14th August 2018
Civica Authority Technology Outlook 2018
Marcus Khor, Head of Product Strategy for Local Government at Civica
Local Government faces significant challenges modernising their organisations to achieve “more with less” while meeting the growing service expectations of citizens.
Over the last 25 years, Civica Authority has developed in order to help the Local Government sector future-proof organisations and harness advancements in technology to build Smart Cities and serve citizens better. As we move into 2019, the following are some top technologies that the Authority development team are looking at to meet the changing needs of Local Government.
Cloud & Security
Gartner predicts that public spending on cloud services will increase by 22.9% to $186.9 billion in 2018. Governments use hybrid Cloud services to share information while simultaneously protecting sensitive data, while technology companies provide analytical capabilities through cloud platforms.
In addition to our existing premium private Cloud, we’ve now developed secure public and hybrid Cloud offerings – attaining a Tier 1 Cloud partnership with Microsoft in record time. We understand that not all local government organisations are the same, therefore offering different styles of Cloud to suit different requirements is instrumental moving forward.
Remote computing services allow mass collaboration around huge data sets, bringing scale to computationally intensive problem-solving. Cloud computing closes the digital divide by making collaboration across distance and disciplines both possible and cost-effective.
Alongside the ongoing refinement of our Business Intelligence tool (BIS) and enhancement of our mobility offerings, we are continually looking at ways that local government organisations can use their data to gain useful and actionable insights that help achieve their objectives.
Artificial intelligence (AI) as a foundation for modern solutions opens up a new frontier for digital business, as virtually every application, service and Internet of Things (IoT) object possesses an intelligence aspect.
AI-powered natural-language recognition makes new categories of applications possible, such as virtual personal assistants (VPAs) with voice interfaces and chatbots with text interfaces. AI advancements such as role-based assistants can significantly improve interactions with employees, customers and partners. These assistants can handle many routine information-driven workloads (for example, simple customer or employee service requests). We are invested in exploring AI to free people from administrative burden to focus on more complex and higher-value tasks.
Internet of Things
As the size and price of sensors decline and communication technologies become more affordable, the Internet of Things (IoT) is growing by leaps and bounds.
The IoT ecosystem is growing at a rapid pace. It’s forecasted that by 2020 there will be 34 billion devices connected to the Internet - businesses in the private sector will have 11.2 billion devices installed, Government will have 7.7 billion devices installed, and Consumers will have 5 billion devices installed1 .
The exponential growth of IoT opens significant opportunities to organisations that have a solid, integrated core platform like Authority. Allowing them to leverage this technology to generate insights from a variety of devices capturing data to streamline and tailor automated processes.
The private sector has set the service expectation that users and citizens expect data and functionality to be accessible on any device at any time. Mobility is key in the development of Authority and we are now seeing huge efficiency gains through our current mobile capabilities targeted at local government officers performing various duties in the field – from fines to asset management, to work orders and more.
With the imminent release of functionality that helps organisations manage employees, and an application focused around citizens interacting with councils, mobility will play a key role in our Authority journey going forward.
Integration should be the rule rather than the exception. Authority has a rich integration layer with the continual development of Application Programmable Interfaces (APIs) making it easy to utilise anything from IoT devices to preferred third-party applications. The Authority roadmap includes further API support to facilitate integration well into the future as new technologies emerge.
Customer Self Service
An online 24/7 e-service capability is an important pillar of Authority development. Citizen expectations of interactions with organisations are heavily influenced by their experiences with the private sector.
Citizens expect to be able to interact with services at any time, on any device, without the need to wait for a response. Authority’s Community Portal already allows local government organisations to reap the benefits of citizen self-service, including internal efficiency gains, data integrity due to the absence of double handling, and citizen engagement. We’re committed to further refine and automate interactions wherever possible to ensure local government service delivery is in-line or better than interactions with private sector organisations.
Local government customers are looking for trusted partners as opposed to vendors. We have experience managing risk, possess all relevant certifications to work with local government, a proven track record of delivery, and a high level of investment in development and industry research. These characteristics make us the ideal partner for all levels of local government and within the broader public sector seeking to leverage the latest technologies to help achieve their goals.
Our secure software development lifecycle ensures continuous improvement of our products and solutions are aligned with industry best practices, which make Authority a secure choice well into the future.