Service

  • Strategy and Transformation

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  • Citizen-Centric Personalized Digital Government
  • Government

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by Nortal

How a digital platform opens the door for value-added personalized public services

Accessing public services can be confusing and time-consuming. Information is buried in complex jargon, multiple office visits are required for different services, applications often demand signed hard copies of documents, and user experiences are inconsistent across departments. People might have put up with this before (though not without complaint)—but in an age of personalized private sector attentiveness, they expect the same from their public services as well. They want their tax dollars’ worth reflected in the level of attention they receive as citizens.

In this guide, we’ll explore the core components of GovTech and how digital platforms are shaping the future of governance and personalized public services.

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Foundations of digital government: GovTech core and its components

Unifying digital platforms is the first, most basic step for governments to enhance user experience. By offering a single access point for various services and information tailored to specific personal or business needs, users can more easily find what they’re looking for.

Although challenges exist, some pioneering countries have successfully overhauled their public services. More governments are now adopting this strategy, recognizing that success hinges on a cohesive, whole-of-government approach.

In the employment of this proactive, personalized public services model, four GovTech core components are essential.

1. Digital identity

Digital identity offers a secure and verified means of identifying citizens online through electronic credentials. Its implementation can be streamlined by using biometric authentication and cloud infrastructure; moreover, governments can enhance efficiency by creating a shared platform for digital IDs, reducing system duplication and excess data collection.

When it comes to GovTech, the importance of digital identity is multifaceted. Digital identities allow citizens to securely access a wide range of government services online, such as applying for benefits, filing taxes, and registering for healthcare. This reduces the need for physical documents and in-person visits.

Individuals also gain greater control over their personal information. They are able to share only the necessary data required for a particular service, helping to protect their privacy. Establishing a trusted digital identity framework can increase confidence in digital interactions, encouraging more citizens to engage with online government services.

From an administrative perspective, streamlining verification processes reduces paperwork, processing times, and overhead. This means significant savings for both government agencies and citizens. In addition, a digital identity framework is designed to work across different government departments and services; this allows for a more integrated approach to public service delivery and reduced redundant identity checks.

2. Interoperability frameworks

Interoperability frameworks are crucial for ensuring that different government information systems, processes, and services work together seamlessly. These frameworks provide the standards and guidelines for the integration of various technologies and platforms across multiple departments. The goal is for data and services to be shared efficiently, securely, and in a way that enhances the delivery of government services to citizens.

Standardization, security, and scalability are key to establishing a successful interoperability framework. Standardized data formats, communication protocols, and interfaces ensure that different systems can understand and use the data exchanged between them; these frameworks facilitate the integration of disparate systems, allowing them to function as a cohesive whole. This can involve linking databases, software applications, and other digital resources. In addition, the framework provides governance models that define the roles, responsibilities, and rules for how different entities within government interact with one another and share information.

Interoperability frameworks encourage collaboration between government agencies as well as with private sector partners to foster innovation and leverage complementary capabilities. However, ensuring the privacy of citizens’ data during the exchange is critical. Security protocols form an essential component of these frameworks, establishing guidelines for data privacy that comply with relevant laws and regulations.

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3. Electronic voting

E-voting refers to the use of electronic means to cast and count votes in an election. It’s a core component of GovTech initiatives, which aim to improve the efficiency, accessibility, and transparency of government processes through technology.

E-voting can make participation in elections easier for people with disabilities, those living in remote areas, or citizens residing abroad. It also reduces the need for physical polling stations, allowing people to vote using their personal devices instead. By reducing the need for paper ballots and related materials, the process is also more environmentally friendly.

Over the long term, e-voting has the potential to lower the costs associated with elections by reducing the need for physical infrastructure, printed ballots, and the manpower required for traditional voting methods; it can also lead to faster vote counting and result tabulation and reduce human error in the counting of votes. In addition, e-voting systems can collect detailed data on voting patterns and preferences, which can be valuable for future planning and policymaking.

4. One-stop government shops

One-stop government shops are centralized platforms where citizens can access a variety of personalized public services from multiple government departments or agencies in a single place. This functions as part of a broader effort to streamline government service delivery, making it more convenient, efficient, and user-friendly for citizens.

For instance, new parents could obtain a birth certificate, apply for child benefits, register for parental leave, and access related services in one simplified step, rather than repeatedly providing the same information to various agencies—many of which may require in-person visits.

Some of the benefits of one-stop government shops include:

  • Improved convenience, as citizens can access different services in one location
  • Centralized and simplified processes, reducing bureaucracy and making it easier for citizens to understand what is required of them
  • Increased accessibility for those in remote areas or for individuals with mobility issues
  • Improved service quality with staff trained to assist with a range of services
  • A decreased need for multiple separate offices, staff, and resources—which essentially means cost savings for the government
  • Increased efficiency and better coordination between departments and agencies
  • Enhanced data management, which provides a more holistic view of citizen needs and service usage
  • More effective resource allocation by analyzing the data collected from these centralized points of service to identify trends and areas of high demand
  • Improved compliance and oversight

Gateway to government e-services

The proliferation of data and rapid evolution of digital technology have created the perfect environment for governments worldwide to implement truly efficient, proactive services for the public. Creating a unified digital access point requires significant effort, investment, and dedication. However, the rewards are substantial, as evidenced by the successes in various nations globally.

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Estonia, for example, ranks number one for digital public sector services in The Digital Economy and Society Index. The redesign of Estonia’s state portal, eesti.ee, enhanced user experience and accessibility. The portal, a key communication channel between citizens and the state, includes over 500 e-services. The redesign focused on personalizing the portal for logged-in users and involved creating persona mindset maps and customer journey maps based on user data and interests.

The result is a more user-friendly portal that offers personalized government services and information relevant to individual users, including those with partial sight.

 

 

Personalized public services for a digital society

The movement toward personalized public services reflects a larger shift toward more interconnected, responsive, and citizen-centric governance. By prioritizing user needs and expectations, governments can increase public satisfaction, build trust, and foster deeper engagement.

To successfully make the shift towards Government-as-a-Platform solutions, vision and strategy need to merge cohesively with legal frameworks and emerging technologies. The balanced and systematic development of such a monumental endeavor requires that public sector organizations collaborate with vendor-neutral experts. From designing and implementing a robust technological infrastructure to onboarding the program and developing a communication strategy, strategic partnerships that contribute to public trust are key.

Public departments globally have significantly improved efficiency, cost savings, and responsiveness. Embrace the revolutionary benefits of a digital society—talk to an expert today.

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Personal government is a vision that considers the next stage of already developed digital societies to provide more human-centric public services, considering the complexities where traditional digital government approaches do not necessarily provide a straightforward solution.

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