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HMRC internal manual

Labour Provider Guidance

Systems and processes: HMRC information systems: indirect tax: Electronic Folder

Electronic Folder (EF) is an electronic document storage and retrieval system that replaces paper-based trader’s folders. Its introduction involved the conversion of existing paper information to electronic media.

EF is designed to give you immediate online access to any document, even while a colleague is currently viewing it.

EF does the following:

  • Hold records of interaction between HMRC and customers across a range of duties including reports, phone calls and correspondence.
  • Keeps all documents to ensure a complete history. New and existing paper documents are scanned and indexed to make them available to EF users. You can also capture existing electronic documents. As well as this, EF receives documents electronically from a number of sources, including the VAT mainframe, the contact centres (National Advice Service), and trader submissions over the internet.
  • Documents can be moved around the organisation and accessed by various teams via the EF In-Tray Facility
  • Makes all changes related to a trader immediately available to all users-these are indexed against the Departmental Trader Reference Number (DTRN)
  • Notifies users of all extant interests registered by users.
  • Provides simultaneous document viewing capabilities, although only one person can alter a document at one time.
  • Helps manage business processes based on documents.
  • Keeps audit trails to record all actions taken.
  • Provides management assurance facilities, including some new reporting opportunities.
  • Allows users with the required access rights to use EF from their laptop computers. This facility is called ‘mobile working’.

A comprehensive guide to Electronic Folder is available on the VAT Systems Liaison Team intranet site.