The Government Accountability Office released a new report (2010 Tax Filing Season: IRS's Performance Improved in Some Key Areas, but Efficiency Gains Are Possible in Others). Among the findings, the report looked at the long wait time facing taxpayers who call the IRS.
Compared to 2009, the percentage of callers seeking live assistance who received it improved in 2010 and the accuracy of answers remained high, at over 90 percent. However, the average wait time increased. Further, IRS’s annual goal for providing caller assistance was lower than any of the preceding 5 years. However, IRS lacks a standard for what constitutes good customer telephone service that could be compared to its annual goals. Such a standard would make the gap between the annual goals and the standard more transparent.