The latest report from Australia has an interesting comparison with the resent Socitm Customer Access Improvment Service one, if its fair to compare the national versus the local, although the Australian states that it compares “satisfaction with e-government across all tiers of government, compared with the more traditional methods of service delivery.” Interestingly, the’ve also expanded so that: “In 2008 the issues explored in the telephone survey were broadened to include the use of intermediaries to contact government.”
Some of the conclusions to the Australian report are:
“Use of e-government (internet and telephone) channels for government contact has continued to grow. Growth is being driven by increased use of the internet rather than the telephone. The internet is now the most common way people last made contact with government. ”
“The level of dissatisfaction varies depending on the service delivery channel used: People who contacted government by internet or in person are less likely to be dissatisfied, whereas telephone or mail users are consistently the most likely to be dissatisfied. ”
“There continues to be a need for governments to provide the telephone and in-person channels as well as the internet. ”
“Government agencies also need to be aware that community expectations for government service delivery are increasingly being shaped by experience with private sector services and that service delivery standards need to be monitored on an ongoing basis. ”
None of which I disagree with! The bizarre one being that Australians are most satisfied with their Internet service than telephone, which is a major contrast with the Socitm finding. Perhaps it would be different across all levels of UK government but I somehow don’t think so?
This is interesting – thanks for reporting on it. I’m glad the Aussies have found that ‘The internet is now the most common way people last made contact with government’ because I think there is still a perception here that people overwhelmingly want to use the phone, which is not the case from our figures. I think this persistent misconception has been inhibiting investment in improving websites.
As far as the contrast between our finding that the web is the least satisfactory channel and theirs that the phone is, that could be explained by a number of factors. I suspect that the local government call centres our Socitm data comes from acheive a higher level of satisfaction than central government ones do (I have no evidence!). The results will also depend a lot on the question that was asked and who was asked.
Another angle on the research was that they used an 11 point Likert scale which they then appear to have compunded in to the binary satisfied/dissatisatified. This may have some effect along with the mix of telephone and face-to-face groups.