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Citizen Relationship Management Citizen Relationship Management Overview

USA Services—Helping Agencies Help Citizens

One of the Presidential E-Government initiatives, USA Services is an integral part of the President’s Management Agenda. Managed by GSA's Office of Citizen Services and Communications, the mission of USA Services is to present citizens with a single “front door” for government, allowing them to receive accurate, timely and consistent answers and information.

With USA Services, citizens can get information from federal agencies in both English and Spanish via Internet, publications, telephone, and e-mail.

During the fiscal year 2005 budget planning process, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) directed agencies to sign a working agreement for misdirected telephone and e-mail inquiries and to determine the feasibility of securing USA Services for first contact inquiries.

USA Services works with federal agencies to assist in their responses to public inquiries in two ways:

Handling misdirects involves
no cost. Agencies redirect telephone and e-mail inquiries that are not related to the agency’s mission to USA Services using 1(800) FED-INFO or an agency-specific e-mail. USA Services answers the inquiry using its extensive database. If USA Services does not have the information, it refers the citizen to the appropriate agency.

Handling “Tier-One” inquiries is a reimbursable service. Tier-One telephone and e-mail inquiries are answered by trained staff using a database of frequently asked questions. USA Services responds to the inquiries as if they were the agency providing responses based on the agency’s instructions.

Federal agencies can partner with USA Services in several ways, depending on the type and level of service they desire. Customized e-mail, telephone, and publication distribution services are some of the options available. These services are provided through GSA’s Federal Citizen Information Center, the long-standing provider of citizen information for the federal government.

By using USA Services, federal agencies can:

     ● Improve service to citizens;
     ● Provide easier citizen-access to an agency’s information
        and services;
     ● Reduce agency infrastructure and labor expenses for centers
        to respond to e-mail and calls; and
     ● Improve agency compliance with federal policies including:
       - President’s Management Agenda
       - E-Gov scorecard
       - Clinger-Cohen Act (elimination of redundant IT efforts)
       - Executive Memorandum, December 1999 (requires agencies
         to be able to receive and respond to citizens via e-mail)
       - OMB Information Quality Guidelines, February 2002

Many agencies are already USA Services Partners! Review the generic working agreement document in the USA Services Library.

Agencies that utilize USA Services take advantage of valuable resources such as:
     ● 1(800) FED-INFO
     ● Pueblo, Colorado Publications Center

Contact Stuart Willoughby to learn more about USA Services or to contract for the free misdirected inquiries or the reimbursable Tier One services. 

Last Modified 10/12/2004