Department was aware of the interest that the app would generate but was overwhelmed by the response.

Self-management

“It has really caught people’s imagination, and by using crowdsourcing to reach out to the public, we have been able to reach such a large audience. This challenge is about developing the app that small businesses need to get their information directly from IRD and making it easier to manage their tax affairs themselves,” he said.

Mr Ward said that the Department was listening to the needs of the people on the one hand and those of the developers of the app on the other.

There is no limit to the ideas that people can use to enter the challenge, he said.

Wide appeal

“We were looking for a whole range of ideas and they may include enabling IRD and small businesses work together in new and different ways. We are also examining how it can become easier for small businesses to register for PAYE or submit a GST return, presenting more data to a customer regarding their account, and a way of receiving reminders or alerts for key dates,” Mr Ward said.

The application process was open to all parties in New Zealand such as software developers, designers, business, individuals and IT groups.

“Our customers want to do business with IRD as easily and as with any other business 24 hours, seven days a week, using their tablets and smart-phones. We are not only making it easier but also more cost-effective, and this challenge is an innovative way of making that happen,” he said.

The APP4IR Challenge closed on April 14, 2014.

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