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Customer Experience

How to tap into Technology Modernization Funds for your customer experience initiatives

Customer experience leaders in the U.S. federal government have a unique opportunity to apply for federal funding allocated to support CX initiatives. All federal agencies providing public-facing information, benefits, services, and programs are invited to apply and High-Impact Service Providers (HISPs) will receive an expedited review.

What is the Technology Modernization Fund?

The General Services Administration and Office of Management and Budget announced on June 16, 2022 that the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF) will designate $100 million to improve customer experiences in the federal government. This is the first time the TMF has designated funds specifically for customer experience (CX) improvements.

While customer experience is gaining traction within government, the term isn’t widely understood yet, nor are the solutions to improving customer experience. This article breaks down how to apply for the Technology Modernization Fund and how to spend it.

Criteria and considerations when applying

Here’s what to consider as you determine which CX initiatives would best align to areas considered for prioritized implementation under TMF. You can review the established criteria on the TMF website.

The CX project you propose should be “grounded in existing customer research, data analysis, and/or customer-driven business needs, to solve identified pain points or delivery impediments.” If research and design is not complete yet, you can include a plan in your proposal. Qualtrics can help you craft and execute a research plan quickly.

In addition to the TMF criteria, here are project areas for priority implementation:

Cross-agency life experiences or customer life experiences

If your agency is part of the focused improvement of a customer life experience (CLE), select a project that aids progress. Think about opportunities to capture the voice of your customer across the entire customer journey.

Are there blind spots you have where gathering insights could inform and accelerate your support to the public in their biggest life moments? For example, a more robust CX platform that can pull in customer feedback data from multiple sources to show a more complete picture of a CLE across agencies.

High impact service providers (HISPs)

Consider the services designated for enhancement by the Office of Management and Budget. Which projects would help your agency meet the OMB mandates or help complete your CX Action Plan?

Self service and decreasing customer wait times

Think of transactions or services that either take the most time for customers to complete or require the most staff support. Can you better leverage contact center, website, and other touchpoint data to best design and improve self-service tools, reduce call volume, or make call handling more efficient?

Qualtrics can help you map the customer journey to identify bottlenecks and prioritize opportunities to reduce wait times and offer self service options.

Reducing administrative burden

Would a reliable and efficient way to digitize forms help you decrease customer effort required to access benefits or services? CX platforms can serve as operational workflow tools and integrate with most service and ticketing platforms.

Advancing equity

Can you uncover and address barriers to equity across your customer journey to advance equity or address steps in your agency’s Equity Action Plan? A CX platform like Qualtrics can analyze unstructured data and bring new life to customer feedback that spans across agency experiences and better informs nearly all of these priority areas.

Consider harnessing social media and other forums to better understand your customers, their pain points, and what they need in order to make services more equitable and accessible, reduce wait times, and ultimately improve customer life moments. Don’t overlook your contact centers as the ultimate listening post to accelerate CX maturity in addition to enhancing customer service.

How to apply for the Technology Modernization Fund

Apply for Technology Modernization Funds in 3 steps:

  1. Express interest in applying as soon as possible through this interest form. Don’t skip this step, the TMF Program Management Office may be able to assist you through the rest of the process depending on your submission.
  2. Send an initial project proposal to ombtmf@omb.eop.gov and tmf@gsa.gov. We highly recommend submitting this by August 1, 2022 to receive an expedited review. The final deadline is September 30, 2022. You can find IPP templates on the TMF website.
  3. If your initial project proposal is approved, you will be invited to complete a final project proposal. You can find FPP templates on the TMF website.

For more information, see the complete process overview.

4 tips for successfully submitting for funds

  1. Submit more than one proposal. Consider all of your CX and/or IT priorities that could align to the intent of the allocation to “directly support the Biden-Harris Administration’s technology vision and priorities to deliver a better customer experience to the public.”
  2. Align to the selection criteria as much as possible. Prioritize CLEs, HISP services, advancing equity, decreasing call volume, and improvements to self-service tools.
  3. Use the sample documents provided as templates as your craft your submission.
  4. Read the fine print! As you vet the project proposal through your agency, do not forget to include that agencies will need to make repayments to the TMF depending on the terms of the project written agreement.

If you are selected, your agency will have quarterly project reviews with the TMF Board to ensure project progress according to key milestones. Additionally, your team will receive hands-on support from technical experts to support project success.


Do you need more ideas? Download our TMF guide.

Qualtrics // Experience Management

Qualtrics is the technology platform that organizations use to collect, manage, and act on experience data, also called X-data™. The Qualtrics XM Platform™ is a system of action, used by teams, departments, and entire organizations to manage the four core experiences of business—customer, product, employee, and brand—on one platform.

Over 12,000 enterprises worldwide, including more than 75 percent of the Fortune 100 and 99 of the top 100 U.S. business schools, rely on Qualtrics to consistently build products that people love, create more loyal customers, develop a phenomenal employee culture, and build iconic brands.

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