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What does this mean?

A Holistic Approach to Create Better Citizen Experiences

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The benefits of a customer-centric strategy are not confined to private entities. The same holds for government agencies. Government entities at all levels can benefit by prioritizing citizens' needs and wants.

The benefits of a customer-centric strategy are not confined to private entities. The same holds for government agencies. Government entities at all levels can benefit by prioritizing citizens' needs and wants. State and local governments can enhance their citizen experience and solve their issues, but one-size-fits-all solutions will not work. Instead, agencies must approach their challenges holistically. They can do so by designing and incorporating alternate solutions that will enable them to create better citizen experiences.


SMART SPEAKERS AND GOVERNMENT AGENCIES

Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Siri form the foundation of the smart voice ecosystem. Since citizens are already embedded into the new ecosystem, the civic agencies have an opportunity to reach out to them. Smart speakers represent a technological advancement that has the potential to significantly improve the lives of citizens in cities, counties and government organizations.

A voice-based approach is essential if citizens are to be fully involved. It can assist civic organizations to enhance their citizens' experience by merging citizen services with emerging technologies such as voice tech and AI. Creating an omnichannel experience will allow individuals to interact with government in the most convenient manner and at the most convenient times for them.

Smart cities are taking the lead to embrace the “next thing”: the voice-activated digital assistant. Cities like Los Angeles, Albuquerque, andLas Vegas are turning to voice assistants to field resident inquiries.

Mississippi was the second state to launch an Alexa skill, with Utah being the first. Users can ask an Amazon or Google device regarding their common queries. The Ask Mississippi Alexa skill has answers to more than 5,000 questions so far, and there are 1,500 unique utterances – or scenarios – built into the system. This follows a trend, where many local and state governments are going more digital, embracing consumer tech in the form of smart devices.

WHAT ROLE CAN A VOICE APP PLAY IN SMART GOVERNANCE?

A voice app can directly impact the services offered by a government to its citizens. It can aid in the following areas:

  1. Personalized information

The information provided via a voice app can be customized to the individual needs, interests and circumstances. In contrast to the one-size-fits-all approach, a civic agency can understand its citizens and offer a personalized experience.

2. For a frictionless experience:

The secret lies in identifying and eliminating the difficulties and pain points that arise when citizens interact with government services. This could involve using self-service tools to avoid customers with routine questions being left waiting in endless 311 service center queues. Or introducing voice assistants and artificial intelligence bots to understand and address customer queries, either by routing customers quickly to the right department or perhaps answering the questions themselves.

3. Omnichannel strategy:

A voice-driven strategy will help to deliver a consistent experience across multiple channels. Voice apps can be easily integrated into the omnichannel strategy to ensure seamless communication between the agency and citizens.

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4. For employee efficiency and productivity  

Voice apps can help civic agencies streamline operations, improve employee skills, and boost workforce efficiency by relieving employees of various routine administrative duties. Gartner predicts 25 percent of workers will use a virtual employee assistant every day by 2021. By embracing voice, government agencies can improve employee productivity and foster exquisite work culture.

VOICE ASSISTANTS FOR CIVIC ENGAGEMENT

Let's look at some creative ways that voice assistants can aid civic organizations in connecting with their constituents:

Promotion of local events: Voice assistants often serve as a reliable point of contact for information, updating the citizens on upcoming local events, activities and holidays.

Free 24/7 city guides: Implementing a voice app can make the city or town tourist-friendly by guiding visitors to more local attractions, and also by assisting them to plan their itineraries. It can address the recurring questions that tourists visiting a city are likely to have and can also provide public transit FAQs.

Administering and keeping track of road conditions: Voice navigation apps serve as an example of civic innovation helping citizens to avoid traffic delays. It can provide essential traffic information such as updates on road closures and other real-time traffic situations.

Aiding local necessities: Easy access to basic information on community centers, municipal services and their operational hours.

Consultation by voice assistants: Voice assistants can act as default customer service agents to answer the routine queries of citizens who demand easy access to information.

311 services: The voice app is ideal for providing the residents with quick and easy access to important government services and information via their smart devices. Voice applications will aid with quick access to information and services, whether it is for obtaining real-time public transit information, or for reporting a missing trash pickup, or even for information on local museums, aquariums, and zoos.

To conclude, civic innovation is no longer optional for government agencies, and 311 remains the key point of contact between the city government and its residents. New data and technology capabilities offer great potential for the continued development where cities can improve the speed and effectiveness of their interactions with residents. Voice technology complements and expands existing service delivery methods for routine FAQs, reporting issues and requesting service.

For more information on how you can leverage smart speaker technology to create better citizen experiences, check out www.vogovoice.com.