Blogs

Blogs

Improve Customer Service in Government With the Right CRM

Government agencies are always working to serve their constituents. Often, however, these agencies are working to improve constituent engagement with limited resources and budgets. There’s one tool that can help: a CRM, or customer relationship management system, helps companies, including government agencies, manage relationships with their customers or constituents. How? These systems easily store and maintain a single source of information, automate workflows, integrate with other systems, increase customer and constituent satisfaction, and come with user-friendly mobile applications.

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Blogs

States Can Leverage Tech to Navigate Marijuana Regulations

Imagine trying to track by hand every gram of cannabis in the legal marijuana industry. It would be virtually impossible, not to mention inefficient — but tracking is still required. Fortunately, there’s a better way to contend with tracking and the other implications of evolving government regulation surrounding marijuana: technology.Without tech solutions such as cannabis traceability systems, municipalities and statewide governing bodies will struggle to follow marijuana from seed to sale. They’ll also struggle to evolve in step with changing community, societal, and federal regulations and expectations as they relate to medicinal and recreational cannabis use.Why, then, don’t more states and local governments leverage the power of technology or automated solutions when it comes to marijuana regulation? In many cases, the problem is that they don’t know what they need in order to measure, monitor, and control the flow of cannabis through properly credentialed and authorized dispensaries. And trying to pinpoint where the spread of illegal marijuana falls into the equation makes the issue seem doubly difficult.Another pain point involves knowing how best to use new marijuana technology to bring together all the confusing — and sometimes conflicting — laws and regulations surrounding cannabis. Even governments that are able to navigate emerging legislation might feel overwhelmed by trying to balance all the unique aspects of legalized marijuana with business expectations (such as paying appropriate taxes, setting competitive prices, and labeling products appropriately and according to current standards).Despite these obstacles, technology needs to be considered to navigate the changes that come with the legalization of marijuana. After all, states and municipalities that embrace digital and cloud-based tools will simplify their processes and improve their ability to operate in this uncharted territory.Using Technology to Navigate Marijuana RegulationsTo deploy tech solutions designed to help you navigate, understand, and operate in a way that’s compliant with evolving marijuana regulations and mitigate related obstacles, take the following steps:1. Test no-code and low-code tech platforms.One of the most underrated benefits of a powerful portal such as Salesforce is that it can be implemented and programmed by people without deep and technical coding knowledge. This makes it an effective solution for automating and managing marijuana legislation workflows rapidly. At the same time, these types of platforms can become centralized knowledge bases built for scalability and flexibility.2. Look for tech stack integrations and tools with built-in components and data models.When you want a powerful foundation, find software that empowers you to adapt. You’ll need this type of tech because state and federal marijuana legislation changes quickly — and often. When the rules do change, you won’t have to pay developers to alter your configurations.3. Lean into automation and cloud-based hosting.Technology enables you to stop relying on repetitive tasks and physical servers, not to mention the hardware and maintenance that goes with them. Plenty of cloud-based technology programs can automate much of the work your team members are currently doing manually, such as moving information slowly from one portal to another. This automation both reduces risk and error. At the same time, it frees up you and your colleagues so everyone can stay up to date with marijuana legislation shifts.Governments have been slow to make the most of the latest technological advancements on the private market. However, those that want to feel more confident in the way they approach each iteration of local, state, and federal marijuana legislation will see immediate and significant benefits when they take advantage of everything these tech solutions have to offer.

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Blogs

How to Get Gen Z Workers Into Public Sector Jobs

Talented, tech-savvy Generation Z workers aren’t just flooding into the private sector. They’re investigating jobs in the public sector, too. However, they’re not always liking what they see.What’s the issue? Because government entities tend to exist in a risk-averse culture where processes eclipse outcomes, their leaders remain hesitant to embrace tech innovations. This means public sector entities are often behind the digital curve. And that doesn’t bode well for attracting top Gen Z candidates who want to work with the latest and greatest technologies.How important is access to digital solutions to the next generation of workers? Very. A Dell Technologies study shows 91% of Gen Z participants cite technology as a main factor in evaluating job offers, and four-fifths of respondents say they want access to emerging technology. Similarly, 9 in 10 Gen Z and Millennial workers expect employers to offer remote or hybrid work options. These findings aren’t surprising to anyone who understands the lifestyle leanings of Gen Z, and they clearly point out a disconnect between public and private sector roles. Even though the pandemic necessitated a higher degree of adaptability among government workers, the overall tenor of public sector workforce management remains one that’s hesitant to be on the forefront of change.Nevertheless, change is necessary. Agencies need to lean into government digital transformation more than ever. Otherwise, some members of Gen Z might bypass the chance to work in the public realm simply because they feel like they’d be working in a bygone era.A Doable Path to Government ModernizationSo what can public agencies and government leaders do now to avoid losing out on bringing Gen Z into the workplace? Below are three starting points:1. Find creative ways to enable telecommuting.

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Blogs

How Government Modernization Can Help Regain Public Trust

Government has a wide-ranging set of complex responsibilities to the public, from safeguarding our freedoms to defending us from invasion. And through our cyclical election process, government entities are judged harshly regarding how well they can accomplish these objectives. It’s a tough task even in “normal” times, but it’s been especially difficult in the wake of the pandemic and several other tumultuous events.Research shows that satisfaction with government is at its lowest level since 2015 after falling for the past three years. Although this metric certainly oversimplifies a complex relationship, the data tells us something important: Right now, people look at the bargain they’ve made with the government to exchange their tax dollars for essential public services, and they feel like they’re not getting a fair deal.If citizens lose faith in government, that distrust can lead to widespread consequences — most notably a potential breakdown in public order. Government offices at all levels need to understand citizen satisfaction. And when people aren’t content, government needs to know why so it can take action to improve.Where Government Services Are LackingFrom getting a driver’s license at the Department of Motor Vehicles to filing a complaint with a local health department, citizens nationwide feel that government services can be slow, confusing, and difficult to access. Countless processes still rely on paper forms, in-person procedures, and hours-long call center wait times. And when there is a digital component, it’s often clunky, outdated, and perhaps stuck in the early 2000s (or even the ’90s).People have grown accustomed to the seamless digital experiences the private sector provides by now, yet they’ve come to expect the opposite from the public sector. The lack of easy-to-use technology causes citizens to disengage from government, which only further erodes confidence. It’s a cycle that will speed up as technology becomes a bigger part of daily life.Why does government digital transformation lag so far behind the private sector? Because federal and state technology leaders often lack the necessary resources for government modernization. In a Center for Digital Government survey, more than three-quarters of federal- and state-level technology leaders said they needed a faster and less complicated way to build applications.That’s where low-code workflow automation comes in handy. Low-code platforms greatly simplify app development and citizen engagement. More and more government bodies are using low-code workflow automation to build apps, chatbots, and other communication pipelines to interact with and support their citizens. With agile low-code development at the ready, the question is this: What digital services can government build and deploy efficiently to increase citizen satisfaction?Improving Customer Service in Government With TechnologyCitizens’ expectations have evolved significantly in the era of interactive smartphones and seamless web interactions. Here are three ways government can catch up:1. Prioritize mobile-friendly service. An obvious strategy for improving service delivery in government is to use a popular and convenient platform (i.e., mobile) for everything that engages citizens. Up to 75% of smartphone users will search for information on their phones before using a computer. With this in mind, government services that are not optimized for mobile create an unnecessary inconvenience for most constituents and make those services seem anachronistic. Websites and platforms that are not optimized for mobile use also greatly reduce access to individuals with lower income who might have a phone, but not a computer.2. Leverage low-code tools. Instead of relying on hand-built code, agile low-code development uses pre-built “blocks” of code and graphical interfaces. This streamlines app development and makes it easier to construct custom applications on top of pre-built platforms such as Salesforce. Automation helps expedite things even further. Using low-code tools lets government build a robust digital experience with limited developers and tight budgets. Agile low-code development also helps government tech workers meet fast-changing regulatory requirements, legislative demands, and public preferences.3. Connect business and data silos. The most significant obstacle to improving customer service in government and government modernization might be that different agencies and offices don’t share data. Widespread data silos have led to incomplete information and inefficient processes, so breaking them down and integrating each unit must be prioritized. Powerful integrators (like MuleSoft) can help with that effort, systematically unifying various data sources to create a single source of truth. Having one place to access all information benefits government employees at all levels and the public at large.With the right technology tools, public officials have the means to improve customer service and restore faith in government. But first, they need to reject the status quo and embrace a smarter, faster path to government modernization.

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Blogs

How Emerging Payment Channels Will Transform Highway Tolling

Tolling agencies are about to again transform to better meet customer requirements, this time thanks to payment innovations accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic. Devang Patel, vice president of consulting and projects at Kyra Solutions, explains how these new payment channels can be incorporated into existing systems and why they are vital to the future of the highway tolling industry.

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Blogs

Successful Digital Transformation in Government

Digital transformation is not simply having the newest technology – it’s a cultural understanding. It is less about the specific technology and more about the organizational culture’s view of how they adopt new technologies. Of course, keeping technology up to date is the main idea of this mission, however, the attitude, behavior, and environment of the government entity is what drives it, and will ensure its success.

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