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How municipal billing software promotes accountability and transparency in your administration

Government as a Service

Surveys by the United Nations suggest that there has been a decline in constituent trust in governments over the last decade. Transparency and accountability, which help build trust, are critical to reverse this trend. 

Access to information online has increased constituents’ interest in public sector transparency. A study by Deloitte reveals that residents tend to trust local governments more than state and federal governments. Local governments are closer to residents because they offer basic services that directly impact daily life, such as water, electricity and waste management. 

Agencies that deploy government technology such as municipal billing software are able to provide constituents with agile updates on workflows and processes. This capability increases trust in the public sector, which leads to social and economic progress. 

Key takeaways:

  • Periodic updates on government activities improve constituents’ perception of government transparency. 
  • Online payment solutions indicate government digital transformation, which results in efficiency and accountability. 
  • Adopting municipal billing software provides access to data in real time and increases transparency. 

Transparency and accountability are the foundation of public service 

Thriving economies are a result of an expansion and efficient use of capital and labor. Government institutions manage branches of the public sector such as health care, education and transportation with funds generated from their constituency. 

According to a survey of U.S. residents conducted by Deloitte, a distant government tends to be a distrusted government. Individuals and private entities only invest in economies that they believe to be well-managed, functional and profitable. A publicly accountable government is therefore critical to a sustainable administration of the public sector. 

Utility payment software enables efficient service delivery 

Utility bill payment software enables providers to manage the cost of utilities such as gas, sewer and waste management for each resident. Agencies can use workflow automation to execute repetitive tasks such as collecting payment information and sending notifications of due dates. Increased operational efficiency translates into improved service delivery.

According to the 2021 survey conducted by the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO), 74% of CIOs believe providing a better online experience for residents to be the biggest driver for government digital transformation

Here are some ways utility payment software can help you provide better resident experiences:

  • User-focused solutions. You can customize your payment software to meet the specific needs of your residents. For example, a constituency with a high number of elderly residents can offer a solution with a clean interface that is easy to navigate.  
  • Innovation and updates backed by data. A utility billing software enables you to consistently create solutions tailored to your constituents’ needs as you can track features most residents use and conduct surveys to understand the general need. 
  • Digital inclusion. With municipal billing software for utilities, you can provide online solutions to people in underserved communities and foster interest in online opportunities.   
  • Civic engagement and participation. A payment software encourages your residents to view notifications on their payment portal, which makes information dissemination efficient when you need to share vital utility updates. 

How online payment solutions aid government accountability and transparency 

Per a study conducted by Pew Research, only 20% of Americans trust the government to do the right thing most of the time. Deploying municipal billing software can help agencies strengthen trust because they enhance transparency and accountability to constituents.  

These are some specific ways a payment software can boost transparency in government:

  • Providing data in real-time. Information is available to the public on-demand since all computing is done automatically.  
  • Requiring little to no human input. Automated workflows leave little to no room for bypassing due process or partiality, which may sometimes occur when individuals manage utility billing activities.  
  • Enabling constituents to get results quickly. Since payment software provides real-time data, government agencies can respond to press inquiries and resident requests swiftly and efficiently. 
  • Improving accuracy in reporting. Since data is processed by technology that is more accurate than individuals, constituents are confident in the findings of periodic reports.  

The City of Grand Rapids, through a partnership with PayIt to create an online payment solution, was able to accurately estimate the total utility revenue collected in 2021 and track the adoption of government digital solutions by residents. With GR PayIt, residents can view, track and pay utility bills online. 

Infographic on GR PayIt objectives and achievements


Achieve government workflow transparency with PayIt 

A transparent government builds trusts for residents, which improves constituent compliance. 

Transparency promotes accountability by providing constituents with access to government decisions and actions. Book a demo with our team of experts today and discover how your agency can easily share revenue data and other developments with the public. 

Frequently asked questions

What steps can government agencies take to improve transparency?

Government institutions can replace manual processes and legacy technology with modern government software that works faster and gives a clear view of the undertakings of any agency. 

How can PayIt software keep government institutions accountable?

While PayIt designs its solutions to fit your constituents’ needs, the software includes features that provide information such as total revenue accrued within a given period and the number of residents who use the payment solution. This structure enables government institutions to provide accurate information on request. 

What other services can be offered online to improve the constituent experience? 

In addition to collecting utility payments, government institutions can also offer DMV services, process licenses, collect toll payments and court levies online to provide better experiences for residents.