One-Stop Service for Citizens

By Dominic Cain  |  Posted 2009-09-29 Print this article Print

To provide better, faster service to its residents, Southwark automated its client-service workflows.

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A Model of Efficiency

One Touch has become a model of efficiency for government organizations across the United Kingdom. We have deployed interactive processes that address how people want to work and how our customers want to be served. And we’ve saved money in the process: We estimate that the borough has saved approximately 1.2 million pounds through better use of technology.

Citizens also notice a difference in the quality and timeliness of the services they receive. They are surprised when they can sign up for all services with just one call.

We measure the impact of One Touch not only by what CSRs can achieve more efficiently, but also by what we can avoid. Built-in validation in the rich Internet application (RIA) dashboard and PDF forms help ensure that the proper type of information is captured and entered for every request. CSRs achieve a 99 percent accuracy rate on forms entered through the system.

The integration of systems has also reduced training requirements. Before, representatives might have needed two years to be fully trained on the intricacies of completing and submitting all the forms for our benefits applications. Now, training on complicated processes can be completed in days.

One Touch also greatly reduces opportunities for fraud by limiting citizens’ ability to provide conflicting information to different government entities. CSRs are able to cross-reference data provided by customers at the point of transaction, ensuring quality and minimizing errors. This reduces levels of overpayment and helps secure the benefits system.

With a more centralized approach, data captured once can be automatically populated in multiple PDF forms, eliminating the need for citizens to retell their stories to multiple CSRs. And the One Touch system includes built-in prompts that remind CSRs to get required supporting documentation.

For those of us who developed the application, there is satisfaction in seeing One Touch deliver on its promise. We’re boosting the quality of services and saving money, and we’ve also built a foundation for rolling out new services and addressing changing citizen needs and government requirements.

Dominic Cain is the head of client services for the London Borough of Southwark.

Dominic Cain is the head of client services for the London Borough of Southwark.

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