CJNCB TAXATION AND REVENUE
CJNCB Taxation and Revenue Department is responsible, to the residents of the state, for watching over how tax dollars are collected, managed and expensed. Guidelines include; restrictive acts of law, rules and regulations, accounting principles, policies, procedures, and sound management practices. Audits are the mechanism by which we apply professional auditing standards to detect whether monies are collected, managed, or expensed outside of those restrictive acts. The audit report will be indicative of those areas found in violation of the guidelines and will recommend corrective action. The mission: to provide professional, efficient and courteous service through public education and evenhanded administration of CJNCB tax laws. Secondly, to provide information and assistance in the formulation and revision of the tax laws, and ensure that division employees are adequately trained and supervised. Finally, promote individual growth in a participatory work environment, maintain a safe and comfortable work setting for employees, be proactive, progressive, and an innovative organization that promotes excellence and fosters cooperation throughout the department.
Focus will be on the CJNCB Audit Bureau (Division of CJNCB Taxation a Revenue Department) due to reoccurring internal and external problems. The reoccurring problems that need to be addressed are; dysfunctional organizational structure, unmotivated employees, lack of training, poor customer service, and outdated informational technology.
To resolve these problems, the CJNCB Taxation and Revenue Department will examine the following areas: the organizational structure, unmotivated employees, training, customer service, and information technology.
The CJNCB Taxation and revenue Department will also address possible barriers that will be counter productive to the department and they are, hiring qualified employees, updating software/web based applications, reorganizing management, developing an effective training department, and people being resistant to change.
DYSFUNCTIONAL ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE
The first problem to be examined within CJNCB organization is the dysfunctional organizational structure. A Dysfunctional organizational structure is: an organizational structure with too many levels of management and without a formal system of task and authority relationships that control how people coordinate their actions, and use resources to achieve organizational goals. CJNCB’s organization is having an intra-organizational problem. Vertical conflict is occurring because with the multi-levels of middle and upper management; lower levels have conflicts by having multiple supervisors, illustrated by superior-subordinate disputes. The employee’s have conflicts with supervisors because they are working toward goals that vary from supervisor to supervisor. The horizontal conflict occurs between employees in departments that are roughly at the same hierarchical level. Employees in each department independently strive to meet their own departmental goals. If organizational structure is not corrected, then a break down in communication can occur and the different departments will not work together effectively.
Generally, when an employee is unmotivated, we base our conclusion on the quality of that person’s job performance; poor job performance equals lack of motivation. Employee motivation can also be affected by personal factors outside the workplace, as well as factors in the workplace. Some of these factors are lack of communication, conflicts between employees and management, and lack of goals or unachievable goals. Supervisor-Employee behavior is quite often a reflection of the guidance they receive from their superiors. If Employee motivational problems are not addressed, employee performance will deteriate, turn over will increase, and extra revenue will have to be spent on training new personnel.
LACK OF TRAINING AND CUSTOMER SERVICE
Training is a key stepping stone to an organizations development, growth and success. As information technology advances, such is the need to change, innovate, and implement new technology and programs to keep an organization on the leading edge of their industry. The CJNCB Tax and Revenue Audit Department lacks the knowledge base needed in its employees to operate effectively. CJNCB has never operated with a formal training division and has relied on a “Buddy system” to train new employees. The problem with the “Buddy system” is the inconsistency of the training and the lack of information some “Buddies” actually give their new hires, because of a fear that they will take their positions. The lack of a formal training department has promoted a “who you know” attitude not promoting the qualified candidate for the job. Another result of the lack of training is the absence of accountability. Supervisors cannot hold employees accountable because they are mostly unaware of the CJNCB Tax and Revenue policy and procedures, and what is expected of them in their positions. If this issue continues to be ignored the department will continue to operate poorly and ineffectively.
Customer service is essential, in an organization, to keep its customer base happy. The CJNCB audit department has continuously received complaints about its customer service and how problems are handled. Some of the complaints include: inexperienced/untrained personnel, the lack of urgency when dealing with audits, and out dated information systems (i.e., automated phone systems, clunky non-user friendly website). If the problem is not examined, citizens will continue to be frustrated with the tax and revenue department as a whole; and look poorly at the entire state government. Resulting in lower growth rates for the state in business and the general public, which in turn will reduce revenues for the state.
LACK OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
The revolution in Information Technology is having a profound affect upon the management of organizations. By improving the ability of managers to coordinate and control the activities of an organization, and by helping managers make more effective decisions. Modern information technology has become a central component of any organization. In the past, CJNCB has not taken advantage of information technology in its Tax and Revenue departments. This in turn, has left this section of the state government isolated and inept. The Audit department is unable to communicate electronically with any of the other sections of the tax and revenue department. This causes employees to have to use hard copies of all files and of customer audits that need to be communicated inter-departmentally. This is a waste of time and resources. Also, the Audit departments web page cannot handle the amount of activity it receives so it is prone to frequent down time and outages. If the CJNCB Audit department is not tied into the rest of the states information technology soon, it will never be able to catch up. The level of technology will advance so far that the audit department will have to be entirely revamped, expending taxpayer dollars. Where as, if the Audit department is upgraded now, it will be easier and less expensive to keep the whole state on the same systems and technology base.
DYSFUNCIONAL ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE
One of the possible solutions to solving the problems at CJNCB would be flattening and restructuring the organization. Restructuring the organization refers to: the process by which mangers change task and authority relationships to improve effectiveness. If organizational hierarchies are to function effectively and to be highly developed, both managers and employees must understand the organizational configuration. In the case of CJNCB, the six levels of management minimize the effectiveness of communication. Downsizing the top levels of unnecessary management would ultimately allow direct communication between employees, and the appropriate level of management. Based on the needs compared to the existing structure, a functional structure where employees are divided into common groups by skills and expertise, or because they use the same resources. For example, instead of laying off the directors and giving them severance packages, place those seasoned managers into different positions such as training or Human resources positions. This would allow the company to use the experience of its internal resources to advance and create different departments where they are needed. Another possible way of changing the structure would be a complete and total overhaul to a matrix structure. A matrix structure is: a structure that provides for more integration between corporate and divisional managers. Also, it would require the development of a horizontal management chain as well as reorganizing the vertical configuration of the organization.
After weighing a functional structure model verse a matrix structure model, it is evident that a functional model would work best. The functional model would require a rearrangement of the existing structure, where as the matrix model would require total and complete restructuring. The total and complete restructuring of a matrix model would be to difficult to implement with existing employees, and would require a large reduction in force followed by a large scale hiring process, which would be very time consuming and expensive.
A possible solution to employee motivation is to empower the employees. Empowering is: the process of giving employees, throughout the organization, the authority to make decisions and to be responsible for the results. The increased use of empowered workers, self-management teams, and contingent or temporary workers gives the organization more flexibility. This would also decrease the amount of day-to-day minor tasks that fill up a manager’s schedule, because lower level employees are handling the less important tasks. The number of subordinates a manger directly controls would increase; the result, fewer managers would be needed to oversee the organization. Managers would oversee work groups consisting of empowered employees who are jointly responsible for ensuring that the team accomplishes its goals. In short, empowering employees and placing them in teams reduces the need for direct personal supervision by mangers, and in turn the organizational structure would flatten.
Another possible solution to the employee motivation problem is to implement incentive programs for hard work. The incentive programs would be set up to reward those employees, which work harder than others, monetarily.
After consideration of empowerment against incentives, it is apparent that empowerment would be most beneficial to the organization in the long run. Empowerment would cultivate and grow the employees, where incentives would breed competition and opposition.
LACK OF TRAINING AND CUSTOMER SERVICE
Another solution would be to encourage training and give employees advancements for training. Training, in CJNCB, is one of the most important aspects in finding solutions to the problems. To increase the effectiveness of the quality of the audit process, each employee must be technically competent in his or her jobs. Each position would have a designated set of training classes assigned to it, and the employee in that position will be held responsible for attending and completing those classes. The classes would include scheduled and monitored technical workshops; computer based training, classes in human dynamics, and diversity training. All of these workshops would be regimented around and focused towards customer service subject matter. The purpose of the workshops would be to develop new skills, reinforce old skills, and give the employees a culture focused towards advancement and customer service. Employees would be reviewed at the end of the year, based not only by their performance, but also their progress in the training workshops. To effectively implement this solution, a training department would need to be created. This training department would need to consist of senior employees and managers to ensure its success. An alternative to creating a training department would be outsourcing the entire training aspect of the organization. Some of the benefits of outsourcing would be the reduced amount of cost involved in creating a training department, and fewer employees needed to run a training department. Some of the drawbacks to outsourcing the training department would be not being able to directly monitor the training that the employees are receiving, having to terminate senior personnel, and the cost involved in outsourcing the training department to another organization.
After weighing the creation of a training department and outsourcing of a training program, the most beneficial option would be the creation of an in-house training department. This option is most beneficial because the organization can control the quality of training the employees receive. Also, the organization would be able to shift senior personnel into the training department and retain their knowledge, versus laying them off or giving them early retirement. Fore most because it provides people or employees with the opportunity to learn from one another and become more specialized and productive.
LACK OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
The last major solution, to the problems in the organization, is to development a new technological structure. The CJNCB audit department is isolated from the states other departments and from the other tax and revenue departments, by not being electronically linked. One viable solution to this problem is a complete and immediate upgrade to the states systems, and to include the Tax and Revenue department. Each terminal, utilized by the employees, should have the ability to use all the applications on the states main frame. This will increase the ability of the employee to access and download all documents and necessary tools for audits. It will also allow interdepartmental electronic communication and share of information. This added communication will bring the Tax and Revenue department to the level needed to operate efficiently.
The next area of technology that needs to be advanced is the Tax and Revenue departments web site. The development of a customer based web site will enable communication between company services and the users. The web site will be able to answer questions on the audit process and simple tax book inquires. This simple technological tool will be one of the primary upgrades that the public has access to and is aware of. It is also a necessity in bringing the customer service level up to par.
Another possible option is to do a smaller scale upgrade to connect the existing out dated technology, within the Tax and Revenue department, to the current systems in place in the rest of the state. This will save a considerable amount of money and time. However, the small-scale upgrade is more of a short-term fix and not a viable solution as we go into the 21st century.
After examining both options for the technology problem, a more long-term solution was decided on, rather than the short-term fix. Statewide integration of new technology will be more expensive and will take longer to complete, but is completely necessary for the growth of the state.
In summary, the CJNCB Tax and Revenue audit department would be most served by executing the following:
Dysfunctional Organizational Structure
· A complete restructuring to a functional organization model with no more than three upper levels.
· Empowerment of employees and formation of work groups to promote motivation and productivity.
Lack of Training and Customer Service
· Create a training department, utilizing senior personnel and managers, to grow existing employees and emphasize customer service.
Lack of Information Technology
· A wide scale upgrade of the states information technology connecting all state departments, and an integration of web based applications into that information technology.
IMPLEMENTATION PLAN AND POSSIBLE BARRIERS
Now that the solutions have been selected, thought needs to go to the plan for implementing the solutions and the possible barriers that will be encountered. The first step in the implementation process should be flattening the organization. By removing the three extra levels of management, and moving them to the newly created training department. These managers will be the driving force in the next step, which is empowering the employees to handle decisions through training. After the implementation of the empowerment program, the new standardized training program will be executed department wide, and employees will begin the training workshops. The last step goes along with the employees new training program, and that is the statewide upgrade of all computer systems to include the tax and revenue department.
The barriers that will have to be preacted to are: people being resistant to change, hiring qualified employees, reorganizing management, selecting those managers to go to the training department, and updating the infrastructure for the technology upgrade.
JUSTIFICATION AND MEASUREMENT
In closing, after the implementation of the solutions, CJNCB Tax and Revenue audit department employees will, through the new Advanced Information Technology, be able to acquire, organize, store, manipulate, and transmit information to people and subunits both inside and outside the organization. Advanced Information Technologies allow an organization to improve its handling and integration of information processing needs of all functions and divisions. (P.417, Organizational Theory)
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