Much of the work in local authorities is conducted by teams of operatives out in the field – dealing with fly tipping, abandoned vehicles, reports of dead animals, pot holes, tree surgery, health and safety in parks to name but a few. Managing teams of mobile workers like this is a huge expense and can be a logistical nightmare. Time and again I speak to local authority managers who know that the whole process could be done more efficiently and effectively but aren’t exactly sure how to take the next steps. Technology now can help any local authority to manage its mobile workers more effectively, leading to improved customer service, long term channel shift and substantial savings of both time and money.
Here are 10 reason why your organisation should be looking to exploit the opportunities offered by fast to implement and easy to manage mobile working solution.
- Paper-based systems tend to mean that officers have to return to base in order to collect new work or update records from closed cases. Productivity studies show that this way of working can reduce their productivity by at least 20%, meaning jobs take longer to complete than they need to and officers spend unnecessary time travelling to and from base.
- To date, local authorities have tended to focus on offering automated self-service processes for customer-facing services, whilst overlooking the massive benefits that the same automation technology can offer their staff and contractors. UK local authorities can and need to be tackling both. Now!
- Automating internal processes builds resilience into your infrastructure as well as delivering time and resource savings. Resources have never been tighter in UK local authorities than they are now and implementing mobile worker technology solutions means authorities can still deliver an improved service experience to their customers, even when resources are so tightly constrained.
- The time and resource saving delivered through the automation of internal processes enables UK local authorities to offset the increased demand for services that can result from the advent of multi-channel, customer self service offerings.
- Effective digitally enabled mobile working platforms (declaration of interest – such as My Council Service’s Mobile Worker module) allow flexible configuration, enable the setting up of tailored rules and allow for offline working when network access is not available for whatever reason. With these capabilities in place UK Local Authorities have the ability to streamline existing processes making them more straightforward and more cost-efficient.
- One block on the road to a technological mobile worker solution is the perception that it’s going to be complex and time consuming to implement, or that it will take a long time to prove its worth. Both these perceptions are simply wrong. With the appropriate technology support and the right approach to process design, a well-designed mobile working solution can be up and running in a few months and delivering significant resource saving within 6 months of implementation.
- Managers are sometimes concerned that their field operatives won’t adapt to a new way of working. However in my experience (gained working on mobile worker implementations across many different Authorities) field operatives, across all service areas, are invariably keen to adopt new ways of working that make them more efficient and enable them to do their jobs more effectively. Time and again I see how these initiatives are good for organisational morale and lead to operatives taking even more pride in their work.
- Austerity and budget constraints are set to continue, regardless of the political persuasion of the next government, so transformational change is a requirement for all UK public sector organisations. In this context, quick-to-implement, configurable and cost-effective mobile working solutions offer the next major opportunity UK public sector to demonstrate its ingenuity.
- Effective mobile working platforms provide a cornerstone of cost-effective multi-service and multi-agency working. When properly thought out and pragmatically implemented, the savings derived can be remarkable.
- Digital access and process automation is not just for UK public sectors customers to use. It offers manifold opportunities for our public service organisations to thrive in challenging times and to re-invent the way they plan and deploy increasingly scarce resources; both human and financial.
See how Stafford Borough Council have changed the way that they work – read our case study here.