(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Mayor Vincent C. Gray has released the third set of monthly grades – covering the entirety of August – from the pilot Grade.DC.gov program, an advanced customer-service platform designed to provide the best possible feedback on, and analysis of, service delivery and customer care by District government agencies.
The grades show improved ratings for each of the five pilot agencies, chosen because their employees and online presences interact with large segments of the District’s residents and businesses on a daily basis. They are the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) and the Department of Public Works (DPW).
The July grades range from a “B-minus” to an “A-minus.” DCRA continued to show the most dramatic improvement, rising from a “C-minus” based on June feedback to a “B-plus” based on August feedback.
The platform is powered by newBrandAnalytics (nBA), a leading provider of social-market-intelligence solutions in the private sector, and is the company’s first venture into government services. The new Web interface enables agency leaders to gather and interpret real-time, continuous feedback from constituents and use it to make data-driven decisions that will improve agency operations as quickly as possible. Using a proprietary algorithm, nBA converts feedback about each agency into a score, which, in turn, is converted into a letter grade. The grading rubric is the same scale that nBA uses for its private-sector clients in the restaurant and hotel industries.
Independent analyses have shown the District’s customer-service levels improving significantly in recent years. Residents have enjoyed increasing access to online systems for payments, license and permit applications, and public information. Grade.DC.gov complements the District’s existing customer-service-survey tools by providing additional platforms not only for soliciting information, but also for proactively aggregating and analyzing feedback residents are already providing on platforms like Facebook, Twitter and review websites.
Grade.DC.gov also enables residents to provide their on-demand comments and opinions via text, tweet or Facebook post as well as via the initiative’s namesake Web portal. After harvesting the online sentiment, newBrandAnalytics will interpret and analyze qualitative feedback in order to:
- Provide an overall agency grade and specific customer-service-related themes;
- Identify the root causes of customer satisfaction or dissatisfaction; and
- Guide decision makers to allocate limited taxpayer resources to address the most burning issues cited by constituents.
Grade.DC.gov will be expanded to 10 agencies this fall.