Canada Revenue Agency launches public consultations as part of its commitment to improve service

Diane Lebouthillier

CANADA Revenue Agency on Tuesday, as part of its ongoing efforts to improve the client experience for individuals who interact with it, launched public consultations that allow Canadians across the country to highlight opportunities of how the CRA can improve its services.

Public consultations will include an online consultation that will be available from April 23 to June 18 where Canadians can provide feedback.
Over the last three years, the CRA says it has been making it easier, faster, and more secure to file taxes and get credits and benefits. The CRA has introduced online and software improvements such as Auto-fill my return, which automatically fills in parts of a tax return and was used over 9 million times during the 2018 filing season; simplified over 90% of its correspondence as part of its Simplified Correspondence Project; moved to a new modern telephone platform featuring improved accessibility for callers; and quadrupled the budget of the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program, through which 17,700 volunteers filled more than 785,000 returns last year, helping vulnerable Canadians access the credits and benefits to which they are entitled.
However, the CRA says it acknowledges that it needs to do more to meet the expectations of Canadians. These consultations will help inform the Agency’s service transformation. Public consultations are part of the CRA’s people-focused approach to service, and deliver on commitments made by the Minister of National Revenue on October 29, 2018, during the announcement of the CRA’s first Chief Service Officer. They will supplement the input the CRA is receiving through existing feedback channels, public opinion research projects, consultations, call centres and social media, which are already shaping service improvements.
“Our Government is committed to ensuring that the CRA puts people at the center of everything it does. Over the past three years, we have introduced changes that are leading to real results for Canadians. With these public consultations, we are taking another step in listening to Canadians and responding to their concerns, expectations and desire to improve how the CRA delivers services,” says Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue.

“In recent years, we have made important changes to our service experience. We have been listening to Canadians and we know that we can do even better. The way organizations deliver services keeps evolving and Canadians expect us to keep up. We are proud of the progress we’ve made, and we look forward to hearing what other steps people would like us to take. Our service transformation journey continues,”  says Mireille Laroche, Chief Service Officer, Canada Revenue Agency.

Quick Facts

* The CRA delivers over $33.8 billion in benefits to Canadians and administers over $430 billion in revenues on behalf of governments across Canada. Millions of Canadians interact with the CRA, on a regular basis or at least once a year during tax time.
* Online consultations are open to all Canadians from April 23 to June 18.
* The CRA will also conduct seven in-person consultations in Vancouver, Winnipeg, Mississauga, Montreal, Moncton and Halifax during May and June. Up to 20 individuals and representatives of vulnerable populations will be invited by an independent third party to participate in each consultation session.
* These consultations build upon lessons learned through the Serving You Better consultations with small and medium business.