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The two most commonly outsourced functions in U.S. businesses are payroll (43%) and tax (42%), according to the annual benchmarking report by Robert Half and the Financial Executives Research Foundation.

The United States has always had a robust civic life, and recent data from Volunteering and Civic Life in America, issued by the Corporation for National & Community Service and the National Conference on Citizenship, says that the tradition is still going strong. The report found that nearly 63 million adults (25.3%) volunteered through an organization in 2014, contributing a total of 7.9 billion volunteer hours of labor. The total value of these volunteer hours has been estimated at $184 billion.

Forty-one percent of respondents in a recent study said they had taken on student loans to pay for an undergraduate degree, 26% said they had assumed the loans to pay for graduate school, while 10% noted they went into debt to acquire a professional degree. The survey, How Americans Manage their Finances, was conducted by the University of Southern California Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research and the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Analysis.

The National Taxpayer Advocate in her 2016 midyear report to Congress noted that IRS funding has been reduced by about 19% on an inflation-adjusted basis since 2010. The report also noted that funding shortfalls mean that IRS staffers only answer “basic” questions during the filing season and do not answer any tax law questions after the end of the filing season.

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