- Title page
- Executive summary
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Channels of communication
- 3 Different groups' uses and preferences
- 4 Implications for service delivery
- 5 Find out more
2.2 Telephone handles high volume but offers low satisfaction
Key Findings - Telephone and cell phone
- Telephone is still the most commonly used channel but satisfaction with it is low.
- Cell phone is likely to become an increasingly important channel in the future.
Many of New Zealanders' interactions with public services were over the telephone - 55% had sought information and 51% had carried out transactions over the telephone. However, satisfaction with the telephone was the lowest of all channels in both 2007 and 2009. The percentages that were satisfied with using the telephone for their most recent service contact remained unchanged at 61% (See Figure 5).
Research carried out in Australia indicated that the uptake of the internet channel had slowed while the use of cell phones was on the rise2. For this reason, some questions on cell phone use were included in the Kiwis Count 2009 survey to find out how likely New Zealanders were to use their cell phones to contact public services. Kiwis Count 2009 asked whether people had already used or would be interested in using their cell phones to:
- call a free-phone/0800 number for public services
- send or receive text messages from a public service
- visit a public service website using a cell phone.
Of the three, New Zealanders were most likely to have used or to be interested in using their cell phones to call a free-phone for public services. Thirty-nine percent of respondents had already done so, and another 36% said they would.
Ten percent of New Zealanders had sent a text message to or received one from a public service, and another 29% indicated that they would be interested in using their cell phones for this purpose. However, 41% said that they would not use this service and 19% were unsure.
New Zealanders were least likely to visit a public service website using their cell phone with only 4% of respondents having done this. More than half of the respondents (53%) said they would not use this service.
Figure 4: Options for accessing public services by cell phone
The World Internet Project New Zealand reported that around 6% of their respondents accessed the internet on their cell phones, for 1-4 hours a week (including processing emails).3 Cell phones are generally cheaper than computers and their portability also makes them more useful to some people. It is likely that more New Zealanders may be interested in accessing public services via their cell phones in the future (See section 3.1 and 3.3 for demographic breakdowns on using cell phone to contact public services).
2 Australian Government Information Management Office, Commonwealth of Australia, Interacting with Government, December 2008. Australian's use and satisfaction with e-government services.,
3 World internet Project New Zealand. The Internet in New Zealand 2009. Institute of Culture Discourse and Communication AUT University. March 2010. Page 3.