A growing number of state welfare agencies are using the Internet to communicate with potential and current clients. Although public management benefits are clear, little is known about client perspectives. This mixed-methods research project examines the topics of application security, reliability, appropriateness, and ease of use, and personal experiences of potential users to understand opinions of online welfare applications. Focus group findings highlight direct benefits, such as speed and ease of use, and indirect benefits, such as holding caseworkers accountable and avoiding unpleasant office conditions. Study participants also identified exceptions like emergencies and applicants with special needs. Despite mixed feelings, many participants preferred online applications to in-person, worker-led eligibility interviews.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science
- Public Administration
- online applications
- welfare modernization