Survey reveals rapid advances in online services

Thursday 16 October 2008

Survey reveals rapid advances in online services

Survey reveals rapid advances in online services within local authorities.

A survey at the IRRV Conference 2008 by Capita Software Services reveals local councils’ rapid advancement in self-service technology in just four years. In 2004, a Capita survey revealed how concerned local government personnel were about achieving the e-government deadline, and this year 81% of respondents now offer a 24/7 payment service to their customers.

In fact, almost all (97%) of the council representatives questioned say their authorities take online services and the associated benefits seriously. However, 77% believe their local authority’s online services could still be improved, citing the following areas: more automated services, greater interactivity and improved online forms.

The survey also revealed that over three quarters (77%) of respondents believe that Voice Risk Analysis (VRA) can help improve the revenue and benefits verification process. VRA can provide local authorities with the ability to double-check that individuals are receiving the right benefit and if there are no concerns fast-track them through the rest of the process.

Additionally, the results showed that only 57% of those surveyed stated that their councils comply with the payment card industry security standard (PCI DSS), while just 20 per cent were unaware of the standard.

Ian Gates, director of Capita Software Services, commented: ‘The survey’s results clearly demonstrate how local authorities have progressed in providing greater customer choice via the internet and automated telephone services. By responding to customer demand with technology, councils have made a positive step towards improving customer service. We believe that the growth of partnerships with external suppliers has played an important role in this progress.’

Notes to Editors
The survey of 132 local government officers and members was conducted at the IRRV Annual conference between 30 September 2008 and 2 October 2008.

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