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General Services Administration chief customer officer Anahita Reilly, and deputy chief customer officer Matt Ford detail how GSA is using data to improve services, and why it’s important to avoid […]

General Services Administration chief customer officer Anahita Reilly, and deputy chief customer officer Matt Ford detail how GSA is using data to improve services, and why it’s important to avoid “analysis paralysis”


The President’s Management Agenda prioritizes improving customer experience across the federal government. To accomplish this goal, the General Services Administration is leveraging the data they collect to decide which programs need a major update. Anahita Reilly, chief customer officer at GSA, says that they are using all the data they can get to make these decisions.   “We’re using qualitative, quantitative and operational data about our customers and internal operations to help drive our decisions,” Reilly said. “We are thinking of surveys, the numbers, metrics, things that you can attach [Key Performance Indicators] to. Qualitative is interviews, observational research, walk a mile in someone’s shoes. Operational is system data, website traffic and pairing it all together and looking at it in a cohesive portfolio… to then look at our investment decisions. Are we investing in the places that matter to our customers?”   Matt Ford, deputy chief customer officer at GSA, says that it’s important to not get bogged down in data collection, and use the right kind of analysis to get the right answers.   “There’s a tendency to always want more… and if you get stuck in that mindset it can become a bit of an analysis paralysis,” Ford told Government Matters. “It really depends on the problem you are trying to solve, your understanding of it and the stakeholders you are working with.”

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