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Press Releases: Government to Citizen

March 13, 2006

USA Services Announces Better Government Service to Citizens

Interagency Group Recommends Performance Measures

Washington D.C. - 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 Government-wide 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.
  • Email responses are sent within two business days for 90 percent of emails 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

"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."

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