How Local Governments Are Using Technology to Serve Citizens Better

In a world that is connected and customer-centric, people expect their needs to be met quickly and seamlessly. Local governments have often taken a different approach. Forms need to be printed and mailed, payments are only accepted via cash or check, and office hours are restricted. Technology can help better the lives of people while demonstrating value and increasing civic engagement.

Borrowed from the digital/technology sector, there are five key things that can help local governments:

1: Scale matters – In the customer internet sector, a substantial audience leads to a substantial impact. When new apps allow residents to check transit schedules or pay local taxes the impact adds up.

2: Meshing online and offline efforts – Successful government organizations use both online and offline touchpoints to build a digital audience.

3: Government accounts should connect seamlessly – Rather than having multiple accounts for different services, government agencies could work together to share information and back-end databases to create a seamless experience for the residents.

4: Engagement depends on smart segmenting – To attain private-sector standards of engagement while simultaneously respecting the privacy of citizens, government organizations should segment and target their audience while tailoring the communication to their particular interests. This will capture the attention of citizens and engage them in programs and initiatives of value.

5: Influencers improve engagement – Getting the right message into the hands of the right people creates a viral effect. A 2014 Pew Research study showed that fewer than 30% of adults completed common government services digitally. The key component is that many citizens may not know about the digital offerings available to them. Advocacy marketing could help spread this message.

For Government, the biggest challenge in achieving effective digital experiences for citizens is funding.  Technology funding methods are often as outdated and manual as the citizen services they support.  Effective citizen digital experience begins with effect digital funding methods and approaches.  Start with digitizing the funding process as a path to modernize the citizen digital experience. 

Proven IT Finance has worked with government clients since 2012 to help them build and mature their Technology Business Management. PITF is a sponsor at this year’s Government IT Modernization Summit in Washington DC from July 29-31. View the full event guide:  http://bit.ly/2UGZ7l9  All active federal, military, and government employees attend at no cost. Vendors receive 20% off with code: GOVIT19_Sponsor. Save your pass here: http://bit.ly/GovIT_FreePass

Link: https://hbr.org/2016/01/how-local-governments-are-using-technology-to-serve-citizens-better