Study: People like using the Web to reach agencies

Many people prefer using the Internet to get efficient service from federal agencies, according to a study by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). The document was produced by the University of Michigan in partnership with the American Society for Quality and CFI Group, a consulting firm.

The study — published Dec. 16 — said people prefer using the Internet over traditional means of contact, such as by telephone or in person.

“We say to agencies, ‘If you don’t have a huge Web presence, they should get one,’ ” said David VanAmburg ACSI's managing director. “And those that do have a big Web presence need to constantly refine it and improve it. It is definitely the case that the more information you can easily put into citizens' hands the better off that agency is going to be in accomplishing its mission.”

The study did not investigate what types of Web services people favor, VanAmburg said.

The survey takers conducted phone interviews with people who interacted with the federal government over the last year.

“We found ultimately what matters most to customers of government agencies is that information is easy to access and the delivery of that service, whatever that may be, is efficient,” VanAmburg said.

Three of the Social Security Administration’s Web sites topped the list in customer satisfaction, according to the study.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

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