Category Archives: Customer service

An Update on Our Dispute Resolution Program

We’ve written before about the profound impact the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 has had on our workload, and that impact has only continued to grow.  Demand for our services has roughly quadrupled since the passage of the bill, while … Continue reading

Posted in About OGIS, Customer service | 1 Comment

Who Ya Gonna Call?

The FOIA process can be confusing for requesters, especially those who are filing their first FOIA requests or who do not know much about how a particular agency functions. Unfortunately, figuring out who you should contact within an agency to … Continue reading

Posted in About OGIS, Alternative dispute resolution, Best practices, Customer service, FOIA Public Liaisons | 1 Comment

Help Me FOIA. Help, Help Me FOIA.

As we have discussed, the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 requires that agencies inform FOIA requesters that they can ask for assistance from OGIS and an agency’s FOIA Public Liaison (FPL) throughout the request process. But what kind of help … Continue reading

Posted in About OGIS, Alternative dispute resolution, Customer service, FOIA Public Liaisons | 4 Comments

Reserve a Seat for Dispute Resolutions Skills Training Session

We are happy to announce that registration is now open for the October 18 session of our popular Dispute Resolution Skills for FOIA Professionals training. The free day-long session will be at the National Archives in downtown Washington, DC, location. … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative dispute resolution, Best practices, Customer service, FOIA Public Liaisons, Training | Leave a comment

The ABC’s of OGIS Training

As summer winds down and pictures of kids on their first day of school fill up our social media feeds, we thought it might be a good time for a pop quiz on OGIS’s training program. Test your knowledge with … Continue reading

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Upcoming Training Opportunity for FOIA Professionals

FOIA Public Liaisons and the professionals who staff FOIA requester service centers play a key role in the FOIA process—they provide valuable assistance with a process that can confuse requesters. The recently passed FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 expands the … Continue reading

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Have a FOIA Question? We are Here to Help

As the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Ombudsman, one of OGIS’s important functions is to help FOIA requesters better understand how the FOIA process works. We do this by working directly with those who contact our office and by making … Continue reading

Posted in Best practices, Customer service, Ombudsman, Plain Language | 1 Comment

Case Study in Clarity

We play a valuable role in facilitating communications between a requester and an agency. A recent request made by National Public Radio (NPR) to the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) provides an example of this function. NPR reporter Caitlin Dickerson made … Continue reading

Posted in About OGIS, Alternative dispute resolution, Best practices, Customer service, FOIA Public Liaisons, Mediation services, OGIS Case Study | 1 Comment

The Appeal of the Appeal Letter

While the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requires agencies to notify requesters of the legal reasoning for upholding either all or part of an initial denial, the statute gives agencies very little—well, actually, no—additional guidance about what should be in … Continue reading

Posted in About FOIA, Best practices, Customer service | 1 Comment

Smart Solutions to FOIA Problems

We have learned through both our mediation services and agency assessment programs that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to administering a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) program. Agencies process different kinds of requests for vastly different records, and each agency … Continue reading

Posted in About FOIA, Best practices, Customer service, National Archives and Records Administration, Review | 1 Comment