Benefits of Digital Transformation in Government
Digital transformation is having a profound impact on the private sector. There are many resources and examples online that showcase the benefits it brings to small and medium-sized businesses as well as corporations. However, at the same time, digital technology also impacts and affects the public sector.
It can fundamentally change how the public sector tracks, records, and processes its internal operations and the data and services that it provides.
In this article, we will explore some of the benefits of digital transformation in government. Included in the discussion are the role of the big data pipeline, ML, and AI, in digital government transformation.
Government Services and Ease of Use
Government services and private sector services have one thing in common – the target audience is the same. However, while the private sector acknowledges customers’ modern needs and expectations, the public sector lags behind. A report shows that over 70% of customers feel frustrated when the experience is impersonal, and almost 90% of them don’t ever come back to the same company.
With the public sector, the situation is different because citizens face limited alternatives. Citizens expect the services to be conveniently available and easy to use. Often this is a challenge for public sector entities because of an inability to easily access, analyze, and leverage their own data. As an example, think of the last time you visited the DMV and the sheer volume of waiting and paperwork required to process simple transactions.
Today, technology enables data to be leveraged to drive innovation and fundamentally change business processes. As governments enable a data-drive architecture, they can begin to collect data, process it at different stages, and leverage insights to reinvent government services and make them extremely easy to use.
Simple digital tech solutions such as chatbots powered by Artificial Intelligence can also help governments streamline this process. They are good at gathering crucial data for service improvements and delivering services to people on the go.
People are already comfortable around online messaging systems. Chatbots seamlessly integrate into digital communication channels and can be fine-tuned to do particular tasks such as booking an appointment, providing support, and answering questions.
Smart Public Investment Ideas
Regardless of size, governments are responsible for two essential things – public infrastructure and public services. Both of these require a budget. However, governments always operate on a limited, yearly budget. Businesses do as well, and digital transformation has helped them significantly improve their finances.
Making investment ideas on a hunch, experience, or only by listening to the public opinion is a bad idea. The current situation calls for more sustainable ways of financing. Digital transformation can help governments change their entire public investment methodology and enable them to make smart public investment ideas.
Every process driving investment decisions should be examined for digital transformation opportunities. For instance, building a data pipeline that tracks how money is spent, including historical investment patterns, can help governments gain unparalleled spending visibility and more prudently allocate tax dollars.
The system can enable them to understand the current distribution of public resources, identify new public investment opportunities and improve their public resource allocation strategy.
Early insights for government entities that are investing in digital transformations are promising. According to the latest European Commission report, digital transformation helped various governments in the EU:
- Reduce operational and labor costs in public administrations
- Improve allocation of public resources
- Increase public value
- Include citizens in the decision-making process
Managing infrastructure becomes challenging in the midst of fluctuating budget restrictions. However, underinvesting in infrastructure creates considerable problems in the long run. Infrastructure typically needs to follow the trends of increasing economic activity and growing populations in order to meet the needs of its constituents.
What can digital transformation offer to governments in this area? With big data at their disposal, governments can more effectively identify critical infrastructure projects. More importantly, these are not overly complex solutions. For instance, a simple network of sensors throughout the city can identify issues with aging bridges, signal the need for railway maintenance, and identify many different maintenance activities that are due or overdue.
Digital transformation can help governments truly transform the transportation network, promote digital literacy, adopt various digital systems, and improve quality of life.
The Next Level of Citizen Security
While digital technologies streamline various processes and make our lives easier, they also create various vulnerabilities. The question is – “Is there anything governments can do to protect their citizens from cybersecurity threats?”. Digital transformation has the potential to improve citizen security and minimize cybersecurity risks.
Many experts are concerned that embracing digital technologies makes governments even more exposed to these threats. For instance, hackers can disable essential public services, steal data, or hijack computers on the networks. If this is the case, isn’t digital transformation a double-edged sword?
With digital infrastructure, big data pipelines, and various digital technologies implemented, governments can help defense organizations develop their early threat detection programs to prevent these attacks. There are also systems to check the data validity and encryption protocols to render it unusable to anyone without a key.
Not to mention that most digital technologies are cloud-based, meaning that the cloud service providers handle the security. It leaves governments only with concerns about how to use the cloud securely.
The digital transformation leaves governments with plenty of additional options to improve citizen security. Adding 2FA authentication to government portals, planning and launching biometric identification initiatives, or improving the payment systems, barely scratch the surface.
Attract Top Talent and Build Diverse Teams
The labor market is highly competitive. Governments worldwide were always struggling to attract and retain the top talent. Why would they hire top talent and build diverse teams after all? The markets are rapidly changing so are the people and their needs and wants.
To keep citizens happy, governments have to be innovative and agile. Digital transformation can help governments embrace innovation but also attract top talent to facilitate innovation even further. The latest research tells us that diverse teams manage to deliver better results due to innovation.
Digital transformation benefits governments because it enables them to create a more responsive and dynamic work environment where anyone can professionally grow and develop. It can also facilitate building a digital culture and align governments with the private sector’s best practices.
With the emerging technologies, governments will be able to reinvent their processes and automate most repetitive tasks, thus enabling employees to engage with more value-adding tasks.
Enhanced Level of Public Trust in Government
If you take a closer look at all the benefits digital transformation has to offer to governments, it becomes clear that it’s a “citizen-first” transformation. Its goal is not only to improve services and enable citizens to take advantage of modern infrastructure but also to improve their quality of life.
When governments have a solution with such a profound impact to improve service quality, enable efficient interaction, promote transparency, and personalize delivery, the level of public trust in government becomes a parallel process.
Many governments around the world have embraced digital transformation as something inevitable. While it definitely disrupts the status quo, digital transformation can help governments improve and personalize services, allocate resources better, and improve their citizens’ quality of life.
Is the public sector you are working in interested in digital transformation? Find out how Pandio can support your digital transformation by enabling ML and AI to get to data-driven decisions.