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Wells Haslem Mayhew has provided public relations support to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) for almost a decade.

2014-2017

Aim

To assist the ATO with communicating clearly to taxpayers.

Strategy

We reviewed and rewrote the ATO’s communications, ensuring it was written in plain English. This included:

  • Restructuring and editing over 1,000 pages to re-write the website – bringing it in line with the ato.gov.au Content Model.
  • Restructuring and editing hundreds of pages within the ATO intranet – ensuring content was clear and concise for staff.
  • Reviewing and interpreting exceptionally complex Law Administration Practice Statements (LA PS) and creating entirely new documents that clearly explained the LA PS - 545 pages.

Outcome

The ATO's website communications were clear and digestible, ensuring that website visitors and taxpayers clearly understood the often dense and complex information.  

2014-2016

Aim

To provide strategic advice to the ATO leadership.

Strategy

Wells Haslem Mayhew provided ATO leadership communications guidance across a range of campaigns, including:

  • Single Touch Payroll (communications strategy and issues management);
  • Standard Business Reporting (general strategy); and
  • Future of the tax profession 2016.

This included attending workshops in Canberra and Sydney and providing strategy documents.

Outcome

Better media coverage of various campaigns, the ATO brand remaining intact and even boosted, and satisfied internal stakeholders.

2015

Aim

To develop a practitioner roadshow to help educate the business community and the broader public about the positive changes taking place within the Australian Tax Office (ATO). 

Strategy

We worked with the ATO team to arrange briefings for:

  • tax agents & practitioners, accountants, and software developers;
  • small businesses; and
  • the broader community (general public). 

We sought the assistance of Chambers of Commerce as they were the lifeline of their local business communities.

We helped the ATO educate tax practitioners, tax agents and general taxpayers on:

  • tax practitioner changes;
  • small business changes; and
  • MyTax changes and other relevant matters.

We developed feedback channels for those stakeholders, especially the general public. We also developed media materials and liaised with media outlets ahead of roadshows.

The Community Conversations roadshows commenced on 2 September 2015 in Wollongong, with events following in Bathurst; Wagga Wagga; Coffs Harbour; Traralgon; Mildura; Geelong;  Shepparton; Bendigo; Gold Coast; Cairns; Sunshine Coast; Port Pirie; Mount Gambier; Launceston; Busselton; Geraldton; and Darwin.

Outcome

The roadshows were successful and ensured that the general public, tax practitioners and agents were educated on the various changes taking place within the ATO.