By harnessing digital to build and deliver services, government can transform the relationship between the citizen and state. But before this happens, the relationship between public sector staff need to improve. In this sense, digital technology is not only about improving public services, it should also be the gateway to better relationships within government itself.
ONE TRILLION CONNECTED DEVICES
By 2025, it’s said that the world population will be around 8 billion with one trillion connected devices. Needless to say, if government don’t adapt to increasing levels of communication, government will be left behind. Staff need to be equipped with communication technology in order to successfully deliver the services that are user-friendly, consistent and cost-effective.
Historically, people’s needs (whether that be citizens, partners or public sector staff) have not been at the heart of government systems. Because of this, government have experienced many problems – internal and external – caused by poor communication.
As government is the carrier and governor of rich stores of information, digital is needed to ensure that information is well communicated in a timely and seamless manner.
DAY TO DAY, MODERN COMMUNICATIONS
But now, government are understanding that staff need to be empowered to communicate in modern ways. It’s currently trying to understand how staff want to talk and work on a day-to-day basis. And, as everyone works in different ways, from different locations and relies upon different applications and devices to carry out their work, bringing all these communication methods together is no small task.
IT’S HOW WE TALK
As the workplace becomes increasingly digital, communicating across such a vast and complex environment as UK government is tricky – but with the right technology, it isn’t impossible. More and more people are using various digital devices and channels to communicate with each other. From web, to chat to voice and instant messaging, government need to stay relevant and work in a way that aligns with the behaviours, values and digital expectations of staff.
By digitally blending all major communication channels together in a seamless way, staff can be free to talk in ways they prefer, exchange ideas, share best practice, and just get their jobs done. Unified communications is that digital blending of communications where voice, video and text-based communication delivers ways for government staff to collaborate and become more efficient, engaged and productive.
But, due to the sheer amount of hype around unified communications, not everyone understands exactly what the technology brings to the table. Unified communications technology combines voice, email, video, text or instant messaging into a single platform and offers staff a more ubiquitous access to their applications, from any geographic location. Staff benefit by being able to access information quickly, respond to and engage with each other and the public in better ways, building trust and heightening transparency.
The Government Digital Service’s commitment is to make it “much easier to do important things” and unified communications provides that capability. Put simply, unified communications is about integration. Its objective is to make it easier for staff to communicate from wherever they need to, by the most appropriate communications channel and on any device.
COMMUNICATIONS: DIGITAL & MOBILE
The Government Technology Innovation Strategy 2019 has stated that the UK is now in a great position to benefit from emerging technology. And, with its focus firmly on improving coordination and establishing a more joined-up approach to work, the time is ripe for unified communications. Once staff are communicating well, unified communications will no doubt send positive ripples throughout the rest of government, bettering citizen services. Set to revolutionise the way public services are designed and delivered, unified communications is on route to transforming relationships inside – and outside – of government.
For further details on how to create better ways of communicating across government, contact us on 0800 316 7566.
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