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Automation & intelligence: Essential technologies for digital governments

Many government bodies today seek to become ‘digital governments’ for many reasons, not the least of which is because empowered citizens with instant access to information in other aspects of their lives now expect it.

All levels of government – federal, state, county, city and local are now challenged to reliably deliver a complex array of transportation, education, public safety, public works, taxation, and licensing services digitally to highly diverse groups of citizens throughout their lifetime.

Digital governments must deploy innovative technologies to improve the citizen experience, enhance workforce productivity, increase operational efficiency, and adapt when needed by new programs, laws, and the changing needs of citizens.

Automating the delivery of government services is now a top priority among administrators and officials. They seek to reduce redundant, repeatable and often error-prone manual activities and do things faster by streamlining the administrative tasks of government workers.

Highly effective automation standardizes self-service delivery, empowers government workers with information to improve quality, and becomes recognized by citizens as the preferred way to engage with government functions at all levels throughout their lives.

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Digital automation and government

Crafting a digital government will require holistic and uniform means to design, develop, deploy and manage self-service applications, and automate operations across distributed IT infrastructure and cloud services that now compose modern IT architecture.

This will require government bodies to re-examine and augment their current IT strategy and capabilities. Our research finds that those having done so, simplified the effort by using next-generation technologies that are now referred to as digital automation platforms (DAPs), and robotic process automation (RPA) technology.

Digital automation platforms

A DAP is a set of tools and resources structured within a uniform framework that enables developers to rapidly design, prototype, develop, deploy, manage and monitor process-oriented applications – from simple task-related workflows to dynamic unstructured collaborative activity streams, and even highly structured cross-functional business applications.

DAPs use ‘low-code/no-code’ technology that includes visual design capabilities with drag-and-drop tooling and prepackaged templates to compose, rather than code, software, and applications. Some DAPs are equipped with process documentation tools that treat processes as strategic assets, and analytic tools to learn from execution, both helping to manage continuous improvement programs.

Robotic process automation

RPA represents an evolutionary capability that augments DAPs. RPA crafts discrete software robots called ‘bots’ that can automate repetitive human activities within processes, and may also call upon machine learning tools to interpret data and help guide automation tasks and results.

RPA can improve operational performance by reducing errors, cost and cycle times; improve business performance toward specific or desired outcomes; and perform at scale – handy when citizens number in the millions.

Specifically, RPA technology can automate document processing using scripts and machine learning to take structured and unstructured data from source fields, forms, screens, applications, systems, and websites and place it in various target systems without human intervention, for example in application processing.

It can examine the behavior of work activities to reveal patterns that can be automated in bots to improve accuracy, consistency, and productivity. As examination perpetuates, learning can accelerate. Tasks soon can become skills that assist and augment governmental workforce’s with planning, problem-solving and decision making.

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Intelligent government services and operations

Modern governments must react to the changing needs of its citizenry by developing digital self-service and operations that improve and automate intelligent and adaptable processes to better serve their citizens.

We believe DAPs equipped with asset management and analytics capabilities, and RPA technology equipped with machine learning are among the essential technologies needed of 21st-century digital governments.

 

Interested in digitally transforming your government processes with the Nintex Platform? Contact a sales representative today. 

 

Carl Lehmann

Carl Lehmann is Principal Analyst of Architecture, Integration & Process Automation at 451 Research. He specializes in managing complexity and change with expertise in strategic planning, hybrid IT architecture, integration and processes management. Follow Carl on Twitter @CarlLehmann1.