Frank Konkel | Nextgov | April 5, 2017 | 0 Comments

Veterans Affairs Has a New Chief Customer Officer

Mark Van Scyoc/Shutterstock.com

The Department of Veterans Affairs has filled a role critical to continuing the agency’s push to better serve veterans, announcing the appointment of Dr. Lynda Davis as its chief veterans experience officer.

Davis replaces Tom Allin, who was appointed as VA’s first chief veterans experience officer by former Secretary Robert McDonald.

“It is critical that we create a seamless Veteran experience across the entire organization,” said Secretary David Shulkin in a statement. “VA must proactively engage Veterans and their families to ensure their voices are heard. Lynda brings the energy and expertise to develop Veteran-centric solutions that will allow VA to build trust with Veterans and the American public.”

» Get the best federal technology news and ideas delivered right to your inbox. Sign up here.

VA’s push to better service veterans has already resulted in improved call center responses, consolidated websites and other pilots, including a real-time veteran feedback dashboard. Overall, VA scores poorly compared to other organizations as most federal agencies do. Yet in addition to  VA’s early efforts under the Veteran Experience wing—which Davis now heads—the department is also home to the National Cemetery Administration, which achieves higher customer satisfaction ratings than any public- or private-sector organization.

One of Davis’ top priorities will be improving the experience of the more than 300,00 employees at the department, according to Scott Blackburn, interim deputy secretary at VA.

“You can’t have a great customer experience unless you have a great employee experience,” said Blackburn, speaking Wednesday at ACT-ACT’s Customer Experience Summit. “We need to provide a psychologically safe environment for them to be principles-based rather than rules-based.”

Davis’ background is veteran-centric. Before she came to VA, Davis served as deputy undersecretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy; deputy assistant secretary for military personnel policy for the Department of the Navy and was the designated lead for the joint Department of Defense and VA response to the recommendations of Commission on Care for America’s Returning Wounded Warriors.

“As a former Army officer and the mother of a Veteran, I am thrilled to be able to support Secretary Shulkin’s efforts to make VA the organization our Veterans and their families deserve," Davis said in a statement. "Through state-of-the-art technology and innovative solutions, we can ensure Veterans are consistently provided a high-quality experience that earns their trust.”

Davis will be among approximately a dozen chief customer service officers across government, following a push to improve federal customer service in the later years of President Barack Obama’s second term. The position is extremely common in the business world.

Comments
JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Modernizing IT for Mission Success

    Surveying Federal and Defense Leaders on Priorities and Challenges at the Tactical Edge

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • Effective Ransomware Response

    This whitepaper provides an overview and understanding of ransomware and how to successfully combat it.

    Download
  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.