The Biden administration is taking its goal of improving federal customer experience seriously, spending $100 million in Technology Modernization Fund cash across agencies to bolster the digital services most popular with citizens.
In addition, large federal agencies have met the first set of CX-related goals in the President’s Management Agenda, identifying their major priorities with an eye toward fiscal year 2024 budget requests. They are forming teams to improve CX for citizens undergoing major life changes, such as leaving the military for civilian life.
Citizens who have grown used to the modern consumer experience — think one-click buying — now expect it from government as well. Since the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the government had to supply services remotely, federal agencies have learned what their customers want. The end users are pushing that message hard.
There are challenges to making this experience seamless. For instance, agencies with solid plans for improving dated IT are delayed because of supply chain constraints. This triggers an avalanche of issues as other projects reliant on upgraded technology are also delayed.
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How Can Agencies Attract the Right IT Talent?
Agencies also face talent shortages. There are nearly 40,000 cybersecurity job openings available in the U.S. public sector right now, and that doesn’t include open positions for nonsecurity IT work. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that about 668,000 new IT jobs will be created in the U.S. by 2030.
Fewer young IT workers are joining government. They expect that the technology they’ll work with and the experience they’ll gain will be like the private sector. Many aren’t satisfied with what they get. Between that and the number of older, experienced workers retiring, agencies are strapped for staff.
EXPLORE: How different voices and experiences make the workplace richer and encourage new ideas.
Managed service solution providers can help agencies overcome these issues and keep their customer experience goals on track, providing both expert workers and technology that may not be immediately available otherwise.
Such partners find places where agencies can make small changes or refreshes to keep projects moving and accelerate a better customer experience, and they can help agencies stick to the requirements of their service-level agreements.
Senior government leaders, at both the branch and Cabinet levels, have been aggressive in speaking out about the changes they want to make. We’ve seen it with our customers, and we want to make sure they’re able to eventually provide that consumerlike experience for their own customers.
Reviewing the Customer Experience from Every Angle
We see CX from both sides: the CDW•G customer who needs assistance with modernization, and the customer’s own customer, who will benefit. The fact that the White House sees the importance of CX as well gives everyone the impetus to work harder to improve it.
The changes COVID-19 brought to the way citizens demand services and how government supplies them are permanent. Agencies are reinforcing the successes they created in an emergency to continue under more normal circumstances, and they need assistance to make sure all the dots from March 2020 remain connected.
DIVE DEEPER: The White House wants to see improvements in citizen satisfaction.
Here’s one example of agency-oriented CX: Simple conversations with federal customers let third-party vendors and managed solution providers introduce insights that can strengthen their infrastructure and lead to better citizen-related CX.
These relationships have been growing stronger as the need for faster modernization increases. As relationships grow, so does trust. Projects can move along, and citizens gain the benefits.