Governments across the world are looking for ways to improve the quality of public services to meet changing expectations and New Zealand is no exception. In 2005 the State Services Commission (SSC) began the New Zealanders' Experience Research Programme (NZE) to gather feedback that would help to improve public services.
The SSC launched the first Kiwis Count survey in 2007 as part of the NZE to measure how New Zealanders perceive and experience public services. The survey was repeated in 2009 with some new questions added about the different channels of communication New Zealanders use to access public services - mail/fax, telephone, in person and online. A total of 3,724 New Zealanders responded to the 2009 Kiwis Count survey. Understanding people's use of and preferences for different channels of communication - called 'channels' in this report -will help service delivery agencies to improve service uptake and satisfaction.
Kiwis Count 2009 asked New Zealanders:
- what channels they used to find information about or transact with public services
- what channels they would prefer to use
- how satisfied they were with different channels
- where they would like to see improvement, especially for the online channel.
SSC intends to repeat these questions in future Kiwis Count surveys to monitor changes in use, preferences and satisfaction with different channels over time.
This report presents its main findings in two ways before going on to review their implications. Section 2 discusses the key findings about the channels themselves with the focus on patterns of channel use and preference across the entire Kiwis Count sample. In Section 3 the focus moves to people and this part of the report highlights the similarities and differences in the ways different groups of New Zealanders interact with public services. Section 4 identifies some of the implications of the findings for public service delivery now and in the future.
This report is intended to help public service providers to understand how different groups of New Zealanders access public services, therefore to decide how to invest in channels to best meet the needs of the people they serve.