ASQ - Team and Workplace Excellence Forum

Online Edition — February 2003

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Parents, Schools, and Values
Looking Toward the Future

Ask the PowerPhrase® Expert


AQP Connections
The Help Desk
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February 2003 News for a Change—Home Page

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Information of interest from other publications related to quality, participation, change, and leadership

American Customer Satisfaction Index: Satisfaction With Government Drops Slightly

Although Americans are slightly less satisfied with the federal government compared with a year ago, customer satisfaction with federal services still ranks closely behind that of private industry, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) released December 16, 2002.

The ACSI score for government agencies, including those that are regulatory and those that administer benefits, fell to 70.2 in 2002 from a record-high 71.3 in 2001. Overall, the customer satisfaction score for the aggregate ACSI (which includes the public and private sectors) increased from 72 to 73.1 during the same time.

In its annual report on how satisfied Americans are with the services of the federal government, the ACSI shows that large declines in satisfaction with Medicare and parts of the Internal Revenue Service account for most of the drop in the overall government score.

The ACSI is a national economic indicator of customer evaluations of the quality of products and services available to household consumers in the United States. It is updated each quarter with new measures for different sectors of the economy replacing data from the previous year.

Each December, the ACSI issues a report on satisfaction of recipients of services from the federal government. Agency participation is voluntary. This year, 39 different customer groups served by 24 agencies were measured.

The index is produced by a partnership of the University of Michigan Business School, American Society for Quality, and CFI Group. It is supported in part by ForeSee Results, an e-commerce sponsor, and Market Strategies Inc., a major corporate contributor. The Federal Consulting Group, a franchise within the U.S. Department of the Treasury, is the executive agent for the ACSI and the federal government. Agency scores and other information about the ACSI can be found at and at .


ISO Looks for Feedback on New Standards

The product support initiative (PSI) for ISO 9001:2000 of ISO Technical Committee 176 is collecting experiences of users of the revised quality management standards. Feedback on what works well and what needs to be improved can be e-mailed to the following regional coordinators:

Excerpted with permission from Quality Progress, Vol. 36, No. 1, January 2003.


Ways to Improve Interviewing Skills

RHI Management Resources, Menlo, CA, recently surveyed 1,400 CFOs from U.S. companies with more than 20 employees to learn what interviewing practices are the most likely to cost candidates the job. The table below summarizes the key findings:

Paul McDonald, RHI’s executive director, reported, “When hiring at the senior level, companies pay particular attention to a candidate’s ability to lead, motivate, and communicate effectively. Firms value applicants who not only convey authority and aptitude, but who also have the interpersonal skills needed to direct a team and collaborate with top executives.”

The key to success clearly involves the ability to display confidence without being over-confident or overbearing.

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