As analytics have been put as a key priority in a number of government master plans, Markus Werling, Global Vice President, Industry Solutions Public Services, SAP, believes that there are many areas innovative ideas coupled with analytical capabilities could make real difference to public administration.
He recalls a ‘wild thinking workshop’ conducted internally where people proposed interesting areas which sounded like science fiction at that time. Many of them, if not already a reality, is nowadays within the reach of our technological capabilities.
The ideas included having geospatial information projected through a pair of spectacles – Google is currently testing a solution which does just that.
However, while technology has been developing in leaps and bounces, the effect of their application often depends on whether it addresses particular pain points or creates additional value for the agenda of the government or particular agencies.
“Quite often, the choking point of many processes and operations is that analysing data takes too much time,” he says.
Moving forwards, Werling is confident that in-memory analytics – an approach where data that are queried and analysed reside in the random access memory rather than in physical disks – will gradually become indispensable in aiding decision-making around critical areas.
A typical scenario many of us are already familiar with is tax and revenue management. Work has been done or begun with a number of tax agencies across the world to shift the focus of tax enforcement from focusing on a simple cut of a particular income group to a more complex assessment model based on compliance and other factors.
Similar, city governments could leverage advanced analytical capabilities to get real time situational awareness on various areas of city administration. Technology now allows the aggregated data and results of analysis to be pushed to mobile platforms seamlessly.
A university in the US has been using advanced analytics to assess and boost student retention; agencies that run large fleet of vehicles use analytics for route planning and fuel savings; social media analytics is used to find out the most significant concerns of citizens for a particular service and thus the agency could prioritise their attention to better improve customer satisfaction.
Werling says the overarching theme among all these applications is that customers are put in the centre of the operations.
“You can leverage technology to solve real problems in a smart way when combining analytics with cloud and mobility,” he says.
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