- bring an interest in simplifying the taxation of smaller businesses and individuals
- bring an informed, realistic, and independent personal mindset to bear, drawing on their expertise and skills without simply acting as a representative of a particular profession or interest group
- be able to work collaboratively with, and appropriately challenge, others with diverse backgrounds, expertise or experience
- Office of Tax Simplification
- Sponsor department
- HM Treasury
- Business, Finance & Skills
- Accountancy, Business, Commercial, Technology / Digital, Transformation
- Number of vacancies
- Time commitment
- 10 day(s) per annum
- £2400 per annum
- Length of term
- Up to 5 years
- Application deadline
- 1pm on 23 September 2022
Timeline for this appointment
19 August 2022
1pm on 23 September 2022
3 October 2022
Interviews expected to end on
11 November 2022
The ideal candidates will bring expertise or background in one or more of the following:
- customer transformation or service digitization programs
- economics, finance, or tax in an academic or research setting
- experience of tax for groups with protected characteristics or on lower incomes
The current Board has significant experience of tax, commonly with backgrounds in advisory roles in legal and accountancy professions. Whilst this experience is very welcome in any new candidates, the Board would benefit from wider complementary skills and expertise that is relevant to the modern world of tax; such as customer transformation or service digitization (see ‘Desirable criteria’).
The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) is the independent advisor to the government on simplifying the tax system to make things easier for taxpayers.
The OTS publishes reviews undertaken by a small staff team drawn from the civil service and the private sector, led by the OTS Head of Office. Some reviews are commissioned by the Chancellor, and some are own-initiative, generated by the OTS themselves; the Board provides steers and insights into both, as well as contacts and influence to support the work.
The OTS Board is led by an independent Chair (Kathryn Cearns OBE) and the Tax Director (Bill Dodwell) and comprises a body of independent members as well as one representative from each of HM Treasury and HMRC. Since 24 February 2022 the independent membership has increased to six members.
The current independent members of the OTS Board are Paul Aplin OBE, John Cullinane, Professor Judith Freedman CBE, and Kathleen Russ. The Board is supplemented by Dame Teresa Graham DBE as an observer, who is also Chair of the HMRC-sponsored Administrative Burdens Advisory Board.
To support its work and further development, the Office of Tax Simplification would like to identify two exceptional individuals to join its Board as further independent members.
Application and selection process
The closing date for applications is 13:00pm on 23rd September.
Apply by email: James.Konya@ots.gov.uk or, if you cannot apply online, by post to Office of Tax Simplification, Room G41, 1 Horse Guards Road, London SW1A 2HQ.
Applications must include:
- The role title and reference
- A CV, which provides details of your qualifications, employment history, skills and expertise
- A covering letter in which you succinctly address how you meet the essential and (if appropriate) desirable criteria
- Names of at least two referees who may be contacted at short list stage, i.e. before interview
- The forms (above) regarding contact details, diversity and political activity. This information is required for monitoring purposes only and will not be seen by any selection panel.
If you would like to know more about being a board member of the OTS or to have a conversation about how your experience and perspectives could support its work, please email James.Konya@ots.gov.uk to arrange a conversation with OTS Chair Kathryn Cearns.
This is a Chancellor Appointment. The Chair of the Office of Tax Simplification nominates appointable candidates to the Chancellor.
The OTS was set up on 20 July 2010 and made a permanent independent Office of HM Treasury on 21 July 2015. It was then placed on a statutory basis in sections 184 to 189 of, and Schedule 25 to, Finance Act 2016, which came into effect as from 28 November 2016.
HM Treasury carried out its first five-yearly statutory review of the OTS in 2021, one of the recommendations of which was for this expansion of the OTS Board by increasing the number of independent board members. The legislation has now been amended to allow for additional Board appointees following Royal Assent of the 2021-22 Finance Bill on 24 February.
Board members are appointed for a term of office of up to five years and are eligible for reappointment. Board meetings take place in Central London. They can be attended virtually, but some attendance in person is encouraged.
We welcome applications from all suitably qualified people and committed to providing equal opportunities for all, irrespective of race, age, disability, gender, marital status, religion, sexual orientation and transgender.
We are committed to actively encouraging applications from people with disabilities. Applicants with a disability are guaranteed an interview if they meet the minimum criteria for the appointment, as outlined in the relevant role description. Declaring a disability for the purposes of a guaranteed interview is your decision and is entirely voluntary. If you wish to apply under the Interview Access Scheme, please complete the Disability Confident Form. Whether you choose to apply under the Interview Access Scheme or not you can still ask us to make particular arrangements for you when attending an interview. You can also contact us if you want to discuss the criteria for the role or have questions regarding your application.
Reasonable expenses incurred by candidates during the recruitment process will be reimbursed.
You will be required to exercise care in the use of official information acquired in the course of your duties, and not to disclose information which is held in confidence.
You are expected not to occupy a paid party-political post or to hold a sensitive or high-profile role in a political party during your appointment as OTS Board member. Subject to this, you are free to engage in political activities provided you are conscious of your general public responsibilities and exercise a proper discretion, particularly with regard to the work of the OTS.
Due Diligence: as part of the recruitment process, due diligence, including social media checks, will be undertaken on short-listed candidates.
Public appointments are made on merit following a fair and open competition process which is conducted in accordance with the Governance Code for Public Appointments. We will deal with your application as quickly as possible and will keep you informed at key stages. We aim to conclude the appointment process within three months of the deadline for applications – this is in accordance with the Governance Code.
The assessment process
Ministers are responsible and accountable to Parliament for the public appointments made within their department. As a result, they must be consulted at every stage of the appointments process.
An Advisory Assessment Panel (“Panel”) is appointed by Ministers to assist them in their decision making. The role of the Panel is to decide, objectively, which candidates meet the eligibility criteria for the role.
At the shortlisting meeting the Panel will assess applications against the eligibility criteria and decide which candidates should be recommended for interview. Ministers will then be consulted on the Panel’s recommended shortlist.
Once the shortlist has been agreed by Ministers, you will be advised (by e-mail) whether you have been shortlisted. Those shortlisted will be invited to an interview.
The Panel will meet again to interview candidates and determine who is appointable to the role. The names of all appointable candidates are provided to Ministers. It is then for Ministers to determine merit and decide who should be appointed. In some circumstances, Ministers may choose not to appoint any candidates and re-run the competition.
The Panel’s recommendations will be provided to Ministers in a report which details the assessment method used and the outcome of each interview. They will then be asked to agree on the candidate(s) who should be appointed.
Once the decision on the appointment has been made, interviewed candidates will be advised of the outcome of their application. Successful candidates will be issued with their Terms & Conditions and a letter of appointment should they agree to take up the position.
In general, you should have the right to work in the UK to be eligible to apply for a public appointment.
There are a small number of specialist roles that are not open to non-British citizens. Any nationality requirements will be specified in the vacancy details.
The Government expects all holders of public office to work to the highest personal and professional standards.
You cannot be considered for a public appointment if:
you are disqualified from acting as a company director (under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986);
have an unspent conviction on your criminal record;
your estate has been sequestrated in Scotland or you enter into a debt arrangement programme under Part 1 of the Debt Arrangement and Attachment (Scotland) Act 2002 (asp 17) as the debtor or have, under Scots law, granted a trust deed for creditors.
When you apply, you should declare if:
you are, or have been, bankrupt or you have made an arrangement with a creditor at any point, including the dates of this.
you are subject to a current police investigation.
You must inform the sponsor department if, during the application process, your circumstances change in respect of any of the above points.When you apply you should also declare any relevant interests, highlighting any that you think may call into question your ability to properly discharge the responsibilities of the role you are applying for. You should also declare any other matters which may mean you may not be able to meet the requirements of the Code of Conduct of Board Members (see Outside interests and reputational issues section below)
Additional information for candidates
- ensuring that application forms are available in different or accessible formats;
- making adaptations to interview locations;
- allowing candidates to present their skills and experience in a different way;
- giving detailed information on the selection / interview process in advance to allow candidates time to prepare themselves;
- allowing support workers, for example sign language interpreters;
- making provision for support animals to attend.
Holders of public office are expected to adhere to and uphold the Seven Principles of Public Life https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-7-principles-of-public-life/the-7-principles-of-public-life--2. These are:
- SELFLESSNESS - Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest. They should not do so in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family or their friends;
- INTEGRITY - Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties;
- OBJECTIVITY - In carrying out public business, including making public appointments, awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits, holders of public office should make choices on merit;
- ACCOUNTABILITY - Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate to their office;
- OPENNESS - Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions that they take. They should give reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest clearly demands;
- HONESTY - Holders of public office have a duty to declare any private interests relating to their public duties and to take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest;
- LEADERSHIP - Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by leadership and example.
- any outside interests that you may have, such as shares you may hold in a company providing services to government;
- any possible reputational issues arising from your past actions or or public statements that you have made;
- and/or - any political roles you hold or political campaigns you have supported;