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Second Military-wide Survey Shows Satisfaction with MWR Programs Continues to Increase

Release Date: 12/1/2011

HQMC (MR), QUANTICO, VA. —  Results from the recently completed Department of Defense Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR)  programs Customer Satisfaction Survey show that satisfaction with Marine Corps MWR programs continues to improve. The survey which was conducted between June and August, was the second military-wide survey to assess customer satisfaction with MWR programs. 

To see the overall results, click the brief below:

Overall Marine Corps Satisfaction

Overall Active Duty Satisfaction

More than 17,000 active duty service members, across all Services, rated customer service, hours of operation, facility condition, and quality of service of MWR programs.

While the overall DoD customer satisfaction index score of 69 did not change from the first survey in 2009, changes in the individual Service customer satisfaction index scores were significant. Both Army and Marine Corps MWR satisfaction increased two points, 70 and 67 respectively; the Navy decreased one point but still had the highest overall satisfaction index score at 71; and Air Force decreased three points to 67.  For the first time, the 2011 survey included Service members from the National Guard and Reserves. National Guard and Reserves overall customer satisfaction index was higher than active duty at 70, as was their general satisfaction for each of the MWR program areas surveyed.

According to Catherine Ficadenti, Head of Semper Fit and Recreation Programs, “We are pleased to see the increase in satisfaction with our programs. Over the past few years, the Marine Corps has made significant investments in improving fitness and recreation programs aboard our installations and in the deployed environments. These results show that we have made progress, but there is still work that needs to be done.”

In all, eight Marine Corps MWR programs were rated for customer satisfaction with the Automotive Skills program earning the highest satisfaction score with a two point increase to 75. The Library Program earned a one point increase to 74, Single Service Member Program a two point increase to 74, Recreation Centers a four point increase to 74, Leisure Travel a one point increase to 72, Fitness Centers a one point increase to 70, and Outdoor Recreation remained the same at 69. This was the first time Swimming Pools were measured and the program earned a satisfaction score of 71. The score is based on a 0-100 scale, with 0 the lowest and 100 the highest. 

Consistent with the findings in the 2009 study, the top priority areas for improvement are Fitness Centers and Outdoor Recreation, followed closely by Single Service Member programs. Improvements in Fitness Center facilities and Outdoor Recreation programs will have the highest impact on overall satisfaction with MWR. The scores do not represent percent satisfied; instead the scores represent the average rating of three customer satisfaction questions on a 0 to 100 scale. Broadly speaking, scores in the 60s are characterized as "fine, but could use work," in the 70s as "good job, but keep working on it," and in the 80s as "excellent, keep it up."

The survey also measured the impact of MWR satisfaction on readiness, retention, and unit cohesion. The survey findings indicated that MWR has the greatest impact on readiness – if MWR satisfaction increases, readiness increases. The Marine Corps readiness score increased by five points to 69. Also significant was the finding that unit participation in MWR programs has a very positive effect on program satisfaction, MWR satisfaction, and the desired outcomes. 

“An important finding from the survey was the overall MWR Satisfaction score of 71 given by Marines who indicated their unit participated in MWR programs, which was seven points higher than Marines in units that did not participate in MWR programs. We will continue to look for the best ways to encourage unit participation,” said Ficadenti

Over the next several months, Marine Corps recreation program managers will conduct more in depth analysis of the survey results. An overview brief on the results of the Marine Corps MWR Satisfaction survey can be found at The next DoD MWR Customer Satisfaction Survey is planned for 2013. Questions about the survey can be directed to Jose Ver at 603-432-0334, or email

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