10 November 2021
Digital Transformation in Government
Digital transformation is essential for government bodies to implement. As citizens' expectations change in regards to technology, digital services and web chat software. Government departments need to keep up.
It's a constant challenge for government bodies to keep up with the technological demands of the public. Both local and national government entities need to respond to the ways that people use technology in their everyday lives and provide them with information and services in a way that meets their needs. Today, that means more than simply having a website.
Local authorities can struggle to offer the digital services that their constituents expect, whether due to budgeting issues or the general challenges of modernising. However, both central and local governments are taking steps to become more modern and start digitising.
Councils and central government organisations can face challenges as they work to implement digital transformation. However, there are also many tools and services that they can use and various approaches that can help with putting strategies into place.
The National Data Strategy
The Government has set out its commitment to a digital future through its National Data Strategy. The strategy responds to the need for national governments to respond to the vast technological advances and changes of the last few years. The data strategy looks at "how we can leverage existing UK strengths to boost the better use of data across businesses, government, civil society, and individuals". One of the missions laid out in the strategy is transforming the government's use of data to drive efficiency and improve public services.
The Government's Digital Transformation Strategy also concerns itself with how the Government will harness digital to build and deliver services. It acknowledges that many departments have started to change how they deliver services, which has improved the experience of a significant number of services. However, it also notes that organisations without public-facing services haven't benefited from as much focus on digital transformation. It sets out three key components to continuing digital transformation, which are to transform whole citizen-facing services, full-department transformation, and internal government transformation. Their vision includes transforming the relationship between citizens and the state, giving citizens more power, and being more responsive to their needs.
Many changes are taking place for the central GOV.UK website. One project taking place is making all forms on the website accessible, easy to use, and quick to process. A trial has also taken place providing GOV.UK Accounts, which allows users to save personalised answers on the site, log back in, and receive notifications. This helps to join up different services on the site and make them more personalised. Other plans include improving navigation on the website.
Digital Transformation at the Local Level
Local councils are also focusing on digital strategy. For example, the City of Westminster has outlined how they are improving customer experience and digital strategy as a flagship local authority aiming to lead the way in engaging with local communities and delivering services. They aim to change the way that people interact with the council to make it easy for them to find the information and services that they need. This includes exploring how automation and machine learning can help them to make better use of information, prevent problems, and find new ways to deliver services.
One way that local authorities are digitising is through the use of digital tools in the planning process. In June 2021, the Housing Minister announced that £1.1 million would be distributed across 10 councils to implement a pathfinder programme for testing the use of digital tools and data standards.
The programme aims to increase community engagement and speed up the planning process by modernising it through digital transformation. This includes using a digital system that makes plans map-based and accessible online so that residents can engage with planning in their area and homes can be built quicker. It will involve local councils testing how existing plans translate into the new system and developing and testing data standards through the site selection process.
Connecting with People Using Web Chat
Digital transformation can help local authorities to improve their communication and customer service. Webchat is one of the tools that they can use to provide an up-to-date way to connect with people and provide information more quickly.
'Experiences' by Click4Assistance is a flexible solution that helps local authorities to create the right experience for their customers. We provide live chat software to both central and local government organisations and have developed a large amount of knowledge and experience during the time we have been doing so. Click4Assistance offers a secure solution that is designed to be tailored to the specific needs of local authorities. We know the ins and outs of local councils and the issues that they face. When you have to deal with issues ranging from parking permits to refuse, smooth and efficient communication is essential.
Live chat can help local authorities to respond rapidly to a wide variety of issues. Both authorities and citizens can benefit from using live chat, which can save time and ensure people are provided with the information that they need in a way that's convenient for them.
A chatbot can help free up your staff members' time by automating answers to repetitive questions. It adds to your existing team, rather than replacing it, answering the queries that don't necessarily require a human response but still offering a human touch. When a human response is needed, the bot can connect with an available team member so that they can smoothly take over and provide the required assistance. It also provides a full transcript of the conversation until that point so that the team member can easily pick up where the chatbot left off.
Click4Assistance even allows communication on multiple platforms, further enhancing the amount of choice for service users. Integration is available for options such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and SMS. Video Chat and Meeting Rooms can even provide a face-to-face connection.
Digital transformation in government can be a challenging and often slow process. However, both central government organisations and local authorities are striving to improve customer experience through digital services, and there are multiple tools and strategies to use.