Estonian tax authority cuts workforce by 245 people

10.12.2013, 12:08

Marek Helm, director-general of the tax and customs board, says that in the last 18 months the government agency has made major attempts is making their salaries competitive and motivate its employees, writes Postimees.

“While we had about 1,800 employees in the spring 2012, the number today is 1,500,” said Helm in an interview to Postimees.

Helm said that the tax board did not only lay off employees, but also changed its organizational structure.

“The organization’s management was limited to a single layer. Most people who were made redundant were in the management and coordination. We brought the management down to the regional centres. In one area, the number of people working in the centre fell by 40%,” he said.

Another major change was to consolidated similar activities to competence centres that are located all over Estonia.

“For instance, people responsible for reporting discipline are located in Tartu and people responsible for border control are in Narva. They all responsible for these activities on a national leve as well,” he said.

As a result of the changes, the number of employees in the tax and customs board fell by 14%.

“This enabled us not only to increase efficiency, but also to pay existing employees more on account of payroll savings,” said Helm, adding that in the last two years, the salaries paid by the tax and customs board have increased in average 20%, while the agency’s budget remained unchanged in 2012 and increased 4.3% in 2013.