The Federal government performs several key functions for our nation. It defends our strategic interests in the world, it regulates critical industries and aspects of our economy, and it promotes progress of science by issuing patents, and makes rules for the regulation of land and naval forces. But, at the core of every agency’s mission is an acknowledgement to service the American people in some capacity. Yet according to numerous surveys and research, feedback reveals agencies are not fulfilling this critical part of their missions.
But who cares? Government does. In fact Obama’s new directive, Streamlining Service Delivery and Improving Customer Service, squarely addresses the government customer service imperative by ordering each organization to create new technology-based plans to improve their customer service within six months.
Where do agencies start? The order suggests that government immediately leverage what is working in the private sector and apply these best practices to deliver government services better, faster, and at lower cost. Best practices include increasing self-service options accessed by the Internet or mobile devices and improved processes that deliver services faster and more responsively, reducing the overall need for customer inquiries and complaints.
Here are 10 of public and private sector examples that government can leverage now to take immediate action on streamlining service delivery and improving the customer experience.
- Black and Decker leverages an incident management system to empower the company to address customer issues immediately. The system also allows customers to help themselves immediately which has resulted in reduction in email volume by 25 percent and an annual savings of $250,000. Click here for the full case study.
- Electronic Arts (EA) leverages self-service knowledge base technology, available in 10 key languages, provides millions of answer-views per month, and helps support to provide quick, accurate answers to email inquiries. As a result, EA answers 99 percent of emails within 24 hours. Click here for the full story.
- With an automated marketing solution, voice self-service and knowledge base solution, iRobot receives valuable customer feedback and can provide responsive support across all communication channels. The company has gown revenue while delivering a superior customer experience and has kept its operating costs under control. Click here for the full story.
- By deploying web experience and smart assistant solutions, Myspace deflected 900,000 emails in the first 8 months; this translated into a $3.2 million in savings. Click here for the full story.
- At Overstock.com, solutions helped improved web self-service with a keyword search and intelligently re-organized site content based on customer navigation behaviors. Each time a customer uses web self-service instead of call or emailing the contact center, Overstock.com saves approximately $6.38 per interaction. Click here to read the full story.
- The US Forest Service runs its Customer Help Desk contact centers more efficiently, improving the productivity of its operations team providing exceptional customer support to its employees. Click here for full story.
- The Air Force Personnel Center replaced outdated case management and knowledge management solutions and now enables more than 800 AFPC administrators, including 160 call center agents, to provide accurate, up-to-date information across multiple touch points to military and civilian employees of the United States Air Force. Click her for the full case study.
- The Social Security Administration built an online answers knowledgebase to meet the public’s expectation of providing accurate, timely and clear information both online and through mobile devices. As a result, nearly 99% of 25 million web self-service sessions are handled without agent intervention. Click here for the full case study.
- The Army Training Support Center leverages web experience solutions to make information that once took 15 minutes over the phone, delivered by an agent sifting through papers, now instantly available online. Satisfaction has jumped to 75 percent, response times have improved to 24 hours or less and resolution to less than two days. Click here for the full case study.
- The New York State DMV needed to deliver essential services to large numbers of constituents and businesses with limited resources across all communication channels—especially the web. Through customer experience solutions, the agency has significantly exceeded its original efficiency goals by answering 98 percent of customer’s questions automatically via web self-service and email workloads were reduced by 75 percent. Click here for the full case study.
And the list goes on and on…..from 2,000+ private and public examples of ridding the world of bad customer service experiences 1 customer interaction at a time 8M times a day.
For more examples and best practice guidance on how to close the gap, check out RightNow’s “8 Step Guide to Superior Customer Experiences.”
And let me know what you think. How is your agency preparing to streamline and improve citizen service? I’d love to hear your ideas.