Definitions of e‐service and e‐government are considered in seeking to contextualise the discussion, and a distinction is drawn between e‐government and e‐public service. Current theoretical and empirical work is considered in conjunction with the contribution of the usability school and the commercial literature related to outcome measurement. While profit motivation has little relevance in the public sector, homogeneity of consumers, definability of tasks and finite and measureable outcomes can serve as likely conditions of success in e‐public service. The public sector is then considered in light of this knowledge. It is proposed that there is a continuum of public sector organisations based on complexity of task. Initial evidence suggests that e‐service delivery has greater potential for success in public sector tasks that have low or limited levels of complexity. Finally, the paper concludes that any discussion of e‐public service must take cognisance of the context, both internal and external, in which e‐service is delivered.
Managing Service Quality – Emerald Publishing
Published: Dec 1, 2003
Keywords: Public services; Customer services quality
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