June 11, 2012
Suspense Process Review
: During the interview of four Suspense staff and the Fraud Team lead, we found that each person working in Suspense will pull their own queue. We also noted that some edits were very easyto resolve while others took a fair amount of research and judgment. Work from the suspense unit isnot assigned by either a lead worker or manager. More-complex edits could be pulled by less-qualified staff causing unwanted errors or missed opportunities to catch fraudulent returns. We notedthat certain edits within the fraud team are assigned to those individuals within the group that have anexpertise at processing those types of edits.
We recommend that management consider the difficulty of each Edit andassign them as appropriate to the respective skill levels of the Suspense workers.
Management will explore the option of assigning “easier” and “harder” edits toappropriate staff by November 1, 2012. This may require adding different classifications into theunit. The majority of staff in the unit are AS1s, and the work they perform is within thisclassification, therefore, all AS1s should be able to perform the same type of work.3.
It is as accurate as possible within the current scope of Suspense
”. Suspense workers areon a time line and have production numbers that they must meet or exceed. The production theory isthat if one or two edits look good enough, then the other edits will probably be good as well.Although some specific edits within ITX/ITA will usually be associated with other edits (if itsuspends for
edit then it will more than likely suspend for
edit), Business has created eachedit for a specific reason. Therefore, each edit should be individually verified to make sure that thetax return is correct in its entirety. Otherwise there is a redundancy in the edits that suspend returns,causing Suspense workers to disregard some.
Management should instill the necessity to prove (or disprove) each edit before clearing a return (this could be documented in policy and procedure or training).
Management agrees that each edit should be proved or disproved before clearing areturn and is in the process of creating desk procedures to ensure employees are doing appropriatereview of each edit. Desk procedures are expected to be completed by December 31, 2012.4.
: It was suggested that the Over-limit edit be changed this year from suspending any refund or liability that is over to suspending any that is over . When asked why make thechange to that specific amount, the two-fold answer was to lessen the workload and to pick a number everyone could accept. The edit recommendation was never brought forward because the group feltthat the Agency was too conservative and would not loosen the constraint. Although the edithas been in place for a number of years and the system could be used to gather some statistics on it, itappears that statistics were not used during the evaluation process. The edit review process appears to be a best guess effort without using relevant data to support the changes. It also appears that theAgency may not support the decisions of the evaluation team.
Management should fully support (to include IT support) the edit reviewteam or reconfigure it into a team capable of making solid recommendations. Additionally, editmodification recommendations should be based on facts, not best guesses.
Management agrees with the recommendation and has implemented the majority of recommendations made by the edit review team. All of the edits that were brought forward tomanagement for approval had relevant data to support the recommendations. Relevant data iscurrently being gathered to determine if an increase in the second level Over-limit toleranceshould be raised, and to what dollar amount. A recommendation is expected to be ready byAugust 31, 2012.