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Action 8: Cost and quality of services

Measure service delivery cost and quality consistently across government

The Digital Transformation team is working with agencies on Result 10 - making New Zealanders’ transactions with government easier in a digital environment.  Action 8 is one of the ten Actions in the Result 10 Blueprint (PDF 5.9 MB)

Action 8 is about measuring how well government is delivering services.  We’re measuring service ‘performance’- how much services cost to deliver, indicators of service quality - e.g. the time it takes to complete the service, and customer experience.  This information is useful for:

  • agencies - to help inform service improvements 
  • identifying opportunities to transform services across government -  e.g. joiningup services across agencies
  • understanding more about the channels we use to deliver services - e.g. face-to-face, online, contact centres.  This helps us find opportunities to move services to digital.

Action 8 is closely connected to Action 9 in the Government ICT Strategy and Action Plan – measure and improve service performance.

Tools to help us work differently

Service delivery performance measurement

Treasury and DIA worked with agencies to develop a common way of measuring government services.  This is called the ‘Service delivery performance measurement’ methodology (SDPM).  We piloted it with four agencies in 2012.  We improved the approach and then ran it again with six agencies in June 2014.

The measurement exercise isn’t about comparing services or agencies with each other as all services are different.  It gives government a common way of measuring the performance of service delivery.  We’re aiming to baseline service information so we can clearly see the impact of any changes we make.

It’s been challenging for agencies to provide some of the information we want to measure.  Sometimes the information is not available and an agency has to change the way they do things to get the data.  There are also limitations around some of the data and we’ve had to make some informed estimates.

Overall, the 2014 SDPM findings show opportunities to reduce the cost of digital services through improving our processes and making them more standardised.

Digital shift

To track how we’re progressing in Result 10 overall, we’re using this target:
By 2017 an average of 70% of New Zealanders’ most common transactions with government will be completed in a digital environment.

We’re measuring a ‘basket’ of common transactions to track their use.  This gives us an indication of how we’re progressing against the target.

A measure for ‘easily’

As well as measuring uptake of digital transactions, we also need to measure how easy or difficult people are finding these transactions.  We’re keeping the original measure and working on creating a measure of ‘ease’.  To start with, we’re using data collected by the State Services Commission’s Kiwis Count survey.

From January 2015 we’ll be exploring further options for reflecting customers’ digital experience more accurately.  As part of this we’ll be looking at how customers journey through services, and measuring how effective our cross-agency initiatives are so far.

Working together on this action

Our working group of agency representatives for SDPM includes all the Result 10 agencies and The Treasury and ACC (Accident Compensation Corporation). We’re also working with the State Services Commission who run Kiwis Count.

Next steps

  • We’ll be developing a measure of ‘ease’ for Result 10, working with Result 9.
  • We’ll use the new ‘ease’ measure to help measure customer experience for SDPM.
  • We need to determine which agency services are most useful to measure from now on.
  • We also need to agree which data items and metrics are important to continue measuring services effectively, and to provide us with insights across channels. 
  • We’ll be considering whether SDPM should be a regular mandated exercise.  If we think it should be, we’d need to go to Cabinet to get approval.

Related information

Measuring results – how we’re tracking against the ‘digital shift’ measure - DIA website

Page last updated: 06/12/2016