Number:  113-11
Date:  August 2, 2013

House Passes H.R. 1660,
the Government Customer Service Improvement Act of 2013

On July 31, 2013, the House passed H.R. 1660, the Government Customer Service Improvement Act of 2013, as amended, by voice vote.  The bill would establish Government-wide customer service standards and require agencies to develop agency-specific standards.  The bill now moves to the Senate for further action.

Following are provisions of interest to SSA:

  • Would require the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to establish performance measures and standards that ensure agencies provide high-quality customer service and improved service delivery to include Government-wide target response times for telephone calls, electronic mail, paper mail, benefit processing, and payments.
  • Would require each Federal agency to establish customer service standards and include this information in its annual performance plan. 
  • Would require OMB to establish a Customer Service Feedback Pilot Program, which would require IRS and at least two other agencies selected by OMB to implement a customer service feedback system. 

    • The system would collect information from customers of the agencies regarding the quality of service.  Information would include the extent to which agency service complies with the OMB-established performance measures and customer feedback on interaction with Government employees.  The pilot would continue for at least three years.

    • Participating agencies would include information collected from the pilot in their annual agency performance report.

    • Compliance with established customer service standards would be included as elements of employee performance for appraisal processes established by participating agencies.

  • Would require OMB to establish a two-year Service Improvement Unit Pilot Program to provide assistance to agencies that do not meet the established Government-wide standards.   
  • Would require OPM to submit to Congress and the Comptroller General, and issue publicly every month, a report that evaluates the timeliness, completeness, and accuracy of information submitted by each Federal agency regarding its employees who are retiring.
  • Would be effective upon enactment.