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HMRC confirms Microsoft corporate vice-president Jacky Wright as new CDIO

HMRC has tasked Microsoft corporate vice-president Jacky Wright with helping the department achieve its goal of becoming one of the world's most digitally advanced tax authorities

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has concluded its hunt for a new chief digital and information officer (CDIO) by confirming the post will be filled by Microsoft corporate vice president Jacky Wright from October.

Wright will be taking over from interim CDIO Mike Potter, who has held the position since Mark Dearnley’s departure in September 2016, and is leaving for a directorship at the Brexit-focused Future Borders programme.

At present, Wright is working as a corporate vice-president at Microsoft’s core platform division, and has previously held the position of CIO at both General Electric and Momentive Performance Materials.

In a statement confirming her appointment, Wright said it was an exciting time to be joining HMRC, which is still in the throes of extricating itself from the £800m-a-year Aspire contract.

“I am passionate about the impact innovation can have in truly transforming services for people and businesses in a positive way and want to continue the great work being done within HMRC and across the Civil Service at this time,” she said.

“I am proud to represent women and BAME [black, Asian and minority ethnic] in technology and will continue to promote the vital role of diversity within our industry and more broadly.”

As reported by Computer Weekly in April 2017, the CDIO role comes with an annual salary of up to £180,000, and is billed as an opportunity to “shape and transform the way HMRC works” as it pursues its goal to become the “one of the most digitally advanced tax administrations in the world”.

Read more about HMRC

  • Amidst concerns that the customs declaration service won’t be ready in time for Brexit, the Institute for Government calls on HMRC to focus on getting the basics right and let innovation come later.
  • Technical issues while applying for new childcare benefits caused problems for some parents – but HMRC says only 1% were affected.

Jon Thompson, CEO of HMRC, revealed that Wright had faced fierce competition for the role from a slew of potential private and public sector candidates.

“Balancing strong operating experience with a record of driving innovation, Jacky is widely recognised for her contributions to technology and diversity,” he said. “Her influence as a technology leader and champion for the role of women and BAME in industry is a major win for this organisation.

“This builds on a year of real progress and innovation under the leadership of interim CDIO Mike Potter, who has done a fantastic job of pushing digital delivery for HMRC and its customers.”

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