Digital government transformation is here to stay.
Both agencies and citizens benefit from digital transformation in the public sector because operational efficiency and customer experience go hand in hand. A digital-first approach to public services and payments allows state and local governments to serve their citizens better, optimize operational processes and boost revenues.
Increased commitment to digitalization post-pandemic
Governments and businesses alike have accelerated their digital efforts to attend to the increased demand for online services and remote forms of work prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. A 2021 Deloitte survey on government digital transformation indicates that agencies will keep growing their commitments to modernization in a post-pandemic world.
Deloitte has surveyed 800 government leaders from eight countries. According to 77% of the respondents, digital initiatives pushed during the pandemic are already positively impacting their agencies. They cited the need to modernize infrastructure and services to keep up with the times as the top reasons to invest in digitalization.
What is digital transformation?
Digital transformation is the adoption of digital technology to transform processes and service delivery. There is a difference between “doing digital,” for example, digitalizing high-volume essential services, and “being digital,” which also involves a change in operating models through the use of technologies such as workflow automation and cloud computing.
Gartner states that 80% of governments are still at the early or the developing stages of digital maturity. The biggest challenges in digital transformation include budget restrictions, lack of knowledge of where to start and a culture averse to risks and changes.
Improved citizen engagement in local government is a priority
Citizen engagement is the interaction between citizens and their governments. Reporting a pothole, paying taxes and renewing a driver’s license are examples of how citizens engage with local and state agencies.
To improve engagement, the public sector needs to meet citizens’ high expectations for service delivery. As Gartner points out, customer experience is a key performance indicator (KPI) driving digital transformation in government.
“By 2022, half of all digital government key performance indicators will include a citizen/customer experience metric to ensure that services delivered are citizen-centric.”
Seamless service delivery: any time, anywhere, from any device
Citizens want convenience and seamless interaction with their governments. This trend drives the need to provide access to public services and payments anywhere, anytime and from any device. Digital transformation enables government agencies to do just that and more.
PayIt helps state and local governments consolidate electronic public services and payments into a one-stop platform that saves everyone time and money. As the video below shows, that was the case for the city of St. Louis, which is now a leader in digital transformation.
Having online services is not enough to fully transform government operations and meet citizens’ increasing demands. Governments need to invest in the usability of their online offerings. When users face an error or have to input the same information over and over again, they have an unsatisfactory experience. Cumbersome or confusing websites cause frustration and poor citizen engagement.
It’s also imperative to offer an omni-channel approach that enables constituents to access public services and payments through multiple channels such as phones, branches, computers and mobile devices. The White House informs that over 30 million people in the United States live in areas with no high-speed internet access. One of the goals of the new bipartisan infrastructure legislation is to bridge this digital divide. The new funding is expected to leverage initiatives of digital transformation.
An example of a successful omni-channel strategy comes from the city of St. Louis. Residents can pay their taxes in-office with POS, over the phone with IVR or online with a website or an app.
“Wherever our customers are, we are meeting them there.”
~ Gregory F.X. Daily, Collector of Revenue of the city of St. Louis
Unified citizen experience
Governments can also improve user experience through a unified platform. Citizens do not want to go through different portals to access government payment services. An integrated approach means that consumers can use a single platform to pay for transactions such as utility bills, property taxes, driver’s license fees, tickets, tolls and court fines.
Consider the example of the City of Toronto. Residents currently have to navigate more than 10 separate channels throughout the year to manage over 20 residential services and payments. Toronto has signed a deal with PayIt to merge all those portals into one integrated digital experience.
Torontonians will also be able to store documents, receipts and preferred payment methods in their PayIt digital wallet. This partnership will contribute to an improved customer experience and a more cost-effective operation.
Government modernization is key to streamlining operations
Digital transformation can help governments to redefine not only public-facing services but also their back-end operations. When governments consolidate payments into one platform, they accelerate reconciliation efforts, revenue collection and disbursement.
Agencies should take into account that:
- Efficiency is one of the pillars of digital transformation
- Modernization can help agencies to achieve operational excellence
- Government workflow automation improves efficiency and reduces costs
Efficient processes with automation
Governments can use automation to perform repetitive tasks, eliminate redundant data entry, reduce errors and paperwork and even overcome resource limitations. Freeing employees from those tedious tasks helps to increase their morale, too. A Deloitte study notes that, for 83% of government officials interviewed, process automation is already making a significant positive impact on their agencies.
An integrated records management system makes it simpler to gather and process information. This type of automation minimizes the workforce costs of having employees physically locating or processing records and payments. According to a Total Economic Impact™ (TEI) study conducted by Forrester Consulting, agencies can save $190,084 over three years from reducing document and payment processing.
Cost-savings, higher revenue collection and agile disbursement
Digital transformation helps governments deliver better services at a lower cost. For example, PayIt enables agencies to send automated reminders about upcoming renewals and bills. This feature contributes to reduced mail expenses, and it is more practical for the residents.
The increased convenience of paying online or through a mobile device drives customer compliance and reduces delinquent payment. Revenue collection becomes more efficient because citizens can even set automatic payments. After deploying PayIt, the City of St. Louis experienced a 98% year-over-year increase in online revenue collected.
Gregory F.X. Daily, Collector of Revenue of the city of St. Louis, adds that PayIt’s platform has given them the ability to streamline the reconciliation process. With tax revenues collected digitally, the disbursement process has become more agile.
“PayIt has given us that ability to make sure that the taxpayer dollars are going to where they should be going the easiest way possible.”
— Gregory F.X. Daily, Collector of Revenue of the City of St. Louis
Transparency helps to build trust
A report from PwC about trends in digital government cites tracking and transparency as critical to building trust between agencies and citizens.
Transparency enables enhanced citizen satisfaction and government efficiency. Residents save time by checking the status of their applications online when there is no need to call or visit government buildings.
Easy access to information makes the process more efficient for governments, too, eliminating the need for employees to address resident inquiries. The TEI study of deploying PayIt indicates that agencies can save $75,991 from reducing walk-in customers over three years.
A scalable and secure digital platform
Aiming for a scalable and secure digital platform is a top priority for government CIOs, according to Gartner’s Accelerate Digital for Future-Ready Government report.
PayIt integrates agencies’ existing record systems into one convenient platform. Our team works with state and local agencies to identify and pull in the appropriate data sets, automate workflows and create a seamless transfer and deployment.
Organizations are increasingly prioritizing cloud-based technologies because they offer increased security. PayIt’s platform is built on AWS GovCloud and meets the highest security and compliance standards. Our PCI Level 1 Merchant certification protects your agency from fraudulent transactions.
Leverage the power of government technology with PayIt
Digital transformation brings governments and their citizens closer together. PayIt’s clients serve over 80 million Americans with a superior digital experience—all while boosting efficiency and reducing operating costs.
We can do the same for your residents—at no cost to your organization. Book a demo and learn more.