Customer Satisfaction Surveys
Westat draws on its long experience in survey research to design, conduct, and analyze customized surveys to assess satisfaction among the users of government programs. This research helps Federal and state agencies to determine the usefulness of existing services, identify unmet service needs, and allocate resources more efficiently.
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Surveys
Since 2006, Westat has assisted the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in conducting surveys of its external customers. The goal is to receive feedback from customers and to improve products and services.
Medicare Managed Care CAHPS®
The Medicare Managed Care CAHPS® for CMS is an annual survey of beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare HMOs. It includes a sample of some 350 health plans and more than 200,000 beneficiaries. The survey provides information on satisfaction with health plans and quality of services.
2009 Biennial Review
Under contract to the Office of the Director of Administration and Management for the Secretary of Defense, Westat conducted the 1999-2000, the 2001-02, and the 2003-04 Biennial Reviews, and is conducting the 2009 Biennial Review. The review is a legislatively mandated evaluation of the continuing need for and performance of 25 DoD agencies and field activities and includes an assessment of the need for, and economic effectiveness of services and supplies (business lines) provided by each Defense Agency and DoD Field Activity. This assessment includes a senior manager assessment from key DoD officials on their initiatives since the previous survey, lessons learned, and recommendations for improving performance, and a web-administered standardized survey of organizational customers by business line.
National Survey of Veterans 2009
National Survey of Veterans 2009 is the sixth in a series of comprehensive nationwide surveys designed to help the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) improve services for beneficiaries and their families. It provides information to support VA policy, planning, and quality improvement decisions. The scope of the survey has been expanded to address the requirements of P.L. 108-454, Section 805, to assess awareness of veteransï¿½ benefits and services among several populations of interest: veterans, active duty service members, activated and demobilized National Guard and Reserve members, spouses and surviving spouses of veterans, as well as spouses of active duty service members. The National Survey of Veterans is very important to the VA because it is often a unique source of information on veterans who are not currently using VA benefits. The survey results provide the VA, Congress, stakeholders, and the public more accurate descriptions and assessments of the characteristics of the veteran population.
Federal Government Forms
Customer satisfaction with an organization's forms, particularly Federal Government forms, can be key to the success of programs. Westat has assessed a number of forms for comprehension and usability:
- IRS Schedule D. This form is filled out by businesses on a quarterly basis to report discrepancies caused by acquisitions, statutory mergers, or consolidations. We assist the IRS in redesigning this form based on feedback from IRS personnel, as well as input from other government agencies.
- IRS Form 594 Redesign. The main objectives of the project were to make Publication 594 more useful to taxpayers and to ensure that taxpayers understood their rights and responsibilities during the collection process. Westat staff collected and analyzed qualitative data from taxpayers and tax preparers using focus group discussions and cognitive in-depth interviews. Additional cognitive interviews were also used as part of the iterative process of redesigning and testing various versions and portions of the publication until a final version was designed.
Evaluation Examining the Modular Grants Application Process
For the Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health, Westat conducted a feasibility study and an outcome evaluation examining the modular grants application process. For this project, Westat conducted 5 focus groups and 55 cognitive interviews during 2 rounds of testing to develop 5 stakeholder surveys. Following survey development, Westat administered 5 web surveys and managed all aspects of data collection, conducted quantitative and qualitative data analysis, wrote 10 reports, and gave 2 briefings to senior management.
Survey of All Applicants to ATP
To evaluate the effectiveness and impact of the Advanced Technology Program (ATP) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Westat conducted several surveys of different types of populations, including a survey of all applicants to ATP for the 2000, 2002, and 2004 funding competitions and a survey of joint ventures that examined the impact of funding on the partnership venture.
Westat is developing a system to assist ATP/NIST in surveying organizations that received awards to conduct high-risk, innovative research either alone or as part of a joint venture with other organizations. We developed a series of surveys to gather information about the goals of the work funded by NIST, its commercial prospects, and its level of risk. The surveys also assessed revenue from the funded project and the degree of collaboration. These surveys were fielded on a quarterly basis from 2004-09.
Assessed the Customer's Experiences with TIP
The Advanced Technology Program at NIST has become the Technology Innovation Program (TIP). In 2009, Westat developed and fielded a survey of individuals who submitted their names to the TIP mailing list to receive communication materials regarding TIP activities and competitions. The survey assessed the customer's experiences with TIP staff and opinions on the TIP materials.
School Reform Efforts
Westat actively assists school reform efforts through satisfaction surveys. For the District of Columbia Public Schools, we surveyed school administrators, teachers, other school staff, students, and parents concerning topics such as general attitudes, teachers, students, schoolwork, parental involvement, safety and discipline, facilities, and administration and staff. In previous years we have also conducted school satisfaction surveys for the Howard County Public School System and as part of an evaluation of the city-state partnership between the Baltimore City Public Schools and the State of Maryland.
For more information about the Customer Satisfaction Surveys Research Area, please send us a message (email link).