21.10.1 Embedded Quality (EQ) Program for Accounts Management, Campus Compliance, Field Assistance, Tax Exempt/Government Entities, Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS), and Electronic Products and Services Support

Manual Transmittal

September 11, 2018

Purpose

(1) This transmits revised IRM 21.10.1, Quality Assurance - Embedded Quality (EQ) Program for Accounts Management, Compliance, Field Assistance, Tax Exempt/Government Entities, Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS), and Electronic Products and Services Support.

Material Changes

(1) IPU 17U1490 issued 10-23-2017 Exhibit 21.10.1-9 Updated to correct fiscal year column.

(2) IPU 17U1568 issued 11-06-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2 - Updated to add references to CER.

(3) IPU 17U1568 issued 11-06-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.4 - Updated to add references to CER.

(4) IPU 17U1568 issued 11-06-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.5 - Updated to add references to CER.

(5) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.7 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(6) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.7.7 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(7) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.4.2.2.5 - Changes Screen Shots to Screen Capture.

(8) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.4.2.2.10 - Added abbreviation (MAJA).

(9) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.4.2.2.12 - Added Collection Phones CSCO to the Collection Phones Product Line definition.

(10) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.5.3.2.17 - Updated the definition of the CSCO Paper SPRG.

(11) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 IRM 21.10.1.5.3.2.18 - Updated the definition of the CSCO IAAL Transcripts SPRG.

(12) IPU 17U1586 issued 11-09-2017 Exhibit 21.10.1-4 - Added Corporate Timeliness to the header exhibit.

(13) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(14) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.3 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(15) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.6.5 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(16) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.6.6 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(17) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.6.7 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(18) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.7.7 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(19) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.2.8 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(20) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.3.2 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(21) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.4.1.38 - Changed Quality Assurance Coordinator to Quality Assurance Specialist.

(22) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.5.1.2(4) - Revised to add split image unrelated CIS cases to the list of tax account work excluded from Accounts Paper review.

(23) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.8 - Removed reference to CPAS.

(24) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 IRM 21.10.1.8.4 - Updated PAS Review Defect Rebuttal Procedures for Compliance.

(25) IPU 17U1645 issued 12-01-2017 Exhibit 21.10.1-4 - added acronym MAJA after Master Attribute Job Aid.

(26) IPU 18U0138 issued 01-18-2018 IRM 21.10.1.7.12.2 - updated to reflect daily weighting of Compliance Paper SPRGs.

(27) IPU 18U0138 issued 01-18-2018 Exhibit 21.10.1-10 - updated to correct the Planning Period in the last three months of FY18.

(28) IPU 18U0138 issued 01-18-2018 Exhibit 21.10.1-11 - updated to reflect daily weighting on several Compliance Paper SPRGs

(29) IPU 18U0307 issued 02-15-2018 IRM 21.10.1.8.2 - updated to add a link to information for Accounts Management on Bad Line Calls.

(30) IPU 18U0307 issued 02-15-2018 Exhibit 21.10.1-11 - updated to add CSCO Paper and CSCO Paper IAAL Transcripts.

(31) IPU 18U0827 issued 05-17-2018 IRM 21.10.1.5 - updated to add more substance to paragraph 8, 2018regarding reviewing paper cases.

(32) IPU 18U0827 issued 05-17-2018 IRM 21.10.1.7.12.1 - updated to include a note advising managers not to file the View/List Single Case DCI Report in the employee’s EPF.

(33) IPU 18U0827 issued 05-17-2018 Exhibit 21.10.1-2 - updated to include the EQRS permission levels for CER Reviewers.

(34) IPU 18U1107 issued 07-27-2018 IRM 21.10.1.8.3 to add references to Return Preparer Misconduct (RPM) and update the wording.

(35) IRM 21.10.1.2 - Added Return Preparer Misconduct to the SPRG list.

(36) IRM 21.10.1.2(7) - Updated the timeframe for how long calls remain on Contact Recording.

(37) IRM 21.10.1.2.1 (2) - Corrected Field Assistance SPRG names. Added Return Preparer Misconduct.

(38) IRM 21.10.1.2.3 - Added reference to Embedded Quality Program Managers.

(39) IRM 21.10.1.2.6 - Added reference to Embedded Quality Program Managers.

(40) IRM 21.10.1.2.6.4 - Added reference to Embedded Quality Program Managers.

(41) IRM 21.10.1.2.6.6 - Added reference to Embedded Quality Program Managers.

(42) IRM 21.10.1.2.6.7 - Added reference to Embedded Quality Program Managers.

(43) IRM 21.10.1.2.6.8 - Added reference to Identity Theft Victims Assistance (IDTVA).

(44) IRM 21.10.1.2.7 - Changed Process Improvement Specialist to Embedded Quality Program Manager.

(45) IRM 21.10.1.3.1(3) - Added a note related to suspension or early termination of IRM deviations.

(46) IRM 21.10.1.4(8) - Revised paragraph on what CQRS and PAS will capture from CR.

(47) IRM 21.10.1.4.1.36 - Changed TEGE Phones results sample validity from monthly to bi-monthly.

(48) IRM 21.10.1.4.2.2.14 - Removed reference to local review.

(49) IRM 21.10.1.4.2.2.3 - Changed ACS Phones results sample validity from monthly to bi-monthly.

(50) IRM 21.10.1.5(10) - Removed note related to sharing the DCI with the employee.

(51) IRM 21.10.1.5.1.2(1) - Added reference to Return Preparer Misconduct.

(52) IRM 21.10.1.5.1.2(4) - Added another reason tax account work can be excluded from review.

(53) IRM 21.10.1.5.1.3.3 - Added a paragraph explaining the CIS sample.

(54) IRM 21.10.1.5.3.2.13 - Added paragraph (3) to include the Offer in Compromise IRM.

(55) IRM 21.10.1.5.3.3.11 - Removed duplicate paragraph.

(56) IRM 21.10.1.7.12.2(2) - Listed new Systemic Error Driver Report and Volumes Report.

(57) IRM 21.10.1.7.5 - Added a new paragraph (4) referencing the header field 'Corporate Timeliness'.

(58) IRM 21.10.1.7.7(2) - Removed requirement to put Customer Accuracy Drivers in Feedback Summary, added text in the Feedback Summary Remarks indicating to input only one asterisk and added a note related to what CQRS will put in the Remarks fields.

(59) IRM 21.10.1.7.9 - Added a note related to NQRS edits.

(60) IRM 21.10.1.8.2(7) - Clarified that individuals who submit rebuttals must be on the Authorized Rebuttal Contact List.

(61) IRM 21.10.1.8.2(8) - Clarified what changes CQRS can make on rebuttal cases.

(62) IRM 21.10.1.8.2(9) - Clarified that second level rebuttals need to address CQRS justifications on the first level rebuttal.

(63) IRM 21.10.1.8.4(4) - Added a reference to header fields.

(64) IRM 21.10.1.8.4(6) - Changed the recorded call retention period from 60 days to 18 months.

(65) IRM 21.10.1.9.5 - Updated to reflect the change from Aspect to IUP.

(66) Exhibit 21.10.1-4 - Update to add header field Cust Sat Survey Offered.

(67) Exhibit 21.10.1-5 - Updated to add missing attributes in the 5XX series.

(68) Exhibit 21.10.1-9 - Updated Month Ending Edit Cutoff Dates Cycle Chart.

(69) Exhibit 21.10.1-10 - Updated Month Ending Edit Cutoff Dates Calendar Chart.

(70) Exhibit 21.10.1-11 - Updated to add Private Debt Collection Phones.

(71) Exhibit 21.10.1-12 - Added CQRSS (Campus Quality Review SharePoint Site) to the acronym list.

Effect on Other Documents

IRM 21.10.1, dated August 29, 2017 (effective October 1, 2017), is superseded. The following IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs), issued from October 23, 2017 to July 27, 2018, have been incorporated into this IRM: IPU 17U1490, IPU 17U1568, IPU 17U1645, IPU 18U0138, IPU 18U0307, IPU 18U0827, IPU 18U1107.

Audience

Accounts Management (AM), Campus Compliance in Small Business/Self-Employed (SB/SE) and Wage and Investment (W&I), Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS), Field Assistance (FA), Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS), and Tax Exempt and Government Organizations (TE/GE)

Effective Date

(10-01-2018)

Christina Navarrete Wasson
Director, Joint Operations Center
Wage and Investment Division

Embedded Quality (EQ) Review Program Scope and Objectives

  1. Embedded Quality is the system used by Accounts Management, Campus Compliance Services consisting of Collection, Examination, Return Integrity and Verification Operations (RICS) and Specialty, Electronic Products and Services Support, Field Assistance, Return Integrity, and Tax Exempt/Government Entities for their Embedded Quality Review Program.

  2. This section provides procedures for Campus Embedded Quality program level and site reviews, as well as front-line manager evaluative employee reviews of:

    • Telephone operations

    • Closed Paper case reviews

    • In-process case reviews

    • Responses to taxpayer correspondence

    • Outgoing correspondence and notices

    • Adjustment actions

    • Centralized processes

    • Email responses to IRS web site questions

    • Taxpayer Assistance Center contacts

  3. This section also provides procedures for:

    • Accessing, adding, editing, and correcting National Quality Review System (NQRS) and Embedded Quality Review System (EQRS) records

    • Generating reports available through NQRS and EQRS

    • Completing the IRS portion of the Customer Satisfaction Survey

The Quality Review Process

  1. The Quality Review process provides a method to monitor, measure, and improve the quality of work. Quality Review data is used to provide quality statistics for the Service's Business Results portion of the Balanced Measures, and/or to identify trends, problem areas, training needs, and opportunities for process improvement.

  2. The Embedded Quality (EQ) effort is a way of doing business that builds commitment and capability among all individuals to continually improve customer service, employee satisfaction, and business results. The EQ effort is based on three components:

    • Improving the way quality is measured, calculated, and reported

    • Creating accountability by connecting employee reviews to quality measurement in a way that enables managers and employees to act on the results

    • Improving the design and deployment of the quality resources dedicated to review, analysis, and improvement

    The Embedded Quality System calculates measurement using the percent of applicable coded attributes that are correct based on the number of opportunities within each of five "buckets" . The buckets are defined as follows:

    • Customer Accuracy: giving the correct answer with the correct resolution. "Correct" is measured based on the taxpayer receiving a correct response or resolution to the case or issue, and if appropriate, taking the necessary case actions or case disposition to provide this response or resolution. For the purpose of coding, additional IRS issues or procedures that do not directly impact the taxpayer's issue or case are not considered.

    • Regulatory Accuracy: adhering to statutory/regulatory process requirements when making determinations on taxpayer accounts/cases.

    • Procedural Accuracy: adhering to non-statutory/non-regulatory internal process requirements when making determinations on taxpayer accounts/cases.

    • Professionalism: promoting a positive image of the Service by using effective communication techniques.

    • Timeliness: resolving an issue in the most efficient manner through the use of proper workload management and time utilization techniques.

  3. A "product line" is a major grouping of similar work that is reportable and is measured in the Business Performance Review System (BPRS). Product lines listed below are further defined later in this IRM. The national and local quality reviews for these product lines will be entered into NQRS, and the managerial/CER quality reviews for these product lines will be entered into EQRS. A "Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG)" is a subset of a product line that generally has a separate sample.

    Product Line Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG) SOI Designed Sample
    Accounts Paper Accounts Paper Adjustments Yes
    Adjustments Paper (non-CIS) Yes
    Accounts Phones Accounts Phones EIN Yes
    Accounts Phones General Yes
    Accounts Phones NTA Yes
    Accounts Phones PPS Yes
    AM Identity Theft Phones Yes
    ACS Phones ACS Phones Yes
    ACS Written ACS Case Processing  
    ACS Support  
    AM Identity Theft Paper IDT Fraudulent Returns Yes
    IDT IPSU Yes
    IDT Paper - AM Yes
    IDT Specialty - AM Yes
    AM Routing AM Routing Default Screener Yes
    AM Specialized Services AMSS CAF/POA Yes
    AMSS EIN Yes
    AMSS International Specialized Yes
    AMSS Support Services Yes
    AMSS Technical Services Yes
    AUR Paper AUR Paper  
    AUR Paper CAWR  
    AUR Paper FUTA  
    AUR Paper PMF  
    BMF AUR Paper  
    AUR Phones AUR Phones  
    BMF AUR Phones  
    ASFR Paper ASFR Paper  
    ASFR Phones ASFR Phones (Including Refund Hold)  
    Centralized Case Processing Collection Paper CLP Lien Paper  
    CCP GCP  
    CCP MMIA  
    CLP Lien Paper CRD  
    Centralized Case Processing Phones CCP Lien Phones  
    CCP MMIA Phones  
    Centralized Case Processing Exam Paper CCP Exam Paper  
    Centralized Liens Paper CLO Lien Paper  
    CLO Lien Paper CRD  
    Centralized Liens Phones CLO Lien Phones  
    CIO Paper CIO Paper  
    CIO Phones CIO Phones  
    OIC Paper COIC Paper  
    MOIC Paper  
    OIC Phones COIC Offer Exam  
    COIC Process Exam  
    Collection Paper Collection Paper Primary  
    CSCO Paper  
    CSCO Paper IAAL Transcripts  
    Collection Phones Collection Phones CSCO  
    Collection Phones CSCO Collection Phones Combat Zone  
    WHC Phones  
    Compliance PAS Compliance PAS Review  
    CS Specialized Paper Services Centralized Excise Tax Paper  
    Centralized Estate and Gift Tax Paper  
    Centralized Transfer Tax Technician  
    CS Specialized Phone Services Centralized Excise Tax Phones  
    Centralized Estate and Gift Tax Phones  
    e-help Phones e-help Phones Yes
    Exam Paper Exam Paper Area Office Support  
    Exam Paper Classification  
    Exam Paper Discretionary Programs  
    Exam Paper EIC Programs  
    Exam Paper Flow Through Entities  
    Exam Phones Exam Phones  
    Forms Order Forms Order NDC Yes
    Innocent Spouse Paper Innocent Spouse Paper  
    Innocent Spouse Phones Innocent Spouse Phones  
    Integrity and Verification Operations IVO Screening and Verification Yes
    IVO Accounts Resolution Yes
    IVO Identification Yes
    IVO Frivolous Filer Paper Yes
    IVO Frivolous Filer Phones Yes
    International Phones Accounts Phones International Yes
    Tax Law Phones International Yes
    Private Debt Collection Phones PDC Phones PCA Calls  
    Spanish Phones Accounts Phones Spanish Yes
    Tax Law Phones Spanish Yes
    Tax Law Phones Tax Law Phones General Yes
    TE/GE Phones TE/GE Telephone Yes
    TE/GE Correspondence TE/GE Correspondence  
    Field Assistance FA Procedural Yes
    FA Contacts Yes
    AM Clerical Campus Support Yes
    Image Control Team  
    Return Preparer Misconduct Return Preparer Misconduct Yes
  4. New product lines for Campus Compliance Collection or Examination must be approved by the Collection or Examination Quality and Technical Support who have responsibility for updates and maintenance of the system, and the EQ National Support Staff, who is responsible for programming the database. Other functions need approval from the areas responsible for quality review and the EQ National Support Staff. The function must be prepared to provide the following information:

    • Is there an existing measure?

    • How many Full Time Equivalents (FTEs) will be needed to review the product line, and how will the function provide them?

    • Who will perform the review (Centralized Quality Review System, Program Analysis System or Centralized Program Analysis System, site quality analysts)?

    • What is the volume of work?

    • Who is recommending this request?

    • Will Contact Recording be used?

  5. Reviews for the Quality Review process are completed by the Centralized Quality Review System (CQRS), Program Analysis System (PAS), or sites (for some national quality measure or, local reviews performed for quality improvement). The National Review is a review that measures the quality of the entire product. Review data is compiled using a Data Collection Instrument (DCI). Data from national reviews is input to the National Quality Review System (NQRS), then rolled up, to provide the business results for the Balanced Measures. These results are the quality ratings for Customer Accuracy, Professionalism, and Timeliness. Data from local reviews performed for quality improvement is entered into NQRS as a Local Review and is not rolled up into the national accuracy rates.

  6. The Managerial Review process creates accountability by connecting employee reviews to the balanced measures. Managers and Centralized Evaluative Review (CER) will use the system to track employee performance and training needs. Data from the managerial and CER reviews is entered into the Embedded Quality Review System (EQRS), which maps to an employee's Critical Job Elements and Aspects. It is then rolled up to identify overall employee, team, department, and operation scores for Accuracy, Professionalism, and Timeliness. It is not combined in any way with national or local accuracy rates.

  7. The Contact Recording (CR) system records telephone contacts between the Service and customers. The CR system records the complete conversation of every call and randomly selects approximately ten percent of the calls per site, 60 percent for CER, to simultaneously capture both the voice and on-screen computer activity. If a call is one of the randomly selected on-screen calls, managers and CER quality reviewers will be able to hear and see the entire customer experience. Contact Recording technology allows managers to provide feedback and identify training needs for employees. Managers can access the recordings and allow employees to listen to their own interactions with customers. CR is available for managers, CER and National quality review for most telephone and Field Assistance product lines. Selected telephone calls for which an evaluation form is submitted remain in the system for eighteen months.

    Note:

    Periodically, there are systemic problems with Contact Recording. When there are problems, managerial reviews must be live monitored using alternate available tools. CER quality reviewers do not monitor live calls.

  8. All calls handled by the operation are included in the sample and are selected by an algorithm that is programmed into the CR system to randomly select the calls for review.

  9. Campus Quality Review SharePoint Site (CQRSS) was implemented to streamline the review and rebuttal process. Case contents are scanned into CQRSS and completed reviews are shared with the Operations using a designated Points of Contact (POC). CQRSS is mandatory to use on all Compliance Collection and Examination case/call reviews.

  10. The IRS adopted the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TBOR) in June 2014. Employees are responsible for being familiar with and acting in accord with taxpayer rights. See IRC 7803(a)(3), and for additional information about the Taxpayer Bill of Rights please review the TBOR website. http://irweb.irs.gov/AboutIRS/tbor/default.aspx )

Centralized Quality Review System (CQRS)

  1. Centralized Quality Review System (CQRS) is operated by the Joint Operations Center (JOC) to provide independent quality review services for a number of product lines.

  2. CQRS measures the quality of:

    • Tax Law, Accounts, National Distribution Center, Default Screeners, e-help, Tax Exempt/Government Entities (TE/GE) and Automated Collection System (ACS) calls answered by assistors in all sites

    • Accounts Paper, AM Identity Theft Paper SPRGs and Return Preparer Misconduct

    • Field Assistance Contacts and Procedural contacts

Program Analysis System (PAS) and Site Reviews for the National Measure

  1. PAS and Site Quality Review measures the quality of:

    • Adjustments Paper (non-CIS)

    • ACS Support

    • Accounts Management Clerical - Campus Support

    • Accounts Management Specialized Services

    • Automated Substitute For Return (ASFR) Paper and Phones

    • Automated Underreporter (AUR) Paper

    • Automated Underreporter (AUR) Phones

    • Centralized Case Processing Collection (CCP) Paper and Phones

    • Centralized Case Processing (CCP) Exam

    • Centralized Insolvency Operation (CIO) Paper and Phones

    • Centralized Liens (CLO) Paper and Phones

    • Offer In Compromise (OIC) Paper and Phones

    • Collection Paper and Phones

    • Compliance Services (CS) Specialized Paper and Phones Services

    • Exam Paper

    • Exam Phones

    • Innocent Spouse Paper

    • Innocent Spouse Phones

    • Return Integrity and Compliance Services - Integrity and Verification Operations

Local Reviews for Quality Improvement

  1. Local reviews may be performed to focus attention on areas that require improvement. The local quality reviews are performed by staffs reporting to the Quality Assurance Manager, Embedded Quality Program Manager (AM) or other units that have quality assurance duties. Local quality reviews may also be used for employee development and on-the-job instruction. The Accounts Management function may also request that local quality reviews be performed on processes that are not subject to the national quality review.

  2. Generally, local reviews should be used for one year when a new product is being implemented. This process is considered a “baseline” period. Often the new procedures being implemented are unstable and need to be adjusted. During this time changes are made to the functional IRMs and training is provided to the employees. The baseline period allows time for the operation to perfect their processes and procedures while receiving feedback on performance.

Managerial/CER Reviews

  1. Managerial/CER reviews, which are prepared on EQRS, measure employee performance.

    Note:

    Managerial/CER reviews are performed independently from national and local quality reviews. National and local quality review results are never used for evaluation of individual employees.

Objectives of Quality Review

  1. Quality Review data is used by management to provide a basis for measuring and improving program effectiveness by identifying:

    1. Defects resulting from site or systemic action(s) or inaction(s),

    2. Drivers of Customer Accuracy,

    3. Reason(s) for defect occurrence,

    4. Defect trends, and

    5. Recommendation for corrective action

  2. Quality review also provides:

    • A way to ensure the corrective action was effective

    • A vehicle for input to balanced measures, and

    • Assistance to management in efforts to improve quality of service

  3. Managerial review data is used by management for some or all the purposes listed above as well as:

    1. Tracking employee performance and providing input into employee appraisals,

    2. Identifying training needs for individual employees and for groups of employees, and

    3. Planning workload distribution.

    Note:

    Managerial/CER reviews evaluate individual employee performance and are performed independently from national and local quality reviews. National and local quality review results are never used for evaluation of individual employees. See IRM 1.4.16 (Accounts Management Guide for Managers), IRM 1.4.20 (Filing and Payment Compliance Managers Handbook) IRM 1.4.17 (Compliance Managers Handbook) IRM 1.4.11 (Field Assistance Guide for Managers) and IRM 1.4.18 (Electronic Products and Support Services Managers Guide) for more information on manager responsibilities in conducting managerial reviews. In Compliances Services NQRS reviews are not to be shared with employees.

Quality Review Roles and Responsibilities

  1. The Quality Review process relies on the teamwork of all of the following:

    • Headquarters Policy divisions, Headquarters Campus Quality Analysts, Headquarters Collection or Examination Quality and Technical Support Product Line Analysts (PLAs), Process Improvement and Customer Accuracy (PICA) and EQ National Support Staff

    • CQRS - part of the Joint Operations Center (JOC)

    • Compliance PAS - Headquarters Campus Quality and reports to the program manager

    • Planning and Analysis (P&A) Staffs

    • Accounts Management, Campus Compliance, Electronic Products and Services Support, Return Integrity and Compliance Services, Field Assistance and TE/GE Operations

    • Quality Assurance Managers (QAMs) and Field Improvement Managers and Specialists or other quality staffs

    • Embedded Quality Program Managers

Headquarters Business Operating Divisions (BOD)
  1. The Headquarter Policy divisions issue program goals based on the Balanced Measures.

  2. Policy reviews Quality Assurance programs as part of periodic reviews of Accounts Management, Compliance, Electronic Products and Services Support, Return Integrity and Compliance Services - Integrity and Verification Operations and Field Assistance programs.

Collection Quality and Technical Support (CQ&TS) and Examination Quality and Technical Support (EQ&TS)
  1. The mission of CQ&TS and EQ&TS is to provide unbiased, cross-Policy administration of the Embedded Quality Review System. The functions span both Campus Collection and Examination and have an enterprise objective to measure performance. By design it is independent from other functions to ensure impartiality and maintain data integrity. CQ&TS and EQ&TS regularly interacts with the headquarters’ business owners and all campus/remote office operations to work quality issues including:

    • Providing oversight and coordination of the cross-functional Embedded Quality (EQ) Program.

    • Monitoring EQ program adherence including proper coding of reviews and all aspects of the sampling process.

    • Sponsoring on-going cross-campus discussions to identify trends and issuing guidance and direction to correct global problems.

    • Maintaining the EQ system which includes establishing work arounds for problems identified through coding.

    • Updating EQ tools including job aids, system fields, attribute definitions, and monitoring and resolving Contact Recording issues.

    • Establishing regulations and procedures and providing support for attribute coding for Campus Collection and Examination reviews.

    • Making all final-authority determinations on elevated rebuttals or adjustments.

    • Serving as the Campus Collection and Examination liaison to Accounts Management including coordinating system adjustments to ensure uniform and cohesive data collection.

    • Sponsoring and supporting new Campus Collection and Examination product lines for the system.

Embedded Quality (EQ) National Support Staff
  1. The EQ National Support Staff is part of the Joint Operations Center (JOC) and provides support to all EQRS and NQRS users in all functions at all levels. The responsibilities include but are not limited to:

    • Serve as liaison between JOC and various Business Units in the Enterprise on program and quality issues

    • Coordinate with Statistics of Income (SOI) on weighted report calculations and related programming

    • Support business quality training initiatives

    • Work with business units to develop and define new (Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs)

    • Work with the business units to develop new reports as needed

    • Work with various business Product Line Analysts to maintain Data Collection Instruments (DCIs) for current SPRGs

    • Support the EQ Summits between business units and NTEU required in the contract

    • Process Reports Request Central (RRC) submissions for EQRS/NQRS data

    • Issue system alerts to customer base

    • Ensure official Quality measures (Customer Accuracy, Timeliness, Professionalism) as reported by the application are timely and accurate

    • Ensure managerial performance reviews as reported by the application are accurate and reliable

    • Create/submit annual EQRS-C (Campus) enhancement UWR

    • Create/submit annual EQRS-C Maintenance UWR and other UWRs as needed

    • Work with IT (Applications Development, Embedded Quality Section) on all EQRS-C system-related issues

    • Coordinate with IT in completing annual UWR submissions

    • Maintain EQRS-C database reference tables via OL-Matrix web application

    • Serve as Application Point of Contact for all FISMA-related activities and requirements

    • Maintain Embedded Quality Website http://eq.web.irs.gov

Accounts Management/Compliance Operations
  1. The P&A Chiefs for Accounts Management and Compliance are responsible for the Site Level Business Plans.

  2. The P&A Chiefs are responsible for site reviews of product lines in Accounts Management that provide data for the Balanced Measures.

  3. The operations managers are responsible for evaluative reviews on their employees separate and apart from the National Review process on the EQRS side of the database.

  4. If feasible, the Embedded Quality Program Manager and Process Improvement Specialist/Field Improvement Specialist should report directly to the P&A Chief. This eliminates potential conflicts of interest which may occur when more than one department manager is accountable for a product or service. If a formal position is not designated within P&A the responsibilities should be designated to one or more individuals in the operation to ensure that the obligation is met.

Quality Assurance Manager (QAM)
  1. This section only applies to remote and campus locations with functional areas where there is an existing QAM position. In offices/functional areas where no position exists, or in Campus Compliance, management will need to ensure these duties are appropriately addressed.

  2. The QAM is responsible for the overall planning, administration, and evaluation of the quality-related sections of the Site Level Business Plans. The QAM will identify problems and work with management to solve them.

  3. The Site Level Business Plans outline procedures for the review of all areas of responsibility. This review process, when combined with CQRS/PAS data and other functional data, will help with evaluating the overall quality of operations and making recommendations for improvement.

  4. The QAM will serve as the Quality (QA) manager for the Operation, ensuring that designated quality resources are used to focus on quality improvement efforts.

    Note:

    Results of reviews performed by CQRS/PAS staff are not to be used in employee evaluations.

  5. By using trend analysis, the QAM will determine the causes that adversely affect quality. The QAM will assist the management team in initiating processes for employees to improve their quality of service. It is important that lines of communication remain open among the QAM, the QR team, and management in order to identify problem areas, take appropriate corrective actions, and re-evaluate quality to ensure corrective actions result in improved quality.

  6. The QAM or other designated person within the operation will log in and date completed review records that require rework, including reviews by CQRS/PAS, where defects have been identified including when FLASH was annotated in the Feedback Summary Remarks field. Managers must return corrected work to the QAM within five working days of receipt. See IRM 21.10.1.7.7(3) for additional instructions on FLASH remarks. The QAM will enter the completion date in the log. The QAM will monitor corrected work to ensure the timeliness and quality of responses to taxpayers.

  7. The QAM will act as the liaison between the CQRS/PAS staff and management and is responsible for communicating quality information to all managers in the operation.

  8. The QAM will identify training needs and recommend to the Training Coordinator and/or management, the type of training needed (e.g., on-the-job training or classroom instruction), and assist in the development of additional training exercises and workshops to meet those needs.

  9. The QAM and the CQRS/PAS staff will be responsible for the protection of NQRS DCIs and any supporting documentation from legacy systems. All documents and information (including taxpayer information) seen, heard, or handled must remain secure and confidential.

  10. The QAM will serve as the Embedded Quality liaison with managers.

  11. The QAM will work with managers to recognize and reward quality at all levels (e.g., employee-of-the-month, Quality Honor Roll, etc.), using the National Agreement for guidance.

  12. The QAM will be responsible for working with the Training Coordinator and/or management to ensure that EQ training is made available to all who need it. The QAM is responsible for providing technical training to the quality staff.

  13. The Field Improvement Specialists (FIS) will work closely with Headquarters and the PICA team to manage the portfolio of national projects and best practice evaluation. The expectations for the FIS positions include, but are not limited to, the following.

    1. A regular solicitation for projects will be made to ensure there is no overlap between various sites or functions.

    2. Field Directors recommending projects would be in charge of those selected.

    3. Each Field Director will conduct at least one project with national impact each year.

    4. Field Directors will have the latitude to use FIS resources for local projects.

    5. All projects will be linked to the organization’s strategic goals and direction.

Quality Review/Embedded Quality Program Managers
  1. Throughout this IRM section, the term "Quality Managers" will be used to include the duties of CQRS/PAS Managers, Embedded Quality Program Managers or other functional Quality Review Managers who perform site reviews for the national quality measure and/or local reviews for quality improvement.

  2. Quality Managers are responsible for ensuring the completion of the national and local reviews.

  3. Compliance Collection and Examination PAS Managers use the Campus Quality Review SharePoint Site (CQRSS) to assign and monitor the national reviews.

  4. Quality Managers ensure that all applicable work is sampled and reviewed within sample plan guidelines.

    Note:

    Results of reviews performed by CQRS/PAS are not to be used in functional employee evaluations.

  5. The Quality Manager maintains the integrity and quality of the review system by monitoring and reviewing the quality analysts and clerical support. The Quality Manager should routinely monitor the quality sampling selection process. Refer to descriptions of the product lines later in this section for more information on sample universes and sampling guidelines. The Quality Manager should also perform a periodic (at least quarterly) spot check of the work to confirm the case volume matches the count provided by the operations. For example: verify the review content of a single folder to ensure that the volume of the work matches the number of cases in the folder. If these figures do not match, contact the operation to address the reason(s) for the discrepancy and to discuss ways to improve the process accuracy.

  6. The Quality Manager and staff determine the causes that adversely affect quality by using trend analysis to identify the most frequently made defects and root causes. The Quality Manager recommends corrective action and/or improvements to functional areas.

  7. The Quality Manager identifies sample cases that require rework (including cases where FLASH was entered in the Feedback Summary Remarks field) and forwards them to the appropriate functional area. This includes reviews by CQRS where defects have been identified. All defects must be reworked to ensure each taxpayer receives the correct information and all appropriate adjustments are made to their account(s). The manager of the employee who created the defect is responsible for ensuring the defect is corrected within the applicable timeframe after the two-day consistency period. Flash defects must be corrected by the next business day. All other corrective actions not marked as Flash defects must be corrected within five business days.

  8. The Quality Manager is responsible for working with the Training Coordinator to ensure that the CQRS/PAS staff has the appropriate training.

Quality Analyst/PAS Analyst
  1. A quality analyst or a clerk is responsible for pulling the daily sample.

  2. The quality analyst should perform an unbiased, consistent, and accurate review of all work.

  3. The quality analyst provides the QAM or PAS Manager with:

    • Any cases identified as Flash for rework

    • Analysis of types of errors identified during review.

  4. The quality analyst should provide the QAM, CQ&TS, EQ&TS, Embedded Quality Program Manager, PICA Product Line Quality Analyst, or National Support Staff, as applicable, with recommendations for corrections/improvements on:

    • IRM 21.10.1, Quality Assurance - Embedded Quality (EQ) Program for Accounts Management, Compliance, Field Assistance, Tax Exempt/Government Entities, Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS) - Integrity and Verification Operations and Electronic Products and Services Support

    • Embedded Quality Review Training Material

    • The NQRS DCI

  5. The quality analyst will:

    1. Code the appropriate attribute for each action, while considering the root cause of any defects a single action should not be coded "N" in multiple attributes to avoid a trickle-down effect.

    2. Review work using valid sampling techniques as approved by SOI for all SPRGs with sampling plans designed by SOI. IRM 21.10.1.2 to determine if the SPRG has a sample designed by SOI.

    3. Record complete review results using the NQRS DCI.

    4. Measure performance against established quality standards in the functional IRM, publications, and other approved reference sources.

  6. The quality analyst reviewing the work will need to complete training that is appropriate for the SPRG they will review. The following is a list of suggested training topics:

    • Embedded Quality Review Training (available on ELMS)

    • Quality Review command codes

    • Automatic Data Processing (ADP)/Integrated Data Retrieval System (IDRS) training modules, including on-line accounts and adjustments, and Accounts Management and Compliance Services

    • Coding Consistency Course

    • Technical tax law (as appropriate)

    • Interactive Tax Law Assistant (ITLA)

    • Accounts Collection Service Guide

    • Correspondence guidelines

    • Taxpayer Advocate Service guidelines and criteria

    • Oral statement guidelines

    • Procedural guidelines

    • Communication skills

    • Probing skills

    • Timeliness guidelines

    • e-help

    • TE/GE Specialized Systems

    • TE/GE Probe and Response Guide

    • Continuing Professional Education (CPE) classes related to their assigned SPRG when available

Accounts Management Local Quality Analyst/PAS Analyst
  1. The Quality Analysts (PAS, QAC) is responsible for:

    1. Pulling the daily sample

    2. Performing consistent, unbiased and accurate review of all work

    3. Providing Managers with:
      any cases identified as Flash for rework
      analysis of types of errors identified during review

    4. Identifying IRM updates for Weekly Meetings and local training initiatives

    5. Providing the tax analysts from Process Improvement/Customer Accuracy (PICA); Process and Program Management (PPM); Identify Protection Strategy and Oversight (IPSO); Identity Theft Victims Assistance (IDTVA); and Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS) – i.e., Taxpayer Protection Program with SERP Feedbacks for corrections/improvements to:
      IRM 21, Customer Account Services
      IRM 21.10.1, Embedded Quality
      Embedded Quality Review (EQRS) training materials

  2. The local Quality Analyst will use the National Quality Review System (NQRS) Data Collection Instrument (DCI) to:

    1. Code the appropriate attribute for each action

    2. Consider root cause of each defect as a single action

    3. Not code "N" in multiple attributes to avoid a trickle-down effect

    4. Review work using valid sampling techniques and approved by SOI

    5. Record complete review results using the NQRS DCI

    6. Measure performance against established IRM procedures, publications, form instructions and other approved reference material.

  3. Identify and coordinate IRM procedures impacting quality. Follow IRM 21.10.1.2.8.1, AM IRM Procedural Update/SERP Alert Filtering and Distribution.

  4. Work with local PI Specialist (or PICA) to gather facts/data to justify procedural, systemic and program changes to improve work practices, policies and procedures. Forward sound recommendations to PPM, IPSO, IDTVA and RICS - i.e., Taxpayer Protection Program with solid facts and figures to justify changes.

  5. The Quality Analyst reviewing the work will need to complete Training lessons that are appropriate for the Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG) they review. The following is a list of suggested training topics:

    • Embedded Quality Review Training

    • Quality Review command codes

    • Automatic Data Processing (ADP)/Integrated Data Retrieval System (IDRS) training modules, including on-line accounts and adjustments, and Accounts Management and Compliance Services

    • EQRS Coding Consistency Training Courses (3 courses)

    • Technical Phone Courses (as appropriate)

    • Technical Paper Courses (as appropriate)

    • Technical Probe and Response Guide

    • Interactive Tax Law Assistant (ITLA)

    • Accounts Collection Service Guide

    • Correspondence guidelines

    • Taxpayer Advocate Service guidelines and criteria

    • Oral statement guidelines

    • Procedural guidelines

    • Communication skills

    • Probing skills

    • Timeliness guidelines

    • e-help

    • TE/GE Specialized Systems

    • TE/GE Probe and Response Guide

Disclosure Reporting for Quality Reviewers
  1. Quality Reviewers will document unauthorized disclosures in the feedback summary section of the DCI using the FLASH procedure (IRM 21.10.1.7.7) and advise the Operation that they must report the incident per IRM 21.1.3.2.2 and IRM 10.5.4.3.3 once the Operation accepts the defect or the rebuttal period expires.

Embedded Quality Program Manager Roles and Responsibilities

  1. Campus Embedded Quality Program Manager duties are to:

    • Identify and recommend potential new processes and procedural changes that will improve work processes, quality and level of service for the taxpayers.

    • Ensure feasible recommendations are presented to enhance procedural, policy, and systemic work practices.

    • Identify and recommend changes to provide consistency, enhance productivity and efficiency.

    • Elevate improvement process recommendations to Process Improvement (PI) Manager and Process Improvement Customer Accuracy (PICA) Tax Analysts.

    • Attend and assist with Training on improvement methods, including the Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control (DMAIC) process.

    • Work with PICA to gather facts/data to justify procedural, systemic, and program changes to improve work practices, policies and procedures.

    • Share sound recommendations with solid facts and figures to justify changes to appropriate stakeholders such as Process and Program Management (PPM), Identify Protection Strategy and Oversight (IPSO), Identity Theft Victim Assistance (IDTVA), Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS), Taxpayer Protection Program (TPP), and Field Assistance (FA).

    • Ensure approved recommendations are implemented in a timely manner. Identify and coordinate IRM procedures impacting quality (via PICA then to appropriate stakeholders such as PPM, IPSO, IDTVA, Field Assistance and RICS -- i.e., TPP). IRM 21.10.1.2.7.1, AM IRM Procedural Update/SERP Alert Filtering and Distribution.

    • Identify and coordinate IRM procedures impacting quality. PI Specialist are also responsible for following procedures in IRM 21.10.1.2.7.1, AM IRM Procedural Update/SERP Alert Filtering and Distribution.

    • Lead cross-functional improvement discussions.

    • Develop and share Monthly Quality Review Talking Points with the site Field Director, P&A Chief, Operations, Department and Frontline Managers. Talking points should cover quality data, error trends, site actions to address defects, and other improvement actions. A courtesy copy of the talking points should be shared with your PICA Point of Contact (POC).

    • Request action plans (from program owner), when appropriate.

    • Participate in a least two projects (per person) per year (HQ and/or campus), working with PICA.

    • Report project status monthly (weekly when appropriate) to PICA.

    • Manage the improvement project when additional information must be gathered.

    • Use at least half your time (during the year) providing assistance to the P&A Chief and the other half of your time (during the year) working with PICA (i.e., projects and other site specific issues).

    • Perform review of CQRS reviewer DCI coding within two-day consistency timeframe to help reduce the number of incorrect defects being charged and the number of rebuttals being processed

    • Communicate results, recommendations and related improvement procedures to PICA.

    • Conduct calibration and consistency analysis.

    • Establish improvement team to address hot topics during the filing season.

    • Identify local procedures, job aids, and check sheet(s) and ensure they are approved by Headquarters and used by each site for consistency.

    • Ensure changes are based on the quality principles which are:
      •Professionalism
      •Customer Accuracy
      •Procedural Accuracy
      •Regulatory Accuracy
      •Timeliness

    • Use the following reports when analyzing quality issues:
      NQRS Weighted Customer Accuracy Report
      NQRS Customer Accuracy Driver Report
      NQRS Top Defects/Successes by Site Report
      NQRS Ad-hoc Report
      EQRS Customer Accuracy Driver Report
      EQRS Top Defects/Successes by Site Report
      EQRS Ad-hoc Report
      EQRS/NQRS Comparison Report
      SLIM Report
      ETD Report

    • Embedded Quality Program Managers and QACs are responsible for informing the Lead and Manager, when the Lead provides “bad advice” to a CSR contacting the AM Lead Gate for assistance. See IRM 21.10.1.4.1.38, Sample Procedures for AM Lead Gate.

AM IRM Procedural Update/SERP Alert Filtering and Distribution
  1. The following contains information for the filtering and distribution of IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs) and Alerts posted on SERP. Process Improvement (PI) Specialists and Quality Assurance Coordinators (QACs) will designate a minimum of two employees (within each Accounts Management (AM) site); one primary and one backup, to filter and distribute IRM procedures, IPUs and Alerts. Designated employees must:

    1. Possess strong technical skills in the applicable programs

    2. Have excellent communication skills

    3. Have the ability to identify information of importance to the site programs and distribute in a timely manner

  2. Distribution will be conducted as follows:

    1. Identifying information of high importance requiring immediate distribution (daily)

    2. Identifying information that is relevant to site specific programs (weekly)

    3. Consolidating information to be shared with the managers (daily/weekly)

  3. Managers will determine what needs to be included in their weekly meetings or can assign to employees as directed read time.

    Note:

    This process does not replace the employees’ responsibility to identify and research information on SERP.

  4. When identifying information for distribution, the designated employee will:

    1. Identify the audience or area impacted

    2. Use SERP, Tax Forms, and Tax Publication (including IRS websites) to identify information for the employees

    3. Distribute the important and relevant information daily/weekly (as described above)

    4. For IPU/Alert clarification, the designated employee (Campus/Remote) should contact the PI Specialist

  5. If the PI Specialist needs assistance with IPU/Alert clarification, PI Specialist will contact their local Planning and Analysis (P&A) Analyst responsible for the related program/procedure for assistance.

  6. If after consulting with each other, the PI Specialist and the P&A analyst cannot clarify the procedures, contact the IRM Author of the IPU or the Alert originator by utilizing the SERP Feedback process. PI Specialist will follow guidance under paragraphs (7), (8), and (9) below.

  7. For clarification of an IPU, PI Specialist will submit a SERP Feedback following these steps:

    1. Select the topic "IRMs" from the Topics button on the SERP Feedback screen

    2. In the "Title" field, indicate "IPU xxUxxxx" , using the number of the IPU

    3. Refer to the SERP Submitter Guide for information on entering your Feedback issue

    4. Follow the guidelines in IRM 21.1.2.2.2, Change Request.

  8. For clarification of an Alert, PI Specialist will submit a SERP Feedback following these steps:

    1. Select the topic "IRM Supplements" from the Topics button on the SERP Feedback screen

    2. In the "Title" field, indicate "Alert xxAxxxx" , using the number of the Alert

    3. Refer to the SERP Submitter Guide for information on entering your feedback issue

  9. For both IPU and Alert clarification, PI Specialist will share a copy of the SERP email confirmation with the PICA Analyst with the assigned SPRG via email. Include with the email:

    1. Subject line title: "Request for Clarification" - "IPU xxUxxxx" or "Alert xxAxxxx" (if IPU or Alert)

    2. Brief description of the issue (short statement explaining what is unclear and the impact)

    3. Supporting documentation if appropriate

    4. Copy of SERP feedback control

  10. PI Specialist must keep the Designated employee (who raised the issue) informed that the request for clarification has been raised. PI Specialist will ensure clarification that is received is shared with designated employee for appropriate dissemination locally.

  11. When requesting corrections and/or changes to existing/current IRM procedures, follow the guidelines in IRM 21.1.2.2.2, IRM 21 – Change Requests.

  12. Each AM site is responsible for the distribution of SERP information accordingly:

    1. Post the Directed Read Time information weekly in a prominent location (e.g., post to local site Quality website). Send a copy via email to Managers and Leads

      Note:

      PI Specialist should encourage managers to timely deliver the information, especially if the information is critical to quality.

    2. Weekly, the designated employee(s) will prepare a consolidated listing for AM employees of all required read items

    3. Directed Read Time information will include:
      - The timeframe covered by the information
      - All Alerts and/or Quality Tips should be issued with links to an e-version, if available
      - All information as relevant to the site’s specific programs, any clarification obtained for IRM procedures/IPUs/Alerts and links to the original source
      - Information grouped by specific program or product line based on the audience, when possible. The grouped information must include "ALL" , "Balance Due" , "Refund Inquiry" , "PPS Only" , "Phone Only" , etc., Directed Read Time information for each week must be archived on the site’s local website for future reference

      Note:

      Employees are responsible for using official read time each week to review Directed Read Time information.

Strategy and Program Plans/W&I Operations Plans

  1. The Strategy and Program Plans/W&I Operations Plans are vehicles used to monitor, measure, and evaluate activities consistent with the quality goals of the Balanced Measures.

  2. The Strategy and Program Plans/W&I Operations Plans should include:

    1. Action items that support Balanced Measures initiatives.

    2. Measurement data from CQRS, PAS, QR, local reviews, quality staffs, and managerial reviews.

      Note:

      Throughout each month, management must monitor/review the required minimum number of employee telephone calls/cases with taxpayers as set in the Site Quality Action Plan.

  3. The QAM or other local management will assist in the development of Site Level Business Plans which should include requirements to perform reviews to assess the quality of the work including:

    • Managerial reviews of employee work including telephone assistance and written work

    • Timeliness of completed work

    • Accounts Management Accounts and Tax Law work

    • Field Assistance contacts

Establishing the Strategy and Program Plans/W&I Operations Plans and Site Level Business Plans
  1. When creating the Site Level Business Plans, the QAM will:

    1. Review past Site Level Business Plans and the current year’s Balanced Measures recommendations to understand the program’s goals.

    2. Analyze statistical data, such as NQRS, and EQRS data to identify inconsistencies.

    3. Meet with management to discuss QA objectives.

    4. Establish QA objectives and set priorities using criteria provided by Headquarters and functional management. Local objectives can be added, if desired.

    5. Develop a schedule for implementing each objective of the plan and assign responsibilities.

    6. Work with management to prepare a draft of the plan for review.

    7. Consolidate suggested changes into a final draft for the Operations Chief’s concurrence, which certifies that the plan is operable.

    8. Communicate the applicable portions of the plan to all functional employees, ensuring they understand the plan’s objectives and their roles in the QA process.

  2. After implementation of the Site Level Business Plan, the QAM will monitor plan accomplishments and continue to analyze site data to determine if the operation is meeting objectives. The QAM is expected to recommend needed changes to the plan such as modification or discontinuance of certain objectives.

Strategy and Program Plans/W&I Operations Plans and Site Level Business Plans Resources
  1. Following is a list of resources available to the QAM when creating the quality portion of the Site Level Business Plan. This list is in no particular order and is not meant to be all inclusive. It is designed to suggest the wide variety of data available for consideration.

    • Local work plans

    • NQRS data including local reports

    • EQRS data including local reports

    • Timeliness data

    • Prior year's Operating Guidelines, including plans for QR and managerial involvement

    • Headquarters and functional business plans and reviews

    • Field Assistance data

    • Accounts Management/Compliance Campus reports on functional activities

    • Alert information previously provided to employees

    • Staff feedback

    • Statisticians feedback or reports

    • Taxpayer Advocate Service staff

    • Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration reports

    • Results of Improvement Projects

    • Focus testing reports

    • General Accounting Office reports

    • Existing system telephone reports/data

    • Customer satisfaction survey results.

Quality Review Research Tools

  1. The following paragraphs may not be all-inclusive, but they will provide a listing of the most frequently used research tools.

  2. A number of IRMs impact the work done by Accounts Management, Compliance, Return Integrity and Compliance Services, Field Assistance, Electronic Products and Services Support and TE/GE. The IRM 21 will often cross-reference these other manuals. Examples include:

    • IRM 4, Examining Process

    • IRM 5, Collecting Process

    • IRM 20.1, Penalty Handbook

    • IRM 3.42, Electronic Tax Administration

    • IRM 13, Taxpayer Advocate Service

    • IRM 11.3, Disclosure of Official Information

    • IRM 2.3, IDRS Terminal Response

    • IRM 2.4, IDRS Terminal Input

    • IRM 2.8, Audit Information Management Systems (AIMS)

    • IRM 25.23, Identity Protection and Victim Assistance

    • IRM 20.2, Interest

    • IRM 21.1, Accounts Management and Compliance Services Operations

    • IRM 21.1.7, Campus Support

    • IRM 21.3, Taxpayer Contacts

    • IRM 21.3.7, Processing Third Party Authorizations onto Centralized Authorization File (CAF)

    • IRM 25.6, Statute of Limitations

    • IRM 25.25, Revenue Protection

    • IRM 1.4.10, Integrity and Verification Operation Managers Guide

    • IRM 1.4.11, Field Assistance Guide for Managers

    • IRM 1.4.16, Accounts Management Guide for Managers

    • IRM 1.4.17, Compliance Managers Guide

    • IRM 1.4.18, Electronic Products and Support Services Managers Guide

  3. A number of methods are used to communicate changes, clarifications or corrections to the IRMs and other published products. Among these are:

    • Servicewide Electronic Research Program (SERP)

    • IDRS Bulletins

    • IDRS Message File

    • IRM Update

    • Internal Revenue Bulletins (IRBs)

    • The EQ Website

    • The CQRS Website

    • Quick Alerts and EPSS Communications

    • Quality Alerts

    • Interim Guidance Memoranda

  4. Following are examples of additional sources of information available on SERP:

    • IRM 21, Customer Accounts Services

    • Other product line-specific IRM (IRM 3, IRM 4, and IRM 5)

    • IRM 10, Security, Privacy and Assurance and IRM 25, Special Topics

    • Interactive Tax Law Assistant (ITLA)

    • Publication Method Guide (PMG)

    • Electronic ACS Guide (EACSG)

    • IAT Tools

    • Technical Communication Documents (TCD)

    • AM Portal

    • TE/GE Probe and Response Guide

    • Telephone Transfer Guide (TTG)

    • Taxpayer Contact Outline

    • Taxpayer Information Publications

    • Forms, Schedules, Instructions

    • Correspondence Letters

    • SNIP

    • Post-of-Duty Listing and Job Aid

    • Lockbox Addresses

    • Special Procedures Directory

    • VITA Volunteer Income Tax Assistance/Tax Counselors for the Elderly/American Association or Retired Person Sites

    • On-Line Training Materials

    • Miscellaneous documents of local interest

    • EPSS SERP Portal

    • Document 6209

  5. Because of the scope of paper reviews conducted in campuses, each QR/PAS function should establish or have access to a library of all necessary IRMs. Area offices (AOs) should establish a similar IRM library covering all the types of work performed in their site. In most cases, the IRMs can be found on-line through SERP.

  6. Any IRS publication can be cited as a reference source. IRS publications will often be the primary research tool for tax law issues. Procedural issues are often addressed in the publication which can be located electronically on SERP.

  7. Responses to taxpayer questions may refer to specific forms and their instructions. They can be located electronically on SERP under Forms/Letters/Pubs to verify the quality of the response. If erroneous information has been given to the taxpayer, cite the form or instruction to substantiate the defect.

  8. The IRS Electronic Publishing Catalog contains a number of documents that can be used for research purposes. One of the most frequently used is Document 6209, IRS Processing Codes and Information. This document can also be found on-line through SERP.

    Note:

    If there is a discrepancy between the Document 6209 and a specific IRM, the IRM takes precedence.

  9. Use the Interactive Tax Law Assistant (ITLA) or the Publication Method Guide in conjunction with Publication 17 and other reference materials to answer customers’ tax law questions. Its use is mandatory for review of the Tax Law product line.

    Note:

    Starting January 2, 2014 see IRM 21.1.1.6(5), (6) and (7), Customer Service Representative (CSR) Duties for new tax law procedures.

  10. Various automated systems may be needed to conduct reviews. These items include, but are not limited to:

    • Automated Insolvency System (AIS)

    • Account Management System (AMS)

    • Automated Collection System (ACS)

    • Automated Underreporter (AUR)

    • Automated Lien System (ALS)

    • Integrated Collection System (ICS)

    • Automated Non-Master File (A-NMF)

    • On-Line Notice Review (OLNR)

    • Locator services, such as credit bureaus and state employment commissions

    • Automated Substitute for Return (ASFR)

    • Report Generation Software (RGS) used by Examination

    • Automated Offer in Compromise (AOIC)

    • Correspondence Imaging System (CIS)

    • Withholding Compliance System (WHCS)

    • e-help Support System (EHSS)

    • Third Party Data Store (TPDS)

    • EP/EO Determination System (EDS)

    • Letter and Information Network User Fee System (LINUS)

    • TE/GE Rulings and Agreements Control (TRAC)

  11. Training materials or locally developed job aids cannot be used to evaluate the quality of a contact or case.

Quality Review Exceptions and IRM Deviations

  1. Quality defects related to IRM or procedural changes will be charged seven calendar days (ten business days for Compliance and Accounts Management) after the SERP posting date of the IRM update/change.
    During the seven calendar day grace period (ten business days for Compliance and Accounts Management), national analysts will code "Y" if either the former or new procedure is followed. Informational feedback from local and national reviews will be shared with functional areas prior to the seventh/tenth day.

    Note:

    For National Distribution Center (NDC), the seven calendar day period begins after the date on the Alert/Change.

    Note:

    For EPSS, the seven calendar days begins on the date the EPSS Communication or Quick Alert e-mail was first issued.

    Note:

    For Accounts Management, the ten business day grace period for charging quality errors applies solely to IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs), not to SERP Alerts.

  2. Any guidance that deviates from the IRM or that establish new practices for temporary procedures or pilot projects must receive prior approval from Headquarters program management. A formal deviation must be filed. See (3) below for instruction on filing a deviation. Deviations are not retroactive.

  3. It is essential that all sites and functions follow the same guidelines for coding quality service. Deviations from the IRM; for example, local procedures, or any other practices outside the IRM must be approved by Headquarters (HQ). The procedure for preparing a deviation is as follows:

    • The request must be in memorandum format.

    • The memo must state the reason for the deviation, what caused the situation to occur, what is being done to correct it, and the beginning and end date of the deviation (no longer than one year).

    • The memo must be forwarded for approval to the business unit directors (HQ Collection or HQ Exam and policy for Compliance).

    • The deviation memo must contain the signatures of all business unit directors that are impacted.

    • The signed deviation memo must be forwarded to HQ Policy, Campus Directors and Collection or Examination Quality and Technical Support for implementation.

    Note:

    Deviations are only good for the time specified but never longer than one year. See IRM 1.11.2.2.4, When Procedures Deviate from the IRM. Deviations are not retroactive and only become effective after obtaining the appropriate signature(s). During the deviation period the work will be reviewed based on the procedures outlined in the deviation.

    Note:

    These procedures do not apply to regular IRM updates processed through SERP IRM Procedural Updates, as these items officially replace the current manual. Also, manuals owned by Field Policy do not fall within this process, as they fall within the interim guidance procedures IRM 1.11.10, Interim Guidance Process.

    Note:

    Suspension or early termination of a deviation must be approved by HQ Policy and Campus Directors and shared timely with Collection or Examination Quality and Technical Support to ensure National and Local Quality reviews are based on appropriate and current procedures.

Quality Review Sampling Guidelines for Sample Plans Designed by SOI

  1. A sample is a representation that displays characteristics of the whole population. Sampling allows the IRS to determine the quality of service without having to review the entire universe of work. Generally, the sample is determined by Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs).

  2. In order for a sample to be statistically valid it must be randomly selected. This allows for any case in the sample to have the opportunity to be selected. The randomness of a sample is ensured by selecting the “Nth” case using a skip interval based on the number of required reviews and the population of the work.

  3. A sample, which is really an estimate, must be unbiased and consistent. An unbiased estimate is one where the average value is equal to the actual quality in the population. A consistent estimate is one where the estimate approaches the actual quality in the population as the sample size increases.

  4. Because a sample does not include all cases in the population, any estimate resulting from a sample will not equal the actual quality in the population and will have some variability associated with it. For an estimate to be meaningful, a measure of variability should be included with results. A precision margin and level of confidence can be used to express the variability of an estimate. When added to and subtracted from the estimate, a precision margin identifies the range of values where the actual quality in the population most likely falls. The confidence level indicates how much confidence one can have that the actual population value is within this range. Many IRS quality measures are designed to achieve estimates of 5 percent precision with 90 percent confidence. That is, there can be 90 percent confidence that the actual quality in the population is within plus or minus 5 percent of the sample estimate.

    • While quality measures are designed to achieve a certain precision (e.g., 5 percent), the actual precision of an estimate must be calculated using the actual results from the sample.

    • Precision is directly related to sample size. As sample size increases, precision decreases.

    • Precision is also directly related to the estimate of quality. The worst case scenario for an estimate (precision-wise) is 50 percent. In other words, an estimate of 50 percent will have the highest precision of all possible samples of the same sample size. Estimates that are closer to either 0 percent or 100 percent will be more precise than estimates near 50 percent.

    • Precision margins should be taken into consideration when determining if a site met its goal.

      Example:

      Assume a site has a goal of 85 percent and that their sample estimate is 82 percent with a precision of 4 percent. Applying the precision margin to the estimate implies that the actual quality in the population is between 78 percent and 86 percent. Because 85 percent lies in this range, the site cannot conclude that they did not meet their goal nor can they conclude that they did meet their goal. However, not taking the precision margin into account would have led the site to conclude that they did not meet their goal.

    • Precision margins should also be taken into consideration when comparing quality estimates between offices or different time periods from the same office.

  5. Samples are designed conservatively by Statistics of Income (SOI) for several SPRGs. IRM 21.10.1.2 (3) to determine if the SPRG has a SOI designed sample. One piece of information that is necessary when designing a sample is an estimate of the actual quality being measured. This estimate, often obtained from reviews from prior years, is used in the process for determining the sample size. An assumed quality of 50 percent will result in the largest sample size. Therefore, in order to get a more conservative sample size, either slightly increase or decrease the assumed quality rate so that it is closer to 50 percent. This will result in a sample size that should provide the desired precision.

    Example:

    If an office had an 88 percent quality rate for a certain SPRG during the prior year, then assuming an estimated quality rate of 80 percent will result in a larger sample size.

  6. When designing a sample, a decision must be made on how often quality estimates are necessary. The individual needs of the SPRG, as well as the resources assigned to the quality review will help determine whether estimates should be made on a daily, weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual basis.

  7. Some SPRGs may consider merging several types of similar work. There may be several items at the site that need to be tested. However, none are large enough to justify an individual sample. A merged sample, producing a composite estimate, would be a possible solution in this situation. Information describing the different types of work would have to be included with all estimates from these merged samples.

  8. While CQRS and PAS perform reviews on product lines or SPRGs for the national measure, each site may also perform local reviews to help improve their quality. There are two ways to designate reviews as local. You can use the local button on the DCI in NQRS or you can use the group code “BL” (baseline).

    Note:

    Local reviews are not used in official measures of the product line or SPRG.

    • When performing local reviews for quality improvement, the overall local quality rates may be lower than the national quality rates since local analysts will focus on problem areas.

    • Local reviews for quality improvement are not necessarily expected to be statistically valid samples.

Selecting the Quality Sample
  1. The following steps are used to determine a sample size:

    1. How often quality estimates are necessary (e.g., quarterly, daily, weekly, monthly).

    2. The level of precision (e.g., 3 percent, 5 percent).

    3. The level of confidence (e.g., 90 percent, 95 percent, 99 percent). (Generally, a confidence interval of 90 percent with a precision margin of 5 percent is used.).

    4. A hypothetical "best guess" of the quality rate expected. This guess should be conservative (See IRM 21.10.1.3.2) and can be obtained by reviewing historical quality rates for similar product lines or SPRGs.

      Note:

      If the resulting sample size is too large for the allocated resources, consider reducing the quality estimates.

  2. Unless otherwise specified in IRM 21.10.1, all cases with a closing count must be made available for the National Quality Review System (NQRS) process. This includes cases reviewed by managers, On-the-Job Instructors (OJIs), and cases that are subject to 100 percent review. Cases that are not included in the Operation’s closing count should not be included in the National Quality Review System (NQRS) process.

  3. Sampling assumptions must be determined. Unclear or inappropriate assumptions could lead to a sample that is not random, resulting in estimates that are biased, unrepresentative of the population, or inconsistent. This could call the statistical validity of the estimate into question.

  4. Sites must provide sampling assumptions to the Headquarters Process Improvement Customer Accuracy (PICA) analyst responsible for the product. PICA will provide due dates for the sampling assumptions. The site must estimate the total volumes closed for the SPRG for each period. PICA will provide Statistics of Income (SOI) with the sampling assumptions. The SOI staff will calculate the sample size for SPRGs where the samples are SOI designed. IRM 21.10.1.2 (3) to determine if a SPRG has an SOI designed sample.

  5. Apply a skip interval (see below) to the population to select the sample,

    1. The skip interval is equal to the population, divided by the sample size.

    2. Calculate and use a random start number to select the first case (See IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1(6). The random start is between 1 and the skip interval.

    3. Use the skip interval to select the rest of the sample see IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1(7).

    4. If all of the cases are not available at the same time, then sample cases as the work arrives.

    5. If all of the cases are available at the same time and are stored electronically, then software should be used to sort the list of cases either randomly or by a variable related to the quality measure (e.g., time, case ID) prior to applying the skip interval.

    6. If used correctly, a skip interval will ensure that a sample is spread appropriately across the population with estimates that are relatively unbiased.

  6. A random start is needed to apply the skip interval. The random start is provided as part of the sample plan determined by SOI if the SPRG has an SOI designed sample.

  7. Use the following procedures to select a sample using a skip interval:

    1. On the first day of the sampling period, use the random start number to identify and select the first sampled case.

    2. Use the skip interval to select the subsequent documents for review. In other words, select the ‘nth’ case after the random start case, and continue selecting every ‘nth’ case thereafter.

    3. If the population of cases spans more than one day, then the skip interval must continue between days. Begin each new day’s count with the number of cases remaining following the last document selected from the previous day.

      Example:

      Assume a skip interval of "8" and that there were 5 cases remaining after applying the skip interval over Monday’s entire population. Then, continuing the skip interval sequence of 8 into the next day, the case count would begin at 6 on Tuesday. Therefore, the first case selected on Tuesday would be case number 3, the second would be case number 11, the third would be case number 19, etc.

    4. A random start number is used only once per sampling plan (at the start of sample selection for that plan). If a skip interval changes in the middle of a sampling timeframe, a new random start should be calculated and used.

    5. If the required sample size has been met, continue applying the skip interval through the last case in the population. This will ensure that all work has an equal chance of being selected.

  8. If the size of the population is not known then a skip interval cannot be calculated and another method must be used to select the sample. One alternative to manually spread the sample among the population is as follows:

    1. Establish the time period of the estimate and the sample size.

    2. Using the sample size and the number of business days in the sampling period, determine the average daily sample size

    3. Depending on the flow of the work for this particular review, manually spread the weekly sample appropriately among the days of the week. If you expect the work to be distributed evenly across the week and hours of the day, then divide the sample evenly among the days of the week. In addition, if you expect the work to be distributed evenly throughout individual days, then the sample can be split evenly between the morning and afternoon hours. If, on the other hand, it is known that certain types of work are more likely to occur on certain days (e.g., Mondays, Tuesdays) or during certain times of day (e.g., afternoons), then the sample can be shifted accordingly to follow the workload more accurately.

    4. Spread the sample appropriately among each member of the team or unit performing the type of work being reviewed.

    5. When selecting cases for review during designated dates and times, use one of the methods in IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1(5) to incorporate randomness.

      Example:

      If a case must be selected from the 50 cases handled by a particular employee on Tuesday morning, then a random number table can be used to select a random number between 1 and 50.

    6. Document all decisions made and procedures used throughout the process of manually spreading the sample across the population.

      Note:

      Because sampled cases are selected without the use of a skip interval, it is not automatically ensured that the sample is spread appropriately across the time period being measured and among the assistors included in the review. It is also not ensured that all cases in the population will have an equal chance of being selected. For these reasons, samples selected using the above procedures will have some amount of bias. Selecting the "most random sample possible" given local resources will help minimize this bias.

Revising the Quality Sample
  1. If the site experiences much higher or lower volumes than predicted, the site may change its skip interval within the quarter.

    1. For SPRGs that are weighted monthly, the new skip interval may be implemented ONLY at the beginning of a sampling month, NEVER in the middle of a sampling month and only under the guidance of an SOI statistician if the SPRG has an SOI designed sample. IRM 21.10.1.2 (3) to determine if the sample is SOI designed. Because NQRS generates weighted reports monthly, skip intervals must remain constant within any given month.

    2. Never simply grab extra cases, drop selected cases, seek out cases of special interest, or use different methods to select cases in the same sample. Each of these situations could lead to a sample that provides biased results.

    3. Contact the Headquarters quality analyst for assistance in determining the new skip interval.

Weighted Sampling
  1. In sampling, every sampled case represents a certain number of cases in the population. The exact number of cases a sampled case represents will depend on both the sample size and the actual size of the population from which it was selected. When a quality estimate is a combination of two or more separate samples (e.g., a fiscal year report for a single SPRG for a single site), it is necessary to account for the fact that each sampled case included in the overall estimate may not represent the same number of cases in the overall population. Weighting is used to ensure that every sampled case has the appropriate amount of influence on the overall cumulative estimate.

    Example:

    A quality estimate for a single SPRG in a single site for a planning period may consist of three individual samples, one from each month. Therefore, the planning period quality estimate is weighted by the three individual monthly SPRG volumes. This will make certain that each month’s influence on the planning period estimate is directly related to the total number of cases handled during that month.

  2. NQRS provides both weighted and unweighted estimates of quality.

  3. Unweighted estimates that combine more than one site, time period, or SPRG are not considered statistically valid. Such estimates should only be used internally. Their statistical limitations should be taken into consideration when basing business decisions on them.

Quality Review Compliance Sampling Guidelines

  1. A sample is a representation that displays characteristics of the whole population. Sampling allows the IRS to determine the quality of service without having to review the entire universe of work. Generally, the sample is determined by Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs).

  2. In order for a sample to be statistically valid it must be randomly selected. This allows for any case in the sample to have the opportunity to be selected. The randomness of a sample is ensured by using a random case selection process. A sample, which is really an estimate, must be unbiased and consistent. An unbiased estimate is one where the average value is equal to the actual quality in the population. A consistent estimate is one where the estimate approaches the actual quality in the population as the sample size increases.

  3. Because a sample does not include all cases in the population, any estimate resulting from a sample will not equal the actual quality in the population and will have some variability associated with it. For an estimate to be meaningful, a measure of variability should be included with results. A precision margin and level of confidence can be used to express the variability of an estimate. When added to and subtracted from the estimate, a precision margin identifies the range of values where the actual quality in the population most likely falls. The confidence level indicates how much confidence one can have that the actual population value is within this range. Many IRS quality measures are designed to achieve estimates of 5 percent precision with 90 percent confidence. That is, there can be 90 percent confidence that the actual quality in the population is within plus or minus 5 percent of the sample estimate.

    • While quality measures are designed to achieve a certain precision (e.g., 5 percent), the actual precision of an estimate must be calculated using the actual results from the sample.

    • Precision is directly related to sample size. As sample size increases, precision decreases.

    • Precision is also directly related to the estimate of quality. The worst case scenario for an estimate (precision-wise) is 50 percent. In other words, an estimate of 50 percent will have the highest precision of all possible samples of the same sample size. Estimates that are closer to either 0 percent or 100 percent will be more precise than estimates near 50 percent.

    • Precision margins should be taken into consideration when determining if a site met its goal.

      Example:

      Assume a site has a goal of 85 percent and that their sample estimate is 82 percent with a precision of 4 percent. Applying the precision margin to the estimate implies that the actual quality in the population is between 78 percent and 86 percent. Because 85 percent lies in this range, the site cannot conclude that they did not meet their goal nor can they conclude that they did meet their goal. However, not taking the precision margin into account would have led the site to conclude that they did not meet their goal.

    • Precision margins should also be taken into consideration when comparing quality estimates between offices or different time periods from the same office.

  4. Samples are designed using conservative calculations. One piece of information that is necessary when designing a sample is an estimate of the actual quality being measured. This estimate, often obtained from reviews from prior years, is used in the process for determining the sample size. An assumed quality of 50 percent will result in the largest sample size. Therefore, in order to get a more conservative sample size, either slightly increase or decrease the assumed quality rate so that it is closer to 50 percent. This will result in a sample size that should provide the desired precision.

    Example:

    If an office had an 88 percent quality rate for a certain SPRG during the prior year, then assuming an estimated quality rate of 80 percent will result in a larger sample size.

  5. When designing a sample, a decision must be made on how often quality estimates are necessary. The individual needs of the SPRG, as well as the resources assigned to the quality review, will help determine whether estimates should be made on a daily, weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual basis.

  6. Some SPRGs may consider merging several types of similar work. There may be several items at the site that need to be tested. However, none are large enough to justify an individual sample. A merged sample, producing a composite estimate, would be a possible solution in this situation. Information describing the different types of work would have to be included with all estimates from these merged samples.

  7. While Compliance PAS perform reviews on product lines or SPRGs for the national measure, each site, when resources permit, may also perform local reviews to help improve their quality.

    Note:

    Local reviews are not used in official measures of the product line or SPRG.

    • When performing local reviews for quality improvement, the overall local quality rates may be lower than the national quality rates since local analysts will focus on problem areas.

    • Local reviews for quality improvement are not necessarily expected to be statistically valid samples.

Selecting the Quality Sample
  1. The following steps are used to determine a sample size:

    1. How often quality estimates are necessary (e.g., quarterly, daily, weekly, monthly).

    2. The level of precision (e.g., 3 percent, 5 percent).

    3. The level of confidence (e.g., 90 percent, 95 percent, 99 percent). (Generally, a confidence interval of 90 percent with a precision margin of 5 percent is used.).

    4. A hypothetical "best guess" of the quality rate expected. This guess should be conservative (See IRM 21.10.1.3.2) and can be obtained by reviewing historical quality rates for similar product lines or SPRGs.

      Note:

      If the resulting sample size is too large for the allocated resources, consider reducing the quality estimates. Contact a Headquarters Product Line Analyst (PLA) for assistance with this.

  2. Unless otherwise specified in IRM 21.10.1, all cases with a closing count must be made available for the National Quality Review System (NQRS) process. This includes cases reviewed by managers, On-the-Job Instructors (OJIs), and cases that are subject to 100 percent review. Cases that are not included in the Operation’s closing count for example certain Compliance Identify Theft cases transferred to Accounts Management; should not be included in the National Quality Review System (NQRS) process.

  3. Unclear or inappropriate volume counts could lead to a sample that is not random, resulting in estimates that are biased, unrepresentative of the population, or inconsistent. This could call the statistical validity of the estimate into question.

  4. Compliance uses a random selection method that manually spreads the sample among the population as follows:

    1. Establish the time period of the estimate and the sample size.

    2. Compute historical accuracy for each SPRG.

    3. Using the sample size and the number of business days in the sampling period, determine the average daily sample size.

    4. Depending on the flow of the work for this particular review, the Product Line Analysts (PLA) will manually spread the sample appropriately among the business days in the quarter. PAS will maintain a record of the sample size and case selection.

    5. A calculator with a randomize function will be used to determine the case(s) to be pulled for the day.

Weighted Sampling
  1. In sampling, every sampled case represents a certain number of cases in the population. The exact number of cases a sampled case represents will depend on both the sample size and the actual size of the population from which it was selected. When a quality estimate is a combination of two or more separate samples (e.g., a fiscal year report for a single SPRG for a single site), it is necessary to account for the fact that each sampled case included in the overall estimate may not represent the same number of cases in the overall population. Weighting is used to ensure that every sampled case has the appropriate amount of influence on the overall cumulative estimate.

    Example:

    A quality estimate for a single SPRG in a single site for a planning period may consist of three individual samples, one from each month. Therefore, the planning period quality estimate is weighted by the three individual monthly SPRG volumes. This will make certain that each month’s influence on the planning period estimate is directly related to the total number of cases handled during that month.

  2. NQRS provides both weighted and unweighted estimates of quality.

  3. Unweighted estimates that combine more than one site, time period, or SPRG are not considered statistically valid. Such estimates should only be used internally. Their statistical limitations should be taken into consideration when basing business decisions on them.

Quality Review Records Retention

  1. Document 12990, Records Control Schedules provides specific guidelines on the retention period for National Quality Review System (NQRS) records. National quality review printed reports may be destroyed when superseded or no longer needed. Source documentation relating to non-evaluative national and local product reviews may be destroyed after data input has been validated.

  2. EQRS records are systemically removed from the database after 5 years. NQRS records are removed after 7 years.

Quality Review of Phone Calls

  1. CQRS/PAS monitors recorded contacts through the use of the Verint contact recording system. CQRS monitors are conducted for all Accounts Management toll-free phone SPRGs (except for National Taxpayer Advocate), ACS Phones for Compliance, e-help Phones for Electronic Products and Services Support and all Field Assistance (CARE) product lines (except for Adjustments). PAS monitors the remaining Compliance Phone SPRGs. The data from these reviews may be used for the Business Results of the Balanced Measures.

  2. Managerial reviews of these phone calls are not included in the Business Results calculations; they are used in employee evaluative documentation and to identify training issues.

  3. Campus Quality Collection PAS may also conduct local reviews of phone product lines for local use and/or quality improvement. Local review data is not included in the Business Results calculations.

  4. The Verint Contact Recording (CR) system is a telephone tool used by Accounts Management, Electronic Products and Services Support, and Compliance to record incoming "toll free" telephone contacts, some of which may be selected for quality review. Incoming calls are answered with an additional announcement that states, "Your call may be monitored or recorded for quality purposes." The Verint Ultra system records the audio, and occasionally the screen capture, of all telephone calls coming into the Service via the current telephone system. See IRM 21.10.1.2 (7) for more information on CR.

  5. Managers and Quality Analysts use CR to perform required random reviews of incoming telephone contacts. CR allows for a more cost-effective review as there is no lag time between calls. The PAS analysts use a Shared In-Box to retrieve their daily sample. Reviewers must include the CR identification number or Router Call Key on the Data Collection Instrument used to capture the call review. Calls recorded in this system are available for National review the next business day and every effort should be made to complete the National Review daily.

  6. The CR system retains all calls for 60 days and calls that are reviewed are retained for 18 months.

  7. On a call that was Contact Recorded, if the taxpayer requests that the recording be stopped (aka: "Stop on Demand" ) CQRS/PAS will not review the call. If a "Stop on Demand" call is randomly selected for the national sample, it will be rejected and systemically replaced by CR.

  8. When performing a telephone review, the CQRS and PAS analyst will capture the employee's identification number provided on the call:

    • CQRS and PAS will capture the employee's extension number (as it appears on CR from the PBXID field on Ultra 10 or 15) as the identification number.

    • If the PBXID is not available or the review is performed using recordings outside CR and the employee number is not available, PAS will use the following identifiers in the Employee Name field:
      1. U – If PAS analysts are unable to determine the ID # and/or the extension number,
      2. N – If the employee does not give either an ID # or a name at any time during the conversation,
      3. XI –If the PAS analyst could not capture the full ID # or last name.

      Note:

      Enter a portion of the ID # in the employee name section, for example 99999985XX if the last two digits could not be captured and 99999XX521 the middle two digits could not be captured.

  9. For a sample call to be counted as a phone review, the taxpayer does not have to remain on the line until all adjustment actions are complete. Even if the employee does not complete all work until the next business day, the call is still counted as part of the sample. If a call is disconnected prior to completion, however an employee has already provided procedural or technical information, the actions taken are coded and the call is still counted as part of the sample.

  10. If an Accounts Phone call subject becomes a Tax Law or ACS issue, or vice versa, code the complete call for Professionalism and Timeliness, and code any issue(s) addressed for Accuracy. If the call is transferred and no action was taken to resolve the taxpayer's issue, code the case for all applicable buckets except Customer Accuracy, which will be "not applicable." When this happens, code attribute 004 Call Transfer.

  11. The Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) for the phone Product Lines and SPRGs are located on the http://eq.web.irs.gov.

Accounts Phones Product Line

  1. The Accounts Phones Product line consists of seven Specialized Product Review Groups, (SPRGs). The seven SPRGs are Employer Identification Number (EIN), General Account Calls, International, National Taxpayer Advocate (NTA), Priority Practitioner Support (PPS), AM Identity Theft Phones and Spanish calls.

  2. Reviewing Accounts Phones allows us to monitor and improve the quality of responses to a taxpayer's questions about his/her account.

  3. An incorrect/incomplete action (per IRM guidelines) which results in an incorrect calculation must exceed $5.00 before charging a Customer Accuracy defect for the national review. When the calculation error is $5.00 or less, this should be charged as a Procedural defect only.

  4. The AM Lead Gate SPRG was added to NQRS in May 2016. The AM Lead Gate utilizes a DCI to record the interactions between a CSR and the Lead, and all Leads who are staffing the Lead Gate are required to complete a DCI on every call. Since the AM Lead Gate is a Smart DCI that captures contact information, no attributes are coded. All Leads using the AM Lead Gate have Local Reviewer access to NQRS.

Accounts Phones Measure
  1. Accounts Phones will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Definition of Employer Identification Number (EIN) Calls SPRG
  1. EIN calls include any questions received on the Telephone EIN application(s) such as.

    1. Any call relating to a taxpayer’s request for an Employer Identification Number (EIN)

    2. Any call regarding procedural issues (how to complete Form SS-4, Application for Employer Identification Number, where to fax/mail Form SS-4 etc.)

Sample Procedures for EIN Calls
  1. SOI develops sampling plans for EIN Phone calls monitored at CQRS. Samples from CQRS are valid at the site level on a bi-monthly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Definition of General Account Calls Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG)
  1. General Account Calls include any questions received on the Telephone Accounts Phone Balance Due, Advanced Accounts or Procedural applications for General Account Calls. This does not include calls received on the designated Spanish or International Account applications. General Accounts calls include:

    1. Any call relating to a taxpayer's account Individual Master File (IMF) or Business Master File (BMF

    2. Any call regarding entity information, the processing of a tax return, corrections to errors found during processing, or corrections resulting from adjustments or audit assessments

    3. Any call regarding procedural issues (where to file a return, when and where to make payments, etc.)

Sample Procedures for General Accounts Calls SPRG
  1. SOI develops sampling for Account Phone calls monitored at CQRS. Samples from CQRS are valid at the site level on a monthly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Definition of International Calls SPRG
  1. International Calls include any questions received on the designated ASEPCT applications for International such as:

    1. Any international (foreign, non-resident, etc.) call relating to a taxpayer's account (IMF or BMF)

    2. Any international call regarding entity information, the processing of a tax return, corrections to errors found during processing or corrections resulting from adjustments or audit assessments

    3. Any international call regarding procedural issues (where to file a return, when and where to make payments, etc.)

Sample Procedures for International Calls
  1. SOI Staff develops a combined sample plan for International Tax Law and Accounts Phone calls monitored at CQRS. Sample size from CQRS is valid at the site level on a quarterly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Definition of NTA Calls SPRG
  1. National Taxpayer Advocate (NTA) calls include any calls relating to a taxpayer's account (IMF or BMF) received on the designated NTA Telephone applications.

Sample Procedures for National Taxpayer Advocate (NTA) Calls
  1. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers to evaluate the contact.

  2. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  3. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Definition of Practitioner Priority Services (PPS) SPRG
  1. PPS Calls include any call from a tax practitioner relating to his or her client's/taxpayer's account (IMF or BMF) or any other questions received on the Telephone applications for PPS.

Sample Procedures for PPS
  1. SOI develops sampling plans for PPS calls monitored at CQRS. Samples from CQRS are valid at the site and national level on a bi-monthly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Definition of Spanish Tax Law and Account Calls SPRG
  1. Spanish Calls include any questions received on the Telephone applications for Spanish Calls including:

    • Any call relating to a tax law question from the taxpayer

    • Any call relating to a taxpayer's account (IMF or BMF)

    • Any call regarding entity information, the processing of a tax return, corrections to errors found during processing, or corrections resulting from adjustments or audit assessments

    • Any call regarding procedural issues (where to file a return, when and where to make payments, etc.)

Sample Procedures for Spanish Account Calls
  1. SOI Staff develops a combined sampling plan for Spanish Tax Law and Spanish Accounts calls monitored at CQRS. Samples from CQRS are valid (which includes Spanish Accounts and Spanish Tax Law combined) at the site level on a monthly basis. Statistical validity at the site level varies for Puerto Rico based on time of year. For all other sites combined, the statistical validity is monthly.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Definition of AM Identity Theft Phones
  1. Accounts Management (AM) Identity Theft Calls include any call from an individual to report that their SSN or ITIN has been misused to obtain goods or services, to report other complaints of identity theft, and/or request protection of their tax account information or any questions received on the Telephone ID Theft Phone application(s). See IRM 25.23.3.2, Identity Theft Telephone Overview and General Guidance, for additional guidance.

Sample Procedures for AM Identity Theft Phones
  1. SOI develops sampling for ID Theft Phone calls monitored at CQRS. Samples from CQRS are valid at the site level on a monthly basis.

  2. Ultra (Contact Recording) and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

AM Routing Product Line
  1. The AM Routing Product line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG), Default Screener Calls.

  2. AM Routing phone calls are reviewed to measure and improve the accuracy, timeliness and professionalism of transfers to the appropriate area.

Definition of Default Screener Phone Calls SPRG
  1. Default Screener phone calls are defined as any calls received on the designated Telephone Default Screener applications.

Sample Procedures for Default Screener Phone Calls
  1. SOI Staff develops sampling plans for AM Default Screener phone calls monitored at CQRS. Sample sizes from CQRS are valid at the national level on a monthly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to sampling plans.

AM Routing Measures
  1. AM Routing Default Screener phones will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy, and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Forms Order Phones Product Line
  1. The Forms Order Phones Product Line calls will be reviewed to measure and improve the quality of our responses to taxpayers’ request for forms and answers to procedural questions.

  2. The Forms Order Phones Product line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group. The SPRG is National Distribution Center (NDC).

Definition of Forms Order Phones Product Line
  1. Forms Order Phones is defined as any call received by the vendor.

Definition of NDC Phones SPRG
  1. NDC phone calls are defined as any calls received by the vendor.

Sample Procedures for NDC Phones
  1. SOI Staff develops a sampling plan for NDC phone calls monitored at CQRS. The sample is a daily sample and is valid at the national level on a monthly basis.

NDC Phones Measures
  1. NDC Form Order calls will be measured for Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Tax Law Phones Product Line
  1. The Tax Law Phones Product Line calls will be reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses to taxpayers’ tax law and technical questions.

  2. The Tax Law Phone Product line consists of three Specialized Product Review Groups. The three SPRG's are General Tax Law Calls, International Tax Law calls, and Spanish Tax Law calls.

Definition of Tax Law Phones Product Line
  1. Tax Law Phones is defined as any General, International or Spanish calls received on the Telephone Tax Law applications.

Tax Law Phones Measures
  1. For Accounts Management, all Tax Law Phone SPRGs will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy, and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Definition of General Tax Law SPRG
  1. General Tax law phone calls are defined as any on-line calls received on the designated Telephone Tax Law applications. This does not include calls received on the designated Spanish or International Tax law applications.

Sample Procedures for General Tax Law Phones
  1. SOI Staff develops sampling plans for General Tax Law Phones calls monitored at CQRS. In FY14 Tax Law Phones was changed to a national only measure valid on a monthly basis. Statistical validity at the site level varies based on time of year. It is valid monthly during the filing season.

    Note:

    Starting January 2, 2014 see IRM 21.1.1.6 (5), (6) and (7), Customer Service Representative (CSR) Duties for new tax law procedures.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

Definition of International Tax Law SPRG
  1. International phone calls are defined as any on-line calls received on the designated Telephone International Tax Law applications.

Sample Procedures for International Phones
  1. SOI Staff develops a combined sample plan for International Tax Law and Accounts Phone calls monitored at CQRS. Sample size from CQRS is valid at the site level on a quarterly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

Definition of Spanish Tax Law SPRG
  1. Spanish Tax Law Phone calls are defined as any call received on the designated Spanish Telephone Tax Law Applications.

Sample Procedures for Spanish Tax Law
  1. SOI staff develops a combined sampling plan for Spanish Tax Law and Spanish Accounts Phone calls monitored at CQRS. Sample sizes from CQRS are valid at the site and national level on a monthly basis.

    Note:

    Starting January 2, 2014 see IRM 21.1.1.6 (5), (6) and (7), Customer Service Representative (CSR) Duties for new tax law procedures.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. A site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local review sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

TE/GE Phones Product Line
  1. The TE/GE Phones Product Line will be reviewed in order to measure and improve the quality of responses to taxpayer's/customer's technical and account related questions.

  2. The TE/GE Phones Product line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG).

Definition of TE/GE Phones SPRG
  1. TE/GE Phones calls are defined as any tax law, procedural or account calls received on the designated Telephone TE/GE applications.

Sample Procedures for TE/GE Phones
  1. SOI Staff develops sampling plans for TE/GE phone calls monitored at CQRS. Sample sizes from CQRS are valid at the site level on a bi-monthly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. The site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local sampling guidelines have been included. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

TE/GE Phones Measures
  1. TE/GE Phones will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Sample Procedures for AM Lead Gate
  1. The AM Lead Gate was established for CSRs on the Account Phone lines to call for assistance. These procedures are for AM Leads (assigned to an AM Lead Gate) and Quality Reviewers (CQRS, CER, and Managers).

  2. The AM Lead must use the "AM Lead Gate" SPRG DCI (referred to as a Smart DCI) to record interactions between the CSR and Lead:

    1. Request Local Reviewer (Level 5) on your OL-5081 and indicate you are a Lead Gate Participant to gain access to NQRS.

    2. Complete AM Lead Gate DCI for each call.

    3. The AM Lead will code no attributes on the call.

  3. For Quality Reviews of quality samples, defects will be recorded on NQRS and EQRS.

    1. NQRS and EQRS DCIs will be coded by following the existing coding procedures (IRM 21.10.1).

    2. Update the HQ Tracking field with “LG” for each call when a CSR contacts the AM Lead Gate and receives assistance

    3. Defects recorded in NQRS (product/program review), are not for evaluative purposes.

    4. Defects charged when incorrect information was provided will not be reflected or included in CSR’s evaluations/evaluative reviews.
      In EQRS change the Reviewer Category to “Evaluative Targeted” in the header.
      The attribute relating to the defect will be left blank.
      CER or the CSR’s manager must give CSR feedback regarding any incorrect information provided by the AM Lead.

      Note:

      If the defect impacts the taxpayer, enter “FLASH” and provide feedback, including an IRM reference, to the employee. Feedback is only on the portion of the call where the Lead Gate assisted. If the defect does not impact the taxpayer, enter “Corrective Action” and provide feedback, including an IRM reference, to the employee. In some cases, there may not be a need for actual corrective action, and instead, it may be guidance for the employee in order to avoid a mistake in the future.

    5. The Process Improvement Specialist or Quality Assurance Specialist (QAS) must notify the AM Lead’s and CSR’s Manager when incorrect information was provided.

  4. The Quality Reviewer (which includes CER and the CSR’s Manager) must contact the Process Improvement Specialist or Quality Assurance Specialist when a quality defect is caused by incorrect information given to a CSR.

    1. Notate on the DCI Feedback Summary, "Lead provided bad advice" , and include a brief explanation of the incorrect guidance given and the correct response.

    2. The Specialist or QAS (where the CSR and manager are located) must inform the AM Lead’s manager (located in the site where the defect is charged), about the defect and incorrect information. If the manager is located at another site, the feedback to the AM Lead must be coordinated between the Specialists/QAS. Go to Embedded Quality Website http://eq.web.irs.gov under EQ Contacts (Improvement Specialist Tab) for a list of Specialists/QAS.

Roles and Responsibilities of the Collection and Examination Campus Quality (CQ) Phones Analyst

  1. The Collection and Examination Campus Quality (CQ) Analyst for Compliance Phones will complete an unbiased, consistent, and accurate review of Compliance Phones including follow-up actions taken once the taxpayer has hung up. Even if the employee does not complete all work until the next business day, the call is still counted as part of the sample.

  2. CQ Phone Quality Analysts will review the entire call to identify actions taken. Analysts will ensure that appropriate actions are annotated in IDRS or other specialized systems and actions taken clearly support the conclusion of the call as required by the procedural IRMs of the SPRG.

  3. Incorrect/incomplete action (per IRM guidelines) which results in incorrect calculations must exceed a $5.00 threshold before charging a defect for the national review.

  4. CQ Phones Quality analysts will complete an NQRS Data Collection Instrument (DCI) for each call reviewed using the MAJA for the SPRG as guidance for coding. All appropriate fields will be completed to indicate quality standards as having been met or not met. Analysts’ narratives will provide the basis for their findings and include applicable IRM references for coded defects. Whenever Attribute 715 is coded with a defect, the driver must be indicated in parenthesis immediately following "715" in the Feedback/Summary Remarks on the DCI, i.e., N=715, Correct/Complete Response Resolution (003). NQRS reviews will provide a basis for defect analysis and reporting error trends.

  5. Enter ACA in the "National Use Only" Field when ACA procedures should have been applied for the case or call being reviewed. Continue to code in the appropriate attributes, but also include in the Feedback Summary Remarks which (if any) of the defects related to handling of the ACA procedures outlined in the IRM with the use of (ACA) similar to current handling of 715 drivers. Please type (ACA) exactly as shown with all capital letters and inside of parenthesis to allow for easier searches of any ACA defect cases.

  6. NQRS reviews will provide a basis for defect analysis and reporting error trends.

  7. Review data will be input daily to NQRS, whenever possible. The PLA should be advised of significant delay.

  8. Enter the word FLASH in the Feedback Summary Remarks section of the DCI to identify a defect that requires immediate (by the next business day) corrective action by the operation. For example, recalling a notice/letter before it is issued or correcting an adjustment to an account. The remarks are used by many analysts for trend analysis and should not contain extraneous verbiage. Keep the remarks professional and concise. Explain the error in specific and simple terms. See IRM 21.10.1.7.7, EQRS/NQRS Remarks Section for additional information.

    Note:

    Defects requiring corrective action that are not annotated with FLASH are to be completed by the Operation within five working days. See IRM 21.10.1.2.7.5.

  9. CQRSS will be used daily to enter PAS review information and upload completed DCIs.

  10. Refer to the Embedded Quality Website http://eq.web.irs.gov frequently to glean updated information on the use of attributes in the Compliance Phones review, obtain the latest Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) and Quality Grams, etc.

  11. Consult your manager for coding assistance or to interpret attribute usage, when necessary. If additional guidance is required contact the Product Line Analyst (PLA).

  12. In a quarterly report to be shared with the Operations, provide suggestions for improvement by:

    • Identifying most frequently occurring defects

    • Analyzing root causes of defects

    • Verifying sample plans and guidelines

    • Reviewing methods used to capture needed information

Collection and Examination Campus Quality Phone Measures
  1. Collection and Examination Campus Quality Phone SPRGs will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Collection Campus Quality Phone Product Lines
  1. The following are the Collection Campus Quality Phone Product Lines:

    • ACS Phones

    • Automated Substitute for Return (ASFR) Phones

    • Centralized Case Processing (CCP Collection Phones

    • Centralized Lien Phone

    • Centralized Insolvency Operation (CIO) Phones

    • Collection Phones

    • Private Debt Collection Phones

ACS Phones Product Line
  1. Automated Collection System (ACS) Phone calls are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of our responses to taxpayer inquiries about balance due and return delinquency accounts.

Definition of ACS Phones SPRG
  1. ACS is a computerized inventory system of balance due accounts and return delinquency accounts after normal notice routines occur.

  2. ACS Phones calls are defined as any call received on an IMF or BMF account in 22 or Taxpayer Delinquency Investigation (TDI) status assigned to ACS, and any other calls received on the Telephone ACS applications.

Sample Procedures for ACS Phones
  1. SOI Staff develops sampling plans for ACS Phones' calls monitored at CQRS. Samples from CQRS are weighted daily and are valid at the site and national level on a bi-monthly basis.

  2. All ACS Phones’ calls will be included in the universe of calls subjected to sampling per the SOI algorithm. This includes cases reviewed by managers, On-the-Job Instructors (OJIs), and cases subjected to 100 percent review.

  3. Local reviews are not performed for the national measure of the ACS Phones product line and therefore, are not included in the sampling plan.

  4. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  5. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

Automated Substitute for Return (ASFR) Phones Product Line
  1. Automated Substitute for Returns (ASFR) Phones are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayer inquiries received on the ASFR and ASFR Refund Hold toll-free lines.

Definition of ASFR SPRG
  1. ASFR Phones are defined as any call received as a result of ASFR issued 30 day (2566) and 90 day (3219) letters or Refund Hold (CP63) letters generated from IDRS.

  2. CR and the associated screen capture (when available) may be used by managers or PAS to evaluate the contact.

Centralized Case Processing (CCP) Collection Phones Product Line
  1. Centralized Case Processing (CCP) is a separate product line review on the National Quality Review System (NQRS) and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality System (EQ) using the CCP Manually Monitored I/A (MMIA) Phones Special Product Review Group (SPRG).

  2. CCP MMIA Phones is reviewed to measure, analyze, and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayer/caller inquiries received on the CCP Toll-free lines.

  3. Quality Analysts and Managers will use the appropriate functional IRM(s), Quality Job Aid, and the IRM 21.10.1 during their review of the CCP MMIA Phone calls.

Definition of CCP MMIA Phone SPRG
  1. CCP MMIA Phone is defined as any phone calls received on an account where a case is monitored for actions by CCP. This encompasses cases for routine Partial Payment Installment Agreements (PPIAs), Manually Monitored Installment Agreement processing (In-Business Trust Fund Installment Agreements (IBTF) and/or PPIA-IBTF), any installment agreement that cannot be monitored by IDRS and any two year reviews in adherence to prescribed policies and IRM procedures. Phone calls received from Revenue Officers on the CCP MMIA Phone product line will not be reviewed by PAS.

Centralized Lien Phones Product Line
  1. Centralized Lien Phones is a separate product line review on the National Quality Review System (NQRS) and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality System (EQ) using the CLO Lien Phones Special Product Review Group (SPRG).

  2. CLO Lien Phones is reviewed to measure, analyze, and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayer/caller inquiries received on the CLO Toll-free lines.

  3. Quality Analysts and Managers will use the appropriate functional IRM(s), Quality Job Aid, and the IRM 21.10.1 during their review of the CLO Phone calls.

Definition of CLO Lien Phones SPRG
  1. CLO Lien Phones is defined as any calls received on the Telephone system related to CLO Lien applications. This could include calls from taxpayers, revenue officers or counties in response to a lien filing, release, payoff, billing, court recordings, payments, etc.

Centralized Insolvency Operation (CIO) Phones Product Line
  1. Centralized Insolvency Operation (CIO) Phones is a separate product line review on NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. CIO phones is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses provided to taxpayer/caller inquiries regarding bankruptcy issues on his/her account.

  2. Analysts and managers will primarily use IRM 5.9, Bankruptcy and other Insolvencies, IRM 1.4.51, Insolvency, Bankruptcy Law Advisory Rules Engine (BLARE), IRM 21.10.1, and the Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) during their review of CIO Phone cases.

Definition of CIO Phones SPRG
  1. CIO Phones is defined as any phone call received on the CIO toll-free line through the Telephone system on an account on the Automated Insolvency System (AIS). This includes both open CIO cases and closed CIO cases in the bankruptcy process.

Collection Phones Product Line
  1. Collection Phones are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayers and/or their representative’s inquiries received on the toll-free lines.

  2. The Collection Phones Product line consists of three SPRGs:

    • Collection Phones CSCO (EQRS)

    • WHC Phones (EQRS/NQRS)

    • Collection Phones Combat Zone (EQRS)

Definition of WHC Phones SPRG
  1. Withholding Compliance WHC Phones are defined as any call received because of a Withholding Compliance program CRX letter being issued. (Letters 2800, 2801, 2802, 2804, 2808, 2809, 2810, 2811, 2812, 2813, 3042).

  2. Beginning in FY17, the WHC Phone sample will be two separate samples for the Andover and Austin campuses and measured at the directorship level.

  3. PAS Analysts and managers will use the IRM 5.19.11, Withholding Compliance Program, IRM 5.19.1, Balance Due, Document 6209, Revenue Procedures, Treasury Regulations 26 CFR Part 31, Internal Revenue Code sections 3402, 3403 and 6682 and associated publications, IRM 21.10.1, and the WHC Phones Quality Job Aid during their review of WHC Phone cases.

Private Debt Collection Phones Product Line
  1. Private Debt Collection Phones review are performed to measure and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayers and/or their representative’s inquiries received in the Private Collection Agency (PCA) sites, ConServe, Pioneer, Performant and CBE.

  2. The Private Debt Collection Phones Product line consists of one SPRG:

    • PDC Phones PCA Calls

Definition of PDC Phones PCA Calls SPRG
  1. PDC Phones PCA Calls are defined as any phone call received in any of the PCA sites on their locally designed recording systems. This includes both opened and closed accounts assigned to a PCA site.

Examination Campus Quality Phone Product Lines
  1. The following are the Examination Campus Quality Phone Product Lines:

    • Automated Underreporter (AUR)

    • CS Specialized Phone Services

    • Exam Phones

    • Innocent Spouse Phones

Automated Underreporter (AUR) Product Line
  1. Automated Underreporter (AUR) Phones is a separate Automated Underreporter product line review in NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. There are two (2) Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) under the AUR Phones Product Line.

    • AUR Phones

    • BMF AUR Phones

  2. AUR Phones Product Line is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayer/caller inquiries received on the AUR toll-free telephone lines.

  3. PAS Analysts and managers will primarily use IRM 4.19.3, IMF Automated Underreporter, IRM 4.119.4, BMF Underreporter (BMF-AUR), IRM 21.10.1 and the Attribute Matrix Job Aids during the review of AUR Phone Calls.

Definition of AUR Phones SPRG
  1. AUR Phones is defined as any phone call received on the AUR toll-free line through the Telephone system on an IMF account by the Automated Underreporter Operation. These include both open AUR cases and closed AUR cases in the Reconsideration process, and any immediate account actions required to be taken by the AUR employee once the taxpayer terminates the call. The call is still counted as part of the sample even if the employee does not complete all work until the next business day.

Definition of BMF AUR Phones SPRG
  1. BMF AUR Phones is defined as any phone call received on the BMF AUR toll-free line through the Telephone system on a BMF account by the BMF Automated Underreporter Operation. These include both open BMF AUR cases and closed BMF AUR cases in the Reconsideration process, and any immediate account actions required to be taken by the BMF AUR employee once the taxpayer terminates the call. The call is still counted as part of the sample even if the employee does not complete all work until the next business day.

CS Specialized Phone Services Product Line
  1. Compliance Services (CS) Specialized Phone Services Product Line consist of two SPRGs:

    • Centralized Excise Tax Phones

    • Centralized Estate/Gift Tax Phones

  2. The telephone calls are reviewed in order to measure and improve the quality of our responses to taxpayer telephone inquiries concerning account issues and tax law issues.

Definition of Centralized Excise Tax Phone SPRG
  1. Centralized Excise Tax telephone calls are any calls received through the Telephone system that relate to excise tax account issues and tax law issues.

Definition of the Centralized Estate/Gift Tax Phone SPRG
  1. Centralized Estate/Gift Tax telephone calls are any calls received through the Telephone system that relates to Estate/Gift Tax account issues and tax law issues.

Exam Phones Product Line
  1. Exam Phones is a separate product line review in EQRS/NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality System.

  2. Exam Phones is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayer/caller inquiries received on the Exam Toll-free lines.

  3. PAS Analysts and Managers will use the IRM 4.19.19, Campus Examination Telephone Contacts, Quality Job Aid-Exam Phones, and the IRM 21.10.1 during their review of Exam Phone cases.

Definition of Exam Phones SPRG
  1. Exam Phones is defined as any call received on the Examination toll-free lines through the Telephone system. Additionally, Exam Phones includes Outgoing Calls, as these calls will be included by managers in their review.

  2. Exam Phones is based on two primary sources:

    • Earned Income Tax Credit Program

    • Discretionary Programs

Innocent Spouse Phones Product Line
  1. Innocent Spouse Phones is a separate product line review in NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality System.

  2. Innocent Spouse Phones is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of responses given to taxpayer/caller inquiries received on the Innocent Spouse Toll-free line.

  3. PAS Analysts and managers will use the IRM 25.15.18.9.2, Phones, Document 6209, Revenue Procedures, Treasury Regulations, Internal Revenue Code sections 6013, 6015, and 66, IRM 21.10.1, and the Innocent Spouse Phones Quality Job Aid during their review of Innocent Spouse Phone cases.

Definition of the Innocent Spouse Phones SPRG
  1. Innocent Spouse Phones is defined as any call received by the Cincinnati Centralized Innocent Spouse Operation (CCISO) Cold Call units on the toll-free line through the Telephone system on open or closed cases, as well as Extension Routed calls and any other phone call received on the Innocent Spouse toll-free line. Additionally, Innocent Spouse Phones includes Outgoing Calls for managers, as these calls will be included in their review.

  2. Innocent Spouse Phones is based on three primary sources:

    • Forms 8857, Request from Innocent Spouse Relief (or Substitute Form 8857) claims waiting for response

    • Forms 8857 claims that have been granted full or partial relief

    • Forms 8857 claims that have been denied

  3. Phone Volumes in NQRS will be adjusted based on Variance Trackers completed using ETD reports to determine the corrected volumes.

e-help Support Phones Product Line

  1. e-help phone calls are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of the support provided to users of IRS electronic products and services (e.g., e-file, e-services, FATCA Registration, Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS), etc.).

  2. The e-help Support Phones Product Line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG): e-help Phones.

Definition of e-help Phones SPRG
  1. e-help Phone calls are defined as any calls received on the designated Telephone e-help applications.

Sample Procedures for e-help Phones
  1. SOI Staff develops sampling plans for e-help phone calls monitored at CQRS. Sample sizes from CQRS are valid at the site level on a monthly basis.

  2. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers or CQRS to evaluate the contact.

  3. The site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local sampling guidelines have been included; See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  4. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

e-help Phone Measures
  1. e-help Phones will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Technical Support Operations (TSO) Information Returns Branch (IRB) Phones Product Line

  1. Technical Support Operation (TSO) IRB phone calls are reviewed to improve the quality of the support provided to filers/payers of Information Returns.

  2. The IRB Phones Product Line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG): IRB Phones.

Definition of IRB Phones SPRG
  1. IRB Phone calls are defined as any calls received on the designated Telephone IRB Customer Service Section applications.

Sample Procedures for IRB Phones
  1. CR and the associated screen shots may be used by managers to evaluate the contact.

  2. The site may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. Local sampling guidelines have been included; IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1.

  3. Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

IRB Phone Measures
  1. IRB Phones will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and reported under the Balanced Measurement System. IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Quality Review of Paper Cases

  1. Quality Analysts at the sites conduct sample reviews of all paper product lines and provide data to the Business Results of the Balanced Measurement System for each product line.

  2. They may also conduct local reviews of paper product lines for local use and/or quality improvement. Local review data is not included in the Business Results calculations.

  3. Managerial reviews of paper cases are not included in the Business Results calculations; they are used in employee evaluative documentation to plan workload distribution, and to identify training issues.

  4. Each product line will be reviewed using a sample size designed specifically for that product line and site. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2, IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.2 (General) and IRM 21.10.1.3.3, IRM 21.10.1.3.3.1 and IRM 21.10.1.3.3.2 (Compliance) for information on determining the sample.

    Note:

    Managerial reviews are not subject to a sampling plan.

  5. The basic roles and responsibilities for paper analysts are the same across all paper product lines. Paper cases are rated based on percentage correct in each of the five buckets.

  6. Review all actions taken on the sampled case. Use the appropriate IDRS or other applicable system Command Codes to research the account(s) involved.

  7. Review sample cases after all IDRS, ACS, or applicable specialized system input action is complete. Review the actual input against case documentation to ensure all actions were appropriately taken.

  8. Review correspondence issued to taxpayers as part of the case review. This includes evaluating the content of letters that are attached as PDF files instead of LPAGE request completed screens, as well as captured LPAGE screens where the words Request Completed are not visible when they are required to be. Correspondence must provide a correct and complete response to all taxpayer and IRS issues. Correspondence must address how the taxpayer's issue was resolved, request additional information from the taxpayer if necessary, and/or notify the taxpayer that information has been requested from outside the IRS.

  9. When performing a paper review, the analyst will use the employee's IDRS number, unless informed differently by PICA or the PLA.

    Note:

    In Campus Compliance since more than one employee may work on a paper case, the analyst will use the IDRS number or other identifier of the employee who created the 715 driver error on the case. If the analyst cannot discern who the primary caseworker was or there are no 715 driver errors and 715 is coded "Y" , use the IDRS number or other identifier of the employee who closed the case.

  10. Product Line Specific Guidance: In addition to the guidance stated above, the following product line specific instructions are to be followed:

    SPRG How to identify the employee being reviewed:
    AUR Enter the AUR UID number in the Employee Name field on the National Quality Review System. Enter the following identifiers when the situation warrants:
    1. M - Use if more than one person worked the case and it cannot be identified who made the error, who the primary caseworker was if there were no errors on the case, or there are defects that could apply to more than one caseworker.

    2. A - Use if the case was completely worked by an automated process, such as Batch, with no caseworker involvement or contribution during the entire process.

    Exam Paper Enter the identification number of the employee who created the 715 error. If no 715 error, enter the identifier of the primary caseworker. Enter the following identifiers when the situation warrants:
    1. M – Use if more than one person worked the case and it cannot be identified who made the error, who the primary caseworker was (if there were no errors on the case), or there are defects that could apply to more than one caseworker.

    2. A – Use if the case was completely worked by an automated process, such as Batch, with no caseworker involvement or contribution during the entire process.

    Innocent Spouse Enter the identification number of the employee who created the 715 error in the employee name field of the DCI. If no 715 error, enter the identifier of the primary caseworker. Enter the following identifiers when the situation warrants:
    1. M – Use if more than one person worked the case and it cannot be identified who made the error, who the primary caseworker was (if there were no errors on the case), or there are defects that could apply to more than one case worker.

    2. A – Use if the case was completely worked by an automated process, such as Batch, with no caseworker involvement or contribution during the entire process.

  11. For more information on correspondence requirements, see IRM 21.3.3.4.17.1, Preparation of Outgoing Correspondence.

Accounts Paper Product Line

  1. Accounts Paper Adjustments and AM Identity Theft Paper (including referrals) are reviewed to evaluate and improve the quality of account actions and correspondence in response to written taxpayer inquiries and internal requests.

  2. Incorrect/incomplete action (per IRM guidelines) which results in incorrect/incomplete information to the taxpayer must exceed a $5.00 threshold before charging a Customer Accuracy defect. This should be charged as a Procedural defect only.

Roles and Responsibilities of the Accounts Paper Analyst
  1. Review the finished product for Tax Account Activity work (which includes some types of employee generated correspondence). Review the entire case file, from IRS Received Date to the closing date for that particular inquiry or internally generated case.

    Note:

    Exception: DITA Cases are exempt from review of entire case file from IRS Received Date to closing date. Begin review of DITA cases from the time the case is received from the referring function (i.e., Large Business & International (LBI), Field Examination, Field Collection and IDTVA-C)) to the closing date of the case.

  2. After coding the DCI, do not include any subsequent or corrective action taken on or after the Closing Date.

  3. Review each sample case and enter identification data on the applicable section of the NQRS/EQRS DCI. All sections of the NQRS/EQRS DCI apply for Accounts Paper except the Exam section.

    Note:

    Only mark attributes Y/N for the CIS ID case that fell into the sample pool. However, research of linked cases may be necessary for information that may be available within those cases for the correct closing of the case.

Definition of Accounts Paper SPRG
  1. Any cases worked under Tax Account Activity are subject to Accounts Paper (Adjustments, AM Identity Theft Paper and Return Preparer Misconduct) review. This includes electronic Forms e-4442, and written Forms 4442, Inquiry Referral, and Taxpayer Correspondence.

  2. A case is considered Tax Account Activity work if it requires the employee to either research an account or perform adjustment action on an account. All Tax Account Activity work completed within any campus site is to be included in one SPRG sample plan for the campus. Separate sample plans for each remote site would be cost prohibitive.

  3. Examples of types of Tax Account Activity work included in the Accounts Paper reviews:

    • Internal Notices/CPs (see IRM 3.13.62, Media and Transport Control, for a complete list of internally generated CP Notices)

    • TCB/NOL–Tentative Carrybacks

    • Previous Adjustments

    • Amended Returns (Form 1040X, 1120X, 94X)

    • CP59

    • Loose Schedules

    • Duplicate filed returns

    • EFTPS Issues

    • FTDs

    • Penalty Issues

  4. Examples of Tax Account work excluded for Accounts Paper reviews:

    • Criminal Investigation

    • Collection

    • Examination

    • Phone Calls

    • E-mail

    • ELF

    • Undeliverable Mail

    • Unidentified Remittances in Receipt and Control

    • Automated Extensions (i.e., Form 4868, Form 2688, etc.)

    • Bank Letters–Outgoing

    • Receipt and Control Payments

    • Returns routed to another area

    • CAWR

    • Installment Billing

    • Form 1133 – Not a closed case

    • Form 3858 – Not a closed case

    • ASFR

    • Form 8871 (OSC Only)

    • Returns being statute cleared and routed to another area (710–01028),

    • Entity Unpostables

    • Form 8655, Reporting Agent Authorization for Magnetic Tape/Electronic Filers

    • Reworking an Unpostable

    • CIS case that was closed as MISC and linked to another open CIS case

    • Split image unrelated case that are erroneously processed as one single CIS case. Refer to IRM 21.5.1.5.1(16). Splitting the image cannot be evaluated/coded on DCI as part of case selection for reviews. The unrelated case did not appropriately fall into the sample pull.

    • Case selected for sample review is unreviewable (requiring replacement case) for example, case linked to an active case on day of closure.

      Note:

      The above Included and Excluded lists are not all inclusive. Contact Headquarters for a decision on whether or not to review any Tax Accounts Activity work not found on either list.

  5. The following will help you determine the received date:

    • Determine whether your case is a Taxpayer Initiated Inquiry (TPI) or non-TPI. When you are unable to determine whether your case is a TPI case, or other type of case, treat the case as a TPI.

    • When there is no IRS Received Date or handwritten received date on the document, determine the received date using the following priority list:
      a. Latest postmark or private delivery service date on the envelope.
      b. Date the document/correspondence was prepared or signed.
      c. Julian Date of the DLN minus 10 days.
      d. Current date minus 10 days.
      e. IRM 21.5.1.4.2.4, Received Date Determination, will also help you determine a received date.

      Note:

      For information concerning the Statute Reprocessable Return, see IRM 21.5.2.4.23.4, Statute Imminent Documents.

    • On computer generated cases, use the transcript or notice date minus 14 days to determine the IRS received date. If no computer generated date is present, use the IRS received date on the source document.

      Exception:

      A CP 98/198 case resulting from a TPI should be controlled using the IRS received date of the source document.

      Exception:

      A CP 193 should be controlled using the transcript received date.

    • When fax receipts are date and time stamped by the fax machine, no further action is required to evidence receipt. Otherwise, fax receipts received before 2:00 p.m. local time, are considered received on the current date. Documents received after 2:00 p.m. local time, are considered received the next business day.

Sample Procedures for Accounts Paper
  1. Headquarters Quality Product Line Analysts (PLA) provide sample sizes for written referral review at the sites. Statistics of Income (SOI) develops the sample plan when requested by Headquarters. This plan allows for statistically reliable estimates quarterly at the site level and monthly at the national level.

  2. For non-CIS Adjustments work, the sites should use the skip for AMSS Support Services. The Adjustments Non-CIS SPRG is not measured.

Identifying the Sample
  1. The campus PAS group is able to review not only campus closures but also the campus remote site closures. PAS will input the DCI under the parent campus, not under the remote site. For example: when a case is selected for Baltimore (52), the site field selected for inputting the DCI should be Andover (Directorate 08). For accountability purposes, these remote site cases may be input under their own separate group code than the parent campus. If applicable, please notify the Product Line Analyst if an additional group code is needed. Also, the end of the month volumes for e-4442 should be input to the parent group code or to the parent campus using the applicable remote site group code. For example, if a case was reviewed for the Baltimore remote site, add their volume to the parent (Andover) campus group code or to the Andover campus using the separate remote site group code.

Sampling e-4442
  1. Electronic Forms e-4442, Inquiry Referral - Accounts Paper (Adjustments and AM Identity Theft Paper) work includes electronic and written Forms 4442 that are the result of Accounts Phone calls. See IRM 21.3.5.2, What Is a Referral? E4442s are reviewed under the Adjustments Non- CIS SPRG.

  2. When reviewing written account work, the analyst must perform a complete review of the Form 4442 as well as the action(s) taken to resolve the taxpayer's inquiry. Instructions for review of Form 4442 are included below:

    • Work groups must be assigned on AMS. To do this, the campus P&A staff notifies the HQ Analyst for Accounts Paper Quality advising which workgroup(s) should have access to the e-4442 PAS queue for each campus. The HQ Analyst notifies AMS Development.

    • Once AMS Development has given the group/team access to the PAS Review queue, the manager and/or acting manager of the designated workgroup will have the ability to profile employees to work e-4442 PAS Review. Only PAS units at each campus will have the ability to perform PAS Review.

      Note:

      Local Quality Groups at the campus and/or remote sites do not have access to this functionality. All other reviews would need to be conducted by managers/acting managers on an ad hoc basis from the employees completed list. Any changes to the employees list should be sent to AMS Development.

  3. The AMS system will select a case as determined by the quarterly sampling plan for each campus (Accounts Paper Adjustments and AM Identity Theft Paper SPRGs supplied by SOI) of all Forms e-4442 closed at a campus and its remote site(s) for a Directorate PAS review queue. Each AM Directorate will have their own review queue. Only employees appropriately profiled in the designated campus workgroup(s) will have access to this Review queue.

Sampling CIS
  1. The Correspondence Imaging System (CIS) is a system for scanning all Adjustments receipts (including Forms 1040X) into digital images and working the cases from those images. CIS moves Adjustments from a paper to a paperless environment.

    1. Guidelines for reviewing CIS are in IRM 21.5.1.5,Correspondence Imaging System (CIS) Procedures, IRM 21.10.1, Quality Assurance - Embedded Quality (EQ) Program for Accounts Management, Compliance Services, Field Assistance, Tax Exempt/Government Entities, Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS) - Integrity and Verification Operations and Electronic Products and Services Support. and the applicable job aid. The CIS Performance Guide (Course Number 6902c-203 CSR Guide) may be used for reviewing cases on CIS. It provides additional explanations, information, and instructions.

    2. When completing reviews using EQRS/NQRS and CIS, the CIS case ID must be typed into the Offer/CIS/Case Number header field on EQRS/NQRS. The case ID should also be noted on any type of written quality review feedback form, including 100 percent review documentation. This will enable the employee to easily locate the case within CIS.

    3. Case notes should not be used to document the results of review since they become a permanent part of the case.

      Note:

      Rejecting/Accepting a case on CIS does not reject/accept the transaction on IDRS. IDRS command code RVIEW must be used with CIS to perform complete case review when applicable.

    4. Designating a user as an OJI gives them access to a Quality Review inventory that contains all of the cases selected for review at the campus. OJIs performing review may sort that inventory by employee number in order to identify targeted review cases, or search by the targeted employee number and status to isolate a single employee's review cases.

  2. The CIS system will select a case as determined by the quarterly sampling plan for each campus (Accounts Paper Adjustments, AM Identity Theft Paper SPRGs and Return Preparer Misconduct) supplied by SOI of all cases closed at a campus. Adjustments and Identity Theft Paper SPRGs are not sampled per OFP. Instead, all Adjustment work is lumped together and the sample comes from the entire mix using the skip interval including Form e-4442.

  3. The CIS sample is based on the date that cases that go into archived status; it is not based on the date the case was closed. It takes approximately two business days for cases to update to an archived status within CIS after the case is closed. Exception: In some instances, it may take longer than two days for a case to archive. Managerial holds and systemic issues may increase the timeframe. Conversely, a case that is selected for CER/managerial review and promptly accepted by the reviewer may be archived in less than two days.

    The cutoff timeframe for the sample selection of archived status cases is 6:00 PM M-F Central.

    Sample Day: Sample Includes: Available for review on:
    Monday Cases archived after 6 pm Central Friday up to 6 pm Central on Monday Tuesday
    Tuesday Cases archived after 6 pm Central Monday up to 6 pm Central on Tuesday Wednesday
    Wednesday Cases archived after 6 pm Central Tuesday up to 6 pm Central on Wednesday Thursday
    Thursday Cases archived after 6 pm Central Wednesday up to 6 pm Central on Thursday Friday
    Friday Cases archived after 6 pm Central Thursday up to 6 pm Central on Friday Monday


    Automated Holiday Sample Process: The PAS case selection process stopped processing cases for PAS review on IRS holidays effective July 2018. These cases are now processed during the next IRS business day.

Other Review by Work Leader or Manager on CIS
  1. An employee may be profiled for Suspense to CAT A, Statute and Tech Assist, Reroute, Reroute to EITC, and Reroute to Exam to pass through a managerial approval step prior to completing the selected action. Any other situations that require managerial or work leader approval prior to taking action should be Suspended with 2WORKLEADER or 2MANAGER and a description of the action that is planned in a Case Note or a Case Message. This will not reassign the case to the lead or the manager, but will make the case available in their Assistance inventory. This process can also be used if a question is asked on the case. When the response is received, continue working the case to closure.

  2. Examples of possible uses:

    1. Certified letter review. Capture the ADJ54 and LETER request completed screens. Leave the IDRS control in "A" status. Suspend 2Manager or 2Workleader. Some sites use 2Manager to indicate a higher priority or a more time sensitive case. The manager or lead will review, then OK in a case note, and return to the Customer Service Representative. Click the Close button when the approved case is returned.

    2. Payment date change.

    3. Reassignment of a misidentified carryback case.

    Note:

    Case Notes are permanent and are automatically written to AMS history. Case Messages are temporary and are not written to AMS. They may be manually deleted prior to case closure, and are automatically deleted when a case is archived.

Accounts Paper Measures
  1. Accounts Paper will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy, and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Accounts Management (AM) Specialized Services Product Line
  1. AM Specialized Services is reviewed to evaluate and improve the quality of account actions and correspondence in response to written taxpayer inquiries and internal requests.

Roles and Responsibilities of the AM Specialized Services Paper Analyst
  1. Review the finished product for Tax Account Activity work (which includes some types of correspondence). Review the entire case folder, from IRS Received Date to the Closing Date, for that particular inquiry or internally generated case.

  2. Review each sample case and enter identification data on the applicable section of the NQRS/EQRS DCI.

Definition of AM Specialized Services Paper Product Line
  1. Any cases worked under Tax Account Activity are subject to AM Specialized Services Paper review.

  2. AM Specialized Services is separated into the following SPRGs:

    • Support Services work which includes Refund Inquiry, Account Maintenance and Statutes

    • Technical Services work which includes Technical Large Corp. and Complex Interest

    • EIN Paper (Form SS-4) which includes Paper SS-4s mailed or faxed (FAX-TIN),

    • CAF/POA which includes the review of Form 2848/8821 work

    • International Specialized which includes international related work not performed under the Account paper - Adjustment SPRG

    • Excise tax and Estate and Gift taxes which will be worked under CS Specialized Services

  3. A case will be considered Tax Account Activity work if it requires the tax examiner or employee to either research an account or perform adjustment action on an account.

  4. Examples of types of Tax Account work included in the AM Specialized Services Paper reviews:

    • Form SS-4

    • Form 8822 - Address Changes

    • Form 2848 - POA

    • Form 8821 - POA

    • Form 3911/3913

    • Bank Letters-when they come back in

    • Foreign/Regular Certification

    • Statute program (transcripts and notices)

    • Accounts Maintenance transcripts

    • High Dollar notices

    • Internal Notices/CPs (see IRM 3.13.62,Media Transport Control, for a complete list of internally generated CP notices)

    • International

  5. For examples of Tax Account work excluded for AM Specialized Services refer to the IRM. See IRM 21.10.1.5.1.2(4).

    Note:

    The above Included and Excluded lists are not all inclusive. Contact Headquarters for a decision on whether or not to review any Tax Accounts Activity work not found on either list.

  6. To determine the Received Date for specific types of cases in AM Specialized Services, refer to the following instructions:

    If the Case Type is: Then use:
    AMRH Transcripts Use the date on IDRS the case was assigned to a tax examiner.
    Internal Transcripts Use the date seven days prior to the 23C date of the notice
    Notice Review Adjustments Use the date seven days prior to the 23C date of the notice
    Scrambled SSNs Use the 23C date of the duplicate transcript.
    Underreporter Pre-work/Stat work If the case contains correspondence from the taxpayer, use the received date of the taxpayer’s first response. If the case does not contain correspondence, use the case initiation date.
    Form 4506 Use the stamped received date.
    Previous Adjustment Use the date the case is Xed out.
    Form 8758 / Form 8765 Use the Area Office prepared date.
    Push Codes Use the date on the source document.
    Fax-TIN Use the date on the source document.
    P freeze Use the date seven days prior to the 23C date.
    Erroneous Refund The date of the reply to the 510C letter.
    Statute Transcripts Use the date on IDRS the case was assigned to a TE.
Sample Procedures for AM Specialized Services Paper
  1. Headquarters Product Line Quality Analysts provide sample sizes for written referral review at the sites. Statistics of Income (SOI) develops the sample plan when requested by Headquarters. This plan allows for statistically reliable estimates quarterly at the site level and monthly at the national level.

AM Specialized Services Paper Product Line Measures
  1. AM Specialized Services Paper Product Line will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy, and Procedural Accuracy as part of the Balanced Measurement System. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Accounts Management (AM) – AM Clerical Campus Support Product Line
  1. AM Clerical – Campus Support encompasses "live" review of the Campus Support mail operation and evaluates each process for efficiency and timeliness to ensure that the objectives are met. The objectives are as follows: To open and extract mail; expedite all remittances to Deposit; minimize time from receipt of mail through the sorting function to routing; identify and control all payments for shipping; and expediting.

Roles and Responsibilities of the AM Clerical Campus Support Analyst/Reviewer
  1. Perform review of each Campus Support process utilizing the Data Collection Instrument established for this Product Line. Reviews will also be entered to the Embedded Quality Review System (NQRS and EQRS).

Definition of AM Campus Support Paper Product Line
  1. Campus Support work is clerical and performed by the mail/file clerks and the cash clerks. Work primarily consists of opening and extracting mail; expediting all remittances to their deposit sites; minimizing the time for processing of mail to the proper destinations; identifying and controlling all payments for shipping; and processing of perfect payments through the RS-PCC scanning system.

  2. The Campus Support review is performed live and involves review of each process as follows: Incoming Mail; Extraction; Secondary Sort; Final Candling; RS-PCC (Misdirected); Correspondence; COIC PCC (BAMC, MAMC only); Outgoing Mail; RS-PCC Insolvency (PAMC only) and PCC Insolvency (PAMC only).

Sample Procedures for AM Campus Support Paper
  1. SOI has developed a sample tool for random selection of Campus Support Reviews. For the National reviews, the reviewers will run the tool prior to each new month for the sample. The reviews are based on eight workdays a month (twelve workdays for Philadelphia). Each work day requires anywhere between 2.5 hours and 3.75 hours of a reviewer's time or 20 to 30 hours of time per month (or 60 to 90 hours per quarter). Headquarter staff is allowed to increase the sample if it is determined there is a need.

AM Clerical Campus Support Product Line Measures
  1. The AM Clerical Campus Support Product Line measures Customer Accuracy, Regulatory Accuracy, Procedural Accuracy, Timeliness, and Professionalism (Manager Reviews only). The National reviews will be based on unweighted results due to the limitations of performing live reviews. The results from these reviews are only representative of the short time when a reviewer is in the area to perform the reviews and so cannot be weighted up to the population. This is an issue for all live-work reviews, including for example the Lockbox on-site reviews and the Submission Processing Security Reviews. The work flows along a pipeline process and this means the work being reviewed is only available within a given area for a short period of time before it moves onto the next area for continued processing. This differs dramatically from review of closed cases or recorded taxpayer telephone calls where quality can be checked and validated after the fact as with other AM SPRGs. Due to the fact that the reviewer cannot possibly be in multiple areas at the same time; nor can he/she be in an area all day, this means not all work has a chance of being reviewed. In order for the reviews to be valid statistically would mean that every item in the population had a chance of being reviewed and the results are representative of the entire body of work. Unfortunately, with Campus Support work this is not possible. While the results from these reviews are unweighted and much more limited than those from other AM SPRGs, they are still valuable. Ultimately, the National reviews conducted for the Campus Support operation will help AM determine how each process is working to ensure that AM is providing the best service possible to its customers.

e-help Support Paper

  1. e-help Support Paper is a separate product line review in EQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. The e-help Support Paper product line consist of two Specialized Review Groups (SPRG).

    • e-help Paper

    • e-help e-mail

  2. e-help Support Paper is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the e-help Operation. Analysts and managers will use the MAJA and IRM 21.10.1 during their review of e-help cases.

Definition of e-help Support Paper
  1. e-help Support Paper is defined as any paper or e-mail case closed by the e-help Operation. This includes all correspondence (paper and electronic) received directly from a customer or a telephone call reduced to writing via an Interaction/Incident closed by the e-help Operation.

Roles and Responsibilities of the Collection and Examination Campus Quality (CQ) Paper Analyst

  1. The Collection and Examination Campus Quality (CQ) Analyst for Compliance Paper will complete an unbiased, consistent and accurate review of work encompassing all technical and procedural actions taken.

  2. CQ Paper Quality Analysts will review the entire case to identify actions taken. Analysts will ensure that appropriate actions are annotated in IDRS or other specialized systems as well as applicable input documents and those actions taken, clearly support the conclusion of the case as required by the procedural IRMs of the SPRG.

  3. Incorrect/incomplete action (per IRM guidelines) which results in incorrect calculations must exceed a $5.00 threshold before charging a defect for the national review.

  4. CQ Paper Quality Analysts will complete an NQRS Data Collection Instrument (DCI) for each case reviewed using the MAJA for the SPRG as guidance for coding. All appropriate fields will be completed to indicate quality standards as having been met or not met. Analyst's narratives will provide the basis for their findings and include applicable IRM references for coded defects. Whenever Attribute 715 is coded with a defect, the driver must be indicated in parenthesis immediately following "715" in the Feedback/Summary Remarks on the DCI, i.e., N=715, Correct/Complete Response Resolution (003).

  5. Enter ACA in the "National Use Only" Field when ACA procedures should have been applied for the case or call being reviewed. Continue to code in the appropriate attributes, but also include in the Feedback Summary Remarks which (if any) of the defects related to handling of the ACA procedures outlined in the IRM with the use of (ACA) similar to current handling of 715 drivers. Please type (ACA) exactly as shown with all capital letters and inside of parenthesis to allow for easier searches of any ACA defect cases.

  6. NQRS reviews will provide a basis for defect analysis and reporting error trends.

  7. Enter the word FLASH in the Feedback Summary Remarks section of the DCI to identify a defect that requires immediate (by the next business day) corrective action by the operation. For example, recalling a notice/letter before it is issued or correcting an adjustment to an account. The remarks are used by many analysts for trend analysis and should not contain extraneous verbiage. Keep the remarks professional and concise. Explain the error in specific and simple terms. See IRM 21.10.1.7.7, EQRS/NQRS Remarks Section for additional information.

    Note:

    Defects requiring corrective action that are not annotated with FLASH are to be completed by the Operation within five working days. See IRM 21.10.1.2.6.5

  8. Review data will be input daily to NQRS, whenever possible. The PLA should be advised of significant delay.

  9. CQRSS will be used daily to enter PAS review information and upload completed DCIs.

  10. Refer to the Embedded Quality Website, http://eq.web.irs.gov, frequently to glean updated information on the use of attributes, in the Compliance Paper review, obtain the latest Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) and Quality Gram, etc.

  11. Consult your manager for coding assistance or to interpret attribute usage, when necessary. If additional guidance is required contact the Product Line Analyst (PLA).

  12. In a quarterly report, to be shared with the Operation, provide suggestions for improvement by:

    1. Identifying most frequently occurring defects

    2. Preparing an analysis of root causes of defects

    3. Verifying sampling plans and guidelines

    4. Reviewing methods used to capture needed information

Collection and Examination Campus Quality Paper Measures
  1. Campus Quality Paper SPRGs will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Collection Campus Quality Paper Product Lines
  1. Collection Campus Quality Paper Product Lines include:

    • ACS Written

    • Automated Substitute for Returns (ASFR) Paper

    • Centralized Case Processing (CCP) Collection Paper

    • Centralized Liens Paper

    • CIO Paper

    • Offer in Compromise (OIC) Paper

    • Collection Paper

ACS Written Product Line
  1. There is one Specialized Product Review Groups under ACS Written:

    • ACS Support - a national review.

  2. Under ACS Support, ACS Inventory and Correspondence generated from the ACS system will be reviewed to evaluate and improve the quality of ACS casework.

  3. Analysts must have a thorough knowledge of IDRS and AMS, Document 6209, ACS history codes and narrative comments, e-ACSG, and IAT. These resources will give analysts the ability to assess adherence to compliance guidelines by reconstructing, deciphering, and interpreting actions taken when the entries are unclear.

  4. Analysts and managers will utilize IRM Part 5 Collecting Process, IRM Part 11 Communications and Liaison, IRM Part 21 Customer Account Services, and the Master Attribute Job Aids (MAJA) for ACS Support found on the Embedded Quality Website, http://eq.web.irs.gov.

Definition of ACS Support SPRG
  1. ACS Support works ACS Inventory and Correspondence generated from the ACS system. This is primarily cases that are in Status 22, but may include cases in Statuses 24 and 26.

    1. The ACS Support Sample (Group Codes 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, and 79) will consist of ACS Inventory and Correspondence, OFP codes generated from the ACS system, and cases worked in the S functions, Status 22. It may also include cases in Statuses 24 and 26.

    2. All closed ACS Support cases must be made available to the Quality Staff for sampling. See IRM 21.10.1.3.3 and IRM 21.10.1.3.3.1 for sampling guidelines.

Automated Substitute for Returns (ASFR) Paper Product Line
  1. Automated Substitute for Returns (ASFR) Paper is reviewed in order to measure and improve the quality of the ASFR program, which consists of correspondence and returns for ASFR and ASFR Reconsideration.

  2. ASFR utilizes the authority granted to the IRS to prepare returns using available income information for taxpayers who have failed to respond to requests for delinquent returns.

Definition of ASFR Paper SPRG
  1. ASFR Paper is defined as any case closed by ASFR as a result of taxpayer returns, correspondence or internal requests. This includes correspondence or returns received for reconsideration of an ASFR assessment.

  2. The sample for ASFR Paper contains ASFR correspondence and returns and ASFR Reconsideration correspondence and returns.

Centralized Case Processing (CCP) Collection Paper Product Line
  1. Centralized Case Processing (CCP) Collection is a separate product line review on the National Quality Review System (NQRS) and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality System (EQ). There are two Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) under the CCP Collection Paper product line:

    • CCP Manually Monitored Installment Agreement (MMIA)

    • CCP General Case Processing (GCP)

  2. CCP Collection is reviewed to measure, analyze, and enhance the quality of cases processed through the CCP operation and to ensure consistency with established case processing guidelines.

  3. Quality Analysts and Managers will use the appropriate functional IRM(s), Quality Job Aid, and the IRM 21.10.1 during their review of the CCP Paper cases.

Definition of CCP MMIA Paper SPRG
  1. CCP MMIA is defined as any paper case monitored for actions by CCP. This encompasses cases involving revenue officer requests for routine PPIA's, manually monitored installment agreement processing (IBTF and/or PPIA-IBTF), any installment agreement that can or cannot be monitored by IDRS and any two year reviews in adherence to prescribed policies and IRM procedures.

Definition of CCP GCP Paper SPRG
  1. CCP GCP is defined as any paper case closed by CCP. This encompasses cases involving revenue officer requests for adjustments to balances due, requests for transfers of credit, payment tracer requests, requests for assessment under IRC 6020B, and any required action involving IDRS terminal input in adherence to prescribed policies and IRM procedures.

Centralized Liens Paper Product Line
  1. Centralized Liens Paper is a separate product line review on the National Quality Review System (NQRS) and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality System (EQ). There is one Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) under the Centralized Liens Paper product line:

    • CLO Lien Paper

  2. Centralized Liens Paper is reviewed to measure, analyze, and enhance the quality of cases processed through the CLO operation and to ensure consistency with established case processing guidelines.

  3. Quality Analysts and Managers will use the appropriate functional IRM(s), Quality Job Aid, and the IRM 21.10.1 during their review of the Centralized Lien Paper cases.

Definition of CLO Lien Paper SPRG
  1. CLO Lien Paper includes all closed CLO Lien Paper cases that originate as taxpayer, customer or internal requests.

  2. The sample includes but is not limited to lien filings, payoff letters, lien releases, lost liens, unpostables, and SATMOD listings.

CIO Paper Product Line
  1. Centralized Insolvency Operation (CIO) is a separate product line review on NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. CIO Paper is the only Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG) under the CIO product line.

  2. CIO is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the Centralized Insolvency Operation.

  3. Analysts and managers will primarily use IRM 5.9, Bankruptcy and Other Insolvencies, IRM 1.4.51, Insolvency, Bankruptcy Law Advisory Rules Engine (BLARE), 21.10.1 and the Master Attribute Job Aids during their review of CIO cases.

Definition of CIO Paper SPRG
  1. CIO Paper is defined as any paper case closed by the CIO Operation. This includes cases involving taxpayers who have filed bankruptcy or have been affected by a bankruptcy court automatic stay or discharge and have had their case dismissed, discharged, or closed on the Automated Insolvency System (AIS) as a result of procedures or policy.

  2. See IRM 1.4.51, Insolvency for CIO Paper quality review procedures.

Offer in Compromise (OIC) Paper Product Line
  1. OIC Paper is reviewed in order to measure and improve the quality of the Compliance Services Centralized Offer In Compromise (COIC) Operation program and the Monitoring Offer in Compromise (MOIC). There are four Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) under the OIC Paper product line:

    • COIC Paper (NQRS)

    • MOIC Paper (NQRS/EQRS)

    • COIC Process Examination (EQRS)

    • COIC Offer Examination (EQRS)

Definition of COIC Paper SPRG
  1. COIC Paper includes all closed cases that originate per taxpayer submission of an offer in compromise request.

    Exception:

    Cases closed by Appeals are not subject to the National Review.

  2. NQRS has one SPRG COIC Paper and EQRS has two SPRGs: COIC Paper Process Examination and COIC Paper Offer Examination. COIC Process Examination is the initial processability determination and taxpayer contact, if applicable, to secure all necessary critical documentation prior to assignment to the Offer Examiner. COIC Offer Examination is the evaluation of an offer to determine its acceptability. In NQRS, Process Examination and Offer Examination are reviewed using the COIC Paper SPRG and identified by Group Codes 88 and 89. This SPRG has one sample plan.

  3. PAS Analysts will primarily use IRM 5.8, Offer in Compromise.

Definition of MOIC Paper SPRG
  1. Monitoring Offers in Compromise (MOIC) is defined as any paper case that completes end processing and is monitored for actions by COIC. MOIC units monitor accepted offers from COIC, Collection Field function, Appeals and Examination and settlements referred to the IRS by the Department of Justice. Offers are generally monitored for payment of the offered amount for a mandatory 5-year compliance period.

  2. Completed action for the purpose of this review is defined as any action taken where a count was recorded per IRM guidelines for that action. MOIC reviews consist of both in-process and closed case reviews.

  3. PAS Analysts and EQRS Reviewers will primarily use IRM 5.8, "Offer in Compromise" , IRM 5.19.7.2, Monitoring Offers In Compromise and IRM 5.19.1, "Balance due for MOIC" quality review procedures.

Collection Paper Product Line
  1. Collection Paper is reviewed in order to measure and improve the quality of the Compliance Services Collection Operations. There are three Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) under the Collection Paper product line:

    • Collection Paper Primary (EQRS)

    • CSCO Paper (NQRS)

    • CSCO Paper IAAL Transcripts (NQRS)

  2. PAS Analysts and EQRS Reviewers will primarily use IRM 5.19.1, Balance Due, IRM 5.19.2, Return Delinquency, IRM 5.19.10, Collection Operations Transcript Processing, IRM 5.19.11, Withholding Compliance Program, IRM 5.19.14, Trust Fund Recovery Penalty (TFRP), and IRM 5.19.16, Compliance Services Collection Operations (CSCO) Clerical Procedures as well as IRM 21.10.1, Quality Assurance - Embedded Quality (EQ) Program for Accounts Management, Compliance Services, Field Assistance, Tax Exempt/Government Entities, Return Integrity and Compliance Services (RICS) - Integrity and Verification Operations and Electronic Products and Services Support. and the Master Attribute Job Aids.

Definition of Collection Paper Primary SPRG
  1. Collection Paper Primary includes all Compliance Services Collection Operation (CSCO) cases that originate as taxpayer inquiries or internal requests.

  2. EQRS Reviews for Group Code 80 consists of IAAL listing/transcripts originating from Atlanta. All other transcripts and listings worked at other campuses will be included in Group Code 81.

  3. The EQ review for Group Code 81 consists of A6020b, Balance Due, RBA, Return Delinquency, Refund Hold, TFRP, Withholding Compliance and internal transcripts (other than IAAL from Atlanta).

Definition of CSCO Paper SPRG
  1. CSCO Paper includes all closed Compliance Services Collection Operation (CSCO) cases that originate as taxpayer inquiries or internal requests.

  2. CSCO Paper is used exclusively for the National Quality (NQRS) sampling of the following Collection Paper Primary Group Code 81 programs: Automated 6020b (6020b), IMF and BMF Balance Due (TDA), IMF and BMF Return Delinquency (TDI), Restitution Based Assessment (RBA), Refund Hold (RH), Automated Trust Fund Recovery (ATFR/TFRP), Withholding Compliance (WHC) and internal transcripts (other than IAAL in Atlanta).

  3. All closed cases must be made available timely to Quality Staff for sampling. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1 for sampling guidelines.

Definition of CSCO IAAL Transcripts SPRG
  1. CSCO Paper IAAL Transcripts includes all closed Compliance Services Collection Operation (CSCO) cases that originate from Atlanta as Installment Agreement Accounts List (IAAL) requests (Collection Paper Primary Group Code 80).

  2. CSCO Paper IAAL Transcripts is used exclusively for National Quality (NQRS) sampling of Collection Paper Primary Group Code 80 programs.

  3. All closed cases must be made available timely to Quality Staff for sampling. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 and IRM 21.10.1.3.2.1 for sampling guidelines.

Examination Campus Quality Paper Product Lines
  1. Examination Campus Quality Paper Product Lines include:

    • Automated Underreport (AUR) Paper

    • CCP Exam Paper

    • CS Specialized Paper Services

    • Exam Paper

    • Innocent Spouse Paper

Automated Underreporter (AUR) Paper Product Line
  1. AUR Paper is a separate product line review on NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. There are five SPRGs within the AUR Paper product line.

    • AUR Paper

    • BMF AUR Paper

    • CAWR

    • FUTA

    • PMF

  2. AUR Paper product line cases are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the AUR, BMF AUR, CAWR, FUTA and PMF Operations.

  3. PAS Analysts and EQRS Reviewers will primarily use IRM 4.19.2, IMF Automated Underreporter (AUR) Control, IRM 4.19.3, IMF Automated Underreporter (AUR), IRM 4.19.4, CAWR Reconciliation Balancing, IRM 4.119.4, BMF Underreporter (BMF-AUR) Program, IRM 4.19.5, Certification of State FUTA Credits, IRM 4.19.6, SSA Correspondence, Minister Waivers, and Application for Exemption from Social Security and Medicare, IRM 21.10.1 and the Master Attribute Job Aids to review AUR Paper product line cases.

Definition of AUR Paper SPRG
  1. AUR Paper cases are built from two primary sources:

    • Individual Master File (IMF) which contains information reported to IRS by taxpayers

    • Information Returns Master File (IRMF)

Definition of BMF AUR Paper SPRG
  1. BMF AUR Paper cases are built from two primary sources:

    • Business Master File (BMF) which contains information reported to IRS by taxpayers

    • Information Returns Master File (IRMF)

Definition of AUR Paper CAWR SPRG
  1. AUR Paper CAWR cases are built from CAWR Reconciliation Balancing.

Definition of the AUR FUTA SPRG
  1. AUR Paper FUTA SPRG cases are built from Certification of State FUTA Credits.

Definition of the AUR Paper PMF SPRG
  1. AUR Paper PMF cases consist of the following programs:

    • Ministerial Waivers

    • TIN Penalties

    • SSA Wage

CCP Exam Paper Product Line
  1. CCP Exam is a separate Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG) under the product line Centralized Case Processing (CCP) Exam and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality (EQ) system. The three largest areas of review include:

    • Cases closed by CCP from RA/TCO Field Groups following Form 3198 notations

    • Cases closed by CCP from Technical Services following Form 3198 notations

    • Clerical processes

  2. CCP Exam is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked/closed by the CCP Exam Operations in Cincinnati, Memphis, and Ogden.

  3. Quality Analysts and Managers will use "IRM 4.4" , AIMS Processing, IRM 4.7.8, Examination Returns Control System – Centralized Case Processing, and the IRM 21.10.1 during their review of CCP Exam cases.

Definition of CCP Exam SPRG
  1. The CCP Exam SPRG is defined as any paper case closed by the CCP Exam Operation. This includes agreed, defaults, no changes, etc., that are closed in the CCP Operation.

  2. CCP Exam work is received from these primary sources:

    • Field Offices

    • Technical Services

  3. See "IRM 4.4" , AIMS Processing and IRM 4.7.8, Examination Returns Control System – Centralized Case Processing for quality review of CCP-Exam.

CS Specialized Paper Services Product Line
  1. CS Specialized Paper Services Product Line consists of three SPRGs:

    • Centralized Excise Tax Paper SPRG

    • Centralized Estate/Gift Tax Paper SPRG

    • Centralized Transfer Tax Technician Paper SPRG (EQRS Only)

  2. Centralized Excise Tax paper cases are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of our responses to taxpayer inquiries on excise tax return issues and internally generated notices.

  3. Centralized Estate/Gift Tax paper cases are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of our responses to taxpayer inquiries on Estate/Gift tax return issues and internally generated notices.

  4. Centralized Transfer Tax Technician paper cases are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of our responses to taxpayer inquiries on Estate and Gift tax return issues and internally generated notices that are worked by Transfer Tax Technicians (TTTs).

Definition of Centralized Excise Tax SPRG
  1. Centralized Excise Tax work consists of taxpayer correspondence and internal notices. Most are received after the original return is processed. The work also includes pre-assessment fuel tax claims.

Definition of Centralized Estate/Gift Tax SPRG
  1. Centralized Estate/Gift Tax work consists of various types of Form 706 "Estate Tax Return", Form 709 "Gift Tax Return", taxpayer correspondence and internal notices.

Definition of Centralized Transfer Tax Technician Paper SPRG
  1. Centralized Transfer Tax Technician consists of various technical referrals on Form 706 “Estate Tax Return”, Form 709 “Gift Tax Return”, taxpayer correspondence and Form 1041, Correspondence Audits and (Cammack) interest computations.

Exam Paper Product Line
  1. Exam Paper is a separate product line review on EQRS/NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. There are five Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) under the Exam Paper product line:

    • Exam Paper EIC Programs

    • Exam Paper Discretionary Programs

    • Exam Paper Flow Through Entities

    • Exam Paper Area Office Support (EQRS Only)

    • Exam Paper Classification (EQRS only)

  2. Exam Paper EIC and Discretionary Programs and Flow Through Entities are reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the Exam Operation.

  3. For the review of Earned Income Tax Credit and Discretionary Programs Quality Analysts and Managers will primarily use IRM 4.19.10, Examination General Overview, IRM 4.19.13, General Case Development and Resolution, IRM 4.19.14, EITC/Revenue Protection Strategy, IRM 4.19.15, Discretionary Programs, IRM 4.19.21, Clerical, IRM 4.13, Audit Reconsideration, IRM 4.19.13.5, Report Generation Software (RGS) System and IRM 4.10.15, Report Generation Software. This list is not all inclusive.

  4. For the review of the Flow Through Entities, Quality Analysts and Managers will primarily use IRM 4.29, Partnership Control System (PCS) and IRM 4.31, Pass-through Entity Handbook during their review of Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibilities Act (TEFRA) cases.

Definition of Exam Paper SPRGs
  1. Exam Paper is defined as any paper case closed by the functional operation. This includes agreed, no change, 90-day default, appeals, fraud, reconsiderations, etc., that are examined and/or adjusted, and closed in the functional operation.

  2. Exam Paper is based on three primary sources:

    • Earned Income Tax Credit Program

    • Discretionary Programs

    • Flow Through Programs

Innocent Spouse Paper Product Line
  1. Innocent Spouse Paper is a separate product line review on NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. There is one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG) under the Innocent Spouse Paper Product Line: Innocent Spouse Paper.

  2. Innocent Spouse Paper is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the Cincinnati Centralized Innocent Spouse Operation (CCISO).

  3. Analysts and managers will use the IRM 25.15, Relief from Joint and Several Liability, during their review of Innocent Spouse cases as well as Document 6209, IRM 21.3, Taxpayer Contacts, Revenue Procedures, Treasury Regulations, IRC 6013, IRC 6015 and IRC 66, IRM 21.10.1 and the Innocent Spouse Quality Job Aid will be used during the review of Innocent Spouse cases.

  4. Analysts must be knowledgeable of the innocent spouse law under IRC 6013, IRC 6015 and IRC 66, be well informed of pertinent policies and procedures and be cognizant of the mission of the Innocent Spouse Program to fairly and consistently apply the innocent spouse relief provisions.

  5. Analysts will use command code ISTSR to update the Innocent Spouse Tracking System (ISTS) to stage 09 and/or stage 30 with the appropriate activity code. See IRM 25.15.14, Innocent Spouse Tracking System Inventory Validation Instructions for further discussion of ISTS.

Definition of Innocent Spouse Paper SPRG
  1. Innocent Spouse is defined as any paper case closed by Cincinnati Centralized Innocent Spouse Operation (CCISO). This includes appealed and closed cases.

  2. Innocent Spouse is based on three primary sources:

    • Form 8857, Request for Innocent Spouse Relief

    • Substitute Document for Form 8857, containing all required information

    • Congressional cases

Compliance PAS Product Line
  1. Compliance PAS is a separate product line reviewed only on EQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. There is one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG) under the Compliance PAS Product Line: Compliance PAS Review.

  2. Compliance PAS is reviewed to measure the quality of the cases/calls reviewed by the Collection and Examination Campus Quality (CQ) PAS Analyst.

  3. Managers will use the IRM 21.10.1 as well as other applicable IRMs during this review.

Definition of Compliance PAS Review
  1. Compliance PAS Review is defined as any paper/phone case/call reviewed by a Collection or Examination Campus Quality PAS Analyst.

TE/GE Correspondence Product Line

  1. TE/GE Correspondence reviewed in Cincinnati is a separate product line review on NQRS and is reviewed within the Embedded Quality system. The TE/GE Correspondence product line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG).

  2. TE/GE Correspondence is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the TE/GE Correspondence Unit.

  3. Analysts and managers will use the Quality Job Aids for TE/GE Correspondence, and IRM 21.10.1 during their review of TE/GE Correspondence cases.

Roles and Responsibilities of the TE/GE Correspondence Analyst
  1. TE/GE Correspondence Analysts will use the TE/GE Correspondence skip interval to select sample cases each day from the previous day's closures.

  2. TE/GE Correspondence Analysts will complete an unbiased, consistent and accurate review of closed TE/GE Correspondence Unit paper cases, covering all technical, procedural, and professional actions taken.

  3. DQ any letter that will result in erroneous information being sent to a Taxpayer. See IRM 2.4.5, Command Codes QRADD, QRADDO, QRNCH, QRNCHG, RVIEW, QRACN, and QRIND for the Quality Review System.

  4. Review the entire case file, including any clerical processes to identify the actions taken. Ensure there is a corresponding annotation on the history sheet that includes all the required information (date, time, explanation of actions taken) and that the work papers thoroughly support the conclusion of the case.

  5. For each case reviewed, complete an NQRS/EQRS DCI, and all appropriate attribute fields, indicating whether or not the quality standards were met, while providing as much information as possible, including all IRM references for coded defects. This review should identify defects as outlined in IRS Regulations and IRM guidelines and procedures, and provide a basis for error analysis and error trends.

  6. Enter the word FLASH in Remarks in the Finish section of the DCI to designate an error case that requires immediate corrective action by the site. Return the case to the examiner's Manager for correction. See IRM 21.10.1.7.7,EQRS/NQRS Remarks Section for more information.

  7. Input the review data daily using NQRS.

  8. Refer to the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov) weekly to glean updated information on the use of attributes in the TE/GE Correspondence Unit, obtain the latest Quality Gram, review the Issue Log, etc.

  9. In a monthly report, which is to be shared with the TE/GE Correspondence Unit, provide suggestions for improvement by:

    • Identifying most frequently made defects and the top five Customer Accuracy Drivers by SPRG

    • Analyzing root causes of defects

    • Reviewing guidelines or sampling procedures

    • Reviewing methods used to capture needed information

Definition of TE/GE Correspondence Product Line
  1. TE/GE Correspondence is defined as any paper case closed by the TE/GE Correspondence Unit. This includes all paper correspondence received directly from a Taxpayer or a telephone call reduced to writing via Form 4442 closed in the TE/GE Correspondence Unit.

  2. TE/GE Correspondence is based on two primary sources:

    • Direct Taxpayer Correspondence

    • Form 4442 referrals

Sample Procedures for TE/GE
  1. Samples from the site are valid at the site and national level on a quarterly basis.

  2. The analyst must sample and review the complete closed TE/GE Correspondence case, (after all input actions are completed), including any clerical process performed on the product.

  3. National Review will consist of a random sample of cases, based on the skip interval.

    Note:

    All closed cases are to be available for sampling, regardless of any prior reviews. This includes situations where a 100 percent or managerial review has been performed (trainees, etc.).

  4. SOI does not develop a sampling plan for TEGE Correspondence.

  5. Local reviews are not performed for the national measure of the TE/GE Correspondence product line and therefore are not included in the sampling plan. However, if time and staffing permits, the site should also perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 for more information on local reviews.

TE/GE Correspondence Measures
  1. TE/GE Correspondence will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy, and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. See IRM 21.10.1.7.3 for more information on the measures.

Information Returns Branch (IRB) Non-phones

  1. TSO IRB Non-phones is a separate product line review in EQRS within the Embedded Quality system. The IRB Phones Product Line consists of one Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG): IRB Non-Phones.

  2. IRB Non-phones is reviewed to measure and improve the quality of cases worked by the Customer Service Section of the TSO Operation in EPSS. Analysts and managers will use the MAJA and IRM 21.10.1 during their review of IRB cases.

Definition of IRB Non-phones
  1. IRB Paper is defined as any paper or e-mail case closed by CSS in TSO. This includes all correspondence (paper and electronic) received directly from a customer or a telephone call reduced to writing via an Interaction or Incident closed by the CSS.

Roles and Responsibilities of the IVO PAS Analyst

  1. Pull a statistically valid SOI designed sample daily from the entire universe of closed cases.

  2. Complete an unbiased, consistent, and accurate review of all aspects of IVO work.

  3. Complete an NQRS DCI for each case reviewed indicating whether or not the quality standards were met, while providing as much information as possible, including all IRM references for coding defects.

    • Complete all required fields

    • Reviews should identify defects as outlined in the IRS Regulations and IRM guidelines and procedures, and provide a basis for error analysis and error trends

  4. Enter the word FLASH in the Feedback Summary Remarks section of the DCI to identify a defect that requires immediate (by the next business day) corrective action by the operation. For example, recalling a notice/letter before it is issued or correcting an adjustment to an account. See IRM 21.10.1.7.7, EQRS/NQRS Remarks Section for additional information.

    Note:

    Defects requiring correction that are not annotated with FLASH are to be completed by the Operation within five working days (IRM 21.10.1.2.6.5, Quality Assurance Manager).

  5. Input review data daily using NQRS.

  6. Always enter the reason for editing a DCI. Any DCI edited as the result of a rebuttal must always have the reason code "Rebuttal" selected.

  7. In a monthly report, which is to be shared with the IVO Operation, provide suggestions for improvement by:

    • Identifying the most frequently made defects

    • Analyzing root causes of defects

    • Reviewing guidelines or sampling procedures

    • Reviewing methods used to capture information

  8. Recommendations for resolving problems identified in the DCI, review guides, and sampling procedures should be forwarded to the appropriate policy analyst. Solutions might include methods to capture needed information, promote uniformity in the application of the standards, or overcome problem areas.

  9. It is recommended that NQRS analysts meet quarterly with EQRS analysts to confer, compare, and review attribute usage. These meetings can be used as a forum for both sides to discuss and come to an agreement on the consistent use of each attribute on the DCI. The Product Line Analyst should always be consulted for assistance in interpretation of attribute usage.

  10. To ensure consistency with established IVO guidelines, the analysts and assigned policy analysts will hold consistency calls on an as needed basis.

Field Assistance Work Product Line

  1. Field Assistance (FA) managers use the Embedded Quality Review System (EQRS) to review contacts on Tax Law, Accounts, and Procedural issues. These reviews are to measure individual employee performance. Refer to the IRM 1.4.11, Field Assistance Guide for Managers for more information.

  2. The National Quality Review System (NQRS) is the database where data from the national review is stored and retrieved. For FA, national quality review results are statistically valid on a monthly basis at the FA and Area levels only. The sample is not statistically valid below the Area level. For example, the sample is not valid at the Territory or Group level, but may still be used to indicate improvement opportunities. The FA sample is pulled by a Headquarters Contact Recording Analyst and it is provided to the Centralized Quality Review Site (CQRS) on a weekly, as opposed to daily basis as are many other reviews.

  3. Although both the national and managerial reviews cover a wide range of different issues, these reviews are no longer conducted using separate SPRGs (for example, FA Tax Law and FA Accounts SPRGs). Beginning in FY 2015, FA reviews all face-to-face taxpayer contacts that can be rated for Customer Accuracy using a single Specialized Product Review Group (SPRG), named FA Contacts. In addition to costing less to perform than multiple reviews, the one SPRG simplifies reports, reduces time to prepare them, streamlines analysis, remains flexible and adaptable as work processes change, and produces a more accurate and representative picture of the work that FA actually performs.

  4. As part of the Appointment Service strategy implemented at all TACs during FY 2017, FA participates in the Accounts Paper Adjustments SPRG owed by Accounts Management. Referred to as an Alternative Workstream, cases closed by FA employees are available for selection and included in the AM sample just as any case closed by an employee in an AM campus. The accuracy of FA closures rolls up into the AM quality performance measure.

Field Assistance Embedded Quality Roles and Responsibilities

  1. Details about the Roles and Responsibilities for Field Assistance Embedded Quality can be found in IRM 1.4.11, Field Assistance Guide for Managers.

Field Assistance Area Quality Analyst (AQA)/Headquarters Quality Assurance Analyst (HQA)
  1. The HQA is responsible for the overall planning, administration, and evaluation of the quality-related sections of the Site Level Business Plans. The HQA will identify problems and work with management to solve them.

  2. The review process, when combined with CQRS data and other functional data, will assist the HQA in evaluating the overall quality of operations and making recommendations for improvement.

  3. The AQA will serve as the Quality (QA) Analyst for the Area, ensuring that designated quality resources are used to focus on quality improvement efforts.

    Note:

    Results of reviews performed by the CQRS staff are not to be used in employee evaluations. Timely managerial EQ reviews of the same contacts may, however, be used to evaluate an employee's job performance, as usual.

  4. The AQA/HQA will maintain the integrity and quality of the QR system by monitoring and reviewing NQRS results.

  5. By using trend analysis, the AQA/HQA will determine the causes that adversely affect quality. The AQA/HQA will assist management in initiating programs for employees to improve the quality of FA services. It is important that lines of communication remain open among the AQA/HQA, management and CQRS in order to identify problem areas, take appropriate corrective actions, and re-evaluate quality to ensure that corrective actions result in improved quality.

  6. The AQA/HQA will act as the liaison between the CQRS staff and management and is responsible for communicating quality information to all managers in the Area.

  7. The AQA/HQA will identify training needs and recommend to the Training Coordinator and/or management, the type of training needed (such as on-the-job training, online courses, informal workshops, or classroom instruction), and assist in the development of additional training exercises and workshops to meet those needs.

  8. The AQA/HQA and the CQRS staff will be responsible for the protection of NQRS DCIs and any supporting documentation from legacy systems. All documents and information (including taxpayer information) seen, heard, or handled must remain secure and confidential.

  9. The AQA will serve as the Embedded Quality liaison with managers.

  10. The AQA will work with managers to accurately assess performance and code EQ attributes, provide continuous and substantive performance feedback and recognize and reward quality at all levels (e.g., employee-of-the-month, Quality Honor Roll, etc.), using the National Agreement for guidance.

  11. The AQA/HQA will be responsible for working with the Training Coordinator and/or management to ensure that EQ training is made available to all who need it and advise if instruction in training materials are consistent with service quality standards and objectives.

Sample Procedures for Field Assistance Analysts

  1. A sample for national review of Field Assistance work will be selected by the CR software. The sampled contacts will be reviewed by the CQRS staff and input to the National Quality Review System (NQRS). See IRM 21.10.1.6, Field Assistance Work Product Line, for more information.

  2. Field Assistance Sample plans are designed by SOI.

  3. Local reviews are not performed for the national measure for the Field Assistance product lines and therefore are not included in the sampling plan. However, Areas may want to perform local reviews to aid in the quality improvement of the product line. See IRM 21.10.1.3.2 Quality Review Sampling Guidelines for more information on local reviews.

Field Assistance Measures

  1. Field Assistance SPRGs will be measured for Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer Accuracy, Regulatory/Statutory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy. These are the measures that are available and may be reported under the Balanced Measurement System. For more information on the measures, see IRM 21.10.1.2, What is Quality Review?

Embedded Quality Review System (EQRS)/National Quality Review System (NQRS)

  1. The Embedded Quality Review System (EQRS) is an on-line database accessed through the IRS Intranet. Within this database are two systems that mirror each other: EQRS used by managers and NQRS used by Quality Reviewers for the National product reviews. Managers and reviewers use Data Collection Instruments (DCIs) to input case review results. The database is partitioned and the review results will not be combined. Managers will also use EQRS to generate employee feedback reports, standardized and ad hoc reports.

    Note:

    Managers will not use quantitative EQRS data (percentages) as the sole basis for performance ratings in any critical element. The EQRS system numerical results, or pass rate percentages, will not be used to evaluate employees.

  2. Local analysts performing evaluative or non-evaluative employee reviews on behalf of a manager may use EQRS.

EQRS/NQRS Passwords

  1. EQ system users will need a password to access EQRS/NQRS. To get a password for the first time, use the On-Line 5081 process. Once the user's manager approves the request, it will be routed automatically to the Site System Support Coordinator (SSC) or EQ National Support who will verify the user's permission level and add the user to the system. See Exhibit 21.10.1-2 and Exhibit 21.10.1-3 for permission levels. An automated e-mail from On-line 5081 will be generated asking the user to sign the 5081 and retrieve the default password. The user will be asked to change the password when logging on to the system the first time.

  2. When the user no longer needs access to the system, the manager will go into On-line 5081 and delete the application from the user's list of approved applications, which sends an e-mail to the SSC advising that the user needs to be deleted from the system. The SSC will then either delete the user or change the status back to employee (any reviews will remain in the system).

  3. NQRS analyst access is determined by the SPRG(s) reviewed. For a list of Product Lines and Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRG) see IRM 21.10.1.2. The On-line 5081 for analysts must include the Analyst's IDRS (or other identifying) number to be used as the reviewer number, the permission level needed, each of the SPRG(s) to be reviewed (for both local and national reviews), as well as the site(s) for which analyst access is needed. Any non-reviewer analyst should just note the permission level needed. All of this information should be included in the Instructions section of On-line 5081.

  4. Enter your login (SEID) and your default password the first time you login to the NQRS site. You will then be asked to change your password from the default. Your new password must be at least 8 characters long and satisfy the following conditions:

    • Uppercase alpha character

    • Lowercase alpha character

    • Numeric character and/or

    • Special character

    • Does not equal last 24 passwords

    Protect your new password as you would any other official IRS password.

  5. Dual users (who use both EQRS and NQRS) will need only one password for both systems.

  6. If you need to change your EQRS or NQRS permission level (i.e., from Lead to Manager or from Data Reader to Site Analyst), use the On-line 5081 system to request the modification to your user profile. If you ONLY need to change the SPRGs to which you have access, send an E-mail to the National Support Staff to update your user profile.

  7. Users are required to periodically change their EQRS/NQRS password. Every six months, the system will automatically prompt you to update your password at the login screen.

  8. Users who have not logged into EQRS/NQRS for 45 days will automatically have their account locked. You must complete an On-line 5081 to request a password reset before you can regain access to the system. Once your password is reset you must logon within 5 days or the password will be locked again.

  9. Users who have not logged into EQRS/NQRS for 90 days will automatically have their account removed. You must complete an On-line 5081 to add the appropriate application(s) back to your list of approved applications. If you previously had access to both EQRS and NQRS, you must complete an On-Line 5081 request for each system. Once your account is restored you must logon within 5 days or your account will be automatically removed again.

  10. Users who have three consecutive unsuccessful logon attempts will have their passwords locked. If they previously answered the security questions they will be able to reset their passwords. This can only be done once per day.

  11. To access the On-line 5081, open the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov) Home Page and click on the Form 5081 link. This will take you to https://ol5081.enterprise.irs.gov/.

Accessing EQRS/NQRS

  1. The first step in accessing EQRS/NQRS is to open the Internet browser. Follow standard procedures to open Internet Explorer. To access EQRS or NQRS, select: http://eqrs.enterprise.irs.gov:8098/eqrs/common/eqrsSplash.jsp or use the link on the EQ Website. This address is subject to change. Your EQRS System Support Coordinator or Headquarters Quality Analyst will provide the current Intranet address for the EQRS/NQRS login screen.

  2. Select the EQRS/NQRS [Main Menu] link from the opening screen. After selecting the EQRS/NQRS Main menu link, a message box will appear regarding unauthorized access. Click [OK] to acknowledge.

  3. The user will enter their User ID (SEID) and Password in the EQRS/NQRS Logon Dialog box, then press [Enter] or click on the [Connect] button. If the user has successfully entered the login information, a menu will appear to select EQRS or NQRS. If an error occurs, the system will give the user an opportunity to try again. If the user has access to both EQRS and NQRS, the user will be asked to choose which portion the user wishes to enter.

  4. The user's system profile determines which actions are allowed to be performed on EQRS/NQRS. The profile is determined by the job function. For example, managers can input and edit reviews and run reports for their own team, and can also see Department/Territory level and above reports for all sites. Quality analysts/analysts can access the DCI to enter and edit review data and to run reports. See Exhibit 21.10.1-2 for a listing of user access levels for EQRS and Exhibit 21.10.1-3 for a listing of user access levels for NQRS.

  5. If a user regularly uses EQRS/NQRS to perform work that is not included in the user's profile, submit an On-line 5081, including a justification, to adjust the permission level.

  6. If the user has problems accessing or using EQRS, contact the EQRS System Support Coordinator. For a list of contacts, select the EQ Contacts link on the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov). If the user has problems accessing or using NQRS, contact the National Support Staff.

EQRS/NQRS Measures

  1. There are five EQRS/NQRS measures:

    • Customer Accuracy

    • Regulatory Accuracy

    • Procedural Accuracy

    • Professionalism

    • Timeliness

  2. Customer Accuracy: giving the correct answer with the correct resolution. "Correct" is measured based upon the customer receiving a correct response or resolution to the case or issue, and, if appropriate, taking the necessary case actions or disposition to provide this response or resolution. It does not take into consideration any additional IRS issues or procedures that do not directly impact the taxpayer's issue or case.

  3. Regulatory Accuracy: adhering to statutory/regulatory process requirements when making determinations on taxpayer accounts.

  4. Procedural Accuracy: adhering to non-statutory/non-regulatory internal process requirements.

  5. Professionalism: promoting a positive image of the Service by using effective communication techniques.

  6. Timeliness: resolving an issue in the most efficient manner through the use of proper workload management and time utilization techniques.

  7. The EQRS/NQRS measures are calculated based on defects per opportunity. As an example, if 10 attributes are applicable in the Regulatory Accuracy bucket for a particular call/case, and 8 of them are correctly handled, the Regulatory Accuracy score is 8 correct out of 10 opportunities, or 80 percent.

  8. The scores for the five buckets are never combined with each other to create one overall quality score; they stand on their own. Also, the buckets are not weighted to give one bucket more significance than the others.

  9. The scores for each bucket for an individual DCI are calculated at the time the DCI is submitted as "finished" . Reports can be generated to show cumulative scores for each of the five buckets for various levels of the organization, product lines, SPRGs, case types, etc.

  10. The Customer Accuracy, Professionalism, and Timeliness measures are reported to the Commissioner as Quality measures. The Customer Accuracy measure is also reported externally to our stakeholders (Congress, GAO, etc.). The Regulatory Accuracy and Procedural Accuracy measures are internally reported process measures - reported to Site Directors and other levels of management along with the other three measures.

  11. Review the Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) or the Quality Job Aid on the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov), or from Help within the database for more information on the quality attributes, attribute groups, assignment to buckets, and mapping to employee critical job elements.

EQRS/NQRS DCIs

  1. The DCI is divided into twelve sections:

    • Header Fields

    • Opening/Taxpayer Identification Attributes (0XX)

    • Research/Refer Attributes (1XX)

    • Collection Attributes (2XX)

    • Exam Attributes (3XX)

    • Tax Law Attributes (4XX)

    • Compute/Determine Attributes (5XX)

    • Input/Resolution Attributes (6XX)

    • Closing: Final Input/Explanations Attributes (7XX)

    • Professionalism Attributes (8XX)

    • Timeliness Attributes (9XX)

    • Remarks

  2. To make the review input process easier for managers and analysts, a "Smart DCI" has been created for each product line or SPRG. The Smart DCI will only display the most commonly used attributes applicable to the SPRG you select to review.

  3. In reviewing a case, if you need to bring up additional occasionally coded attributes that are not on the Smart DCI, you may do so by clicking on the "TOTAL Attributes" button within the attribute group screen. This will bring up the Total DCI for your SPRG.

  4. There are two types of definitions for most header fields and attributes – the operational definition and the job aid definition. The operational definition is general and the job aid definition is specific to the SPRG

  5. See the Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) or the Quality Job Aid on the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov), for job aids for each product line or SPRG giving operational and job aid definitions for each attribute on that product line's or SPRG's Smart DCI, as well as functional examples for clarification.

EQRS/NQRS DCI Header

  1. The Header section is the first section of the DCI that the manager or analyst will complete. This section captures general information about the calls/cases reviewed for case identification purposes. The Header is "smart" , only showing the fields applicable to the SPRG reviewed. The Header fields are not numbered.

  2. All header fields in both EQRS and NQRS have been identified as Required, Discretionary or Smart depending on the SPRG. Required fields must be input prior to having a complete DCI. Discretionary fields do not have to have a value, but the user will receive a reminder at the Finish Screen if they are not coded. Smart fields are not required and no reminder will be displayed if not coded.

  3. For Campus Compliance the header field "Review Date" will be the date the sample is selected. If the review is not entered into NQRS on the same day the case is selected, manually update the review date field to reflect the sample selection date.

  4. Beginning FY18 the header field "Corporate Timeliness" was added to some NQRS Compliance Collection paper SPRGs to capture timeliness data outside of the control of the closing operation. PAS Analysts will use the header field "Prior Ops/Dept. Code" in conjunction to identify the area/function where the case was first received.

  5. The Header field "Systemic Error" is used to identify if a defect attribute is coded due to a systemic failure. The defect in question would NOT be caused by an employee’s action. Select “yes” if a systemic error is being coded. On NQRS, for Compliance only, prior to the completion of the DCI, a window will appear showing all the attributes that were coded “N” during the review. In order to complete the DCI, the attribute coded for the Systemic Error must be selected. The defect should not be identified as a "Systemic Error" if the Operation has the capability to correct the error (i.e., by manual input). If HQ establishes a "workaround" for the system failure, the defect would not be identified as a "Systemic Error" .

  6. See Exhibit 21.10.1-4 for a complete list of EQRS and NQRS header fields.

EQRS/NQRS Quality Attributes

  1. Quality Attributes, like header fields, are also "smart" by DCI. The "total" DCI for an SPRG includes the smart attributes as well as other attributes identified as being used occasionally by the SPRG. To view these additional attributes, it is necessary to expand the DCI screens.

  2. Quality Attributes are used to rate specific aspects of a case. Refer to the Operational definition of each attribute to determine if there is an opportunity to meet or not meet the required functional processes for the case. If a specific attribute is applicable to the event being reviewed, then it is either coded Y (meets quality standards) or N (does not meet quality standards). If there are no opportunities for the standards measured by the attribute to be met or not met, the attribute should be left as "N/A" (Not applicable). This will be reflected on some reports as "I" (Inapplicable). Some attributes are required and are identified in bold on the DCI.

  3. Whenever possible, attributes should have an equal chance of being coded Y or N. Defects should be coded at the point of the error based on the path the employee took. Procedural attributes should only be coded if the action is required by the IRM. Regulatory attributes should only be coded if the employee is required to know and use the IRM regulation when addressing the customer's question or issue. Timeliness attributes should be coded when resolving an issue in the most efficient manner through the use of proper workload management and time utilization techniques.

    Note:

    The Accounts Management EQRS Flowchart - Coding the Use of Hold can be found on the Job Aid page of the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov).

  4. It is important to code defects only for the decisions made on the call or case. When an error occurs, it can affect future decisions the employee will make. You should not code errors for procedures that should have been followed after the initial wrong decision. Instead, once you charged the error, code the rest of the call or case based on the procedures the employee followed. This is known as “wrong path.” In other words, only one defect is charged for each wrong decision.

  5. It is important to provide as much feedback as you can about each case you review; therefore, you should mark every attribute that applies to the case, whether the attribute is correct or incorrect. It is vital that you identify all errors. This type of detailed review feedback will help sites identify why errors are occurring and determine the best ways to prevent them in the future.

  6. See Exhibit 21.10.1-5 for a complete list of EQRS and NQRS attributes.

Customer Accuracy Drivers
  1. Attribute 715 Customer Accuracy will be rated on each contact unless the event being reviewed is internal work that would never have impact on the customer's case, account or issue. In that situation consider Attribute 718, Met Internal Requirements. See Exhibit 21.10.1-7 and Exhibit 21.10.1-8 for assistance with coding attributes 715 and 718.

    Note:

    It is important to remember that 715 can be coded as “N” even if there was a positive impact to the customer or can be coded as “Y” if there was a negative impact to the customer.

  2. Attribute 715 Customer Accuracy should never be coded "N" by itself. There should be another Regulatory and/or Procedural attribute that caused the Customer Accuracy error. These other attributes are referred to as "Customer Accuracy Drivers." It is these "driver attributes" that are used to make improvements. Prior to the completion of the DCI, a window will appear showing all of the attributes that were coded "N" during the review. In order to complete the DCI, a decision must be made to determine the core defect causing attribute 715 to be coded "N" . You can choose multiple drivers of Customer Accuracy; however, you must choose a minimum of one attribute to define the reason for coding attribute 715 an "N." When selecting the driving attribute, consider the following:

    • What specific attribute(s) had a direct effect on the decision to code attribute 715 an "N" ?

    • Is this the primary attribute that, if corrected, would improve the Customer Accuracy defect?

    Note:

    For Compliance Attributes in the 800 series (Professionalism) and 900 series (Timeliness) are typically not drivers of Customer Accuracy. For Accounts Management, Electronic Products and Services Support and Field Assistance, the Professionalism and Timeliness attributes cannot be selected as Customer Accuracy Drivers.

    Note:

    If the Primary and Secondary CA Driver IRM reference fields are available for the SPRG you are reviewing, the IRM references for the CA Drivers should be input to these fields. If there are more than 2 IRM references, use the two that have the most impact.

Defect Reason Codes
  1. Defect Reason Codes were developed for attributes in the EQ system that either have a high error rate or that cover multiple activities. These defect reason codes help clarify errors coded by identifying the root cause of the error. When an attribute with defect reason codes is coded "N" , a drop-down menu will appear listing defect reason codes for this attribute. You will be required to select at least one code that best describes the root cause of the error. You can select as many codes that fit the specific situation. If none of the codes fit the root cause of the error, select [Other]. Refer to the MAJA or Quality Job aid on the Embedded Quality Website (http://eq.web.irs.gov), for your SPRG for more information on defect reason codes.

EQRS/NQRS Remarks Section

  1. Click [Remarks] from the Header screen or any Attribute Group screen to input remarks. Remarks can be input at any time after the minimum Required Header fields have been input, or the user can go back and forth between the Attribute Groups and Remarks.

    Caution:

    It is imperative to stress to ALL reviewers that they DO NOT INCLUDE any information that could be used to identify the taxpayer or representative in any of the Remarks sections of the DCI. We are permitted to record the TIN in its specific field on the DCI, but only because no other identifying information is included. The TIN will only display on the View/List DCI Report. You cannot, for example, search or display the TIN on an Ad-Hoc Report, but you can display the Remarks fields, creating a potential disclosure. If any of the following information must be communicated, it must be done on a separate document, not on the database. The following is a list of examples (not all-inclusive) of items that should NOT be typed in any of the remarks fields: any portion of the name; first, last, business, children’s, POA etc., any phone number; home, work, cell, etc., any Date of Birth; primary TP, secondary TP, child, etc., any TIN (or part of TIN); Primary, Secondary, Child, etc. or any part of the taxpayer’s address, including corrections to the spelling.

  2. There are three input fields or "boxes" to record remarks in EQRS/NQRS. These are Customer Issue, Employee Actions/Response and Feedback Summary. Each box has a maximum number of characters including spaces that may be input.

    Box Function
    Customer Issue (allows up to 1,000 characters) Describes the details of the customer inquiry. Be as specific as possible to be helpful in recalling the event. For EQRS/manager use, it rolls up to the employee individual report only.
    Employee Actions/Response (allows up to 3,000 characters) Describes the response(s) given to the customer and/or the actions taken by the employee to resolve the customer's issue. Be sure to include enough detailed information to support the coding of the attributes. Use behavioral verbs that describe what the employee did/said. Do not comment on what the employee did not do in this section. For EQRS/manager use, it rolls up to the employee individual report only.
    Feedback Summary (allows up to 4,000 characters) This is the overall assessment of the event. Attributes that were coded "N" on the DCI will be displayed in this section for the analyst to comment on why the defect was charged. The Feedback Summary Remarks should include:
    • What the employee did well (generally, EQRS).

    • What the employee needs to improve and, when applicable, what corrective action the employee needs to take.

    • A clear explanation of why each attribute coded "N" was coded that way.

    For CQRS and PAS analysts, if coding a defect, an IRM reference, or other appropriate reference such as SERP, ITLA, P&R Guide, etc., must be entered immediately after a brief explanation of the defect, including the letter missed when appropriate (mandatory for Accounts Management). In some cases where a defect is charged for basic IDRS research, a reference may not be required. The analyst may cite IDRS/ACS/IAT, etc., as the source for the defect along with a brief explanation of the missed or misinterpreted research. Local analysts and managers for all product lines must also provide an IRM or other appropriate reference (see above) when coding a defect. This field is required and the DCI cannot be finalized without completing it. Some reviews require the analyst to enter the word FLASH in the Feedback Summary Remarks for calls or cases that require immediate corrective action (e.g., imminent refunds). Caution should be exercised when using the word FLASH as this is used only for imminent actions on a case. In order to emphasize cases that need correction you may input an asterisk (*) before entering "Corrective Action Required" on the DCI’s for cases requiring corrective action (e.g., input a STAUP, send a return to be processed, send a response letter, etc.). Do not input more than one asterisk (*). The manager of the employee who was issued the defect is responsible for ensuring the defect is corrected within the applicable timeframe after the two-day consistency period. (2). Flash defects must be corrected by the next business day. All other corrective actions not marked as FLASH defects must be corrected within five business days. Note: If there is no impact to the TP such as an internal procedure, no corrective action would be required.

    Note:

    The Feedback Summary Remarks are the only remarks that will appear on the employees Cumulative Report that managers will use when preparing an employee's mid-year or annual appraisal. For this reason, managers may want to cut and paste some items from the first two remarks sections into the Feedback Summary Remarks.

    Note:

    (CQRS ONLY): CQRS only comments on the accuracy of the DCI in the Feedback Summary. The Employee Remarks Section is only for the facts and it should not include any commentary on whether an action was correct, timely, courteous, etc. Also, CQRS only addresses what the employee failed to do. CQRS does not provide coaching via narratives (e.g. information on how the employee should have handled the case or call better, etc.).

  3. The CQRS and PAS analysts will enter the word FLASH in the remarks field to designate an error case that requires immediate corrective action by the site. When flash is used, notify the applicable function manager of the error so they can take corrective action by the next business day following the two-day timeframe for review. All corrective actions, not marked as FLASH defects, must be corrected within five business days.

Submitting the EQRS/NQRS DCI

  1. Analysts are encouraged to input the DCI at the time of the review; however, generally in no case should it be longer than one business day from the day it was selected for review. As long as the minimum required information is input on the Header, the DCI will be saved as Incomplete. This could happen when the analyst cannot complete the entire DCI at one time, or if the analyst wants to move right into monitoring another call. The analyst may go back to complete it later.

  2. After all review information has been input into the EQRS/NQRS DCI, the DCI must be submitted for verification. To do this, use the left mouse button and click on the [Finish] button at the bottom of the Attribute Groups list and get one of three responses:

    1. If all Required and Discretionary fields are complete, the message advises that the DCI is complete.

    2. If all Required fields are complete, but there are Discretionary fields that were not marked, a message advises that the DCI is complete, but it advises of Highly Suggested/Discretionary fields to consider completing before moving on.

    3. If all Required fields are not complete, there will be a screen advising which Required fields have not yet been completed. These fields are listed in Attribute Group order. Click on the attribute name and the system will go to that attribute to complete. Then hit [Back], to go back to the Finish screen and the next Required attribute to complete.

Editing EQRS/NQRS Records

  1. To complete an unfinished DCI, or if an attribute coding change is required, a DCI can be edited. The DCI needing editing can be retrieved from the Edit DCI screen or Current DCI List Screen.

    Note:

    In EQRS managers have 45 days from the review date to edit or delete a DCI. Department and Operation managers have 180 days and Site Support Coordinators (SSCs) are not limited. The edit period for an NQRS DCI extends for ten days after the last day of the reporting month for the SPRG.

  2. Once the coding is corrected, one of the following reasons for edit will need to be selected from a drop-down list:

    Reasons For Edit Definition
    Complete Unfinished Review Use when a DCI needs to be completed and the analyst goes back to the database to complete the review.
    Incorrect Input Use when a DCI has been completed and an input error was made.

    Note:

    Do not use when the change is the result of a rebuttal.

    New Information Received Use when new information is discovered such as a recent IRM change.

    Note:

    Do not use when the change is the result of a rebuttal.

    Rebuttal (NQRS only) Use any time a DCI is changed as the result of a rebuttal.
    Other Use for any other issue which requires a change in the coding of the DCI not covered above.

    Note:

    An explanation must be input. For NQRS, records can only be edited in SPRGs with permission and then only within the appropriate timeframes.

NQRS Cutoff Dates

  1. A cutoff date is the last date on which input or edit of a particular DCI is allowed. In NQRS, for most EQ paper product lines, the monthly reporting period consists of four- or five-weekly cycles ending on the last Saturday of the month. For all of the EQ phone product lines, the monthly reporting period is one calendar month.

    Exception:

    NDC Forms Order Phones is on a cycle month.

    See Exhibit 21.10.1-11 for a list of SPRGs and reporting periods. Generally, the cutoff date for input or edit is ten calendar days after the end of the reporting month. While some Headquarters employees may have permissions that allow them to input or edit after the cutoff date, these inputs/edits will not be included in the weighted report for that month unless the edit is completed prior to the last Saturday of the subsequent month. See Exhibit 21.10.1-9 for a table of cutoff dates through FY for the "cycle" and Exhibit 21.10.1-10 for a "calendar" table of reporting periods for all SPRGs. There are no cutoff dates in EQRS.

  2. Contact the Headquarters Quality Analyst assigned to your program to correct a DCI error after the cutoff date. The Headquarters Analysts can edit or delete records up to 90 days after the site cutoff date has passed. You must be able to justify why an edit is necessary. Reports for prior periods will not be revised to reflect the edited/deleted records. Any changes in a site's Quality rates will be reflected in the next cumulative report produced. Edits after 90 days can only be done by the National Support Staff.

Deleting EQRS/NQRS DCI Records

  1. You may occasionally need to delete a complete or incomplete DCI record from EQRS/NQRS.

  2. Managers have 45 days after the Review date on EQRS to delete a DCI. Department and Operation managers have 180 days and Site Support Coordinators are not limited. On NQRS records can be deleted through the reporting period cutoff dates. If you need to delete a case on NQRS after the cutoff date, contact the Headquarters Quality Analyst (Product Line Analyst) assigned to your program area for assistance.

  3. To delete a record, first navigate to the DCI from the Edit DCI screen. Once the record is retrieved, click on the [Delete DCI] button at the top of the screen. The prompt, "Do you really want to delete DCI number" will appear. A reason for delete screen will come up. Select the reason you are deleting the record from this screen and click [OK]. The reasons listed for deleting are:

    EQRS NQRS
    Duplicate Case Duplicate
    Incorrect Employee Selected Incorrect Review Category (i.e., "local" )
    Incorrect Reviewer Type Selected Incorrect Site
    Incorrect SPRG Selected Incorrect SPRG
    Other Other
    Test Test/Sample
  4. If "Other" is selected, an explanation must be input. For NQRS, you will only be able to delete records in SPRGs for which you have quality review permissions and then only within the appropriate timeframes.

  5. EQRS records are systemically removed from the database after 5 years. NQRS records are removed after 7 years.

EQRS/NQRS Standard Reports

  1. As previously mentioned, the EQ database has two sides, EQRS (Embedded Quality Review System) and NQRS (National Quality Review System). Some EQRS and NQRS standard reports differ and are covered in separate sections below.

Standard EQRS Reports
  1. Reports on the EQRS side of the database are in three categories, Employee Reports, Organization Reports, and Ad hoc Reports. Ad hoc Reports are discussed in IRM 21.10.1.7.13. The following reports are available in EQRS:

    • View/List Single Case DCI Report (Employee)

    • Individual Review Feedback Report (Employee)

    • Cumulative Review Feedback Report (Employee)

    • Organization Cumulative Report (Organization)

    • Top Ten Defects/Successes Report (Organization)

    • Customer Accuracy Driver Report (Organization)

    • Days to Close Report (Organization)

    • Time in Inventory Report (Organization)

    • DCI Deletes/Changes Report

    • EQRS/NQRS Comparison Report

  2. The View/List Single Case DCI Report includes all of the DCI header fields including the Taxpayer TIN. This report is for reference only and should never be filed in the Employee Performance File (EPF).

  3. In EQRS, the quality attributes are mapped to employee critical job elements (CJEs) and the performance aspects within those CJEs. The CJEs for the various SPRGs can be found on the EQ Website. A key concept of Embedded Quality is to link employee performance to the business measures. By coding employee’s quality using mapped attributes the employee's performance is tied directly to the business measures.

  4. There are two types of employee evaluative reports generated from this mapping that are available through EQRS - the Employee Individual Review Single Case Feedback report (for a single case review), and the Cumulative Review Feedback report (case reviews over a period of time).

    • "The Employee Individual Review Single Case Feedback Report" shows the quality of that case by bucket. It also groups each CJE by aspects and shows coded attributes within each aspect. Each coded attribute shows whether it was marked "Y" or "N" . All three Remarks fields from the DCI appear on the report - Customer Issue, Employee Actions/Response, and Feedback Summary. There is a signature block for the Manager, Reviewer (if not the manager), and Employee. If the report is generated based on non-evaluative reviews, the bucket information will be shown but the CJE mapping information will not.

    • "The Cumulative Review Feedback Report" shows the quality of all reviewed cases over a designated period of time by bucket. It also groups each CJE by aspect and shows coded attributes within each aspect. Each coded attribute shows the number of times it was rated Y, the number of times it was rated N, and an overall Yes percentage. The Feedback Summary field from each of the reviewed cases during the period will be shown on the report, with a hyperlink back to the Individual Review Feedback report for that case. There is a signature block for the Manager and Employee.

  5. There are several organization level reports that are unweighted. The organizational reports are as follows:

    • The Organizational Cumulative Report can be generated for any organizational segment down to a team level depending on the user’s permission level. The report displays the overall bucket information for the timeframe selected as well as the percentage of times each attribute was met. There are several filters that can be selected to refine the report output to more specific information. Filters are review date range, Site, BOD, SPRG, bucket, case type, group code, job series, OFP, reasons for contact, resolution type, review category and reviewer type.

    • The Top Ten Defects/Successes Report displays the top ten attribute defects or successes for the organizational levels and types of work over a period of time. It identifies both positive and negative trending, and can sort accuracy information by either number of defects, total opportunities, or percentage errors. Reports can be generated down to the team level depending on the permission level of the user. There are several filters that can be selected to refine the report output to more specific information. Filters are review date range, site, BOD, SPRG, bucket, case type, group code, job series, OFP, reasons for contact, resolution type, review category and reviewer type.

    • The Customer Accuracy Driver Report is designed to assist the user in determining the attributes that are driving Customer Accuracy errors. The report will display a list of the top attributes that are causing the Customer Accuracy errors. The attributes selected as drivers make up the pool of Customer Accuracy Drivers that are displayed in the output of the Customer Accuracy Driver Report in descending order of frequency.

    • The Days to Close Report (Unweighted) displays the Average Days in Department or the Average Days in Inventory. Days in Department is calculated from the Operation/Territory Received Date to the Closing Date and the Days in Inventory is calculated from the IRS Received Date to the Closing Date. A roll up by BOD or Enterprise can be selected, or one or more sites can be selected. The report can be run by Product Line or SPRG. The average days to close is displayed as a total and with a break down by group code.

    • The Time in Inventory Report displays various ranges of dates: 1 to 14, 15 to 30, 31 to 44, and 45+ and then shows the number of cases closed in these ranges and the percentage of the total cases closed in the sample. The report shows data for the cases within the review date range input. The report can be calculated by Days in Department or Days in Inventory. The Days in Department is calculated as Operation/Territory Received Date to Closing Date. The Days in Inventory is calculated as IRS Received Date to Closing Date. This report is used for paper product lines and can only be run for one Product Line or SPRG at a time.

    • The DCI Deletes/Changes Report displays the cases that were deleted or edited that meet the filter criteria input. The report displays the DCI number, the date the record was deleted or changed, the name of the user who deleted or changed the record and the reason for delete or change selected. There are several filters that can be used to limit the output including site, date range, delete/change reason code, delete/change date, delete/changed by, organization, reviewer and SPRG.

    • The EQRS/NQRS Comparison Report displays attribute coding comparisons between EQRS and NQRS for the selected SPRG. There are various filters that allow the user to customize reports. The primary filters that can be used are SPRG, site and date range. There are also some additional filters available.

Standard NQRS Reports
  1. Various weighted and unweighted reports are available in NQRS for site and Headquarters personnel with NQRS access. Most Specialized Product Review Groups (SPRGs) and some Product Lines have monthly weighted reports available and all have monthly unweighted reports. The weighted reports are available in NQRS in the following metrics:

    • Customer Accuracy

    • Timeliness

    • Professionalism

    • Days to Close

  2. The unweighted reports available on NQRS are:

    • View/List DCI

    • Quality Attribute Accuracy

    • Quality Rate

    • Accuracy by Header Field

    • Days to Close

    • Time in Inventory

    • Top Defects/Successes by Site

    • Customer Accuracy Driver

    • Systemic Error Driver Report

    • DCI Deletes/Changes

    • Transfer Report

    • Volumes Report

  3. Weighted reports are those where weighting specifications have been developed by the Statistics of Income (SOI) office. For those SPRGs where SOI designs the sampling plan a minimum sample is provided for each site and each Product Line or SPRG that will result in a statistically valid sample of the work performed for a specific period of time. The standard weighting formula uses the sample and volume of work performed in each Product Line or SPRG at each site as well as the number of total opportunities and the number of correct opportunities in each metric to weight the review results. This allows the results for a given Product Line or SPRG to be proportionally represented with a precision margin. A precision margin is a measure, usually in the form of a percentage that describes how close the values of a sample estimate are to the true population values. Volume is input for each SPRG every month beginning on the first day and ending on the tenth day after the end of the reporting period.

    Note:

    For the Accounts Management Specialized Services Product Line, each individual site is responsible for inputting the end of the month volumes using PCC 6040A. CQRS will input volumes for Accounts Paper Adjustments and AM Identity Theft Paper.

  4. Volume is input for paper SPRGs every month beginning on the first day and ending on the tenth day after the end of the reporting period.

    • All of the telephone SPRGs in Accounts Management and many of them in Compliance have daily volume transferred each week automatically from ETD. These figures can be updated manually if necessary. The telephone SPRGs that do not have automatic transfer of daily volume must have these volumes input manually which can be done throughout the month.

    • The Field Assistance SPRGs input volumes on a weekly basis.

    • For the Campus Compliance Paper SPRGs, PAS will input volumes on a daily basis using the count derived from the universe of cases available for the sample selection.


    If you are responsible for the input of volume you should contact your Product Line Analyst for specific information.

  5. Weighted Reports are automatically run each Saturday or Sunday for the preceding month but will not generate for a specific Site/SPRG combination until the volume has been input for that Site/SPRG prior to the reports running. Volume input between Monday and Friday will be reflected on the report that runs on Saturday or Sunday. The Product Line, Small Business Self Employed (SBSE), Wage and Investment (W&I), Directorships and/or and Enterprise roll-ups will not be accurate until the volume is input for all Sites where the SPRG is worked. All reports are weighted at the SPRG and/or Product Line level with the exception of Collection Paper Primary which is also weighted at the Group Code level. Accounts Phones – Spanish and Tax Law Phones – Spanish are weighted together as a product line as are Accounts Phones – International and Tax Law Phones – International.

  6. NQRS reports are all based on pre-defined reporting periods for each SPRG. SPRGs use either review date, closing date or sampled date and calendar month or cycle month to define the month for reporting purposes. See Exhibit 21.10.1-11 for a chart of NQRS Reporting Periods. Exhibit 21.10.1-9 and Exhibit 21.10.1-10 for Cycle and Calendar Cut-off Dates. A cycle month begins on the last Sunday of the preceding month and ends on the last Saturday of the current month. For reports where a date range is input, the cases retrieved are either between two review dates or two closed dates depending on the SPRG. Where a report period is selected from a drop-down list, the cases retrieved are based on closed date or review date as well as calendar month or cycle month depending on the reporting period for the SPRG. If you are trying to match the information on one of the canned reports such as the Quality Attribute Accuracy Report or Quality Rate Report with an Ad hoc Report, it is important to understand the predefined reporting periods of the specific SPRG you are analyzing.

  7. All the NQRS reports are available in HTML and Excel. Following are reports available in NQRS:

    • The Weighted Customer Accuracy Report provides customer accuracy information weighted by volume for several product lines and/or SPRGs. Some work types are weighted at the product line level while others are only weighted at the SPRG level or some other combination depending on the business rules in place. The report can be generated at the SBSE, W&I, Directorship, enterprise, or site level. If you select a site or sites you will see the information specific for the site(s) selected as well as the weighted information for the appropriate SBSE, W&I and the enterprise. A weighted report can be generated, excluding Systemic Defects by selecting Y in the Excluding Systemic Error field.

    • The Weighted Timeliness Report provides timeliness information weighted by volume for several product lines and/or SPRGs. Some work types are weighted at the product line level while others are only weighted at the SPRG level or some other combination depending on the business rules in place. The report can be generated at the SBSE, W&I, directorship, enterprise, or site level. If you select a site or sites you will see the information specific for the site(s) selected as well as the weighted information for the appropriate SBSE, W&I and the enterprise.

    • The Weighted Professionalism Report provides professionalism information weighted by volume for several product lines and/or SPRGs. Some work types are weighted at the product line level while others are only weighted at the SPRG level or some other combination depending on the business rules in place. The report can be generated at the SBSE, W&I, directorship, enterprise, or site level. If you select a site or sites you will see the information specific for the site(s) selected as well as the weighted information for the appropriate SBSE, W&I and the enterprise.

    • The Days to Close Weighted Report provides weighted information on the average number of days that a case was in the inventory of a specific Operation/Territory before it was closed or the average number of days it was in the IRS inventory before it was closed. The Days in Department is calculated as Operation/Territory Received Date to Closing Date. The Days in inventory is calculated as IRS Received Date to Closing Date. This report is only available for specific paper SPRGs.

    • The View/List DCI Report is the report generated to view the coding of a single DCI. The report shows the bucket scores on a single case as well as the Attribute and Header field coding breakdown and the remarks input. This report is generally reviewed daily for each review at the site level.

    • The Quality Attribute Accuracy Report displays information by attribute for a specific product line or SPRG at a specific site, or for a SBSE, W&I or Enterprise. The report displays each attribute including the number of opportunities, the number of times it was coded as correct, the number of times it was coded as incorrect and the accuracy percentage for the attribute. The output can be displayed in Accuracy Measurement or DCI Tab (Opening, Research, etc.) order. The report parameter screen includes filters for Review Type (National or Local), Site, Product line or SPRG, Group Code, OFP, AIMS Status, and Application Number. The reports available are shown in a drop-down list that includes months as well as weeks. If a month is selected, a Planning Period and Fiscal Year to date roll up will also be included.

    • The Quality Rate Report displays the quality rate for all five quality buckets for the timeframe specified in the query. The report will display data for the site(s) selected, the appropriate BOD(s) and the Enterprise. The report displays the product line/SPRG selected, sample size, opportunities, number correct, number incorrect and the accuracy percentage for each quality bucket. The output displays the total for the sites selected individually and as a whole, as well as the Enterprise total for the Product Line or SPRG selected. The individual site data is also shown broken out by group code. The Enterprise or SBSE, W&I data can be shown by group code if selected as a roll up.

    • The Accuracy by Header Field Report is designed to display the quality rate for all five quality buckets for the period selected with the ability to display the information by specific header fields. A total is shown as well as a breakdown by the header field selected. For example, you can ask for an Enterprise report for Accounts Phones General and ask that the output be broken out by application number. You will see the bucket data for each application as well as a total for the period selected. The report can be run for a single site, several sites at once, or with a SBSE, W&I or Enterprise roll up. The report periods are available by week ending or by month. If requested by month, a planning period and fiscal year roll up will also be provided.

    • The Days to Close Report (Unweighted) displays the Average Days in Department or the Average Days in Inventory. Days in Department is calculated from the Operation/Territory Received Date to the Closing Date, and the Days in Inventory is calculated from the IRS Received Date to the Closing Date. A roll up by SBSE, W&I or Enterprise can be selected, or one or more sites can be selected. The report can be run by Product Line or SPRG for most paper Product Lines/SPRGs. The average days to close is displayed as a total and with a breakdown by group code.

    • The Time in Inventory Report displays various ranges of dates, 1 to 14, 15 to 30, 31 to 44 and 45+ and then shows the number of cases closed in these ranges and the percentage of the total cases closed in the sample. The report shows data for the month selected and the planning period and fiscal year. The report can be calculated by Days in Department or Days in Inventory. The Days in Department is calculated as Operation/Territory Received Date to Closing Date. The Days in Inventory is calculated as IRS Received Date to Closing Date. This report is used for paper product lines and can be run for one SPRG at a time.

    • Top Defects/Successes by Site displays the Top 5/10 or All Defects/Successes for the parameters input. The user can request that the report be displayed by the greatest number of Defects/Successes, Total Opportunities or by Percentage. The user can request all measurement types together (default) or request the output for one specific measurement type (Timeliness, Professionalism, Customer, Regulatory, or Procedural Accuracy). The user can also request the output be broken down by a specific header field or no breakdown (default). The header field options are ACS Priority Code, AIMs Status, Application Number, Case Type, CP Number, Disp/Cert Code, MFT Code, OFP or Resolution Type.

    • The Customer Accuracy Driver Report is designed to assist the user in determining the attributes that are driving Customer Accuracy errors. The report will display a list of the top attributes that are causing the Customer Accuracy errors. Each time the Customer Accuracy Attribute is coded "N" , the user is prompted to select the attributes that were coded N, that the user determined to be the main cause of the Customer Accuracy error. There is no limit to the number of attributes that can be selected as Customer Accuracy Drivers. These attributes that make up the pool of Customer Accuracy Drivers are displayed on the Customer Accuracy Driver Report in descending order of frequency.

    • The systemic Error Driver Report (available only for Compliance SPRGs) displays a list of attributes that were identified as systemic errors when the Systemic Error header field is indicated with a “Yes”. The user is prompted to select the attribute(s) that were coded N as a result of a systemic error. There is no limit to the number of attributes that can be selected as Systemic Error Drivers. These attributes that make up the pool of Systemic Error Drivers are displayed on the Systemic Error Driver report in descending order of frequency.

    • The DCI Deletes/Changes Report displays the cases that were deleted or edited that meet the filter criteria input. The report displays the DCI number, Product Line, SPRG, Reviewer number, Changed/Deleted date, Changed/Deleted by, Change/Delete reason code, and Changed/Deleted Notes. There are several filters that can be used to limit the output including review type (Local or National) site, date range, delete/change reason code, delete/change date, delete/changed by, organization, reviewer, and SPRG.

    • The Transfer Report displays the number of transfers from a specific phone application for the SPRG selected. It will also display the percent of the sample transferred for each application and the number and percent of the transfers that were appropriate or not. The report is for analyzing phone transfers.

EQRS/NQRS Ad Hoc Reports

  1. Ad hoc reports can be generated in both NQRS and EQRS. Ad hoc reports provide the user a method to extract data for analysis purposes based on user defined queries. This gives the user much more flexibility in retrieving data than the "canned" reports either system can provide. NQRS and EQRS Ad-hoc reports are discussed here together. These reports differ only to the extent that some header and attribute fields present on one system might not be present on the other or the use for a specific field may differ somewhat.

EQRS/NQRS Ad-Hoc List Cases Report
  1. There are four types of ad hoc reports available in EQRS/NQRS.

    • List Reports display a list of the reviews in the database that meet the criteria outlined in the filters selected. The information displayed on the report will depend on the items the user selects to be displayed. There is no limit on the number of fields displayed on a List report.

    • Review Count Reports display a count of the reviews in the database that meet the criteria outlined in the filters selected. The information displayed is limited to six fields and will be displayed in the order selected.

    • Bucket Count Reports are the same as count reports except that they display the bucket scores for each of the fields selected.

    • Reason Code Reports are used to display the number of times and the percentage of time each reason code was selected for a specific attribute. Only one attribute can be selected at a time and the attribute is selected from the attribute filter section.

  2. The difference between the report types is in the output display. For all report types, the queries are basically the same. Each time you run a new report you must first define the filters and then define what you want displayed in your output. When you define the filters of your query you are asking the database to display a list or count of the reviews that meet the criteria you define. When you define your output you are defining the items that will be displayed on the report. The order of the display is very important on the count report and can change the whole meaning of the output.

  3. It is important to understand the distinction between defining filters and defining output. When you define filters, you are telling the database what data you want and consequently what data you do not want to see. By selecting a range of review dates for example, you are telling the system you only want to see reviews with review dates between the dates selected. This is true for all filters selected. If you select 715=N as a filter, you are telling the system you only want to see data on cases where 715=N. Generally, the more filters you use the less data your report will retrieve. If you use 715=N and 508=N, you are telling the system you only want to see data where both 715 and 508 equal N. If you wanted to see how attribute 715 was coded when attribute 508 was coded as N, you would use 508 = N as a filter and display 715.

  4. The display is only telling the system what you want to see from the database on the cases that meet the filter criteria you selected and in what order you want to see it. If you use 715=N as a filter there is generally no sense in displaying 715 because you know it will always = N on the cases displayed on the report. If you do not use 715 as a filter at all you would likely want to display 715 to see if it was Y, N, or I on the cases on the report. If you use the SPRG filter and only select one SPRG then you would not need to display the SPRG because you already know what it is. If you do not use the SPRG filter or multi-selected SPRGs, then you would want to display the SPRGs so you can see which one related to the DCI. An exception to this might be on a bucket count report. You may want to display the SPRG and then the Group Code for example. This would show you the bucket counts for the data requested as a whole for the SPRG and then show the bucket counts broken out by Group Code.

  5. You will look at the display items you select differently depending on which type of report you are building. Each review (DCI) in the database contains a lot of information. Some of that information may not be relevant to the output you are looking for. Although you can display all of the information related to a review with an Ad hoc List Report, it is usually not practical or desirable to do so.

  6. Once you build a report that meets your needs it can be saved and run periodically whenever you need the data. Often, you will want to redefine one or more of the filters each time you run the report (i.e., Review Date Range, Organizational Segment, etc.).

    Example:

    A Department Manager using EQRS may want to know how many reviews his/her Team Managers conducted during a specific period of time. Once this report is built, the dates or the teams specified can be changed and the report can be run again. Somebody monitoring reviews done on NQRS on a daily basis may want to build a list report that displays the DCI number and SPRG and perhaps attribute 715 to know at a glance if there is a Customer Accuracy defect on the case. This report can be saved and run each day. In this instance you would want to select HTML as the output so you can link to the individual View/List DCI reports.

  7. There are six basic steps in the Ad-hoc report building process.

    1. Determine what information you need.

    2. Determine the report type you want: List, Review Counts or Bucket Counts.

    3. Determine which filters you need to use in order to get the information you need.

    4. Determine what you want to be displayed on the report and in what order.

    5. Run the report and review the information.

    6. Save the report as either private or public.

  8. Ad hoc Reports are generated from the Reports Menu in NQRS or EQRS. The following list provides more detail to the report building process.

    1. Select the Ad hoc Reports menu by clicking on Ad hoc Reports.

    2. Select the Type of Report you wish to generate, then, select Define Filters. Remember, you are asking the database to display a list or count of the reviews that meet the criteria you define.

    3. You can filter the data with essentially any field in the database making these reports true Ad hocs that allow you a great deal of flexibility in pulling information from the database. The filters may seem daunting at first but you will learn that you generally only use 3 to 5 filters on most reports. There are four categories of filters, or fields, within the database. Depending on what type of entry, each field is categorized as one of the following:

      Filter Type Filter Explanation
      Range Item Fields where your filters are defined as a range. Most of these fields are date ranges such as Review Date and IRS Received Date. When you select one of these dates you will be asked to input a To: and From: date. By doing this you are specifying that you want to retrieve, as a List or Count, the reviews that fall within the date range specified.
      Multiple/List Select Items Items that must be selected from a predetermined list of values within the database. This leaves less room for error from a data entry standpoint and makes these fields highly reliable when pulling data based on the specified values.
      Entry Items Items that are input by the users when they are entering a DCI or defining filters for an ad hoc report. Only the number of characters and sometimes the type of characters limits these fields, which makes them a little less desirable to be used as filters from a data integrity standpoint.
      Attributes Include all the attributes in the database and are not limited to the attribute within the Smart DCI for a product line. When you select an attribute as a filter you must also select "Y" , "N " , or "N/A" . In other words, do you want a list or count of each time the attribute was coded Y, N, or N/A. You can also multi-select these values. For example, if you wanted to see cases where attribute 508 was coded you would select 508 as a filter and then select Y and N. This would filter out any cases where attribute 508 was not coded.
    4. After you have selected the type of report and defined your filters it is time to determine what items you want displayed on the report. Click "Items Displayed on Report" . To select an item to be displayed, double click on the item from the available items list. After you double click on the item it will move to the Items Selected list.

    5. To display attributes on the report you have several options. First, you can select attributes one at a time from the available attribute list. You can also select all the attributes by selecting [All Attribute Groups] from the attribute group list although this is not usually a desirable option because you will see many attributes that are never coded and therefore will always be inapplicable. You can also select the attributes to display by attribute group (Opening/TPI, Research/Referral, etc.). The last option is to display the "smart" or "total" attributes for a specific SPRG. This will automatically populate the output with all attributes that are in the DCI for a specific SPRG and can only be used if one SPRG is selected as a filter. You also have this option with header fields.

    6. Items selected to be displayed on the report will display in the order selected. If you want to change the order of the display, de-select and re-select items until you have them in the order you want them displayed. You can also alter the display order with the sequence numbers to the right of the display list.

      Note:

      There is a limit of six items that can be displayed on a Count or Bucket Count Report. There is no limit to the number of fields that can be displayed on a List Report but you may want to limit the number of fields displayed if you plan to print the report.

  9. Once you have selected the Report Type, Defined the Filters and Defined the Items to be displayed on the Report, all you have left to do is to Name, Save, and Run the report. You can also go back later and retrieve or delete a previously saved report.

    1. The name you give the report should be as descriptive as possible so you will know what information is included in the report at a glance. Once an ad hoc report is built that meets your needs, you will probably want to run the report periodically, possibly just changing one or more of the filter items such as the date range.

    2. Ad hoc reports can be saved as "Private" or "Public" . Only the user who created the report can view a private report. Any user can view a public report as long as they have report access. In EQRS there are some limits to viewing Public reports due to permission issues.

    3. To run an ad-hoc report, select Show Report from the Ad-Hoc Report Menu. While you are building the report you can run it as many times as you like to ensure that it includes the information you need. The report is not saved until you select Save Report as discussed above. If you select Excel as the output format you may receive a dialog box asking if you want to open or save the file. You would generally select the option to open the report. When running reports in Excel it is important to close the report before you run it a second time. If you don’t then you can have problems with Excel because you may have two files open with the same name which can be problematic. If you are running a report several times while fine tuning it to give you the information you are after, you should just run the report in HTML until it is final to avoid this problem.

    4. To retrieve a report, select Retrieve a Stored Report from the Ad hoc Report Menu. The Ad hoc Reports-Stored Reports Menu will be returned. You will see a list of the ad hoc reports you have created. To see public reports created by others select View Public Reports.

    5. To delete a report, there is a button on the ad Hoc report screen where the user's stored reports are displayed. To delete a stored report, click on the report name and then click on the [Delete] button. Another method is to click once on the report from the Ad hoc Reports from the Stored Reports menu and then hold down the CTRL key and select Up Arrow on your keyboard. You can only delete reports that you have created.

EQRS/NQRS Help Page

  1. The EQRS/NQRS Help Page provides information for EQRS/NQRS users and can be accessed from the EQRS/NQRS database. The EQRS/NQRS database address is: http://eqrs.enterprise.irs.gov:8098/eqrs/common/eqrsSplash.jsp/.

Contents of EQRS/NQRS Help Page
  1. The Help Page includes five links to choose from:

    • Master Attribute Job Aid

    • EQ Website

    • SERP

    • IRM 21.10.1

    Note:

    The On-Line Matrix is now located on the Top Menu within the database.

  2. Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA): The MAJA is an electronic Job Aid that contains information specific to the SPRG selected from the MAJA Home Page. Once you select an SPRG the MAJA will display the Header Items and Attributes that are in the Smart and Total DCIs for the SPRG. For each field it also displays the Operational definition and the Job Aid definition that is found on the Job Aids for each SPRG. The attribute mapping is displayed as Smart, Total, Discretionary, or Required. The bucket mapping is also displayed and for those attributes with reason codes there is a link that will list the reason codes mapped to the selected SPRG and attribute. If you access the MAJA from the Help screen on EQRS you will also have a link that shows the CJE mapping for each job series on EQRS.

    1. If there are coding examples listed for an attribute for the SPRG selected there will be a link below the attribute that can be used to view the examples.

    2. The Blank DCI for each SPRG is located on the upper right of the screen on the MAJA once an SPRG is selected. If you access the MAJA from EQRS you will select the appropriate Job Series prior to displaying the blank DCI and the CJE mapping will be reflected on the blank DCI. You can also indicate if you want to see only the Smart DCI attributes or if you want to display the Total DCI. On the NQRS side there is no need or option to select the Job Series prior to displaying the Smart or Total Blank DCI.

    3. There is a Print Job Aid button available on the MAJA that will display a job aid that can be printed.

    4. You can also see coding examples on the MAJA for the SPRG being reviewed by selecting the Print Example button.

    5. The MAJA for EQRS and NQRS can also be accessed from the EQ Website. The URL for the EQ Website is: http://eq.web.irs.gov/.

  3. The Embedded Quality Website is the main communication tool for the EQ program. It is located at http://eq.web.irs.gov/. Managers and reviewers should be familiar with how to navigate the EQ Website and they should check the website frequently.

Quality Review Rebuttal Process

  1. This section applies only to sample cases that are included in the computation of measures (Servicewide Measures, Balanced Measurement System, and Diagnostic Indicators) using NQRS. Sites should establish local procedures for rebuttals of local reviews.

  2. When the review of a sample contact is complete and input to NQRS, the functional area responsible for closing the case should receive a copy of the DCI.

    1. DCI records for sample contacts reviewed at CQRS are available for review immediately after the DCI has been input to NQRS; however, CQRS/PAS may identify changes to be made up to two business days after the review. QAMs and/or site managers should regularly review NQRS for new DCI records added, edited or deleted by CQRS analysts.

    2. DCI records for sample contacts reviewed by PAS are available for review after the completed DCI has been input to NQRS. PAS may E-mail the DCI to alert the functional area.

  3. When errors or deficiencies are identified during quality reviews, in Accounts Management the QAM will inform the employee's manager, who in turn will discuss the review results with the employee.

  4. See IRM 21.10.1.2.6.5 regarding the responsibilities of the QAM when follow-up corrective action is required for defect cases.

  5. If the functional area does not agree with defect(s) identified by CQRS or PAS the site should follow the rebuttal process outlined below.

  6. Rebuttals must be submitted on Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal. In Compliance PAS rebuttals must be submitted using the Campus Quality Review SharePoint Site (CQRSS) on cases/calls reviewed. See IRM 21.10.1.8.4, PAS Review Defect Rebuttal Procedures – Compliance.

    Caution:

    It is imperative that rebuttals DO NOT INCLUDE any information that could be used to identify the taxpayer or representative or any IRS employee in any part of the Dispute sections of the Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal. The following is a list of examples (not all inclusive);

    • any portion of the name; first, last, business, children’s, POA etc.

    • any phone number; home, work, cell, etc.

    • any Date of Birth; primary TP, secondary TP, child, etc.

    • any TIN (or part of TIN); Primary, Secondary, Child, etc., or

    • any part of the taxpayer’s address, including corrections to the spelling

CQRS Defect Rebuttal Procedures - Compliance

  1. Clarifications and discrepancies to all attribute coding on DCIs input to NQRS by CQRS as a national review and potential changes to the Header Field "Systemic Error" - must be submitted using the rebuttal process.

  2. CQRS requires two business days for consistency review after the date the DCI is input. Rebuttals may not be submitted prior to the end of the two-day period.

  3. Rebuttals must be submitted on Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal.

  4. Rebuttals of CQRS defects must be received by CQRS no later than ten business days after the consistency review period ends.

  5. Before submitting a rebuttal, the site should:

    • Review NQRS to determine if the DCI had been edited or deleted during the review period;

    • Thoroughly review the coding on the DCI to ensure all questionable coding is included within the original rebuttal;

    • Review the call via CR to ensure the facts presented in the rebuttal are correct.

  6. The following information must be included with the rebuttal:

    • DCI Number

    • Site Information

    • CR identification number, if applicable

    • The reason for disagreement with the defect(s) by attribute

    The narrative should acknowledge what defect attribute is being disputed and specifically explain and support your position on why the coding should be changed. If an IRM is cited in Remarks, explain why it does not apply and provide the IRM reference that supports your position. The site must also E-mail or fax any back-up information they want CQRS to consider.

  7. The Call site Quality staff will send the rebuttal to CQRS via E-mail. See the CQRS Website (http://cqrs.web.irs.gov/) for the CQRS Rebuttal Contact and appropriate E-Mail address.

    Note:

    Employees and Managers may not submit rebuttals to CQRS. All rebuttals should be submitted from a central control point at the call site, (i.e., the call site quality staff), and approved by the manager of that staff. All rebuttals must be written in a professional and courteous tone.

  8. The CQRS rebuttal coordinators, senior analyst, and/or Supervisory Tax Assistant will consider the rebuttal and any back-up research provided. They may consult with the Headquarters Product Line Analyst at any time during the rebuttal process.

    Note:

    An incorrect IRM reference or "finger error" on the DCI should not be the sole basis for a rebuttal.

    First Level
    If Then
    CQRS agrees with the rebuttal CQRS will edit the NQRS DCI to remove the defect and will inform the site. When editing the DCI, CQRS will select the reason code "Rebuttal" for the change. CQRS will complete the first level response on the rebuttal form and return it to the call site.
    CQRS does not agree with the rebuttal CQRS will complete the first level response on the rebuttal form by including their determination and any supporting IRM citations and return it to the call site.
    The call site now agrees with the original coding Keep the original DCI input.
    The site still disagrees with the original coding The call site completes the second level of the rebuttal form and forwards it with level one and level two information to the Chief, CQRS.
    Second Level
    If Then
    The Chief, CQRS disagrees with the second level rebuttal The Chief, CQRS (or acting) will complete the rebuttal form by entering the second level decision and return it to the call site.
    The Chief, CQRS agrees with the second level rebuttal The Chief, CQRS will forward the rebuttal to the reviewer for edit. The reviewer will select reason code "Rebuttal" for the changes to the DCI. CQRS will return the completed rebuttal to the call site.
    The call site now agrees with the coding The call site shares the review with the Operation.
    The call site still disagrees with any of the coding The call site completes the third level of the rebuttal form, explaining why they still disagree and providing supporting IRM references or documentation. The call site forwards the rebuttal form with all three levels completed to the BOD Quality Analysts.
    Third Level
    If Then
    The BOD Analyst agrees with CQRS The BOD informs the call site and the rebuttal process ends.
    The BOD Analyst agrees with the call site The BOD will forward the rebuttal to the QPM Analyst (PLA) responsible for the product line.
    The PLA agrees with the call site that the coding is incorrect The PLA completes level 3 of the rebuttal form, including the third level decision and supporting IRM reference(s). The PLA edits the DCI as appropriate, using reason code "Rebuttal" . The PLA sends a copy of the completed rebuttal form to the call site, CQRS and the BOD Analyst.
    The PLA disagrees with the callsite that the coding is incorrect The PLA completes level 3 of the rebuttal form, including the third level decision and supporting IRM reference(s). The PLA sends a copy of the completed rebuttal form to the call site, CQRS and the BOD Analyst.
  9. If the site does not agree with the assessment of CQRS personnel, the site should complete the second level of the rebuttal form and forward the case and supporting documentation to the Chief, Centralized Quality Review within ten business days.

  10. CQRS personnel and the Chief, Centralized Quality Review, will respond to rebuttals in writing within ten business days from receipt of the rebuttal. CQRS will provide the site and BOD Quality/Headquarters Analyst with information about rebuttal cases that have been elevated to the Chief, Centralized Quality Review level.

  11. If the site does not agree with the assessment of the Chief, Centralized Quality Review, the site should forward the case and supporting documentation to the BOD Quality/Headquarters Analyst within five business days.

  12. The BOD Quality/Headquarters Analyst will review all documentation and if they disagree with the site, they will respond to the site. If they concur with the site, they will forward the case and supporting documentation to the Product Line Quality Analyst (PLA). The referral must contain the DCI number of the disputed case and supporting E-mails and documentation from the site and CQRS. The site must provide any research material or IRM reference(s) used when reviewing the assessment.

  13. The PLA will determine whether the defect was appropriately identified and will respond to the BOD. The PLA will consider the site and CQRS statements, and will discuss the issues with BOD Quality Analyst as needed. The PLA makes the final determination of whether or not a defect has been appropriately identified. If a response is not possible within five business days, the PLA will advise CQRS, in writing, of the approximate date that the rebuttal will be resolved.

  14. A record copy or original copy of the rebuttal must be maintained for the current year and prior fiscal year. After that time, the records can be destroyed. The supporting documentation that must be retained with the rebuttal includes the:

    • Original rebuttal

    • Edited DCI

    • Reason why the defect(s) should be removed

    • Reason why the defect(s) was sustained

    If the supporting documentation includes a Contact Recorded call, the CR must be retained in the system for 60 days per the CR retention schedule.

CQRS Defect Rebuttal Procedures - Accounts Management

  1. Clarifications and discrepancies to all attribute coding on DCIs input to NQRS by CQRS as a national review, must be submitted using the rebuttal process. These rebuttal procedures do not apply to any edit or clarification requests on reviews that are “baselined,” and are therefore, not part of the weighted national sample. Clarification requests on “baselined” reviews can be submitted through normal channels such as email, etc.

    Note:

    Header changes to item "Systemic Error" must be submitted through the formal rebuttal process. Discrepancies in any other header field and/or the remarks section of the DCI can still be handled via current methods.

  2. CQRS requires two business days for consistency review after the date the DCI is input. Rebuttals may not be submitted prior to the end of the two-day period.

    Note:

    CQRS will thoroughly review the coding on the DCI to ensure all information is included within the original DCI. Additional attributes cannot be added after the two-day period.

  3. Rebuttals must be submitted on Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal.

  4. Rebuttals of CQRS defects must be received by CQRS no later than ten business days after the consistency review period ends.

    Note:

    If the review cannot be examined by the site within the above timeframe due to a contact recording problem, the timeframe may be extended if CQRS is notified of the issue within the ten business days.

  5. Before submitting a rebuttal, the site should:

    • Review NQRS to determine if the DCI had been edited or deleted during the review period;

    • Thoroughly review the coding on the DCI to ensure all questionable coding is included within the original rebuttal. Additional attributes cannot be added after the first level rebuttal has been completed;

    • Review the call via CR or the case via CIS to ensure the facts presented in the rebuttal are correct.

    • Avoid submitting frivolous rebuttals by focusing on the attributes with defect(s) and providing IRM sources to support your position.

    • Attach related Screen Displays (e.g., IDRS, AMS, and CIS) to your email to substantiate request.

    • Additional attributes cannot be added to a second level rebuttal.

    • For telephone systemic problems see IRM 1.4.16.3.5.1, Bad Line Calls.

  6. The following information must be included with the rebuttal:

    • DCI Number

    • Site Information

    • CR identification number, if applicable

    • The reason for disagreement with the defect(s) by attribute

    The narrative should acknowledge what error or deficiency is being disputed and specifically explain and support your position on why the disputed error or deficiency did not occur. If an IRM is cited in Remarks, explain why it does not apply and provide the IRM reference that supports your position. The site must also E-mail or fax any back-up information they want CQRS to consider.

    Note:

    Incomplete/corrected rebuttals must be re-submitted within the 10-day rebuttal period.

  7. The Callsite Quality staff will send the rebuttal to CQRS via e-mail. See the CQRS Website (http://cqrs.web.irs.gov/) for the CQRS Rebuttal Contact and appropriate E-Mail address.

    Note:

    Employees and Managers may not submit rebuttals to CQRS. All rebuttals should be submitted from a central control point at the callsite/campus, (i.e., the callsite/campus quality staff), and approved by the manager of that staff. Individuals who are authorized to submit rebuttals must be added to the Authorized Rebuttal Contact List on the CQRS website by contacting the CQRS website content owner. CQRS will reject any rebuttals that are from an individual who is not on the Authorized Rebuttal Contact List. All rebuttals must be written in a professional and courteous tone, do not personalize. The narrative must be objective and factual; personal editorials must be avoided. The narrative must not contain accusatory remarks (e.g., The reviewer was unreasonable). Unprofessional and/or discourteous rebuttals will be returned to submitting analyst’s manager of record.

  8. The CQRS rebuttal coordinators, senior analyst, and/or section chief will consider the rebuttal and any back-up research provided. They may consult with the PICA SPRG Analyst (formerly the Headquarters Product Line Analyst) at any time during the rebuttal process.

    First Level
    If Then
    CQRS agrees with the rebuttal CQRS will edit the NQRS DCI to remove the defect and will inform the site. When editing the DCI, CQRS must select from the drop down list when prompted and select the reason code "Rebuttal" for the change. CQRS will complete the first level response on the rebuttal form and return it to the callsite/campus.
    CQRS does not agree with the rebuttal CQRS will complete the first level response on the rebuttal form by including their determination and any supporting IRM citations and return it to the callsite/campus. Additional attributes cannot be added to first and/or second level CQRS responses; however, CQRS can change the coding of an attribute during the rebuttal process if it was due to incorrect selection (e.g. the reviewer intended to code 505=N, but selected 506=N by accident). In this case, the narrative and IRM cited on the DCI must support the changed attribute.
    The site disagrees with the CQRS First level response The callsite/campus completes the second level of the rebuttal form and forwards it with level one and level two information to the Chief, CQRS.
    Second Level
    If Then
    The Chief, CQRS disagrees with the second level rebuttal The Chief, CQRS (or acting) will complete the rebuttal form by entering the second level decision and return it to the callsite/campus. If the callsite/campus still disagrees, they will complete the third level of the rebuttal form, explaining why they still disagree and provide supporting IRM references or documentation. The callsite/campus forwards the rebuttal form with all three levels completed to the PICA SPRG Quality Analyst.
    The Chief, CQRS agrees with the second level rebuttal CQRS will edit the DCI and select reason code Rebuttal when prompted.
    Third Level
    If Then
    The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst receives/reviews third level and agrees with the callsite/campus. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst completes level 3 of the rebuttal form, including the third level decision and supporting IRM reference(s). The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst edits the DCI as appropriate, using reason code "Rebuttal" when prompted. If the rebuttal requires clarification from an IRM author, the PICA SPRG Quality Analyst will submit a SERP Feedback to have the IRM section in question clarified. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst sends a copy of the completed rebuttal form and SERP Feedback number (if applicable) to the callsite/campus and CQRS. PICA will edit the DCI as appropriate, using reason code "Rebuttal" when prompted.
    The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst receives/reviews third level and disagrees with the callsite/campus. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst completes level 3 of the rebuttal form, including the third level decision and supporting IRM reference(s). The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst sends a copy of the completed rebuttal form to the callsite/campus and CQRS.
  9. If the site does not agree with the assessment of CQRS personnel, the site should complete the second level of the rebuttal form and forward the case and supporting documentation to the Chief, Centralized Quality Review within ten business days and courtesy copy to the PICA SPRG Quality Analyst. The second level rebuttal must address the justification provided by CQRS personnel in their first level response. Only in rare circumstances will the second level rebuttal make an identical argument to the first level rebuttal.

  10. CQRS personnel and the Chief, Centralized Quality Review, will respond to rebuttals in writing within ten business days from receipt of the rebuttal. CQRS will provide the site and PICA SPRG Quality Analyst with information about rebuttal cases that have been elevated to the Chief, Centralized Quality Review level.

  11. If the site does not agree with the assessment of the Chief, Centralized Quality Review, the site should forward the case and supporting documentation to the PICA SPRG Quality Analyst within five business days.

    Note:

    In the event the rebuttal process will go beyond the Ultra recordings 45 day system retention, follow procedures in IRM 1.4.21.1.2.10, Selective Retention, to extend the retention period to 60 days.

  12. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst will review all documentation and if they disagree with the site, they will respond to the site. If they concur with the site, they will forward the case and supporting documentation to CQRS after inputting a SERP Feedback to request an edit to the IRM section in question (if the issue requires IRM clarification). The referral must contain the DCI number of the disputed case and supporting E-mails and documentation from the site and CQRS. The site must provide any research material or IRM reference(s) used when reviewing the assessment.

  13. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst will determine whether the defect was appropriately identified. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst will consider the site and CQRS statements. The PICA SPRG Quality Analyst makes the final determination of whether or not a defect has been appropriately identified. If a response is not possible within five business days, the PICA SPRG Quality Analyst will advise the site, in writing, of the approximate date that the rebuttal will be resolved.

  14. A record copy or original copy of the rebuttal must be maintained for the current year and prior fiscal year. After that time, the records can be destroyed. The supporting documentation that must be retained with the rebuttal includes:

    • Original rebuttal

    • Edited DCI

    • Reason why the defect(s) should be removed

    • Reason why the defect(s) was sustained

    If the supporting documentation includes a Contact Recorded call, the CR must be retained in the system for 60 days per the CR retention schedule.

PAS and Site Review Defect Rebuttal Procedures - Accounts Management

  1. Use the rebuttal process to clarify discrepancies to attribute coding on DCIs that are input as a national review into NQRS by Local PAS (Program Analysis System) reviewers at the Accounts Management Campus Sites. Potential changes to the Header Field "Systemic Error" must also be submitted using the rebuttal process. Do not use the rebuttal process for other issues such as header field input corrections needed. . These issues can be elevated via email to PAS (Embedded Quality Program Manager and Process Improvement Specialist) for correction. For Return Preparer Misconduct (RPM) reviews, regarding DCI header corrections, please copy the PICA SPRG analyst when elevating these issues via email to the Local PAS site.

    Note:

    Only national reviews are required to use the rebuttal process utilizing Form 14448. Sites will follow established local procedures for rebuttal of local reviews.

  2. DCI Rebuttals must be received by Local PAS, Embedded Quality Program Manager and Process Improvement Specialist via E-mail no later than ten business days from posting on NQRS. Rebuttals must be submitted on Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal.

    Note:

    For RPM reviews courtesy copy the PICA Analyst assigned to the SPRG on all first levels sent to Local PAS site.

  3. The rebuttal form must have all fields completed on the form. The narrative explanation for dispute should explain the reason for disagreement addressing each attribute separately and relevant IRM references to support the dispute. If an IRM was cited in Remarks, explain why it does not apply. Also provide any back-up information (i.e., IRM citation or IDRS prints) that needs to be considered with the rebuttal. The Embedded Quality Program Manager and/or the Process Improvement Specialist will review the information provided in the rebuttal form and inform the functional area (site) in writing of the rebuttal response. This is considered a first level rebuttal.

    Note:

    An incorrect IRM reference on the DCI is not the sole basis for a rebuttal.

    If Then
    PAS agrees with the rebuttal Within five business days PAS will edit the NQRS DCI to remove the defect(s) and will inform the site. When editing the DCI, PAS must select "rebuttal" from the drop down list and may include comments in the edit notes field when prompted to select the reason for the change.
    PAS does not agree with the rebuttal Within five business days PAS will inform the site and provide a reason for the decision.
    The Site now agrees with the original coding Do not edit the original DCI.
    The Site still disagrees with the original coding The PAS Manager will initiate a second level rebuttal process as outlined below.
  4. For second level rebuttal, the functional area (site) will use Form 14448 and continue from first level with all fields on the form completed. The narrative explanation for dispute should explain the reason for disagreement addressing each attribute separately and relevant IRM references to support the dispute explaining the reason(s) the site disagrees with the first level decision. Provide any research material (i.e., IRM citation or IDRS/system prints) that was used when originally reviewing the case including the IRM references related to the defect. The functional area (site) must submit the second level rebuttal to Embedded Quality Program Manager and Process Improvement Specialist within five business days of the first level response. Local PAS will review the rebuttal and send the second level rebuttal to PICA SPRG analyst within five business days. Second level will be shared with PICA analyst even if Local PAS now agrees with the second level for PICA records. Local PAS should provide any additional comments on 2nd level submitted by the functional area (site) for PICA’s consideration.

  5. PICA will consider the information provided and will respond to PAS within five business days. If a response is not possible within the timeframe, the PICA analyst will advise Local PAS (Embedded Quality Program Manager and Process Improvement Specialist) in writing, of the approximate date that the rebuttal will be resolved. PICA will consider both the PAS and the functional area (site) statements when working the 2nd level rebuttal.

  6. PICA makes the final determination of whether or not the defect will be sustained and will provide the response to the originating site (Embedded Quality Program Manager and Process Improvement Specialist), including all research material used..

  7. The Embedded Quality Program Manager is responsible for maintaining all rebuttals, for a minimum of the current and prior fiscal years. After that time, the records can be destroyed. The supporting documentation that must be retained with the rebuttal includes the:

    • Original rebuttal

    • Original DCI

    • Edited DCI

    • Pertinent information including copies of forms, system prints, and case documentation that are not retained systemically

    • Reason why the defect(s) were removed or sustained

    Note:

    Contact Recorded calls will be kept for 60 days per the CR retention schedule.

PAS Review Defect Rebuttal Procedures - Compliance

  1. Use the rebuttal process to clarify discrepancies to attribute coding on DCIs that are input as a national review into NQRS by PAS. Potential changes to the Header Field "Systemic Error" must also be submitted using the rebuttal process. Only one rebuttal (first and second level) should be submitted per DCI. Do not use the rebuttal process for header field corrections; submit these to PAS for correction.

    Note:

    Only national reviews are required to use the rebuttal process. Sites should establish local procedures for rebuttal of local reviews. Contact the Product Line Analyst (PLA) for assistance as necessary.

  2. Rebuttals must be completed and submitted electronically using Campus Quality Review SharePoint Site (CQRSS) on all calls/cases reviewed by PASand entered into CQRSS. The rebuttal must be received by the PAS function via CQRSS no later than 10 business days from the date the DCI was made available to the Campus function. The electronic rebuttal form on CQRSS must preserve the original DCI number, and Contact Recording (CR) identification number. The Campus will be responsible for completing the reason for disagreement with the defect(s) by attribute. The narrative should acknowledge what was coded and specifically explain the position on each defect that should be reversed. If an IRM was cited in Remarks, explain why it does not apply. Also provide any back-up information (i.e. IRM citation) that needs to be considered with the rebuttal. Additional back-up documentation (i.e. IDRS prints) may be added as attachments to the electronic form. All rebuttals must be written in a professional and courteous tone. The PAS Analyst will review the information provided in the rebuttal and prepare a response. PAS should include additional documentation when needed to support their position to sustain or remove the defects such as IDRS/AMS History prints. The rebuttal response will be made available to the Campus by the PAS Manager. If the rebuttal is incomplete or written unprofessionally the PAS Manager should reject the rebuttal back to the function and allow the rebuttal to be corrected and resubmitted within the rebuttal period. If the rebuttal period is within two business days of expiring or expires prior to rejection, allow the function two additional business days to correct and resubmit the rebuttal. This is considered a first level rebuttal.

    Note:

    An incorrect IRM reference on the DCI cannot be the sole basis for a rebuttal. The existing electronic CQRSS Review and Rebuttal form will be utilized for both first and second level rebuttals.

    If Then
    PAS agrees with the rebuttal Within five business days PAS will edit the NQRS DCI to remove the defect(s) and upload the edited DCI to CQRSS. When editing the DCI, PAS must select "rebuttal" from the drop down list and may include comments in the edit notes field when prompted to select the reason for the change.
    PAS does not agree with the rebuttal Within five business days PAS will respond to the Campus and provide a reason for the decision.
    The Site now agrees with the original coding Do not edit the original DCI.
    The Site still disagrees with the original coding The Campus will initiate a second level rebuttal process as outlined below.
  3. A second level rebuttal must only include attributes disputed on the first level rebuttal and specifically explain the reason(s) the site disagrees with the first level decision for each defect. Provide any research material (i.e., IRM citation or IDRS/system prints) that was used when originally reviewing the case including the IRM references related to the defect. The second level rebuttal must be submitted within five business days of the first level response.

  4. The PLAs will consider the information provided and will respond to PAS within five business days. If a response is not possible within the timeframe, the PLA will advise PAS in writing, of the approximate date that the rebuttal will be resolved. The PLA will consider both the PAS and the functional area statements, and will discuss the issues with Headquarters SBSE/W&I analysts as needed. Occasionally the PLA may move the defect from the incorrect attribute to charge the defect under the correct attribute or update header fields as needed.

  5. The PLA makes the final determination of whether or not the defect will be sustained and will complete the second level response.

  6. All first and second level rebuttals will be archived on CQRSS for 15 months. After that time records will be deleted from the archives. The electronic form on CQRSS will retain the attached documentation that includes the:

    • Original DCI

    • Edited DCI

    • Pertinent information and attachments which may include copies of forms, system prints, and case documentation.

    • Reason why the defect(s) were removed or sustained

    Note:

    Contact Recorded calls will be kept for 18 months per the CR retention schedule.

Field Assistance Quality Review Rebuttal Process

  1. This section applies only to sample contacts that are included in the National Sample using NQRS. Management should establish local procedures for rebuttals of local reviews.

  2. When the review of a sample contact is complete and input to NQRS, the Area should receive a copy of the results for review.

    1. DCI records for sample contacts reviewed at CQRS are available for review immediately after the DCI has been input to NQRS; however, CQRS may identify changes to be made up to two business days after the review.

    2. At a minimum, defective contacts should be made available for functional area review.

    3. Some sites may choose to share all sample cases with the functional areas.

  3. When errors or deficiencies are identified during quality reviews, the Area Quality Analyst (AQA) will inform the employee's manager, who in turn will discuss the review results with the employee.

  4. See IRM Exhibit 1.4.11-7, Embedded Quality Roles and Responsibilities regarding the responsibilities of the AQA and Manager when follow-up corrective action is required for defect cases.

  5. If the functional area does not agree with defect(s) identified from a CQRS review, the site should follow the process outlined below to resolve the disagreement.

CQRS Defect Rebuttal Procedures for Field Assistance
  1. To allow time for CQRS to perform a consistency review of all CQRS DCIs, Sites should not submit a rebuttal until at least two business days after the DCI is input.

  2. Rebuttals must be submitted on Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal.

  3. Rebuttals of CQRS defects must be received by CQRS no later than ten business days from the week ending date the review was input to NQRS.

    Example:

    Contact reviewed on 2/25/08 (Monday). The ten business day timeframe begins on Monday, 3/3/2008, and would end on Friday, 3/14/2008.

    Example:

    Contact reviewed on 5/23/08 (Friday). The ten business day timeframe begins on Tuesday, 5/27/2008, due to the legal holiday on Monday, 5/26/2008, and would end on Monday, 6/9/2008.

  4. Before submission of a rebuttal, management should review NQRS to determine if the DCI had been edited during the review period.

  5. Before submitting a rebuttal, when possible, management must review the contact via CR to ensure the facts presented in the rebuttal are correct.

  6. The Area Quality Analyst (AQA) will contact CQRS via E-Mail regarding the disputed defect. The HQ Quality Analyst (HQA) will provide the E-Mail address.

  7. The following information must be included with the rebuttal:

    • DCI Number

    • Site information

    • Reason for disagreement with the defect

    The narrative should acknowledge what was coded and specifically explain the position why the coding should be changed (i.e., if an IRM is cited in Remarks, explain why it does not apply). Management must also E-mail or fax any back-up information they want CQRS personnel to consider.

    Note:

    Employees and Managers should not submit rebuttals to CQRS. All rebuttals should be submitted from a central control point at the site, i.e., the Area Quality Analyst. All rebuttals should be written in a professional and courteous tone.

  8. The CQRS analyst, senior analyst, and/or section chief will consider the rebuttal and any back-up research provided. They may consult with the Headquarters Product Line Analyst at any time during the rebuttal process.

    If ... Then ...
    CQRS agrees with the rebuttal CQRS will edit the NQRS DCI to remove the defect and will inform the site.
    CQRS does not agree with the rebuttal CQRS will inform the site and provide a reason for the decision.
    The site now agrees with the original coding Keep the original DCI input.
    The site still disagrees with the original coding The site forwards the rebuttal and CQRS response to the CQRS Site Manager.
  9. CQRS personnel will respond to rebuttals within ten business days from receipt of rebuttal.

  10. Second-level Rebuttals must be submitted within ten business days from CQRS's first-level response. Allow ten business days for CQRS to respond to second-level rebuttals.

  11. Third-level Rebuttals must be submitted within five business days from CQRS's second-level response.

  12. The HQA will review all documentation and will determine whether the defect was appropriately identified and will respond to the AQA. The HQA will consider management and CQRS statements, and will discuss the issues with the AQA, CQRS, and the EQ Core Team Lead as needed. The HQA makes the final determination of whether or not a defect has been appropriately identified. Management must provide any research material used when reviewing the assessment. If the HQA disagrees with management, they will respond to the site. If the analyst concurs with management, he or she will forward the case and supporting documentation to CQRS and the AQA. The referral must contain the DCI number of the disputed case and supporting E-mails and documentation from the site and CQRS.

  13. A record copy or original copy of the rebuttal, and all supporting documentation, must be maintained for the current year and prior fiscal year. After that time, the records can be destroyed.

CQRS Defect Rebuttal Procedures – Electronic Products and Services Support

  1. Clarifications and discrepancies to all attribute coding on DCIs input to NQRS by CQRS as a national review, must be submitted using the rebuttal process.

    Note:

    Header changes to item "Systemic Error" must be submitted through the formal rebuttal process. Discrepancies in any other header field and/or there marks section of the DCI can still be handled via current methods.

  2. CQRS requires two business days for consistency review after the date the DCI is input. Rebuttals may not be submitted prior to the end of the two-day period.

  3. Rebuttals must be submitted on Form 14448, Quality Review Rebuttal.

  4. Rebuttals of CQRS defects must be received by CQRS no later than ten business days after the consistency review period ends.

  5. Before submitting a rebuttal, the site should:

    • Review NQRS to determine if the DCI had been edited or deleted during the review period;

    • Thoroughly review the coding on the DCI to ensure all questionable coding is included within the original rebuttal;

    • Review the call via Contact Recording to ensure the facts presented in the rebuttal are correct.

  6. The following information must be included with the rebuttal:

    • DCI Number

    • Site Information

    • Router Call Key, if applicable

    • The reason for disagreement with the defect(s) by attribute


    The narrative should acknowledge what defect attribute is being disputed and specifically explain and support your position on why the coding should be changed. If an IRM is cited in Remarks, explain why it does not apply and provide the IRM reference that supports your position. The site must also E-mail or fax any back-up information they want CQRS to consider.

  7. The Quality Team will send the rebuttal to CQRS via email. See the CQRS Website (http://cqrs.web.irs.gov/) for the CQRS Rebuttal Contact and appropriate email address.

    Note:

    Employees and Managers may not submit rebuttals directly to CQRS. All rebuttals should be submitted to the Quality Team after review by a manager at that site. All rebuttals must be written in a professional and courteous tone.

Customer Satisfaction Surveys

  1. Customer Satisfaction Surveys (CSS) are used to capture information about the service we provide to the taxpayers. The CSS allows us to systematically collect and review satisfaction data directly from our customers. The Customer Satisfaction Survey is part of a larger Servicewide survey effort coordinated by the Organizational Performance Division (OPD). Each operating division has responsibility for its own surveys, although OPD has oversight responsibilities. This Servicewide approach is designed to reduce duplication of effort and maximize usable data for all parts of the Service. As part of our goal to provide the best possible service to our customers, we solicit feedback from customers on all of our product lines.

  2. Depending on your site and the SPRGs it offers, QR/survey staff may be required to participate in portions of the Customer Satisfaction Survey administration. The IRS has contracted with outside vendors to receive, compile, and report data from our Customer Satisfaction Survey. QR/survey staff will not be required to directly ask the customers about the service they received; only solicit the customers’ participation in the survey.

Automated Underreporter Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. The Automated Underreporter (AUR) survey is administered by an outside vendor. Survey candidates are selected from a Closed Case Database provided to the vendor by The Enterprise Computing Center at Memphis (ECC-MEM). The database is provided monthly and includes cases closed at each of the AUR sites for that month. The vendor sends the survey form along with a postage-paid return envelope to each selected customer. The customer mails his/her response back to the vendor. The vendor then compiles the results and issues national reports and analysis each quarter. Quarterly and annual reports are based on statistically valid samples.

  2. The AUR survey questionnaire includes questions specific to taxpayers' satisfaction with service received through notices/letters and on the AUR Toll Free Telephone lines. No survey feedback opportunity is offered to the taxpayer on-line prior to ending a call.

Correspondence Examination Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. An outside vendor completes this survey with no direct support necessary from field offices. The vendor selects a statistically valid random sample of closed Correspondence Exam cases from the AIMS database each month. The vendor sends the survey form along with a postage-paid return envelope to each selected customer. The customer mails his/her response back to the vendor. The vendor then compiles the results and issues national reports and analysis semi-annually. There are two semi-annual reports and two summary reports. All reports are based on weighted data. The semi-annual reports are based on statistically valid samples.

Field Assistance Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. The Customer Satisfaction Survey in Field Assistance has been developed to help measure and improve taxpayer service at Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC) offices.

  2. Results are compiled by an outside vendor with data provided monthly. Results are analyzed by W&I Research and Analysis with comprehensive reports provided semi-annually.

  3. Please see IRM 21.3.4.3.3Communicating with and Surveying Taxpayers.

Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey Introduction

  1. The Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey has been developed to help measure and improve telephone services to customers.

  2. The survey will be administered by an outside vendor using an external survey system accessible through a toll-free 800 line. Each site has been assigned their own toll-free number.

  3. The survey will be administered during the phone hours of operation.

  4. The calls will be randomly selected before the assistor answers the line.

Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey Attempts
  1. The selected Customer Service Representative/Contact Representative/Assistor offers the survey when the call normally would have been concluded (the caller would have hung up at the end of the call).

  2. If the CSR/CR is going to transfer the caller to another number or application, (the taxpayer would not have normally hung up) do not notify the caller or offer the survey.

  3. One person should be designated as your site’s contact point for the Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey.

W&I Accounts Management and ACS Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. CSR/CR Responsibilities:

    1. When the call the CSR/CR is assisting has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, the assistor will be notified by a display on the IUP display screen.

      Note:

      If CSR has selected "Lite View" on their IUP display screen there will be no "Survey Field" . Instead, an additional button is added to the Toolbar labeled "Survey" . Button is grey but will turn blue when caller has been selected for a survey.

      Note:

      Visually impaired employees using JAWS equipment are not required to participate in the Customer Satisfaction Survey process.

    2. The CSR will complete the call as usual.

      Note:

      If the CSR/CR is going to transfer the caller to another number or application, (the taxpayer would not have normally hung up) do not notify the caller or offer the survey.

    3. After the call is complete, the CSR/CR will read the following script exactly as written:

      "This call has been randomly selected for an anonymous IRS improvement survey. It will take under eight minutes. Would you like to participate in the survey?"

    4. If the caller declines to participate, the CSR/CR will thank him/her and terminate the call.

    5. If the caller asks any questions about the survey, the CSR/CR will read the following as written:

      If the caller Then respond
      Expresses concern about how they were selected "Your call was randomly selected prior to your calling the IRS."
      Expresses concern for anonymity "All information is anonymous. The responses on the questionnaire are not linked to any single individual."
      Asks how the information will be used "The IRS is trying to improve its service. A first step in this process is to gather reliable information from those who have had contact with the IRS."
      Expresses concern for reprisal "You will not be identified or penalized whether or not you decide to participate."
      Asks to be called back later "Because you would be transferred into an automated survey, we would be unable to call you back at a later time. This is the only opportunity we have to survey you."
    6. If the caller agrees to take the survey, say:

      "Thank you. Please wait while I transfer you."

    7. The employee will then proceed to transfer the call to the automated survey.

      Take the following steps to transfer the call as appropriate for telephone system.

      • Do Not Place the Caller on Hold.

      • Transfer the call to the four digit number, 5001.

      • Do not wait for extension to pick up or for further instructions.

    8. While any individual CSR/CR may only be notified occasionally for a Customer Satisfaction Survey attempt, each CSR/CR must have a copy of the CSR/CR script readily available.

  2. Spanish Language Calls:

    1. After the call is completed, the CSR/CR will read the following Spanish language script:

      "Esta llamada ha sido seleccionada al azar para participar en una encuesta anónima acerca del servicio que usted recibió hoy. La encuesta dura menos de ocho minutos. ¿Le gustaría participar en esta encuesta?"

  3. If the caller asks any questions about the survey, the CSR/CR will read the following as written:

    Si el contribuyente responda
    Expresa su preocupación por cómo fue seleccionado "Su llamada fue seleccionada al azar antes de llamar al IRS"
    Expresa su preocupación por el anonimato "Toda la información es anónima. Las respuestas en el cuestionario no están vinculadas a ningún individuo en específico"
    Pregunta cómo se utilizará la información "El IRS está tratando de mejorar su servicio. El primer paso en este proceso es reunir información fidedigna de aquellos que han tenido contacto con el IRS"
    Expresa su preocupación por represalias "No será identificado o penalizado, ya sea que se anime o no a participar"
    Pide que se le llame más tarde "Porque... sería transferido a una encuesta automatizada, no nos seria posible el llamarle en otro tiempo. Esta es la única oportunidad que tenemos para su encuesta"

W&I Exam Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. Assistor Responsibilities

    1. When the call has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, the assistor will be notified their call was selected by a display on the telephone screen. They will no longer hear a beep. The teleset display will show - Offer Cust Sat Survey. The display will show throughout the call unless the call is put on hold.

      Note:

      If the CSR/CR is going to transfer the caller to another number or application, (the taxpayer would not have normally hung up) do not notify the caller or offer the survey.

    2. The assistor will complete the call as usual.

    3. After the call is complete, the assistor will read the following script exactly as written:

      "This call has been randomly selected for an anonymous IRS improvement survey. It will take under eight minutes. Would you like to participate in the survey?"

    4. The assistor will use the following scripts exactly as written to address the taxpayer decision in taking the survey:

      If the caller: Your response:
      Does NOT AGREE to take the survey "Is there anything else I can help you with today?"
      Respond to their questions (if any), thank him/her and terminate the call.
      AGREES to take survey "Thank you. Please wait while I transfer you."
    5. The assistor will use the following IF/THEN chart to address any taxpayer concerns.

      If the caller: Then respond
      Expresses concern about how they were selected "Your call was randomly selected prior to your calling the IRS."
      Expresses concern for anonymity "All information is anonymous. The responses on the questionnaire are not linked to any single individual."
      Asks how the information will be used "The IRS is trying to improve its service. A first step in this process is to gather reliable information from those who have had contact with the IRS."
      Expresses concern for reprisal "You will not be identified or penalized whether or not you decide to participate."
      Asks to be called back later "Because you would be transferred into an automated survey, we would be unable to call you back at a later time. This is the only opportunity we have to survey you."
    6. The employee will then proceed to transfer the call to the automated survey.

      Take the following steps to transfer the call.
      Do Not Place the Caller on Hold

      • Press "OUTSIDE LINE" on your telephone. Dial the appropriate speed dial number from the table below and ENTER/TRANSFER. DO NOT WAIT FOR EXTENSION TO PICKUP OR FOR FURTHER INSTRUCTIONS.

        Note:

        Sites that have the Infrastructure Upgrade Project (IUP) numbers should use the four-digit number, 5001, to transfer customers to the survey.

        Survey Speed Dial Number
        W&I Exam 144
    7. If there are problems with the speed dial numbers or the automated survey system, thank the caller and apologize for the inconvenience. Terminate the call, alert your site's Systems Analyst and he/she will contact the assigned headquarters analyst to investigate the problem.

  2. Spanish Language Calls

    1. When the call has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, the assistor will be notified their call was selected by a display on the telephone screen. The teleset display will show SPN Offer Cust Sat Survey. The display will show throughout the call unless the TP is put on hold.
      After the call is complete, the CSR/CR will read the following Spanish language script:

      "Esta llamada ha sido seleccionada al azar para participar en una encuesta anónima acerca del servicio que usted recibió hoy. La encuesta dura menos de ocho minutos. ¿Le gustaría participar en esta encuesta?"

SB/SE CCE and AUR Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. The Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey has been developed to help measure and improve SB/SE Exam and AUR services to customers. The survey will be administered by an outside vendor during the phone hours of operation 8:00 am to 8:00 pm Central Standard Time for Exam and 7:00 am to 9:00 pm Eastern Standard Time for AUR. Calls will be randomly selected before the assistor answers the line.

  2. Assistor Responsibilities

    1. When the call has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, the assistor will be notified their call was select by a display on the telephone screen. The teleset display will show - Offer Cust Sat Survey. The display will show throughout the call unless the call is put on hold.

      Note:

      If the assistor is going to transfer the caller to another number or application, (the taxpayer would not have normally hung up) do not notify the caller or offer the survey.

    2. The assistor will complete the call as usual.

    3. After the call is complete, the assistor will read the following script exactly as written:

      "This call has been randomly selected for an anonymous IRS improvement survey. It will take under eight minutes. Would you like to participate in the survey?"

    4. The assistor will use the following scripts exactly as written to address the taxpayer decision in taking the survey:

      If the caller: Your response:
      Does NOT AGREE to take the survey "Is there anything else I can help you with today?"
      Respond to their questions (if any), thank him/her and terminate the call.
      AGREES to take survey "Thank you. Please wait while I transfer you."
    5. The assistor will use the following IF/THEN chart to address any taxpayer concerns.

      If the caller: Then respond
      Expresses concern about how they were selected "Your call was randomly selected prior to your calling the IRS."
      Expresses concern for anonymity "All information is anonymous. The responses on the questionnaire are not linked to any single individual."
      Asks how the information will be used "The IRS is trying to improve its service. A first step in this process is to gather reliable information from those who have had contact with the IRS."
      Expresses concern for reprisal "You will not be identified or penalized whether or not you decide to participate."
      Asks to be called back later "Because you would be transferred into an automated survey, we would be unable to call you back at a later time. This is the only opportunity we have to survey you."
    6. The employee will then proceed to transfer the call to the automated survey.

      Take the following steps to transfer the call.
      Do Not Place the Caller on Hold

      • Press "OUTSIDE LINE" on your telephone.

      • Dial the appropriate speed dial number from the table below and ENTER/TRANSFER. DO NOT WAIT FOR EXTENSION TO PICKUP OR FOR FURTHER INSTRUCTIONS.

        Note:

        Sites that have the Infrastructure Upgrade Project (IUP) numbers should use the four-digit number, 5001, to transfer customers to the survey.

        Survey Speed Dial Number
        SB/SE AUR 101
        SB/SE Exam 144
    7. If there are problems with the speed dial numbers or the automated survey system, thank the caller and apologize for the inconvenience. Terminate the call, alert your site's Systems Analyst and he/she will contact the assigned headquarters analyst to investigate the problem.

  3. Spanish Language Calls

    1. When the call has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, the assistor will be notified their call was selected by a display on the telephone screen. The teleset display will show SPN Offer Cust Sat Survey. The display will show throughout the call unless the TP is put on hold.
      After the call is complete, the CSR/CR will read the following Spanish language script:

      "Esta llamada ha sido seleccionada al azar para participar en una encuesta anónima acerca del servicio que usted recibió hoy. La encuesta dura menos de ocho minutos. ¿Le gustaría participar en esta encuesta?"

e-help Phones Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. The IRS e-help Desk Customer Satisfaction Survey is conducted on the telephone through an external automated survey system administered by an outside vendor. A random sampling of customers calling the e-help Desk's toll-free number is used to assess their satisfaction with the service they received.

  2. Telephone Assistor Responsibilities

    1. When the call you are assisting has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, you will be notified the call was selected for the survey by a display on the telephone system. The display will show Offer Cust Sat Survey.

      Note:

      You will no longer hear a beep.

      Note:

      If the assistor is going to transfer the caller to another number or application for other issues, do not notify the caller of the survey offer and do not tell the next assistor to offer the survey.

    2. Complete the call as usual.

    3. After the call is complete, the employee will read the following script exactly as written:
      "This call has been randomly selected for an anonymous IRS improvement survey. It will take under 5 minutes. Would you like to participate in the survey?"

    4. If the caller declines to participate thank him/her and terminate the call.

    5. If the caller agrees to take the survey say: "Thank you. Please wait while I transfer you."

    6. If the caller asks any questions about the survey, the assistor will read the following as written:

      If the practitioner Then respond
      Expresses concern about how they were selected "Your call was randomly selected prior to your calling the IRS."
      Expresses concern for anonymity "All information is anonymous. The responses on the questionnaire are not linked to any single individual."
      Asks how the information will be used "The IRS is trying to improve its service to the American public. A first step in this process is to gather reliable information from those who have had contact with the IRS."
      Expresses concern for reprisal "You will not be identified or penalized whether or not you decide to participate."
      Asks to be called back later "Because you would be transferred into an automated survey, we would be unable to call you back at a later time. This is the only opportunity we have to survey you."
    7. The employee will then proceed to transfer the call to the automated survey.

  3. For customers agreeing to take the survey, the assistor should do the following:

    • Press "OUTSIDE LINE" on the teleset or UniphiConnect software

    • Dial the appropriate speed dial number for the site listed below

      Note:

      Sites that have the Infrastructure Upgrade Project (IUP) numbers should use the four-digit number, 5001, to transfer customers to the survey.

    • Press "ENTER" then

      When you hear, "Press the star key when you are ready to take the survey" .

    • Press "TRANSFER" to connect the customer to the survey. Then hang up.

  4. The speed dial numbers are as follows:

    Note:

    Sites that have the (IUP) numbers should use the four-digit number, 5001, to transfer customers to the survey.

    Site Speed Dial Number
    Andover 355
    Atlanta 355
    Austin 355
    Cincinnati 355
    Ogden 355
  5. If there are problems with transferring the call, the assistor should apologize to the caller and report the issue to their project lead. The lead will elevate all issues to the vendor for investigation.

    Note:

    Once connected, the survey system will instruct the TP, "Press the star key when you are ready to take the survey" . Remember, this is for the TP to press the star, not for IRS staff.

Innocent Spouse (ISP) TF Telephone Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. Assistor Responsibilities:

    1. When the call has been selected for the Customer Satisfaction Survey, the assistor will be notified their call was select by a display on the telephone screen. They will no longer hear a beep. The teleset display will show - Offer Cust Sat Survey. The display will show throughout the call unless the call is put on hold.

      Note:

      If the assistor is going to transfer the caller to another number or application, (the taxpayer would not have normally hung up) do not notify the caller or offer the survey.

    2. The assistor will complete the call as usual.

    3. After the call is complete, the assistor will read the following script exactly as written:

      "This call has been randomly selected for an anonymous IRS improvement survey. It will take under eight minutes. Would you like to participate in the survey?"

    4. The assistor will use the following scripts exactly as written to address the taxpayer decision in taking the survey:

      If the caller: Your response:
      Does NOT AGREE to take the survey "Is there anything else I can help you with today?"
      Respond to their questions (if any), thank him/her and terminate the call.
      AGREES to take survey "Thank you. Please wait while I transfer you."
    5. The assistor will use the following IF/THEN chart to address any taxpayer concerns.

      If the caller: Then respond
      Expresses concern about how they were selected "Your call was randomly selected prior to your calling the IRS."
      Expresses concern for anonymity "All information is anonymous. The responses on the questionnaire are not linked to any single individual."
      Asks how the information will be used "The IRS is trying to improve its service. A first step in this process is to gather reliable information from those who have had contact with the IRS."
      Expresses concern for reprisal "You will not be identified or penalized whether or not you decide to participate."
      Asks to be called back later "Because you would be transferred into an automated survey, we would be unable to call you back at a later time. This is the only opportunity we have to survey you."
    6. The employee will then proceed to transfer the call to the automated survey.

      Take the following steps to transfer the call.
      Do Not Place the Caller on Hold

      • Press "OUTSIDE LINE" on your telephone.

      • Dial 166 and "ENTER/TRANSFER". DO NOT WAIT FOR EXTENSION TO PICKUP OR FOR FURTHER INSTRUCTIONS.

        Note:

        Sites that have the Infrastructure Upgrade Project (IUP) numbers should use the four-digit number, 5001, to transfer customers to the survey.

    7. If there are problems with the speed dial numbers or the automated survey system, thank the caller and apologize for the inconvenience. Terminate the call, alert your site's Systems Analyst and he/she will contact the assigned headquarters analyst to investigate the problem

Collection Operation Customer Satisfaction Survey Sample File

  1. Compliance Collection Operation work as defined for this survey sample is closed correspondence cases processed under the following OFP codes:

    • IMF: 6111X, 6112X, 6114X, 6115X, 6119X, 6174X, 622XX, 624XX, 62501, 62502

    • BMF: 6131X, 6132X, 6241X, 6243X, 6246X, 6261X, 62901, 62930, 61840

  2. Closures to be included are cases based on an incoming response from the taxpayer. This means responses to notices and letters, unsolicited correspondence, returns, and payments.

  3. Headquarters staff pulls sample cases the 26th of each month through the 25th of the next month from closed cases on AMS, through an automated procedure.

  4. The definition template sent to the vendor for SCC Ops sample is as follows:

    • Record Number: Assigned by the system.

    • Site Code: This field is the Site Code. (1- Brookhaven, 2-Cincinnati, 3-Memphis, 4-Ogden, 5-Philadelphia, 6-Austin, 7-Atlanta, 8-Andover, 9-Kansas City, 10-Fresno).

    • BOD Code: This field is the BOD code (WI or SB). E-File: Indicates a Y for yes, and blank if no.

    • Reject Code: A 1 indicates that SCC Ops did not contact the taxpayer either through correspondence or online when closing the case and that the rest of the template is completed. If taxpayer was contacted, field will be blank and rest of the template is completed as appropriate.

    • First Name Line: Indicates taxpayer’s first name or complete business name. For deceased taxpayer's, this line is used for the Executor's name. For joint filers with different last names, the primary taxpayer’s name is listed here and the secondary in the Last Name field. For joint filers with a hyphenated last name (John & Pat Smith-Johnson) is listed as John & Pat Smith, in First Name Line, and Johnson, in Last Name Line.

    • Last Name Line: Indicates taxpayer's last name or second name line for a business. For deceased taxpayers, list the name of the deceased as follows Re: name of deceased.

    • Street Address: Indicates street address or PO Box number.

    • City Name Line: Indicates city name.

    • State Name Line: Indicates two letter State abbreviations

    • Zip Code: Indicates 5-digit zip code.

    • Filing Status (IMF only): Indicates "1" for Single, "2" for Married filing joint, "3" for Married filing separate, "4" for Head of Household, and "5" for Qualifying Widow.

    • AGI (IMF Only): Indicates "1" for $0 to $24,999, "2" for $25,000 to $49,999, "3" for $50,000 to $99,999, and "4" for $100,000 and above. Uses the most current tax year data available.

    • Form: Indicates specific return filed, e.g., 1040A, 1040, 1040X, 941, 1120, etc.

    • Taxable Income (IMF Only): Indicates "1" for $0 to $24,999, "2" for $25,000 to $49,999, "3" for $50,000 to $99,999, and "4" for $100,000 and above. Uses most current tax year available.

    • Date of Birth (IMF Only): Indicates 2-digit for month and day, 4-digit year, and include slashes, e.g., 04/08/1967. Uses date for Primary taxpayer.

    • IRS Received Date: Indicates 2-digit for month and day, 4-digit year, and include slashes, e.g., 04/08/1967.

    • Closed Date: Indicates 2-digit for month and day, 4-digit year, and include slashes, e.g., 04/08/1967.

    • Program Code: Indicates five digit OFP code.

    • Last CP Notice Sent: Indicates the last CP Notice number that was issued, e.g., 501. A blank indicates no record or indication of a notice being issued. If IDRS was researched, assume the notice is related if the date is within 14 to 60 days of the taxpayer’s response.

    • Telephone Number (W&I): Indicates the taxpayer’s telephone number from IDRS.

  5. The CSCO survey, will utilize mail surveys to determine customer satisfaction after case closure. The contractor administers the survey by mail on a monthly basis.

  6. The mail survey process includes the following correspondence to the taxpayer:

    • an advance letter about the survey;

    • the initial survey with a cover letter;

    • a postcard reminder; and,

    • a second letter and survey to non-respondents.

Accounts Management Adjustments Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. "Adjustments" as defined for this survey is work processed under the following programs and reported in Accounts Management Inventory Report (AMIR) Categories 1, 2, 6, and 9:

    Work/cases reported under programs:

    Master File OFP
    BMF 1000X, 1005X, 1006X, 1007X, 1008X
    EO 1310X, 1315X, 1320X
    International 3303X, 3304X, 3308X
    IMF 3572X,4000X, 4001X, 4005X, 4006X, 4007X, 4008X, 4009X, 8236X, 8537X, 9714X
    EP 7280X

    Note:

    Programs excluded from the survey: 1542X, 3307X, and 8238X.

  2. Closures to be included in the survey are any cases based on an incoming submission from the customer, meaning responses to notices and letters, unsolicited correspondence, amended returns and claims, with the exceptions listed below.
    Closures to be excluded from the survey ("Rejects" ) are:

    • Correspondence with attached forms or schedules (or an internal route) that simply need to be associated with a return; undelivered mail; and amended returns that are determined to be "True Dups" .

    • Cases generated and closed based on internal transcripts or notices, even those that result in outgoing correspondence to the customer, when we have no customer response.

    • Form 4442 Referrals, except for referrals that result in the closure of correspondence, a claim or an amended return that would have otherwise qualified for the survey.


    You must pull any case at the designated skip interval, even if it is a "Reject" .

  3. Pull cases for the survey daily, based on the Sample Selection Methodology procedures.

  4. The Access Definition Template below contains the requirements for entering sample case data onto the survey Access Database.

    1. Obtain the data required for input from the closed case file and through IDRS research.

    2. Generally, attempt to ensure that all input fields have an entry unless the instructions allow for a blank. However, if you simply cannot secure data for a particular field, leave it blank.

      Exception:

      If it is determined that a case should be excluded from the survey, enter only the Office Identifier, BOD code, and the Reject indicator of "No" and the CIS ID; leave the remaining fields blank.

    3. If the address on the customer’s correspondence/amended return/claim is different from the address on IDRS, enter the new address information onto the database.

    4. Review daily input to ensure accuracy.

  5. Access Definition Template - From the drop down boxes input the following information.

    • CIS Case ID - Use this field to record the 10-digit CIS ID. Also enter the CIS ID if the case meets Reject Criteria.

    • BOD Code - Enter WI, SB, LMSB, or TE/GE. Don't assume you can determine the BOD Code. Get it from a notice, from part of the case file, or from IDRS.

    • Reject - Do not enter anything if the case will be included in the survey. Enter Yes if the case will not be included in the survey and the CIS Case ID, do not enter any more data on the input sheet.

    • E-File - Yes or No.

    • First Name - Enter the first name for IMF customers. Enter the first name for any BMF customers whose names are simply an individual's first and last names. Leave blank for all other BMF, EP, and EO customers.

    • Last Name - Enter the last name for IMF customers. Enter the last name for any BMF customers whose names are simply an individual's first and last names. Enter the full name of all other BMF, EP, and EO customers.

    • Address - Enter the street address or Box number.

    • City - Enter city name.

    • Zip Code - Enter the five-digit zip code.

    • Filing Status (IMF only) - Enter:
      Single
      Married filing joint
      Married filing separate
      Head of Household
      Qualifying Widow.

    • AGI (IMF Only) - Enter:
      $0 to $24,999
      $25,000 to $49,999
      $50,000 to $99,999
      $100,000 +.

    • Taxable Income (IMF Only) - Enter:
      $0 to $24,999
      $25,000 to $49,999
      $50,000 to $99,999
      $100,000 +.

    • Date of Birth (IMF Only) - Enter 2-digit month, day, and 4-digit year, including the slashes, e.g., 04/08/1967. Use the birth date of the primary taxpayer if a joint account.

    • Form- Enter specific form filed, e.g., 1040A, 1040, 1040X, 941, 1120, etc.

    • Last CP Notice Sent - Enter the notice number of the last CP Notice issued, for example "501" , if it appears to be related to this case. Assume the notice is related if it was issued within 14 to 60 days of the taxpayer's response. Leave blank if there is no record or indication of a notice being issued.

    • Received Date - Enter the IRS Received date using a 2-digit month, day, and 4-digit year, including slashes, e.g., 01/09/2014.

    • Closed Date - Enter a 2-digit month, day, and 4-digit year closed date, including slashes, e.g., 02/14/2014.

    • Program Code - Enter;
      BMF - 10000, 10050, 10060, 10070, 10080
      EO - 13100, 13150
      International - 33030, 33040, 33080
      IMF - 35720, 40000, 40010, 40050, 40060, 40070, 40080, 82360, 85370, 97140
      EP - 72800

      Note:

      Do not use a specific fifth digit.

    • Issue - Enter:
      Status of Refund
      Earned Income Credit
      Credits (child care, education, etc.)
      Status of payment
      Exemptions/Dependents
      Other changes to original return
      Penalty/Interest charges
      Name/Address changes
      Other

    • Telephone Number - Obtain the taxpayer’s telephone number from their submitted documents, or ENMOD. If none is present in the case file or on ENMOD, do not enter anything (numeric field only).

  6. All closures must be input by the fourth business day following the end of the month. Adjustments Customer Satisfaction Survey data will be transferred via Enterprise File Transfer Utility (EFTU) by the PICA Staff.

  7. Time Reporting: Clerks or CSRs working any part of this survey process should use 790-00000. Analysts or managers should include time spent on the survey under the function and program they normally use on a daily basis. In the event a lead CSR is involved, they should use the OFP they normally use when not working cases.

Retention of Survey Source Cases
  1. For the Adjustments survey of Correspondence customers, source case data submitted to headquarters will be retained by the PICA staff until survey results for the quarter have been generated, or for a period not to exceed six months. Sites are no longer responsible for retention of the case data.

Innocent Spouse Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. An outside vendor completes this survey with no direct support necessary from field offices. The vendor selects a statistically valid random sample of closed Innocent Spouse cases from a disc sent to them each month. This disc will list all cases closed on the Innocent Spouse Tracking System for that month. The vendor sends the survey form along with a postage-paid return envelope to each selected customer. The customer mails his/her response back to the vendor. The vendor then compiles the results and issues national reports and analyses each quarter. Unweighted results are available each quarter and weighted reports and analyses are available annually. Quarterly and annual reports are based on statistically valid samples.

Injured Spouse Customer Satisfaction Survey

  1. The Injured Spouse Customer Satisfaction survey was developed to help measure and improve Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation services to our customers. The Injured Spouse Survey questionnaire is administered by an outside contractor. The survey includes specific questions to taxpayers' satisfaction with service received with preparing and filing Form 8379, communications with Customer Service Representatives when contacted for updates and the outcome of their allocation.

  2. Using a data base query tool, survey candidates are selected by querying closed Injured Spouse cases in the Correspondence Imaging System (CIS).

  3. Headquarters uses a Generalized IDRS Interface (GII) tool to build the data for transmission to the contractor. All data transmitted to the contractor for the Injured Spouse Survey is sent via the Enterprise File Transfer Utility (EFTU) to a share point site.

  4. The contractor sends the survey form along with a postage-paid return envelope to each selected customer.

  5. Upon receipt of the customer's response, the contractor enters data and transmits it to the W&I Research Group thru EFTU on a monthly basis.

  6. W&I Research Group extracts the data from the EFTU site and provides quarterly, semi-annually and annually reports and analysis to the Injured Spouse Headquarters Staff for review.

Approximate Precision Table

The table below shows approximate precision margins for various sample sizes and quality rates.

Approximate precision with 90 percent confidence given a sample size (n) and quality rate (p). Usual goal is a precision of 5.
Quality Rate (p in percent)
Sample Size(n) 50 60 65 70 75 80 85 90 95
5 37 36 35 34 32 29 26 22 16
7 31 30 30 28 27 25 22 19 14
10 26 25 25 24 23 21 19 16 11
12 24 23 23 22 21 19 17 14 10
15 21 21 20 19 18 17 15 13 9
20 18 18 18 17 16 15 13 11 8
25 16 16 16 15 14 13 12 10 7
30 15 15 14 14 13 12 11 9 7
35 14 14 13 13 12 11 10 8 6
40 13 13 12 12 11 10 9 8 6
45 12 12 12 11 11 10 9 7 5
50 12 11 11 11 10 9 8 7 5
55 11 11 11 10 10 9 8 7 5
60 11 10 10 10 9 8 8 6 5
65 10 10 10 9 9 8 7 6 4
70 10 10 9 9 9 8 7 6 4
75 9 9 9 9 8 8 7 6 4
85 9 9 9 8 8 7 6 5 4
100 8 8 8 8 7 7 6 5 4
110 8 8 7 7 7 6 6 5 3
125 7 7 7 7 6 6 5 4 3
150 7 7 6 6 6 5 5 4 3
175 6 6 6 5 5 5 4 4 3
200 6 6 6 5 5 5 4 3 3
225 5 5 5 5 5 4 4 3 2
250 5 5 5 5 5 4 4 3 2
275 5 5 5 5 4 4 4 3 2
300 5 5 5 4 4 4 3 3 2
325 5 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 2
350 4 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 2

Note:

These precision estimates assume that a simple random sample was selected. If the sample was not selected properly, the precision will be greater, that is, less precise. Estimates of quality within a confidence interval cannot exceed 100 percent. For example, a sample size of 5 with a 90 percent quality rate has precision of +/- 22. The effective interval is 68-100, not 68-122 percent.

Permission Levels for EQRS

The table below describes the EQRS permission levels.

EQRS PERMISSION LEVELS
Level User Category User Definition
0 Assistor/Employee No system login or access
1 Office Assistant/Clerical Input/Edit limited to own organizational (org) assignment plus additional orgs and applications assigned. View DCI and individual employee reports only, no cumulative employee reports. Org reports limited to own org assignment plus additional orgs assigned. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Ad hocs to employee level in own org and department/territory level in other orgs. No maintenance abilities.
2 Leads/Technical Leads Input/Edit limited to own org assignment plus additional orgs and applications assigned. View DCI and individual employee reports only, no cumulative employee reports. Org reports limited to own org assignment plus additional orgs assigned. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Ad hocs to employee level in own org and department/territory level in other orgs. No Ad-Hoc Bucket Count Reports. No maintenance abilities. Must also be able to be monitored as an employee.
3 Application Managers Input/edit limited to org assignment and application plus additional orgs assigned. Reports down to individual employee level within own org plus additional orgs and applications assigned. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Maintenance ability for assistors, but not users.
4 Front Line Managers Input/edit limited to org assignment plus additional orgs and applications assigned. Reports down to individual employee level within own org plus additional orgs assigned. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Maintenance ability for assistors, but not users.
5 Department Managers Input/edit for own department plus additional orgs assigned. Reports down to individual employee level within own department plus additional orgs assigned. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Maintenance ability for assistors, but not users.
6 Operation/Territory Managers Input/edit for own operation/territory plus additional orgs assigned. Reports down to individual employee level within own operation/territory. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Maintenance ability for assistors, but not users.
7 Quality Manager Input/edit limited to own team plus additional orgs assigned. Reports down to employee level for own directorship. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Maintenance ability for assistors, but not users.
8 Quality Staff No input/edit abilities. Org and ad hoc reports for all levels within directorship down to team. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. No maintenance abilities.
9 P&A Analysts No input/edit abilities. Reports down to employee level for own directorship. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. No maintenance abilities.
10 HQ Personnel No input/edit abilities. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. No DCI Number or Employee Name on Ad Hoc Reports. No maintenance abilities.
11 HQ Personnel - employee access needed No input/edit abilities. Reports down to employee level for own BOD. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. No maintenance abilities.
12 Site SSC Input/edit for own directorship. All reports access for all levels of own directorship. Department/Territory level and above reports nationwide. Maintenance abilities for assistors and users in own directorship.
13 OJI Input/edit limited to own org assignment plus orgs assigned and Non-Evaluative Other and Non-Evaluative Targeted and Non-Evaluative Test Call review categories. View DCI and individual employee reports only for the non-evaluative review types. Cumulative employee reports on non-evaluative review types only. All reports limited to own plus any additional orgs assigned. No Organization or Ad-hoc reports. No maintenance abilities. Must also be able to be monitored as an employee.
14 CER Reviewer Input Enterprise wide for designated SPRGs. Edit only for reviews they input within 45 days of review date. Reports down to employee level for reviews input by CER.
15 CER Reviewer Lead Input Enterprise wide for designated SPRGs. Edit only for reviews input by CER Reviewer or CER Reviewer Lead levels within 120 days. Reports down to employee level for reviews input by CER.
99 EQ Support Team Input/edit enterprise wide. All reports for all levels of enterprise. Maintenance abilities for enterprise. Ability to grant Change Site permissions.

Permission Levels for NQRS

The table below describes the NQRS permission levels.

NQRS PERMISSION LEVELS
Level User Category User Definition
1 HQ Personnel/Product Line Analysts Input/Edit reviews for designated SPRGs nationwide. Input/Edit cutoff is 90 days after end of reporting period. National and local reports nationwide (all sites, all SPRGs). No maintenance abilities. Input/Edit Volumes for designated SPRGs.
2 Centralized National Reviewer Input of national and local reviews for designated SPRGs for all sites enterprise wide. National and local SPRGs are independently assigned. Edit cutoff is ten days after the end of the reporting period. National and local reports for completed reviews (all sites, all SPRGs). No maintenance abilities.
3 Multi-site Reviewer Input/edit of national reviews for own directorship for designated SPRGs. Input/Edit of local reviews for own directorship for designated SPRGs. National and local designated SPRGs may differ. Edit cutoff is ten days after end of reporting period for National review. Input volumes for directorship (designated SPRGs). Volume Input/Edit period begins the day after the end of the reporting period plus 10 days. National reports nationwide for completed reviews (all sites, all SPRGs). Local reports for directorship only. No maintenance abilities.
4 Site Reviewer Input/edit of national reviews for own site for designated SPRGs. Input/edit of local reviews for own site for designated SPRGs. National and local designated SPRGs may differ. Edit cutoff is ten days after end of reporting period for National review. Input volumes for site (designated SPRGs). Volume Input/Edit period begins the day after the end of the reporting period plus 10 days. National reports nationwide for completed reviews (all sites, all SPRGs). Local reports for site only. No maintenance abilities.
5 Local Reviewer Input/edit of local reviews for own site only. Designated SPRGs. National reports nationwide for completed reviews (all sites, all SPRGs). Local reports for own site only. No maintenance abilities.
6 Centralized National Reviewer Lead Input of national and local reviews for designated SPRGs for all sites enterprise wide. National and local SPRGs are independently assigned. Edit cutoff is 90 days after the end of the reporting period. National and local reports for completed reviews (all sites, all SPRGs). No maintenance abilities.
7 HQ Data Reader No input/edit abilities. National and local reports nationwide for completed reviews (all sites, all SPRGs). No maintenance abilities.
8 Data Reader No input/edit abilities. National reports nationwide for completed reviews. (all sites, all SPRGs). Local reports for own directorship. No maintenance abilities.
99 NQ Support Team NQRS ONLY. Input/edit enterprise wide. No Input/edit cutoff. National and local reports nationwide. (all sites, all SPRGs). Maintenance abilities for enterprise. Input/Edit Volumes.

EQRS/NQRS Header Fields

The table below includes all EQRS/NQRS header fields. Header Fields specific to various SPRGs can be found on the Master Attribute Job Aid (MAJA) which can be accessed from the Database or from the Embedded Quality Website, http://eq.web.irs.gov/.

Header Operational Definition Field Type Remarks
# Clients Cases/Questions Correct Use this filed to identify how many cases/questions were correct. User Entry 2 characters, numeric
# Clients/Questions Discussed Use this filed to identify how many clients/questions were discussed. User Entry 2 characters, numeric
ACS Priority Code Use this two digit field to identify the priority score on ACS phone calls and ACS Case Processing cases. Drop-Down 2 characters, alpha numeric
AIMS Status Use this field to identify the current location of the return on AIMS (2 digit numerical code). User Entry 2 characters, numeric
Application Number Use this field to identify the three digit ASPECT application number for the call being reviewed. Drop-Down 2 characters, numeric. Smart by SPRG.
Bucket Category Use this field to identify the Bucket Category Drop-Down  
Call Disconnected Use this field to identify if the call was disconnected. Drop-Down Yes or No default to No
Call/Case Length in Minutes Calculated field based on Time Call/Case Started and Call/Case Completed.    
Case Number Use this field to identify the case number. User Entry 20 characters
Case Type Use this field to identify the case type being reviewed. Drop-Down Smart by SPRG
Closing Date Use this field to identify the date the taxpayer's inquiry or case was resolved. Date MM/DD/YYYY
Contact Recorded Use this field to identify if the review was performed using CR. Drop-Down No, Yes - no screen capture, Yes - screen capture NOT utilized and Yes - screen capture utilized
Corporate Timeliness Use this field to identify the prior Corporate Collection function's timeliness when issuing an interim contact or final response. Drop-Down Yes or No, Defaults to blank
CP Number Use this field to identify the particular notice or letter the taxpayer is calling or writing about. Drop-Down  
Contact ID/Router Call Key Use this field to record the Contact ID on cases where CR was used. User Entry 12 characters
Customer Group Code Use this field only when directed by Headquarters to capture the customers operating group code. Drop-Down NQRS
Customer Name Use this field to identify the name of the IRS customer. User Entry 100 characters
Cust Sat Survey Offered Use this field to identify if the assistor offered the Customer Satisfaction Survey to the caller. Drop-Down 3 characters
Date Controlled/Assigned to Employee Use this field to identify when controlled/assigned to employee. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY
Discharge Determination Type Use this field to identify the DDR issue involved with the discharged module adjustment. Drop-Down  
Disp/Cert Code Use this two digit field to identify the correct disposal code for Exam Paper, TE/GE Issue Code (00-99), the certification code for EITC Certification Paper cases, or Disposition Code for COIC. Drop-Down Smart by SPRG
Docket/Contract Number Use this field to identify the docket/contract number assigned to the case being reviewed. User Entry 20 characters
E-Time Use this field to enter the duration of a monitored call. User Entry 5 characters mm:ss
Employee Name Use this field to identify the name of employee whose work is being reviewed. User Entry (NQRS) Drop-Down (EQRS) 100 characters
File Type   Drop Down IMF, BMF, Default to Blank
First Contact Resolution Reserved Drop Down Smart by SPRG
Fraud Use this field to identify if the case involves fraud. Drop-Down Yes or No
Grade of the Employee Use this field to identify the grade of the employee. Drop-Down  
Group Code Use this field to further identify the source/type of work being reviewed. Drop-Down Smart by SPRG
HQ Tracking HQ will use this field for tracking issues for special analysis. User Entry 50 characters
ID Theft Use this field to identify if the case involves ID Theft. Drop-Down Yes or No
Innocent Spouse Tracking Use this field to identify the ISTS stage. Drop-Down  
Interim Contact Date Use this field to identify the date of the first interim contact. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY
Invalid Use this field to indicate if the TIN is invalid. Y or N field. Drop-Down Yes or No. Defaults to No
IRS Rec’d Date Use this field to identify the date the taxpayer's inquiry or case was received by the service. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY
KISAM Ticket Number Use this field to record the ERC ticket number User Entry 20 characters
Local Use Use this field to identify that a case is for local review purposes only. User Entry 3 characters
Math Error Notice Code Use this field to identify the primary Math Error Notice Code that initiated the inquiry. Drop-Down  
MFT Code Use this field to identify the Master File Tax Account Code of the case being reviewed. Drop-Down  
National Use Use this field to designate special/additional review attributes for selected cases when directed by Headquarters. User Entry 3 characters
Offer/CIS/Case Number Use this field to identify the Offer/CIS/Case Number of the case being reviewed. User Entry 12 characters
OFP Use this field to identify the appropriate function and program codes. User Entry 9 characters XXX-XXXXX
Operation/Territory Rec’d Date Use this field to identify the date a taxpayer's inquiry or case was received by a specific Operation/Territory within a Site/Area. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY
Pay Period Use this field to identify the pay period User Entry 2 characters
Phone Transfer Use this field to indicate that the assistor ended the call segment by transferring the caller. Drop Down NQRS Only
PMG Indicator Use this field to indicate whether the inquiry is one of the following: ITLA, PMG, both, or to indicate if PMG/ITLA was required but not used. Drop-Down  
Primary CA Driver IRM Reference Use this field to identify the primary IRM reference cited for defects coded as Customer Accuracy Drivers. User Entry 30 characters Numbers, periods, parentheses () and hyphens
Prior Application Number Use this field to identify the ASPECT application number if known, when the caller has been transferred in. User Entry 3 characters
Prior Ops/Dept Code Use this field to identify if a prior function made an error on the case. Drop-Down  
Prior Site Use this field to identify the call site that transferred-in the call, if known.    
Prisoner Use this field to identify if prisoner. Drop-Down  
Professional Decision Making Use this field to identify if Professional Decision Making was used while working the case. Drop-Down  
Project Code Use this field to identify the project code. User Entry 4 characters
Reason for Contact Use this field to identify the reason for the taxpayer's contact. Drop-Down Smart by SPRG
Resolution Type Use this field to identify how the case was resolved. Drop-Down Smart by SPRG
Review Category Use this field to identify whether the contact is evaluative, evaluative or non-evaluative test call, non-evaluative other, or evaluative or non-evaluative targeted. Drop-Down EQRS only
Review Date Use this field to identify the date of the review. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY
Review Type Use this field to identify if the review type is "in process" or "closed case." Drop-Down Smart by SPRG EQRS only
Reviewer Name (number) Use this field to identify the person performing the review. Determined by user profile. Number can be overridden in NQRS
Reviewer Type Use this field to identify the position of the person who performed the review. Permission driven EQRS only
Reviewer Type/Category Reviewer Type/Category is either National or Local. Use this field to identify whether the review performed is part of the National or local quality sample.   NQRS only
Sampled Date Use this field to identify the actual date the case was selected in the CIS Sample. User entry NQRS only
Scheme Disposition Use this field to identify the two character disposition code of the scheme. Drop-Down  
Scheme Number Use this field to identify the number of the scheme. User Entry 10 characters
Secondary CA Driver IRM Reference Use this field to enter a second IRM reference cited for defects coded as Customer Accuracy Drivers. User Entry 30 characters Numbers, periods, parentheses () and hyphens
Site Type AM/CS/FA/TE. Drop-Down System tables
Site/Area Site of Employee. Drop-Down System tables EQRS only
Site/Area Rec’d Date Use this field to identify the date a taxpayer's inquiry or case was received at an individual site/area. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY
SPRG Use this field to identify the basic type of work/function being reviewed. Drop-Down System tables
Systemic Error Use this field to identify when a defect attribute was coded due to a systemic failure. For Compliance: If a systemic defect is coded Yes, select from the list of attributes coded "No" on the DCI to determine which are systemic drivers and annotate the Feedback Summary Remarks with the system that caused the systemic failure, i.e., A500 –RGS. Drop Down Yes or No. Defaults to No
Tax Period Use this field to identify the primary tax period of the case being reviewed. If reviewing a case with multiple modules, depending on the applicable SPRG, enter either the oldest or most recent module, unless otherwise instructed by the Product Line Analyst. User Entry YYYYMM
TE/GE Form Use this field to identify the IRS Form pertinent to the contact (TE/GE Only). Drop-Down  
Team/TAC Use this field to identify the Team or the Field Assistance TAC Number. User Entry (NQRS) Drop-Down (EQRS)  
Territory Use this field to identify the Field Assistance and SL Territory Number. User Entry (NQRS) 1 character
Test Question Number Use this field to identify the test question number. User Entry 5 characters
Time Call/Case Completed Use this field to designate the time of day a call/case was completed. User Entry 2:00 AM Double-click for current time
Time Call/Case Started Use this field to designate the time of day a call/case was started. User Entry 2:00 AM Double-click for current time
Taxpayer Authentication Number (TAN) Use this field to identify the Taxpayer’s Authentication Number (TAN) being reviewed. User Entry xxxxxxxxxx
TIN Use this field to identify the SSN, EIN, PTIN or ITIN of the case being reviewed. User Entry xx-xxxxxxx, xxx-xx-xxxx, Pxxxxxxxx, or Exxxxxxxx
Transfer Date Use this field to identify the date the case/referral was transferred. User Entry MM/DD/YYYY NQRS
Transfer In Use this field to identify when the taxpayer indicates they have been transferred multiple times. Drop-Down Yes or NA. Defaults to NA
Transfer Point This field is required and can only be coded when the "Phone Transfer" field has been completed. The 3 character field should be used to identify the ASPECT Application number to where that call was transferred. Note: Do not input an application number unless it can be clearly determined (i.e., the assistor specified in the conversation or through an ASPECT or CR report). If unable to determine, enter "000". User Entry 3 characters NQRS only
Type of Return Schedule (C, E, F) Use this field to identify the primary schedule to be examined. If more than one, select the most significant. Drop-Down  
What-Reason 1 Part 1 alpha Use this field to identify the specific type of error made. Drop-Down NQRS only
What-Reason 1 - Part 2 num Use this field to identify the specific type of error made. Drop-Down NQRS only
What-Reason 2 - Part 1 alpha Use this field to identify the specific type of error made. Drop-Down NQRS only
What-Reason 2 - Part 2 num Use this field to identify the specific type of error made. Drop-Down NQRS only
Who Use this field to identify who caused the error on tax abatement cases. Drop-Down NQRS only

EQRS/NQRS Attributes

The table below includes all EQRS/NQRS attributes. Attributes specific to various SPRGs can be found on the Master Attribute Job Aid, which can be accessed from the Database or from the EQ Web site,http://eq.web.irs.gov/.

Att #   Tab Attribute Name Operational Definition Bucket
001   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Professional Greeting/Opening (Phone) Use this field to identify if the employee opened the call in a professional manner. P
002   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Employee Identification Use this field to identify if the employee identified him/herself as required (name ID Number). RA
003   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Taxpayers Issue(s) Identified/Addressed Use this field to identify if the employee used probing, targeting, listening and paraphrasing to identify and address the taxpayer's issue(s). For paper properly identified and addressed the issue(s) stated in the taxpayer's correspondence. PA
004   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Appropriate Call/Contact Transfer Use this field to identify when an employee correctly identified and transferred a call/contact following established guidelines without resolving the taxpayer/customer's issues. PA
005   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Phone/Contact Purpose Statement Use this field to identify if the employee explained the process or actions to be taken when on the phone/during the contact and when appropriate. P
006   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Paper Purpose Statement Use this field to identify if the employee explained the process or actions to be taken in their response when appropriate. P
007   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Disclosure Met This field is a roll up of 008-014, 016, 021-025. If one of the attributes is marked "N", this attribute is "N. RA
008   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify TIN Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the taxpayer's SSN, EIN, or IRSN online or from correspondence.  
009   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Name Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the taxpayer's name online or from correspondence.  
010   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Address Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the taxpayer's address online or from correspondence.  
011   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Date of Birth Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the taxpayer's date of birth.  
012   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Filing Status Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the taxpayer's filing status.  
013   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify POA/3rd Party Designee Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the Power of Attorney (POA) or 3rd Party Designee (TPD) verbally, on-line or from correspondence.  
014   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Ofc/Signatory Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the corporate officer or signatory information.  
015   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Unauthorized Disclosure Roll-up to 007 Did the employee properly stop from disclosing sensitive information when it is determined that the information on the account appears to be suspicious.  
016   Opening/Taxpayer Identification High Risk/Additional Authentication Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee followed the high risk criteria per IRM guidelines before providing confidential tax information.  
017   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Ceasing Disclosure to Unauthorized Third Party At the moment an unauthorized 3rd Party identifies themselves or is discovered through research, did the employee properly stop from disclosing sensitive information. RA
018   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Accepted/Solicited Info from Third Party Use this field to identify if the employee accepted/solicited information from a third party and took appropriate action when applicable. PA
019   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Professional Greeting/Opening (Paper) Use this field to identify if the employee opened correspondence by selecting, writing, or providing any input into an "Opening Paragraph", that states the reason for initiating or sending a letter. P
020   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Potentially Abusive Non-electing Spouse (PANES) Use this field to identify if the employee correctly identified the case to be PANES. PA
021   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Additional ITIN Verification/Requirements Met Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee covered additional ITIN verification including name at birth, country of birth and country of citizenship.  
022   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify POA Scope of Authority Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the POA Scope of authority either from CAF (or other internal control system) or from correspondence documents.  
023   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Reporting Agent Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified reporting agent information per the IRM.  
024*   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Third Party Designee Use this field to identify if the employee verified third party designee per IRM.  
025   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verified disclosure using photo ID or other probing methods Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify whether the employee requested a photo ID from the customer.  
026   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify TP Had All Return Preparation Documents Use this field to identify whether the employee verified that the customer brought all documents required for Tax Return Preparation. PA
027   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verified TP Met FA Return Preparation Criteria Use this field to identify whether the employee verified that the customer met the current tax year Return Preparation Criteria. PA
028   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Required IRC 6104 TE/GE Disclosure Use this field to identify whether Employee properly addressed an IRC 6104 Disclosure (TE/GE ONLY). RA
029   Opening/Taxpayer Identification TP Rights Use this field to determine if the employee advised the TP/POA of all rights. RA
030   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Disclosure to Authorized State Use this field to identify if the employee disclosed taxpayer information to the authorized state under the Fed-State Exchange Agreement. RA
031   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Customer Identification (Phone) Use this field to identify if the employee verified the customer's phone number, name and/or SEID. PA
032   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Security Guidelines Followed Use this field to determine if the employee followed proper security responsibilities. RA
033*   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verify Transmitter Control Code Roll-up to 007 Use this field to identify if the employee verified the Transmitter Control Code.  
034   Opening/Taxpayer Identification PPS Clients Handled Use this field to identify if the employee handled the appropriate number of clients during a PPS Call. PA
035   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Compute Account Adjustment   PA
036   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Issue Identification Use this field to identify if the employee correctly identified the customer's problem. PA
037   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Verification Completed Use this field to determine if employee completed proper disclosure/verification using the correct/applicable online tools and systems. PA
038   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Documented third party contact information Did agent document ticket with information from the third party calling for the customer? Was contact phone number included in ticket description (ex., death of an employee)? PA
039   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Authenticate Requester Authority Use this field to indicate if the employee determined if requester was legally authorized to obtain the requested information and/or the employee provided the appropriate information in accordance with disclosure law, policy, procedures and the IRM.  
040   Opening/Taxpayer Identification Was the author contacted? Use this field to identify if the employee contacted the author, if necessary. PA
100   Research/Refer Complete Research-Account Related Systems Use this field to identify if the employee properly researched and interpreted account related systems such as IDRS, CFOL, AUR, ACS, AMS, RGS, CEAS, EITC, ICS, CDPTS, AOIC, ASFR, ISTS, etc., correctly. PA
101   Research/Refer Appropriate Referral/Case Transfer Use this field to identify if the employee referred, routed or transferred the taxpayer's case or inquiry to the appropriate function. (Including Form 4442 and call transfers where one or more of the customer's issues were resolved). PA
102   Research/Refer Identified Taxpayer Advocate Service Use this field to identify if the employee identified and took appropriate action on cases meeting Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) criteria. PA
103   Research/Refer Complete Research-Outside Agency Systems Use this field to identify if the employee properly researched any outside government agency and/or commercial system(s). PA
104   Research/Refer Required Contacts Made Use this field to identify if the employee made all appropriate contacts (internal or external) to assist in case processing. PA
105   Research/Refer Processability Screening Use this field to identify if the employee determined if the Offer in Compromise or Innocent Spouse (Form 8857) or the CCP case is processable. PA
106   Research/Refer Verify CAF Number Use this field to determine if the employee verified the CAF number or that the account exists on the RAF system. PA
107   Research/Refer Verify Appropriate Signatures and Dates Use this field to identify if the employee verified the appropriate signatures and dates. PA
108   Research/Refer Verify Presence of POA Designation Code Use this field to determine if the employee verified the presence of the POA designation code. PA
109   Research/Refer CAF/RAF Verified Presence of Forms and Years on POA Form Use this field to identify if the employee verified the presence of the forms and years on the POA Form. PA
110   Research/Refer Appropriate Handling of POA Use this field to identify if POA was appropriately referred to CAF and/or Determination Processing when valid, or not referred when invalid. PA
111   Research/Refer Tax Law Research Use this field to determine if the employee conducts proper research using code, regulations, IRS published services, and other available sources. PA
112   Research/Refer Policy and Procedure Research Use this field to determine if employee conduced proper research using IRS publications and on-line research tools and determined the correct course of action. PA
113   Research/Refer Verification Completed Use this field to identify if the verification has been completed. PA
114   Research/Refer Verification Justified Use this field to identify if a return was correctly selected for verification. PA
115   Research/Refer Signature Verified Use this field to identify if the employee properly verified that the consent form/return was signed by the taxpayer/customer. PA
116   Research/Refer Complete Research e-help Systems Use this field to identify if the employee properly researched e-help related systems such as Control D, EMS, EPRS, EARS, TRDB, TPDS, and EUP, etc. PA
117   Research/Refer SLID (Sequenced Lien Identification Number) Use this field to identify if the employee properly researched and verified the SLID or Taxpayer's SSN or EIN when accessing through the Automated Lien System (ALS). PA
118   Research/Refer Management Approvals Use this field to identify if the employee obtained the appropriate management approvals. PA
119   Research/Refer Complete Research - Check Related Use this field to identify if the employee took the appropriate actions with Remittance (Checks). PA
120*   Research/Refer Complete Research - MIs Sorts Use this field to identify if the employee sorted cases to the proper work type.  
121*   Research/Refer Matching Information Use this field to identify if the employee verified receipt of all items listed on Form 3210.  
122   Research/Refer Complete Research - Payroll Processing Systems Use this field to identify if the employee properly researched and interpreted account related systems such as HR Connect, NFC, SETR/TARS. PA
123   Research/Refer Complete Remittance Research - Check Related Use this field to identify if the employee took the appropriate actions with Remittance (Checks). PA
124   Research/Refer 7 Front-End questions answered To verify if technician asked sufficient questions to identify the customer's issue. PA
125   Research/Refer SD Tier 2 Support and/or UNS PM Triage Documented Determine if technician followed SD Tier 2 Support/UNS PM triage process, including contacting their peers in their respective CSS OCS session, contacting their leads/GS-2210-11/12s and then contacting PM via OCS BEFORE escalating the ticket to PM. PA
126   Research/Refer Knowledge base searched and results documented Determine if technician searched for knowledge articles and documented the findings of their research. PA
127   Research/Refer Known Error Knowledgebase documented as checked Determine if technician searched known error database for possible know error resolution. PA
128   Research/Refer Documented the customer was asked about other IT issues and/or that KISAM was researched Determine if technician used KISAM's feature to check for other open tickets for the customer and ensured customer had no other issues. PA
129   Research/Refer Complete Research Determine if the specialist researched Knowledgebase, utilized correct PWM tools and followed proper transfer procedures. PA
130   Research/Refer Required Contacts Made or Research Completed Determine if technician followed the UNS PM triage process, including contacting their leads/GS-2210-11/12s and then contacting PM BEFORE escalating the ticket to PM. PA
131   Research/Refer