Public satisfaction with federal Web sites up again

Federal Web sites continue to improve in the public's estimation, according to the latest quarterly rankings from the University of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index.

The index's newest poll of public users of federal Web sites indicates an aggregate satisfaction score of 73.5 on a scale of 100. That represents a 1.2 percent increase over the previous quarter and a 3.2 percent increase over the same quarter last year.

Slight improvements in Web site functions, including navigation, and high scores awarded to a few agency sites have driven the growth in satisfaction, according to Larry Freed's analysis. Freed is president and chief executive officer of ForeSee Results, which co-sponsors a portion of the quarterly surveys.

Of the 81 government sites measured, 16 percent received satisfaction scores of 80 or higher. The Social Security Administration has the two highest-ranked sites. The agency's site for help with Medicare prescription drug costs attained a score of 91, and its Internet-based benefits application achieved an 87.

Public satisfaction with federal Web sites is an important indicator of agencies' overall success with the public, Freed said.

"Online customer satisfaction is a critical measure of success that provides not only a score card, but a diagnosis for improvements that will increase satisfaction and further the agency's goals across a variety of fronts," he said.

About the Author

David Perera is a special contributor to Defense Systems.

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