GovTech Solution Series
In an earlier paper, we covered the reasons governments can benefit from choosing an enterprise platform when investing in technology. Governments continue to face challenges when implementing technology to help them provide services, mainly: a high set of expectations from citizens that the technology investments make it as easy to work with the government as their interactions with online retailers like Amazon and online services like Instacart. Additionally, governments face a high set of expectations that limited dollars raised from taxpayers are spent wisely and for maximum benefit.
Our next series of papers will examine how governments are leveraging our Amanda platform in innovative ways and across multiple departments to ultimately provide better services to citizens.
The break between citizen expectation and reality of government services generally comes when citizens have a different experience with different departments of the same jurisdiction. That usually stems from information not being passed between departments easily — in turn requiring citizens to “start fresh” each time they interact with a different department.
That reality often starts when different departments within the same jurisdiction use different software and systems to manage services. When that happens, several other challenges to the provision of great citizen services arise:
- Data is often created and stored in multiple systems, including legacy ones, which prevents governments from being able to have a “360-degree” view of their customer to better anticipate and meet their needs.
- Citizens receive an inconsistent experience when departments use different software applications to deliver their services.
- Often different departments are providing like services, but not taking advantage of a shared set of data. Consider different departments in a municipal government one granting building permits and the other business licenses. A business in that jurisdiction, with one set of data (e.g. business name, physical address, payment account information, etc.) should be easily able to work with both departments. When data is shared between those departments, it reduces the time spent by the business by not having to provide the same data more than once, thereby making it more efficient to work with that government.
- And, multiple deployments of multiple technologies quickly lead to “app sprawl” making it more difficult for government CIOs and technology professionals to secure, patch, and update technology and meet uptime requirements.
The ability to support and provide a consistent experience across multiple services, share data across departments and provide a “360-degree” view of the customer are the most important benefits of investing in the right enterprise platform. Our Amanda platform enables governments to digitize and automate services across more than 50 regulatory-type functions, from building permits to hazardous materials management to animal licensing, and Freedom of Information operations.
Additionally, data from various uses of Amanda across different government departments can be stored in a common dataset. This gives governments one set of data about each citizen or business that can be shared across departments — making it much easier for those citizens and businesses to work with various departments in the same jurisdiction. This also provides the government a “360-degree” view of each customer with data — allowing for analysis of that data to best understand all the needs and activities of each citizen and business, and strategically plan for future needs.
Calytera customers are using Amanda to manage services across each of these areas, and many customers are using Amanda in many, if not all their departments.
Governments who are managing services like building inspection and permitting, almost certainly have a department responsible for other types of licensing — potentially animal, taxi and rideshare, or business and trade licensing. The flexibility of Amanda makes it easy for additional departments to use the platform to digitize and automate their services. This improves overall service for citizens and adds to the common data set, which has additional benefits to the government and citizens. When the same citizen information is kept in a common data set there is less room for error, and it makes it easier to work with multiple government departments. And as governments collect and standardize this data, the potential to analyze and action it grows helping power strategic decisions in an efficient way.
It’s also important to consider that many governments are being challenged with needing to regulate, license, and serve entirely new industries based on evolving state/provincial and federal laws. For example, several states and provinces now need a system to regulate and license cannabis distribution and sales. And many jurisdictions need to regulate rideshare services which have far more individuals and vehicles involved than taxi services historically have.
An additional benefit of a flexible and extendible platform like Amanda is the ability of multiple jurisdictions using it as a shared service. This especially has value for smaller communities and governments. When land use or licensing requirements can be standardized across several jurisdictions, the power of using one platform to manage those greatly improves citizen service levels and immediately increases the return on investment for governments involved because it lowers the cost of accessing the platform.
Over the next several months, we’ll look more closely at Calytera customers that use Amanda in innovative ways to improve citizen services and/or their return on investment. The stories may inspire readers to find new ways to use Amanda across their jurisdiction’s departments and extend Amanda yet further. Sharing the stories supports our shared focus on collaboration — sharing the best ideas so that we most effectively help our customers build safe and prosperous communities.