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Interacting with Government

Australians' use and satisfaction with e-government services—2008

Publication Summary

Interacting with Government explores Australians’ use and satisfaction with e‑government services provided through the internet and telephone. It investigates:


This is the fourth in a series of annual studies into Australians’ use and satisfaction with e‑government services. The studies show that the way people interact with government has changed significantly in a relatively short period of time.

When the first study was released in 2005, overwhelmingly, Australians made contact with government in person. In 2008, the internet is the most common way people last made contact with government. 

The insights provided by this latest study provide an important guide for governments in improving service delivery. The focus for governments is changing from encouraging greater use of the internet to providing e‑government services that meet the needs and preferences of the Australian population.

While Australians now regard the internet as a key way of interacting with government, they continue to identify areas where the delivery of e‑government services could be improved. Such improvements may have the potential to lead to ever increasing use of e‑government services.

Governments at all levels also need to recognise that they must adapt to a world in which interaction increasingly occurs online and that they will need to do so at a greater rate. New technologies such as blogs, social networking websites and wikis are now being used by Australians in all parts of the country and in all age groups. These changes present both opportunities and challenges for governments to deliver services that can keep pace with the rapidly evolving expectations of Australians.


Minister for Finance and Deregulation

Full Publication

Interacting with Government PDF version [PDF Document 4.6 MB]

Table of Contents

  1. Executive Summary
    • 1.1 About the Study
    • 1.2 Major Findings
    • 1.3 Conclusions
  2. Introduction
    • 2.1 About the Study
    • 2.2 Background
    • 2.3 General Use of the Internet
    • 2.4 Use of Newer Communication Technologies
  3. Use of Government Services
    • 3.1 Introduction
    • 3.2 Use of Intermediaries for Contact With Government
  4. Use of E-Government Services Through the Internet
    • 4.1 Introduction
    • 4.2 Level of Government Accessed by Internet
    • 4.3 Transaction Type Accessed by Internet
    • 4.4 Services Accessed by Internet
    • 4.5 Attitudes Towards Government Websites
    • 4.6 Awareness and Knowledge of the Australian Government Portal
  5. Use of E-Government Services by Telephone
    • 5.1 Introduction
    • 5.2 Type of Telephone and Mobile Phone Contact
    • 5.3 Level of Government Accessed by Telephone
    • 5.4 Transaction Type Accessed by Telephone
    • 5.5 Services Accessed by Telephone
  6. Satisfaction With Service Delivery
    • 6.1 Introduction
    • 6.2 Satisfaction
    • 6.3 Dissatisfaction
  7. Why People Choose a Particular Service Delivery Channel to Contact Government
    • 7.1 Introduction
    • 7.2 The Internet
    • 7.3 The Telephone
    • 7.4 In-Person Contact
    • 7.5 Mail
    • 7.6 Encouraging Greater Use of the Internet to Contact Government
    • 7.7 People Who Cannot be Encouraged to Increase Their Use of the Internet to Contact Government
  8. Security and Privacy Issues
    • 8.1 Introduction
    • 8.2 Anonymity and Convenience
    • 8.3 Anonymity and Tailored Services
    • 8.4 Updating Information
    • 8.5 Security and Ease and Speed of Access
  9. Why People Do Not Use E-Government Services
    • 9.1 Introduction
    • 9.2 Why People Who are Internet Users Did Not Use it to Contact Government
    • 9.3 Reasons for Unsuccessful Attempts to Find Government Information or Services Online
    • 9.4 Potential for Growth in Internet Use
    • 9.5 The Telephone
  10. Future Service Delivery Preferences
    • 10.1 Introduction
    • 10.2 Preference for E-Government Service Delivery Channels
    • 10.3 Suggestions for Improvements When Contacting Government Online
    • 10.4 Future Options for Receiving Communications from Government
  11. Conclusions
  12. Appendix 1—Background And Methodology
    • 12.1 Terms Of Reference
    • 12.2 Methodology
  13. Appendix 2—Definitions
  14. Appendix 3—Statistical Reliability

Previous Studies

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Copyright Notice

© Commonwealth of Australia 2008
This work is copyright. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process without prior written permission from the Commonwealth. Requests and inquiries concerning reproduction and rights should be addressed to: Commonwealth Copyright Administration, Attorney General’s Department, Robert Garran Offices, National Circuit Barton ACT 2600 or posted at [External Site]

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Last Modified: 18 December, 2008