Key Facts

  • Overall, the Social Assistance group improved slightly from 67 in 2007 to 68 in 2009.
  • Two services had statistically significant improvements in 2009; A childcare subsidy improved from 56 in 2007 to 65 in 2009, while A housing subsidy or accommodation supplement improved to 62, from 56 in 2007.
  • Among Maori, New Zealand superannuation fell significantly from 77 in 2007 to 69 in 2009, while two services (Sickness, domestic purposes or unemployment benefit and A housing subsidy or accommodation supplement) had statistically significant improvements.

Introduction

In 2009 the Social Assistance service group made a small improvement from 67 in 2007 to 68 in 2009. The services that scored lowest in 2007 had the biggest improvements in 2009. A childcare subsidy improved from 56 in 2007 to 65 in 2009, while A housing subsidy or accommodation supplement improved from 56 in 2007 to 62 in 2009. New Zealand superannuation declined from 79 in 2007 to 75 in 2009, as did Accident compensation for injuries. The other services in the group made small improvements on 2007 results.

Fig 1: Overall service quality scores for services in the Social Assistance group, 2007-2009

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Comparisons with Canada

In the Canadian Citizens First survey, superannuation has improved considerably since 1998. In New Zealand superannuation has not improved between 2007 and 2009. Similarly, the Sickness, domestic purposes or unemployment benefit service improved across four successive surveys in Canada, while in New Zealand service quality scores for this service have remained the same.

Fig 2: Comparison of service quality scores in Canada from 1998-2007 and New Zealand from 2007-2009 1

               

Service

Canada

Kiwis Count

1998

2000

2002

2005

2007

2007

2009

Social Assistance

         

67

68

New Zealand superannuation

69

71

68

73

76

79

75

The community services card

62

67

69

76

73

73

74

A childcare subsidy

-

-

-

55

61

56

65

Accident compensation for injuries

34

37

49

50

47

65

64

State or council rental accommodation

52

50

46

60

53

61

62

A housing subsidy or accommodation supplement

-

-

-

53

48

56

62

Sickness, domestic purposes or unemployment benefit

45

51

53

57

61

59

59

Results for

Results for in in the social assistance group varied greatly. Benefits, childcare subsidies and housing or accommodation supplements all had big improvements on 2007. A housing subsidy or accommodation supplement performed especially well, increasing from 52 in 2007 to 62 in 2009. However, results were less positive for New Zealand superannuation (falling eight points to 69), State or council rental accommodation (falling seven points to 55); and Accident compensation for injuries (falling six points to 59).

Fig 3: Comparison of service quality scores for Social Assistance services between and and the survey average, 2007-2009

         

 

Survey average

Service

2007

2009

2007

2009

New Zealand superannuation

79

75

77

69

The community services card

73

74

69

73

Accident compensation for injuries

65

64

65

59

State or council rental accommodation

61

62

58

55

Sickness, domestic purposes or unemployment benefit

59

59

52

61

A housing subsidy or accommodation supplement

56

62

52

62

A childcare subsidy

56

65

54

60

Performance against the drivers of satisfaction

The Social Assistance group improved against five of the six drivers of satisfaction. However, the scores for all of the drivers are still below the survey average. The biggest improvement was on Your individual circumstances were taken into account, increasing seven points to 58. The only decline was on It's an example of good value for tax dollars spent, which fell from 54 in 2007 to 51 in 2009.

Fig 4: Performance against the drivers of satisfaction for Social Assistance services, 2007-2009

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Other interesting facts

New Zealand superannuation scored 80 among females, compared to 70 for males.

How can these results be improved?

It's an example of good value for tax dollars spent was the worst performing driver for the Social Assistance group, and also had a decline in 2009. Positive improvements were made on The service experience met your expectations. This driver contributes the most to overall satisfaction so further improvements here should have the biggest effect on service quality. To improve the scores for these drivers in the next Kiwis Count survey, the following could be considered:

  • Improve public awareness of the services an agency provides.
  • Provide better information to the public concerning expenditure of public monies. This information should be accessible and easy to understand.
  • Set and monitor service standards so that staff know what is expected of them and the public are aware of the standards they can expect to receive.

For more information

Visit the SSC website:

publicservice.govt.nz/nzers-experience

or email:

newzealanders.experience@publicservice.govt.nz

1 Some of the services included in the Citizens First surveys do not completely align with the services in Kiwis Count

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