Article

How automation can help governments improve experiences

Helen Justice | VP Biller Solutions at Worldpay from FIS

February 23, 2022

Government workers across the US face very different challenges in a post-pandemic world. For one, only 3% of federal workers teleworked every day before 2020.1 Now, it’s possibly the norm for the foreseeable future.

And while remote working can provide benefits, such as more time with family and a better work-life balance,2 it can present challenges in terms of distractions at home and difficulty collaborating with other employees.3 For government workers, this could worsen employee satisfaction, which is already low when compared to the private sector. 1 Many workers feel under pressure and say their talents are not being fully utilized.1

Automation could help to alleviate this pressure, boost employee morale and support better customer experiences.4 Plus, it may also enable governments to source more revenue, faster.5

Workers under pressure

In the 2020 Best Places to Work survey, the government-wide employee engagement score was 69.0 points out of 100, falling short of the private sector score of 77.0.1 There are many factors leading to this discrepancy, but two standouts are that fewer government workers find their workloads to be reasonable and that employees, overall, don’t see their talents being put to use – 65.9 points compared to 79.0 in private sector.1

Another survey found that 48% of federal workers’ demands at work increased “greatly or somewhat” due to the pandemic. 6 At the same time, 23% said that the pandemic was either “extremely or very disruptive to their ability to do their work”. 6

To manage these growing demands, government workers could benefit from tools that reduce the time they spend on manual, repetitive tasks, such as collecting and managing data, and collecting payments.

The potential of automation

In Australia, another country with distinct federal and state governments, it is estimated that 40% of public service employee time could be automated.7

A large part of any government’s regular tasks will be collecting tax revenue and other payments. This could range from property taxes to income taxes, or payments such as fines and service fees. Implementing automation in taxation and billing departments could speed up processes, give employees time back to focus on service, improve experiences for all, and help minimize disputes.

If we look again to Australia, we can see the positive impact of automation in tax reporting. When filing taxes, Australians find much of their information pre-filled, meaning that a tax return can take minutes to complete,, with fewer errors.4

Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment

There is no one way to automate. However, most automation efforts will likely require changing systems and ways of working.

When it comes to streamlining payments, Worldpay from FIS can provide a suite of solutions to help minimize manual effort. For example, state and local government departments may wish to take advantage of Biller Solutions, a full end-to-end flexible electronic bill presentment and payment (EBPP) solution, designed to handle high transaction volumes and deliver a seamless experience.

Our integrated Biller Solutions platform offers access to modern payment technology, can reduce complexity and has the potential to provide robust reporting.8 Worldpay Biller Solutions can integrate with automation systems and open multiple secure payment channels. So, no matter what the payment – tax, fines or service fees – the public will be able to use their preferred method. And these payments can also be settled in 24 hours, so governments could access revenue sooner.

Time to focus on what matters

Automating parts of government payment processes should give employees time back to focus on what they really care about, and what matters most to the public. To increase the chances of success, any automation solution developed should be carefully considered and implemented with expert guidance if it is to really eliminate issues.

For more information on FIS Global’s Biller Solutions, please contact us at: BillerSolutions.Mail@fisglobal.com

References

1 Partnership for Public Service (2021) Government-Wide Findings [Accessed 13/12/21] https://bestplacestowork.org/analysis/government-wide-findings-overall/

2 FlexJobs (2020) FlexJobs Survey: Productivity, Work-life Balance Improves During Pandemic [Accessed 13/12/21] https://www.flexjobs.com/blog/post/survey-productivity-balance-improve-during-pandemic-remote-work/

3 BetterUp (2021) Working from Home? 12 Challenges and How to Overcome Them [Accessed 13/12/21] https://www.betterup.com/blog/challenges-of-working-from-home

4 Daub, D’Emidio, Howard & Ungur (2020) Automation in Government: Harnessing Technology to Transform Customer Experience. McKinsey & Company [Accessed 13/12/21] https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/public-and-social-sector/our-insights/automation-in-government-harnessing-technology-to-transform-customer-experience

5 GCN (2020) How Automation can Help Local Governments Thrive in the Post-COVID World [Accessed 13/12/21] https://gcn.com/articles/2020/07/15/automated-revenue-management.aspx

6 Office of Personnel Management (2021) Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey [Accessed 13/12/21] https://www.opm.gov/fevs/reports/governmentwide-reports/governmentwide-management-report/governmentwide-report/2020/2020-governmentwide-management-report.pdf

7 Australian Government, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (2019) Our Public Service our Future: Independent Review of the Australian Public Service [Accessed 13/12/21] https://www.pmc.gov.au/sites/default/files/publications/independent-review-aps.pdf

8 Worldpay (2021)Biller Solutions Brochure [Accessed 13/12/21] https://www.fisglobal.com/en-gb/merchant-solutions-worldpay/large-enterprise-business/in-store/biller-solutions

Automating bill presentment and payments streamlines back-office processes, reducing cost and complexity. It removes inefficient reconciliation processes, drives down your processing costs, and reduces your carbon footprint.”
Helen Justice | VP Biller Solutions at Worldpay