Services and Transactions


What can we do to improve how services and transactions are delivered on federal websites?

Services and Transactions

Create content around topics/customers - not agencies

Customers don't know - and don't care to know - how government is organized. So why make them go from agency (website) to agency (website) to get the full picture of what govt has to offer them on any subject? Why make them go through a long list of links on USA.gov? Why not get agencies together around content topics or customer groups(owning a home, sending kids to college, services for seniors, contractors) and... more »

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160 votes
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Services and Transactions

Simplify Online Services

Help citizens quickly perform transactions & use online services via simple, secure web forms that walk citizens through each step of the process. Some considerations are: - Identify the steps involved for front end users in completing online transactions - Optimize each step of the workflow (user creates an account, validates account, fills out form, submits form). Where to put instructions? How many fields are optimal?... more »

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84 votes
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Services and Transactions

Making all online forms fillable

All forms provided on federal websites should be fillable. Many forms currently available require individuals to print them out before they can be filled out. Requiring those who need to fill out forms to print forms first and then fill them out by hand means that they are not fillable in any meaningful sense to people who are blind or visually impaired. In order to be truly accessible, these forms and web-based applications... more »

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32 votes
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Services and Transactions

Use Real-time Chats to Help Customers Solve Problems

Although some agencies are using real-time chat, I'm amazed it hasn't caught on more. Customers want help when they hit a snag. They don't want to stop and send an email that might be answered in 3 days (or 3 weeks). They want to finish their task NOW. Real-time chat to the rescue. A human being, in real time, answering questions, breaking the log jam. I love it in the commercial world. Why not in the government... more »

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28 votes
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(@craig0)

Services and Transactions

Make it okay for Fed workers to interact with citizens

Right now, it's not allowed for workers to directly respond to citizens. With a little training, it'd be safe (enough?) for workers to do so, and that'd greatly improve customer service.

 

Here's a great article regarding this at the Dept of Veterans Affairs:

 

http://www.ragan.com/Main/Articles/43670.aspx

 

(I feel this also applies to private industry.)

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26 votes
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Services and Transactions

Create a culture of customer service

I've seen several ideas that relate to this, and many comments have mentioned it. So I thought I'd throw it in as a separate idea and see what folks have to say. I believe that many/most public servants want to serve customers well. I think many of us came to public service to do just this and were discouraged by past practices. The thing is: the internet really changed govt's relationship with its customers. The... more »

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25 votes
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Services and Transactions

Less content, More services

Focus more on enabling task completion from start-to-finish online. Recruit developers who are "get" public policy, have the skills and freedom to experiment, and give them the tools to create.

Barring emergencies, there is virtually no content that's left to be created. Let's refine the existing content, manage the creation of new content, and put some muscle into online services.

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21 votes
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Services and Transactions

Use Websites to Bring FOIA into the 21st Century

Agencies should use their websites to bring the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) into the 21st century. Every agency should allow the public to submit and track FOIA requests, and to receive responses, on the agency website. Specifically, each agency should have an email address and a web form where the public can submit FOIA requests. All agency websites should include an easy-to-understand explanation of how to submit... more »

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21 votes
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Services and Transactions

One resource (website) for all potential federal contracts!!!

Why isn’t there NOT one website used to list ALL contracting opportunities to the federal government? There is “FedBizOps” and “eBuy” but there is no singular resource to list ALL available contracts!! If it is all federal money (regardless of what agency/department it was assigned) “we” (the people) who would like to bid on proposed federal contracts, would like to know “we” have seen ALL available contracts. Not... more »

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20 votes
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Services and Transactions

Improve efficiency of transactional components

The same citizen, interacting with government at all levels, must enter his or her basic information over and over again. This should be totally unacceptable. Create a centralized profile, usable by all public sector agencies, which store the user's basic, public information- name, address, birthdate, etc. and allow any form to pull that data down, prefilling the form and improving the interaction. Part two of this... more »

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14 votes
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Services and Transactions

websites to be action oriented

while people need information, they often go online to DO something. Too many government web sites don't provide a means of action within a click. Instead they take the user around in circles. Make sure you have a repertoire of what people want to DO when they go to a website, provide an obvious set of options in the sidebar, do not have circular referral links.

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9 votes
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Services and Transactions

Best Practice: Automated Replies

I am a vendor, with past experience providing goods to the govt. However our specialty item means we basically wait for them to call us rather than trolling for contract/bid opportunities. I have to be part of ORCA, CCR and now IPP in order to get bids and now to get paid via automation. I received the below auto-reply from the IPP system. "You have not accessed the IPP application for an extended period of time with... more »

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9 votes
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Services and Transactions

Wrap Complaint Forms in an API

So, we have this site called "Recalls.gov" and it's a great cross-agency aggregator for information on product recalls. But what we haven't done is set up a one-stop shop for consumers to SUBMIT complaints for agencies to investigate. Citizens still need to figure out what agency has jurisdiction over the product they want to complain about. What citizen is going to know that they should complain about their child safety... more »

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8 votes
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