This blog post is an excerpt from GovLoop’s recent guide, “Taking Government Cloud Adoption to the Next Level.”
Creating an excellent customer experience is critical to organizational success across sectors – but it’s particularly important for government agencies who need to engage with and provide services to their constituents to effectively drive missions. Cloud technology is one tool that can be particularly useful for agencies in cultivating a positive customer experience.
In order to better understand how agencies can drive more effective citizen engagement through cloud-based solutions, GovLoop sat down with James Ward, North America Director of State and Local Public Sector, Jay Stewart, National Business Manager, U.S. Public Sector, and Brian Bischoff, Vice President of Cloud Solutions at Genesys, a company that specializes in customer experience and call center technology.
Overall, agencies are taking the cue from the private sector and are beginning to make the shift to the cloud to drive more successful citizen experiences, said Bischoff. “The stakes for a better customer experience are higher in government because constituent expectations are being driven by the commercial sector,” he explained. As a result, government organizations have turned to solutions like cloud to fill the expectation gap and provide a customer experience that’s comparable to the private sector. Moving to the cloud allows agencies to provide greater flexibility and efficiency in how they serve their citizens.
Cloud is particularly useful because it offers a shorter time to value, meaning it allows agencies to get solutions up and operating in a much shorter period than without the cloud. “In a cloud environment, you are dealing with a platform that is already built and just configuring it for the applicant,” Ward explained. “So in terms of speed to market, the level of effort is typically much shorter.”
Additionally, cloud solutions can help government agencies reduce inbound call volume. Ward explained that for the average agency, 30 to 50 percent of their inbound call volume is repeat callers inquiring about a specific process. Government agencies are unique in they generally deal with a specific issue and are able to pinpoint what repeat inbound calls are going to be about.
As a result, agencies can use cloud technologies and intelligent customer experience tools like Interactive voice response (IVR) self-service or proactive text communications to let constituents know where they are in the process and reduce inbound calls for the organization. Ward gave the example of driver’s license renewals and explained for the average Department of Motor Vehicles, 30 percent of their inbound calls are simply people inquiring as to whether information has been received, where are they in process and when can they expect an answer or result. “By leveraging IVR self-service or preempting a request with an outbound text, the person doesn’t need to speak to an agent and the agent’s resources are then reapplied to working on actual office work,” Ward explained.
Cloud is also useful for agencies looking to improve their overall customer experience as it enables organizations’ ability to create an omnichannel customer journey. Compared to an on premise technology where, traditionally, communication channels are disparate, a consolidated cloud contact center platform allows agencies to better measure the customer journey and improve how they interact with constituents.
“This means the entire customer journey is consolidated and someone doesn’t have to start over every time they move across available communications channels,” Ward explained. Whether a constituent is connecting to an agency through the phone, web chat, or email, mobile or other options cloud enables a consolidated contact center platform to keep communications consistent and transparent.
The biggest benefit of an omnichannel approach is that it improves efficiency across the agency. “If you can self-serve or preempt even 20 percent of your inbound call volume, this is effectively adding 20 percent more resources in the back office. An agency is truly enabled to do more with less,” said Ward. Through an omnichannel cloud solution that Genesys offers, agencies are able to more efficiently serve constituents and solve some of their resource problems with cloud technology.
Genesys has designed their CX Platform to be an omnichannel consolidated contact center platform so agencies who leverage their technology have one consolidated queue. “As a result, users are able to move between communication channels, maintain high levels of efficiency, and foster an elevated customer experience,” Ward said. This ultimately allows agencies leveraging cloud technology to improve their customer experience and more effectively drive their mission.
For more information about taking cloud to the next level, you can find the full guide here.