For the fourth consecutive time in ten years, the system of national cemeteries operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs has bested the nation’s top corporations and other federal agencies in an independent survey of customer satisfaction.
The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) is the only national, cross-industry measure of satisfaction with the quality of goods and services available in the United States. Beginning in 1999, the federal government selected ACSI to measure citizen satisfaction. More than 100 federal agencies have used ACSI to gauge consumer satisfaction with more than 200 services and programs. The Index was founded at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.
VA’s National Cemetery Administration participates in the ACSI every three years, previously in 2001, 2004 and 2007. This is the fourth time it participated and the fourth consecutive time it received the top rating in the nation. For 2010, the National Cemetery Administration achieved a customer satisfactino index of 94. Its score is nearly 29 points above the average for federal government agencies, which was 65 int eh study.
The ACSI survey polled the next-of-kin or other people who had arranged for the interment of a loved one in a VA national cemetery within the previous year. More than 1,900 people received the survey and 444 responded, a high response rate fora male survey.
Using rating methods developed at the National Quality research center at the University of Michigan Business School, the National Cemetery Administration received ratings in the categories of “customer service” and “user trust” of 96 out of a possible 100 points, indicating respondents are exceptionally pleased with their experience at national cemeteries and willing to recommend their services to others.
Veterans with a discharge issued under conditions other than dishonorable, their spouses and eligible dependent children can be buried in a VA national cemetery. Also eligible are military personnel who die on active duty, their spouses and eligible dependents.
The VA operates 131 national cemeteries in 39 states and Puerto Rico and 33 soldiers’ lots and monument sites. More than 3.5 million Americans, including veterans of every war and conflict, are buried in VA’s cemeteries on more than 19,000 acres of land.
Information on VA burial benefits can be obtained from national cemetery office, from the internet at www.cem.va.gov or by calling VA regional offices toll-free at 800-827-1000. To make burial arrangements at the time of need at any VA national cemetery, call the National Cemetery Scheduling Office at 800.535.1117.
News for Veterans – DAV Magazine