USA Services Announces Better Government Service to Citizens
NOTE: Archived news releases may contain contact names, telephone numbers, Web links, or other information that is outdated. You may reach a public affairs officer at 202-501-1231. For a list of public affairs officers by beat, visit http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/101120.
March 13, 2006
Contact: Neil Franz, (202) 501-1231
Washington, DC—Recommendations for better government service to citizens were made public today by USA Services, the Presidential E-Gov Initiative managed by the Office of Citizen Services and Communications at the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA). They were developed by the Citizen Service Levels Interagency Committee (CSLIC).
“CSLIC members will continue to advocate for a citizen-centric government, just as the President does in his Management Agenda,” said CSLIC Co-Chairs Daryl Covey, NEXRAD Hotline Manager, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce and Mary Lamary, Activities and Inquiries Group Manager, Office of Personnel Management. “It is essential that we constantly improve customer service to keep pace with technology and citizen expectations.”
CSLIC is developing information online that will provide resources to support customer service. The interagency group’s report, Proposed Performance Measures, Practices and Approaches for Governmentwide Citizen Contact Activities, is currently being released to agencies.
CSLIC aims to improve accuracy, timeliness and consistency of government service to citizens. Its 77 members represent 38 federal agencies and major bureaus.
Citizens often cite long waits or lack of response as their biggest frustrations in contacting the government. Among CSLIC’s recommendations are four key metrics to address this:
- An estimate of phone wait time is given to the caller after 30 seconds.
- E-mail responses are sent within two business days for 90 percent of e-mails received.
- For letters, a response, or an estimate of response time, is received within 15 days.
- Citizen wait time for walk-in service, typically, lasts a maximum 15 minutes.
The full report is available at http://www.usaservices.gov/cslic.htm.
“Taxpayers deserve accurate and timely service, whether they call an agency, write an email or letter, or walk into a field office,” said M.J. Pizzella, GSA Associate Administrator for Citizen Services and Communications (OCSC). “There are standards for federal Web sites. We also need standards for the government’s other methods of delivering information to citizens.”
USA Services, one of President Bush’s E-Gov initiatives, was created to help citizens access government information and services. It provides information from federal agencies in English and Spanish:
- On the Internet, through FirstGov.gov, the official Web portal of the U.S. Government.
- By e-mail – via FirstGov.gov.
- By phone, 1-800-FED-INFO.
- By Federal publications from Pueblo, Colorado 81009.
GSA is a centralized, federal procurement, property management, policy development and information provision agency, created by Congress to improve government efficiency and help federal agencies better serve the public. In this role, GSA acquires products and services on behalf of federal agencies; plays a key role in developing and implementing governmentwide policies; provides services and solutions for the office operations of more than one million federal workers; and encourages a citizen-centric relationship with government by providing a single "point of entry" to the information and services citizens need in a timeframe they can appreciate. This allows citizens to receive accurate, timely and consistent answers and information, and helps Federal agencies better respond to citizen inquiries.