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The United States government tasks the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) with managing the country’s tax obligations. This agency helps those who pay their taxes and works to hold those who attempt to avoid these obligations accountable. The numbers of agents who work with this agency to achieve this goal has decreased over the last ten years, leaving this agency short staffed.

According to officials with the agency, this is about to change. The IRS is recruiting tax professionals and hoping to grow its numbers in coming years.

Why is the IRS looking to hire more tax professionals?

As noted above, the numbers are low. The Large Business and International division has dropped from over 7,000 to 4,300 and the Criminal Investigation unit is down from 2,900 to 2,000.

In addition to tax professionals, the agency is looking to hire computer engineers and others who specialize in technology to help build data analytics and software to help increase the agency’s efficiency.

The IRS is hoping not just to fill positions that were left open when others retired, but also gain more people to help better handle an evolving tax world. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) as well as the development of digital currency have led to big changes in the tax world. The IRS sates it needs new agents to develop guidance and help ensure compliance.

What does this mean for taxpayers?

The surge in hiring can mean an increase in audits. As with any position, new hires require training, mentoring and experience. In many cases, experience comes with mistakes. As a result, it may be more important than ever to seek legal counsel if you receive notification of an audit.