How to Become a Revenue Officer

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The United States Internal Revenue Service and other government agencies are very complex and they deal with a wide variety of tax issues. Revenue officers are highly trained professionals that handle with delinquent accounts.


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In 2015, I said goodbye to 16-hour days and hauling boxes up and down stairs for a living (I was a mover). I became a full-time entrepreneur, and I made my money by helping business owners make money.

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What does a revenue officer do?

Revenue officers work for government agencies that collect taxes and other forms of revenue. They are responsible enforcing tax regulations and collecting on accounts that are delinquent. They examine accounts and tax returns to identify possible indications of noncompliance. They also look for late payments and other delinquencies. Revenue officers often spend time meeting directly with taxpayers to arrange payment plans and set up deadlines. They can also seize funds and assets to pay off delinquent accounts and place holds and liens. Revenue officers are responsible for maintaining records of all files including contact information and courses of action. They often use computers and special software to maintain their files.

What kind of training does a revenue officer need?

Revenue officers typically need at least a bachelor degree in accounting, business, or related field. Most revenue officers have a combination of education and sufficient experience in collections, tax compliance, customer service. Many revenue officers begin their careers in other positions such as loan officers and then obtain revenue officer positions after they gain extensive experience. Most employers provide on the job training. New revenue officers often work with experienced employees before performing independent tasks. Most revenue officers receive additional technical training as they gain experience and perform more advanced duties. Revenue officers must complete continuing education to keep their skills up to date and stay abreast with the constantly changing tax laws.

What are the prospects for a career as a revenue officer?

Employment of revenue officers is expected to grow as fast as average for all professions, increasing 13% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The changes in government policies regarding tax enforcement and business growth will drive job growth.

Job prospects should be very good especially for revenue officers with extensive experience in the tax field. Many job openings will stem from the need to replace revenue officers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.

How much do revenue officers make?

As of February 2010, the average annual salary for revenue officers is $64,000; average annual revenue officer salaries vary greatly on location, employer, education, experience, and benefits (2).

A career as a revenue officer is a great choice for individuals with a strong interest in tax issues and dealing with delinquent accounts. Revenue officers must have a solid understanding of the policies and procedures of tax law and delinquent accounts. Patience, detail orientation, good problem solving, and good negotiation skills are necessary characteristics. Revenue officers must have good communication and interpersonal skills and ability to deal with a variety of taxpayers. They must also be able to handle confrontational situations and be able to act quickly on their feet.

Joshua T Osborne

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