Citizen Experience Excellence
For the last 20 years, KPMG have been leaders in the experience space, through the establishment of the 6 Pillars and the Customer Experience Excellence Centre. The 6 Pillars are a set of emotional qualities that define every outstanding customer experience which can create loyalty and drive growth. KPMG’s Customer Experience Excellence research for public sector is now in its second year and the view of the citizen has never been more poignant, the research has analysed over 16,000 individual citizen responses across 7 UK public sector organisations. This research defines what great citizen experiences in the public sector look like across KPMG’s Six Pillar framework, and explores the intrinsic link between citizen satisfaction, public service outcomes, and operating costs.
Challenges in delivering great citizen experiences
Public sector organisations are increasingly having to do more with less. The cost-of-living crisis has increased the demand for public services. This has created a unique challenge for public sector organisations in 2023 and only looks to become more prevalent as inflation rises and macroeconomic factors take their toll. Combine this with the long-term effects of austerity measures and continued financial cuts, and the result is public sector organisations being stretched to their limits.
Our research suggests that the staff whom citizens interact with at public sector organisations are the greatest cause for satisfaction; however, this is seldom translated into a great citizen experience. One of the key drivers behind this is a lack of digital capability within the workforce, causing siloed service delivery which increases operating costs and takes away from the citizen experience. Citizens interact with the public sector on a needs-must basis and therefore measure their experience based on the physical and emotional effort required to find resolutions to their issues. For the new citizen, a friendly face is simply not enough.
Utilising the Six Pillars of Citizen Experience
Understanding citizens through the lens of the following Six Pillars will allow public sector organisations to provide a great citizen experience.
The end-to-end citizen journey is full of highly emotional touchpoints as interactions often have a great bearing on a citizen’s quality of life. Public sector organisations must recognise these touchpoints and ensure they are managed by emotionally intelligent employees, who are empowered to go the extra mile to relate to and prioritise citizens. Organisations should meet citizens where they are emotionally, to empathise with their circumstances.
Citizens expect to be recognised and treated like individuals, regardless of how they choose to interact with services. Our research tells us that over 40% of citizens felt their previous interactions were not recognised when interacting with a public sector organisation. Public sector organisations are in a unique situation, whereby citizens are users of public sector services for life, regularly providing personal information. Public sector organisations must harness this opportunity to link data sources and synchronise services with citizens’ current and previous circumstances, adapting to their changing needs.