IRS Expands Service Capacity

Some news reports (and some politicians) would have you believe that IRS budget increases approved by Congress will result in revenue agents knocking on taxpayer doors, asking questions, and demanding money. Those scare tactics are far from reality. Much of those budget increases will go to upgrading systems and adding service staff, both much needed investments to expand IRS service capacity.

Next tax filing season, the IRS hopes to improve on its 10% answer rate for taxpayer calls during last filing season. The Internal Revenue Service recently announced that it passed the 4,000 milestone for hiring new customer service representatives. These service reps were hired over the last several months and are being trained to provide help to taxpayers, including answering phone questions. All part of a much wider IRS improvement effort partially funded by the Inflation Reduction Act funding approved in August 2022. 

The IRS continues to recruit across the country, with a goal to add another 1,000 customer service representatives by the end of the year, bringing the total of new hires to 5,000. Plans are to have most new employees in place for the start of the 2023 tax season. Others will join as their training is completed in the following weeks. The IRS anticipates almost all of the new staff training will be completed by Presidents Day 2023, when they traditionally see the highest phone volumes.

That all sounds positive but remember that some of the new IRS staff will replace retiring workers, therefore not increasing the overall workforce capacity. Taxpayers should continue to first visit IRS.gov for information related to their tax questions. The site is relatively easy to navigate. Answers and general information about many frequent questions are linked from the home page and can usually be found much faster than by calling. Plus, taxpayers can bookmark the page and refer back to it as many times as necessary.

If you’re looking for a career (or career change) but a customer service representative position is not a good fit for you, the IRS is also working to hire people for other positions throughout the agency, like in Information Technology and compliance – all with a goal of improving IRS work quality and capacity. Even if you never thought of working for the IRS before, it could be a great option. They certainly aren’t going out of business or running out of work anytime soon.

The IRS is expanding service capacity with its recent budget increase by hiring 5,000 new customer service representatives and other positions across the country. More positions will be available in coming weeks and months. Interested in a career change? Check out the opportunities at USAJOBS.gov.