The key to streamlining government services is innovative thinking, and bravery  

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The key to streamlining government services is innovative thinking, and bravery  

Our Expertise

By Emma Hayes

By Emma Hayes

Content Marketing Executive

The key to streamlining government services is innovative thinking, and bravery  

The Government is striving towards the digital age with investment in various digital platforms to spearhead adjustments in the day to day management and operations of government services. Government departments face various challenges, but they must commit to innovating to ensure citizens are being considered in their daily processes. A certain level of risk-taking is required when investing in innovative technology which will inevitably, transform the way services are addressed and then operated. Innovation plays an integral part, but it is the bravery from key stakeholders that instigates change and navigates new technological services.  

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotic Process Automation (RPA) 

The Government has a responsibility to deliver a safer nation, foster change and to enhance life and artificial intelligence has all the capabilities to do so by tackling issues in government offices. The biggest issues the Government face, that directly impacts citizens are processes that can be lagging, costly or labour intensive. With AI it takes care of the issues by reducing time, lowering manual labour, identifying problems at an earlier stage, speeding up decision making as well as advancing accuracy. A responsive government is a better government and it is one that monetises innovative tools to improve inefficiencies that plague public service offices. AI improves infrastructure – making it smarter by navigating routes and reducing commuter journeys. Robotic process automation (RPA) offers increased speed, better productivity, heightened coping skills and an overall reduction in manual errors that can be observed in office operations.      

“A responsive government is a better government and it is one that monetises innovative tools to improve inefficiencies that plague public service offices.”

Bravery and Innovation  

Streamlining services isn’t just about innovation – as we have mentioned, bravery is very much part of the digital transformation. The capabilities exist but the Government must strive to reinvent the wheel and shake off the old traditional methods. 2020 brings a new decade, a new opportunity to think ‘outside the box’ and to drive shifts to greatly improve and alter the current landscape of public services. Culture, mindset, current structures and work practices require a massive overhaul to redefine how public services function and why it is important to do better. A connected government is a daring government who are aware of the changes the world is experiencing and how capturing some of these digital tools will greatly benefit the public, not only now but in the future. Society demands technology and innovation with more people benefiting from it throughout the day without ever comprehending how the modernisation has made lives easier. The public trusts the Government to offer the greatest and most innovative digital technologies available with its numerous capabilities. Understanding citizens to achieve better outcomes, providing streamlined services, discovering innovative solutions to policy changes, and delivering public and stakeholder engagement are expectations that must be delivered now.  

Public Expectations and Personalisation 

Public expectations are higher and certainly more ‘on demand’ than ever before as everything should be available at the touch of a button, and more services are available online but that doesn’t mean the work is complete. There are copious opportunities to respond to and enhance peoples end-to-end experience of public services. By doing so and using innovative solutions, the belief is that the Government are motivating change and switching their culture to redesigning policy and delivering faster and more valuable services. Promoting such innovation creates a level of trust, improves user experience and finally, it has superior results for all involved. The private sector is showcasing their courage with personalisation, quick responses and platforms that are replacing traditional methods of interaction and there is no reason why the public sector should fall through the cracks. In today’s world, people expect the same level of personalisation and swift response from the public sector than that of the private sector.   

“Disruption is happening, innovation is happening, technology is happening so the question is, are you brave enough if we provide the innovative solutions?”

Driving Change and Quality of Life 

Boosting public services comes with a pressure to be the pioneer of such solutions and to gauge the market, plan and continuously innovate to stay ahead. The Government should force change instead of being forced to change with business models that are immensely beneficial to the public. The Governments relations (with innovative services) will be able to create a fantastic quality of life for the public, gain trust and remain competitive in a technologically advancing world.  

Disruption is happening, innovation is happening, technology is happening so the question is, are you brave enough if we provide the innovative solutions?  

 

About OpenSky 

OpenSky Data Systems for Digital Government That Works. 

As Ireland’s Only Govtech digital transformation specialist, we deliver future-proofed citizen access and operational efficiency.   

Our Govtech business expertise has transformed over 50 public sector bodies in Ireland & the UK.  Within transport, waste, housing & health, our systems impact 2.5m people every day & manage 100m digital transactions every month in Government. 

Taking a Customer-Centric approach, we equip government teams with scalable and sustainable citizen platforms, shared digital business process information systems, realtime monitoring and analysis, legacy system modernisation, minimal viable product designs and implementations and data management services. 

Our expertise & approach, provides our clients with a path towards increased cost-efficiency, reduced risk of investment and superior citizen services.  

Working with the best technologies & MS Gold Certified Partners, we have 15 years of digitising processesconnecting citizens – building a smarter nation. 

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About The Author

Emma is responsible for the content strategy, social media marketing and website development. Emma has worked in PR and New Media. 

Our Expertise Posts

Smarter Taxi Regulation

Government & Public Services

Blog: Smarter Taxi Regulation

Digital Regulation For Government

By Susanne Mc Cabe

By Susanne Mc Cabe

Business Development Manager

Smarter Taxi Regulation: Ireland, London & New York

All around the world taxi regulators are investing in their technology platforms to increase staff and driver engagement online efficiencies, manage changing policy and regulatory compliance and create Realtime collaboration with industry and government partners along the taxi regulation continuum.

Zero paper and reduction in call centre investments is the ultimate goal. Many regulators are struggling to drive even 20% of its service and business processes online which given the complexities and breadth of taxi authorities role, is understandable. Advances in workflow technologies, online customer engagement portals and API availability in most modern systems, moving towards a 100% online function, is now an achievable goal for many.

While in Ireland taxi regulation is a national regulatory duty, taxi regulation responsibilities across the world vary. In the USA, various states have eliminated regulations in order to completely level the playing field between traditional taxis and the newer Transport Network companies ie Uber. Other States are considering regulation of TNC’s at a State level while retaining the traditional regulatory powers of city and county regulators.

Outside of London, taxis in the UK are regulated by over 300 local councils, many of which adopt very old taxi legislation in various ways using very different systems, which is a challenge currently under review by the Department of Transport which aims to publish their national working group report in January 2019. In 2018, the Urban Transport GroupTaxi! Issues and Options for City Region Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Policy” report called for a new approach to taxi and PHV policy to ensure a good service for users whilst also making sure the sector contributes to wider public policy goals around public safety, congestion reduction, economic inclusion and air quality.

 

How are Taxi Regulators using Technology to achieve a safe, compliant and collaborative industry?

In Ireland, drivers can engage with the National Transport Authority through the driver portal and complete all their engagements (pay fees, book in skills test, create link etc) online on a selection of devices, applications / renewals remain offline and all industry contractors and government partners collaborate in Realtime with the Taxi Directorate through their core business application – CABS. All drivers and vehicles are linked in Realtime through a smart mobile application which enables the driver to link to a particular vehicle and this is enforced strictly by the NTA inspection team through the mobile inspection app iCABS.

In the USA, according to the IATR, the Transportation Network Company (TNC) movement has run its initial course, there is now some freedom from political pressures exerted on taxi regulators, who may now pick-up the pieces following the casualties of disruption.  Finally, for the incumbent taxicab and limousine industries, key decisions are being made on whether to lobby for the elimination of regulations that tie their hands from competing. From a technical standpoint the Federal Transit Administration’s Mobility on Demand Sandbox Program presents an interesting moment of opportunity to connect TNC’s and taxi regulators with federal services through data sharing.

Department of For-Hire Vehicles (DFHV) for the District of Columbia in Washington D.Clead the charge in terms of technology and its application to modernise the regulations engagement with drivers, inspectors, the public, industry and government partners. The authority has recently launched its Open Data Taxi Dashboard,  An Option For Payment Technology (OPT) and can showcase other useful technology applications however licencing and renewals remain offline.

New York

In New York, the biggest taxi regulatory body in the USA (similar in numbers of taxis licenced to London & Ireland) – The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC), created in 1971, is the agency responsible for licensing and regulating New York City’s medallion (yellow) taxicabs, for-hire vehicles (community-based liveries, black cars and luxury limousines), commuter vans, and paratransit vehicles and employs 600 staff assigned to various divisions and bureaus.

The TLC licenses and regulates over 50,000 vehicles and approximately 100,000 drivers, and performs safety and emissions inspections of the 13,587 medallion taxicabs three times each year, as well as biennial inspections of all TLC-licensed For-Hire vehicles, making it the most active taxi and limousine licensing regulatory agency in the United States.

Systems at the TLC are traditional mainframe systems at the core, but the team at the TLC, along with support from the DoITT have developed some unique driver information upload portalslicencing applications and renewals are only taken online and data and Google Big Querys are open and shared. Tapping into the potential offered by unifying smart meter data with the information held by the TLC, is clearly an interesting exploration for the Commission.

OpenSky‘s Taxi Regulation teams continue investing in innovative ways of building smarter systems to support smart regulation”

London

In London, Transport for Londons Taxi Regulation body approved plans to modernise London’s private hire industry which included: 

  • A fare estimate for customers in advance of their journey
  • The provision of driver and vehicle details to customers, including a photo of the driver, before the start of each journey where customers are able to receive this information
  • Requiring operators to keep improved records and provide driver and vehicle information to TfL regularly to make enforcement easier and more effective

 

In 2018, for the first time TfL’s Taxi and Private Hire (TPH) Compliance Officers have been granted new powers by the Metropolitan Police to carry out road stops without police presence for the first time. TFL offers website visitors an online taxi checker and while drivers can register to apply online, renew online and pay fees online, there are still steps in the process offline.  The TFL Twitter handle for Taxi Industry updates has over 14.5k followers and is a good example of using social media for industry engagement. As Uber renews its licence in London for the foreseeable future, how can technology help TFL level the playing pitch and ensure the safety and high taxi standards it holds so dear in London?

 

Taxi Private Hire London.

In London, New York and Dublin, taxi regulation teams continue to invest in innovative ways of building smarter systems to support smart regulation, albeit in various ways depending on public priorities, economic conditions and evolutions of taxi policy and regulations. The Role of Taxis in the Future of Digital Urban Mobility was a key issue explored by regulators from around the world at the 4th edition of UITP International Taxi Seminar in London this year and technology was discussed as a key enabler of unlocking the value of the taxi transport system to wider public transport strategies. Many regulators from around the world presented their use of technology in maintaining safe, compliant and collaborative taxi industries including Montréal Taxis BureauLand Transport Authority of SingaporeLand Public Transport Commission (SPAD) of Malaysia and the Dubai Taxi Corporation, UAE. Overcoming industry obstacles and supporting rapid adoption of changing taxi regulations using the best in class innovation in technology is a common theme when speaking with global regulators

Our Taxi Regulation team at OpenSky data continue to work with regulators across the world assessing technological landscapes, future visions for model architectures and secure data management and enhancing the technological capability of in house technical teams or where support is minimal from in house tech support, providing a one stop shop for rapid innovation in line with strategic policy.

Interesting Links from around the World

IATR – International Association of Taxi Regulators – http://www.iatr.global/

UITP Taxi Platform – http://www.uitp.org/expert-groups

The Regulation of Taxi Markets in the European Union: a liberalisation forced by technological disruption  – https://www.coleurope.eu/regulation-taxi-markets-european-union-liberalisation-forced-technological-disruption

Taxi driver licensing in select EU countries/cities – http://www.ttnh.ie/news/taxi-driver-licencing-doc2..pdf

About OpenSky 

As Ireland’s Only Govtech digital transformation specialist, we deliver future-proofed citizen access and operational efficiency.  

Our Govtech business expertise has transformed over 50 public sector bodies in Ireland & the UK.  Within transport, waste, housing & health, our systems impact 2.5m people every day & manage 100m digital transactions every month in Government. 

Taking a Customer-Centric approach, we equip government teams with scalable and sustainable citizen platforms, shared digital business process information systems, legacy system modernisation and data management services. 

Our expertise & approach provides our clients with a path towards increased cost-efficiency, reduced risk of investment and superior citizen services. 

Working with the best technologies & MS Gold Certified Partners, we have 15 years of digitising processes, connecting citizens – building a safer nation. 

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About The Author

Susanne McCabe leads Business Development for OpenSky Data. She is responsible for building awareness and interest in our brand, solutions and services, globally. She builds trusted relationships with government business and technology teams which enables us to design and deploy GovTech solutions in a sustainable, scalable and efficient way, maximising value to government buyers.

Susanne’s 20 years plus experience and education in marketing, sales and business development, brings a synergy to her teamwork with the marketing and sales teams at OpenSky Data. Her interests include CSR, Behavioral Economics and Dancing.

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