Transforming citizen experiences in federal healthcare agencies


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Throughout my career as a federal government CIO, my teams and I continually strived to provide the best possible experience to anyone who interacted with our agency. In the age of COVID-19, this sentiment has never been truer, especially for agencies providing healthcare services to citizens, beneficiaries, veterans, or others.  

Government CIOs, like their private sector counterparts, are prioritizing the citizen experience to improve health service quality and access. Their focus is ensuring that every citizen interaction is consistent, visible, and relevant across all channels. The challenge healthcare organizations face, both in the public and private sectors, is that they can’t easily access and analyze all relevant data. Various departments using their own information, coupled with voluminous third-party data sets and data tools, has resulted in ever-growing numbers of data silos.  

Solving this problem and delivering consistent and relevant omni-channel citizen focused healthcare experiences must start with a platform that is highly scalable and capable of deep integration across a variety of tools. This type of platform, along with a company culture that trusts and embraces data, allows organizations to accurately predict and respond to citizen needs. Those responses can be automated, self-service, or via representatives who have data at their fingertips to make informed decisions.  


Best practices pave the way to better experiences 

The private sector is providing higher customer satisfaction than federal agencies, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index. As a result, healthcare agencies are paying higher costs and dealing with more citizen frustration than private companies.  

Industries like retail are stitching together a comprehensive 360-degree view of their customers. The view allows companies to develop products and services to meet customer needs, and also understand how to curate meaningful customer journeys and hyper-personalized communications.  

Federal healthcare agencies are starting to take a similar approach. According to IDC, 26 percent of agency executives are deploying key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the customer experience and advocacy. See IDC’s advice for how agencies can implement private sector best practices to enhance the customer experience.  

The government should follow suit by using data to better understand the citizens they serve. For healthcare service providers, this can include social determinants of health, medical histories, prescription drug use, and other relevant information. These details help agencies better meet beneficiaries’ needs, which in turn improves health outcomes, lowers costs, and increases citizen satisfaction.  


Digital workflows connect and improve patient care 

Federal healthcare agencies have a mandate to move toward digitalization. Digital workflows and processes enable a range of benefits, including automation, fast and easy information sharing, and improved service quality. To optimize digitalization, agencies need a single, centralized platform that’s capable of integrating data and workflows from across the federal, state, and local healthcare ecosystem, then sharing the insights. 

A common problem with many legacy systems is that they don’t offer interoperability. The inability to connect technologies and offer visibility into data sets limits digital capabilities, which in turn negatively impacts the citizen experience. By contrast, a platform built for workflow will facilitate collaboration, the sharing of best practices, and drive innovation, all of which will improve medical care and the delivery of innovative health services.  

The right platform can also consolidate data in a single location while providing cross-functional agency workflows, with the citizen at the center. This allows agencies to improve health service quality, access, and citizen experiences through effective and efficient care. To get started, review the 10 steps to transforming the customer service experience using automation, machine learning, AI, and other advanced processes.   


Develop a responsive citizen service environment  

Federal agencies at the forefront of digital transformation are using digital solutions to automate manual or paper-based processes. They are saving time, money, and resources by eliminating redundant processes. Automated processes can also highlight and prioritize citizen needs. This helps agencies respond quickly to enable better outcomes, reduce overall costs, and ensure continuity of care. 

Digital processes also improve self-service capabilities. Citizens or their families can access forms quickly, fill them out only once, have them securely shared with the proper healthcare providers, and have full transparency into who is using them.  

These same techniques can lower the cost of healthcare. One way to do this is by investing in a platform that can serve as a knowledge center or provide knowledge-center support. This allows anyone with the proper authority to access digital forms, data, or other information from any location at any time. Platforms like this can offer cloud-based customer service management (CSM) solutions to enable an intelligent digital transformation that remains focused on the citizen experience. 

In federal healthcare agencies, CSM takes a patient or beneficiary-centric approach to digital experiences, rather than an agency-centric view. CSM applications can provide citizen information management in areas such as customer history, problem tracking, and contact management. For answers about creating citizen service excellence using CSM, read this Q&A from IDC.  


Enhance citizen experiences using an advanced platform 

The Now Platform® from ServiceNow offers all the core capabilities that enable federal healthcare agencies to quickly and efficiently digitize workflows and run them at scale. It delivers enhanced omnichannel experiences through a single platform to accelerate innovation and reduce issue resolution times. With ServiceNow’s support, agencies can deliver on their mandate to improve health service, quality, access, and experience through effective and efficient care. 

 

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