In 2007, for the first time, the State Services Commission asked a large number of New Zealanders about their experiences and their views of public services. Known as the Kiwis Count survey, this provided rich information on how New Zealand's public services were performing in the eyes of the people who use them. In 2009, the survey was run for a second time. Both times, an independent company collected the survey data.
Kiwis Count is part of wider research, the New Zealanders' Experience Research Programme (NZE), which is designed to find out how New Zealanders experience public services and to develop tools through which services can improve.
Kiwis Count is based on Citizens First, a Canadian Government project that measures satisfaction and identifies areas for improvement in public services. In this report, public services means all services provided by the government and includes central and local government services, tertiary institutions, schools and hospitals.
In 2007, Kiwis Count compared New Zealanders' experiences of public services with those of Canadians, providing us with a valuable benchmark against a recognised leader in citizen-centred public services. In 2009, the international comparison is still relevant, but even more useful is seeing what progress has been made in New Zealanders' experiences in the two years since the first survey.
While it is interesting to understand how New Zealanders experience public services, the real value of Kiwis Count is the insight it provides into how services can be improved. Kiwis Count 2007 gave rise to a number of initiatives across the public service which would have contributed to the areas of improvement shown in the 2009 results. In the same way, government agencies will use the 2009 data to assist with further service enhancements.
The 2009 survey was completed by 3,724 people, slightly more than in 2007. Interestingly, the proportion choosing to complete the survey online in 2009 was more than double that of the earlier survey.
This booklet is a summary of the findings of the 2009 Kiwis Count survey. It tracks changes from the 2007 results and talks about what can be done to further improve public services for New Zealanders. Through this report results from 2009 are compared with those from 2007. Some, but not all of the changes between the two surveys are 'statistically significant'. Statistical significance is the test used to determine whether a change might have occurred by chance or not. A result that is statistically significant is unlikely to have happened by chance. In this report any change that is described as 'significant' is a meaningful change and one that meets the test for statistical significance.