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Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration

Press Release

January 4, 2012
TIGTA - 2012-1
Contact: David Barnes
(202) 622-3062

SES Diversity Demographics at IRS Compare Favorably With Those of Other Federal Agencies, TIGTA Finds

WASHINGTON -- The IRS's Senior Executive Service (SES) diversity demographics statistics compare favorably with those of other Federal agencies, according to a new report by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).

For example, TIGTA found that in Fiscal Year 2009, the IRS exceeded the Federal Government as a whole in placing more females in executive positions at the SES level, which is the highest rank achievable for civil servants in the Federal Government. In addition, TIGTA found that in Fiscal Year 2009, the IRS's SES level was more diverse than other Federal agencies in eight of 12 Office of Personnel Management diversity categories. In the other diversity categories, the IRS was very close to the Federal Government's SES percentages.

TIGTA conducted this audit to determine the level of diversity in IRS SES appointments and whether the IRS has an effective strategy that complies with applicable law and regulations to achieve diversity within executive positions.

As part of its audit, TIGTA interviewed key IRS leaders to determine the IRS's organizational posture toward diversity. TIGTA found that the IRS has an agency-wide diversity policy that includes the SES level and below.

"The IRS is to be commended for the success that it has achieved in its SES diversity demographics," said J. Russell George, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. "We found that the IRS has undertaken a broad-based approach to diversity to achieve a workforce that represents the taxpayers it serves."

TIGTA made three recommendations addressing the IRS's ongoing and future commitment to diversity. First, TIGTA recommended that the IRS ensure that its key diversity practices are made part of its internal guidance. Second, TIGTA recommended that the IRS consider partnering with Federal professional executive organizations to gain additional insight on diversity issues in the Federal executive community. Lastly, TIGTA recommended that the IRS consider ways to communicate to its employees the existence of professional executive organizations that may assist employees in their self-development efforts toward attaining higher level and SES positions.

The IRS agreed with all of TIGTA's recommendations and has taken or plans to take corrective actions.

Read the report


Note: The difference between the date TIGTA issues an audit report to the Internal Revenue Service and the date TIGTA publicly releases the report is due to TIGTA's internal review process to ensure that public release is in compliance with Federal confidentiality laws.

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