In 2015, we saw some significant trends in state and local IT buying that have increased efficiency and productivity. With these improvements, we’re excited to take a look at the buying patterns we’re seeing ramp up in the state and local market.
- Citizen Engagement
State and local agencies have tight budgets and lean teams, self-service is not only a huge benefit to agencies, but to citizens as well. From automating processes to allowing for citizen reporting of potholes and other infrastructure issues, state and local organizations are looking for ways to empower citizens to take care of routine matters on their own so they can spend time in areas where people need personal attention.
Tied to the self-service trend, state and local agencies are looking for ways to take manual, paper processes online and make them automated or at least digital friendly. From pet licenses to state tax forms, there’s a plethora of paper forms that need to be optimized with the customer in mind. Currently, 85% or more of government processes begin with a form and nearly 100% of these forms were meant to be filled out with pen and paper – however, making these paper structured forms electronic is not the solution. As our partners at Adobe point out in this blog post, this involves more than digitizing, many times processes need to be changed to accommodate digital forms.
- Improving Government Websites
Again, tied to the effort to move more routine tasks online, state and local agencies are taking a digital first approach. Agencies are increasingly making their websites more responsive and customer friendly. In one instance, the City of Calgary, Canada employed the Google Search Appliance to move over 16,000 pages of content into a new, searchable design that has since boosted the site’s responsiveness and effectiveness for citizens. This new way of doing things can mean a wholesale technology refresh. Open source technologies provide an affordable and flexible way to make the digital-first switch while Adobe is helping IT teams create citizen portals and manage website content.
- Re-Thinking Storage
In moving activities online, state and local organizations need somewhere to put all of that data and make it accessible to citizens. Agencies are re-thinking the ways they store; they are looking for storage solutions that do more than just store, but also provide layers of security and analyze the data they hold.
We’d love to hear from you. What trends do you see impacting the state and local market in 2016?