wirksam regieren - With citizens for citizens

Citizen service

Improving satisfaction with vehicle registration

Citizen satisfaction with public services is of great importance to the Federal Government. Most of these services are provided at the municipal and district level. The wirksam regieren division at the Federal Chancellery and the Innovationsring des Bayerischen Landkreistages (Innovation Group of the Association of Bavarian Districts) carried out a joint project at the municipal level, with the aim of improving citizen services. They tested how citizens’ viewpoints can help the staff of a local authority to make improvements in the service sector. A system was set up in three pilot districts to survey citizen satisfaction continuously over a certain period, thus helping the local authority to find out how satisfied people were with the quality of the service and to identify ways to improve it. A high level of citizen satisfaction was ascertained in the participating districts.

Vehicle registration

Vehicle registration

Photo: imago images/Marc Schüler

Most contacts between citizens and the state occur at the municipal level

Most contacts between citizens and government bodies occur at the municipal and district level, including procedures carried out on behalf of the federation and Länder. In many cases, these local authorities determine the level of satisfaction with public services. In view of this, a methodology was developed to survey and increase citizen satisfaction with municipal service providers. The idea was that this methodology could be implemented locally and would take into account the particular circumstances of specific service providers.

Finding new solutions by surveying and involving citizens and staff

In order to improve the current quality of the service provided and to identify ways to increase satisfaction, citizens were surveyed while they visited their local vehicle registration office. The survey included questions on how satisfied they were with the registration process and their concrete suggestions for improvement. The surveys were carried out continuously for a six-month period via terminals and mobile devices in the vehicle registration offices. The survey findings were discussed once a month by the staff of the vehicle registration offices at team meetings and used as a basis for jointly devising concrete ways to improve the service in their office.

Citizens and staff work to improve the quality of the service

The project showed that even a simple and inexpensive method of involving citizens directly can help to improve municipal services. Citizen satisfaction with municipal services was surveyed and ways to increase it were identified, particularly in municipalities with lower levels of satisfaction. In addition, teamwork and service orientation were enhanced overall via participation and team meetings.

The methodology developed with the pilot districts will be provided to all interested districts in Bavaria. Other districts have already decided to adopt this approach themselves. The next step will be for the Innovation Group of the Association of Bavarian Districts to explore how the method can be transferred to other fields with a high level of interaction with the public.

In cooperation with the Innovation Group of the Association of Bavarian Districts