ISLAMABAD: The Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) has directed the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to take corrective measures for removing errors in the new version of the “IRIS” for return filing from next month.

Through an order issued on Thursday, the FTO is shocked that how the FBR has launched the new version of the “IRIS” for return filing without proper testing through pilot launch, creating hardship to the users.

FTO has initiated an own motion investigation on errors and omissions in respect of updated version of IRIS 2.0 launched by FBR. Recently, FBR launched IRIS 2.0 on July 27, 2023 by introducing a new version for filing of tax return.

FBR launches ‘IRIS 2.0’

The FBR has claimed that the new system would significantly result in enhanced efficiency and cost-saving. However, the FTO received a number of complaints from various stakeholders who raised issues about multiple errors and omissions in the new version of IRIS.

It seems that the changes have been introduced in haste without pilot launch and no testing and quality assurance has been ensured as required in software development standard procedures. Moreover, there are no user guides available about the new changes made in this system.

FTO has recommended the FBR to direct Member (Information & Technology) to take corrective measures and add explanation/description to MIS Tab and Maloomat folder for clarity for users within 15 days.

The facts showed that the updated version of IRIS had many errors and omissions which created a lot of inconvenience for the users.

Although many of the errors have been removed after the intervention of this office, however, the 03 errors as stated above are still pending for corrective action.

Therefore, it is found that the new version was launched without proper testing through pilot launch which is departure from the established practice and created hardship to the users. Such omissions departures and errors constitute maladministration in terms Section 2(3)(i)(a) and (ii) of the FTO Ordinance, 2000.

FTO has recommended the FBR to direct Member (Information & Technology) to take corrective measures and add explanation/description to MIS Tab and Maloomat folder for clarity for users within 15 days.

The FBR should direct Member (IT) to add appropriate navigational aid for logical hierarchy of user’s journey back and forth within 15 days and also (iii) direct Member (IT) to take measures to streamline the system to allow correct calculation of admissible depreciation within 15 days.

The Member (IT) should also remove sales tax filing options not relevant for filer of income tax return. Besides tool tip help for icons such as logout option be provided within 15 days.

The Member (IT) should strictly follow, in future, SOPs of software launch by announcing new launch first followed by pilot launch for quality assurance before final implementation to avoid errors and omissions as a large number of general publics is affected by such lapses, FTO order added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Love Your Country Sep 01, 2023 10:58am
Hight of incompetence but don't worry no heads will roll bcz this is bureaucracy not a private enterprise.
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Amjad Masood Sep 01, 2023 12:13pm
I would like to bring it to your notice another anomaly with regards to calculations of tax liabilities of rental Income, which the system wrongly calculate less.
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