4 Key Actions to Amplify Digital Gains and Resilience in Government

May 20, 2022

To better serve citizens, focus on actions that improve the breadth, depth and responsiveness of their digital experience.

In short: 

  • Amid pandemic disruptions, governments harnessed the power and benefits of digital technologies to serve citizens, but many of their legacy systems and delivery models proved unable to scale for greater impact. 
  • We predict there will be ongoing pressure on government CIOs to transform citizen and employee experiences, build agile organizations and sustainable service delivery models, and strengthen the overall resilience of the public sector. 
  • Investments in hyperscale cloud services, hyperautomation, total experience (TX), data and analytics (D&A), and artificial intelligence (AI) are key to improving government service delivery in the long run. 

COVID-19 disruptions challenged the ability of traditional government operations to deliver services to citizens, destabilizing operations and creating significant gaps and fraud in service delivery. But some organizations navigated the crisis with great agility, maintaining or even scaling up service delivery.

“Keeping citizens at the top of the priority list is critical to keeping the government focused on its main mission. Government organizations must also focus on helping their employees to make more evidence-based decisions, both at policy and operational levels,” says Arthur Mickoleit, Director, Analyst, Gartner. 

Government CIOs can improve the breadth, depth and responsiveness of their digital public services by taking these four actions.

Download now: Why Digital Transformation Is Challenging in Government — and How to Do it Right

No. 1: Operate workloads using hyperscalers

By 2025, Gartner predicts that over 75% of governments will operate more than half of workloads using hyperscale cloud service providers. Such providers use their significant investment capabilities to outpace competition in the drive for product innovation, security and cost-efficiency. 

During the pandemic, hyperscale cloud services often proved their worth, delivering the fast-response solutions and scaling needed to deal with the growing crisis. Governments want mature offerings from the hyperscalers, but they also want to preserve the sovereignty and autonomy of decision making. Several such mutually beneficial initiatives are underway. 

Working with hyperscalers can also alleviate talent and sustainability challenges. The more complex an organization’s technology mix, and the more that agencies have to deliver, the more acute the talent shortage will be. Simplifying the architectural landscape by moving to “as-a-service” models can make it easier to recruit skilled talent at the necessary scale. 

Government CIOs are more likely to achieve carbon emissions savings with efficient hyperscalers than with local or even on-premises deployments. Massive aggregation of processing and storage, as hyperscalers do, is inherently a more efficient use of power, making the decision to remain local tougher. 

Key Actions for Government CIOs to Amplify Digital Gains

No. 2: Create synergies between different experience disciplines 

By 2023, at least 85% of governments without a total experience (TX) strategy will fail to successfully transform government services. Moving to TX helps governments attract, retain and cultivate skills in their workforce by providing modern tools and approaches to complete the important work of government with less friction.

A TX approach combines the disciplines of citizen experience (CX), employee experience (EX), user experience (UX) and multiexperience (MX) into one holistic service design and delivery approach. By reimagining the user journeys of citizens and employees, and by developing and tracking key metrics for both groups, governments can improve satisfaction and outcomes for all constituents. 

Vendors are starting to package emerging technology applications, such as AI and machine learning (ML), into offers that represent core business applications and capabilities. Examples are case management and experience management. This focus on outcomes can drive higher value for citizens and employees, and also rationalize government IT investments for CIOs.  

Learn more: Everything You Need to Know About Artificial Intelligence

No. 3: Launch hyperautomation initiatives

By 2024, 75% of governments will have at least three enterprisewide hyperautomation initiatives underway. These actions enable proactive and almost “contactless” access to government resources by automating as many business and IT processes as possible. 

The accelerated deployment of digital solutions, such as chatbots, unified communications and collaboration, wireless broadband, and low-code platforms during the pandemic, has led to expanded use — and increasing impacts — of automation technologies within the government workforce. Hyperautomation is scaled enterprisewide by embracing digital government technology platform (DGTP) concepts (such as interoperability) and demanding adherence from vendors. DGTP makes it easier to reuse data, services and capabilities across different organizations.

No. 4: Use AI and data for real-time decision making

By 2024, at least 60% of government AI and D&A investments will directly impact real-time operational decisions and outcomes. 

Processes and controls are there to try to ensure decisions are consistent and in line with government policy. The flexibility and speed of operational analytics can improve first-time accuracy while accelerating decision making. The ability to identify, prioritize and then model and (re)engineer decisions for improvement (i.e., decision intelligence) will be critical for any disruption-ready and resilient organization.

AI and D&A capabilities are often treated separately from service delivery and operational processes. With an increase in decision making built on top of automation, crucial engineering decisions will need to align with governance and political decisions in this area. 

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