3 ways to deliver better citizen services
- Posted on September 16, 2021
- Estimated reading time 4 minutes
The relationship between citizen and state relies on trust. And technology can help you deliver personalised ethical digital services that citizens can rely on and feel confident using. From there, trust blossoms.
The starting point is ease-of-use. Interactions between the state and its citizens should be easy to follow and clearly benefit the citizen. But they also need to be carried out as cost-effectively as possible.
In a time where interactions with citizens feel increasingly impersonal, technology is offering a viable way forward for the UK Government, enabling quick, efficient, ethical and tailored communications.
There are plenty of recent examples to choose from
The government is already using advanced data analytics to identify fraudulent Covid-19 financial support claims, helping the state claw back millions of pounds in misused funds.
Elsewhere, chatbots are helping citizens receive a better contact centre experience, making it easier to understand bills, make payments, complete applications and much more.
Automation is helping government teams and departments save time and free up resources, especially in administrative back-office functions.
These are just the tip of the iceberg. Through modernisation and digital transformation, government bodies can build great services – and build trust.
Three areas you can improve with technology
- Use of data: Transforming government services for the better relies on timely, accurate insights – in other words, data. The government has access to a wealth of untapped potential in the form of underutilised data that could be harnessed to promote citizen wellbeing, understand societal trends and enhance services.
But digital ethics questions still need to be answered: how do we get consent to use this data? We need to demonstrate the benefits much more powerfully than we have done so far.
To make the most of this data, public sector organisations need tools and capabilities that can find, analyse and make sense of it. This is where Microsoft’s business intelligence and analytical tools – like Azure Synapse – are essential. It can help governments break down silos and connect the dots of disparate data sources to generate insights that are pivotal for improved outcomes and informed decision making. One government blue light service is using an Azure Synapse solution – built, supported and developed by Avanade – to analyse incident data across all 43 regions in the UK.
- Connecting citizens:
83% of citizens want the flexibility to access digital services from a PC, mobile app, or kiosk. The pandemic has proved it’s possible in the public sector to rapidly take advantage of digital technologies to provide similar experiences and flexibility to what citizens are accustomed to in the private sector.
In the United States, Avanade is helping local governments leverage mobility, Internet of Things (IoT), and AI to increase the timeliness and effectiveness of responses to non-emergency citizen services request lines (the equivalent of the UK’s 111 service).
Tech is also making a difference to the UK justice system. With in-person court proceedings paused during the pandemic, Avanade has been helping solve this problem with video-enabled courts and virtual sessions powered by Microsoft Teams and our Virtual Visits Solution.
- Automation: Some public sector tasks require repetitive, high-volume tasks that leave little room for creativity and problem-solving. However, with advances in robotics process automation (RPA), this dynamic is shifting.
RPA works by mimicking the actions a worker would perform on the computer – but at scale. The tasks it automates are repetitive and rules based. With RPA, public sector organisations have the opportunity to alleviate their employees from the burden of monotonous work so that they can focus on higher-value tasks.
RPA can help in many different ways, such as sorting data, scheduling appointments, building rotas, automating customer service processes for call centres, case management for support applications, processing claims and complaints, and much more. Avanade’s own Intelligent Automation Platform and supporting services can accelerate the value of RPA across government. Whether you’re just starting your automation journey or are looking to modernize an existing RPA implementation, it’s the ideal solution.
How we can overcome these challenges
At Avanade, we understand the complexities of the public sector ecosystem. We’ve helped more than 450 public sector organisations to overcome their digitalisation hurdles so they can empower the people with the tools they need to perform at their best.
For example, working with the Saarland Police in Germany, we overhauled the police force’s manual paperwork process through a seamless, intuitive mobile application. This led to double-digit time savings for officers, as well as reducing the occurrence of manual errors.
How Avanade can help
We have the digital expertise to help governments and public services organisations unleash the potential of digitalisation to meet the changing expectations of citizens, employees, and other stakeholders. We are perfectly placed to help the public sector reap the rewards of Microsoft ecosystem technologies.