UK enters government services top 10

Accenture sees the UK move up its government customer-service league table, but the public remains indifferent

The UK has moved up three places in an annual league table of government services — but the public remains indifferent to new e-government initiatives.

According to Accenture's annual government customer-service league table, the UK has moved to ninth place. The league is topped by Singapore, Canada and the US.

But just under half (49 percent) of the UK public quizzed in the Leadership in customer service: Delivering on the promise report said the standard of government services has remained the same — or become worse — over the past three years.

The report suggests governments are being challenged by newer technologies — such as email and SMS — replacing traditional communication channels, and are struggling as they shift their focus from offering front-end services to making sure they are adequately supported by back-end services.

The report states: "The time has come to create the infrastructure that closes the loop between expectation and experience."

Despite these issues, 77 percent of respondents said their overall satisfaction with UK government services is very high.

Satisfaction in government service outranks that of private-sector businesses — especially utilities and online retailers — as well as banks, mobile-phone operators and airlines.

The report is the eighth produced by Accenture examining the challenges for government service provision and practice for 22 countries.