Marines

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The Interactive Customer Evaluation system can be accessed at http://ice.-disa.mil.

Photo by Cpl. Brian A. Tuthill

ICE allows opinions to be voiced online

10 Feb 2006 | Cpl. Brian A. Tuthill

Speedy service at the sandwich shop? Clothing store helpful with new regulations? Crooked haircut? Bad bagel?

Not many people are aware of the Web-based feedback system for services and organizations aboard the Combat Center that can let a patron’s opinions be heard by leaders.

The Department of Defense’s Interactive Customer Evaluation, or ICE, was implemented in 1998 to cut costs by replacing customer feedback cards throughout military installations.

ICE is tailored to each base’s specific sections, represents more than 260 locations, services and departments aboard the Combat Center and is available to anyone with Internet access.

“[Marine Corps Community Services] is a service organization more than a business and we want our services to be the best that they can be,” said Maj. Matt Baker, deputy director of MCCS, who said response to ICE comments is usually very quick. “We’d like to get input from everyone aboard the base so we can give them the best possible services.”

To leave a comment using ICE, log on to http://ice.disa.mil and locate the Twentynine Palms link. From there, base services are grouped into categories such as dining, shopping or communications.

The ICE Web site can also be accessed on the Com-bat Center’s homepage at http://www.29palms.usmc.mil.

Users can leave ratings of excellent, good, OK, poor and awful for any of the six listed customer service categories. Those categories are facility appearance, employee/staff attitude, timeliness of service, hours of service and overall satisfaction. There is even a field to leave a paragraph of personal comments.

Although ICE can be accessed completely anonymously, Baker said contact information and the more details given, the better the end result will be.

“The best ICE comments are the ones where people take the time to give us their contact number so we can find more details,” said Baker. “Something as simple as a phone number or e-mail address is all we’d like. That way we can follow up and make sure everything is right.

Comments posted through ICE are reviewed usually on the same or next day, then sent to corresponding leaders so action may be taken as soon as possible, said Philip Fultz, management analyst with the Business Management Directorate, who helps manage the ICE system locally.

“ICE gives folks who deliver the services here some feedback, as well as feedback to their bosses up the chain, an idea of how they are doing,” said Fultz.

Another perk of using the ICE system is it allows for a comprehensive comparison of different services in addition to how well an organization did during a specific timeframe.

“The nice thing about it is that it gives the mangers and leaders the ability to compare weeks, months, years — any time — based on the feedback received during that time,” said Fultz.

Although ICE may seem like an avenue for complaints, users can voice their praise about someone or something on base or give suggestions on how to improve specific aspects.

“We do get a few positive comments, but it’d be nice to read a few more of those,” said Baker. “At MCCS we have a goal of world-class customer service and that is really what we are working toward. ICE is a way for us to improve that.”

ICE is also a good way to give thanks to that unsung hero who helps people out in a snafu, said Fultz.

“ICE can let the entire chain of command know that you’ve got a good person working there,” said Fultz. “We don’t hear enough about them so this is the way to let the world know there is a good guy out there, too.”

Service members who are changing duty stations soon may find ICE valuable to get phone numbers of locations, building numbers and view user ratings for various spots around their new base.

Headquarters Marine Corps