ANN ARBOR — A poll of ForeSee federal government clients shows that one-third of e-government Web sites currently has a functional mobile site or mobile app and more than half (53 percent) are planning or developing a mobile site, app, or both, providing evidence that federal government agencies are beginning to recognize the benefits and opportunity of the mobile channel for serving citizens.
The new findings come as part of the American Customer Satisfaction Index E-Government Satisfaction Index, a quarterly report on the state of customer satisfaction with e-government, which customer experience analytics firm ForeSee produces in partnership with the ACSI.
“Consumers are adopting smartphones and tablets in droves, and these mobile devices are transforming the way people access the Internet,” said Larry Freed, president and CEO of ForeSee. “Mobile is the next frontier in e-government satisfaction. It is commendable that some federal agencies are budgeting for mobile platform development when they are facing other hurdles — like tighter security requirements and budget cuts — that private-sector companies do not necessarily have to worry about.”
Meanwhile, the quarterly update of the ACSI E-Government Satisfaction Index, also included in Tuesday’s report, showed that satisfaction with federal government Web sites remained high. The E-Government Satisfaction Index scored 75.2 on ACSI’s 100-point scale. More than 300,000 survey responses were collected during the first quarter of 2012 to produce the Index. Satisfaction, though high, has hit a plateau and hasn’t varied more than 0.3 from the current score over the last seven consecutive quarters.
Satisfaction with government Web sites drives government efficiency by increasing the likelihood that citizens will turn to the Web site before other, more costly communication channels. High satisfaction also increases the likelihood of positive word of mouth recommendations. As smartphones and other mobile devices continue to proliferate, government agencies will have another efficient channel with which to serve its constituents .
“The online sectors of the economy generally outperform all other sectors in the ACSI, in part because the web is convenient and provides access to a plethora of information and options at the click of a mouse,” said Claes Fornell, founder of the ACSI. “Mobile has the opportunity to take that convenience a step further because few people leave the house without their cell phone. They are as ubiquitous as your keys, and smartphones are still proliferating.”
“Federal agencies are lagging the private sector in building their mobile platforms, but federal employees are smartphone users, too, and e-gov webmasters are among the more tech savvy government employees,” said Dave Lewan, vice president of public sector business at ForeSee. “They see how mobile affects their own lives; how could they not see it in the future of citizen engagement?”
ForeSee continuously measures satisfaction across customer touch points and delivers critical insights on where to prioritize improvements for maximum impact. Because ForeSee’s superior technology and proven methodology connect the customer experience to the bottom line, executives and managers are able to drive future success by confidently optimizing the efforts that will achieve business and brand objectives. The result is better business for companies and a better experience for consumers. Visit www.foresee.com for customer experience solutions and original research.