Despite improvements in the public sector making services more modern and in line with private sector organizations, customers are still unsatisfied with the results. The public sector has a huge opportunity to increase trust in government services in a cost effective, efficient way.

Imagine having a seamless customer experience with your local or state government agencies like you have with private sector businesses. What if they went the extra mile during significant life events, sending a care package to parents of newborns, for example, or telling retirees about new programs for active aging? 

Learn why delivering personalized digital services is the fastest way to increase trust in government. We’ve partnered with the Boston Consulting Group for a deep dive on the trust deficit between government agencies and their constituents.

Businesses excel at this level of customer-centric services delivery, shifting what people expect from digital services. So why can’t public sector agencies?

Here’s what the data tells us:

Only 14% of respondents globally are willing to give the government access to any data, even if it makes their life easier.

There is an opportunity for the public sector to digitize more complex services, and do so in a cost-efficient way. Doing this can reinforce and increase trust in government services, providing what people and communities need — now. 

Whether you are looking to see when the next city bus will arrive or applying for government benefits online, we all rely on digital government services more than we think. 

Globally, 49% of respondents said they use online government services at least once weekly, and 23% access services at least once daily. When COVID limited in-person interactions, the public sector collectively responded with digital solutions that were widely used across the globe. 

In fact, COVID-related services are the most commonly used digital government service in 2022 — used by 81% of respondents globally. 

However, the U.S. and Canada trail the global trends, with only 39% of U.S. and 27% of Canadian respondents using online government services once or more per week. Notably, Canada had the lowest percentage of respondents who access services weekly from all countries surveyed.

This usage gap raises questions: Have the U.S. and Canada used technology to its full potential in government services? Is the trust in these services wavering?

There’s a simple link between quality of service and trust. A positive online experience — like easily renewing a license or paying a bill — can increase trust in government services. However, customer satisfaction has stayed the same since 2018, sitting at a mere 63%, revealing ample room for improvement from the public sector.  

So, what can government offices do to succeed now? What can public sector agencies do to make their digital services better, while building trust with their citizens and constituents?

The public sector can better serve constituents with more personalized offerings through improved technology. Learn more about what’s possible.

Personalized services can improve the experience in many ways, ranging from auto-filled forms with available personal data or product and service recommendations tailored to a person’s unique needs.

When done correctly, personalization can improve product and service quality, reduce service costs, and increase engagement and satisfaction for constituents.

By personalizing digital services, the public sector can embed empathy in all customer interactions – human and digital – and ultimately increase trust in government services.

We found that 72% of people surveyed said they were comfortable with personalized government digital services. And 24% said they were satisfied with the government collecting information from third parties with consent in addition to what they already know. In turn, this data delivers insights that help agencies offer further optimized and automated services.

In the U.S, 70% prefer personalized services, and in Canada, that number rises to 76%.

However, to increase trust in government services, the public sector has to be wise in how that data is gathered and used.

Learn how better technology can help government agencies streamline processes. This Trail is a helpful learning module that helps you get started.

Personalization can also help governments proactively offer solutions and take action on behalf of their constituents. 

Proactive services include automatically enrolling people in eligible services and engaging them on services based on their circumstances or previous actions. 

Globally, 85% of respondents are open to proactively offering services and information to the government. That number is higher in Canada, where 89% of respondents prefer proactive government services. The U.S., however, is a bit lower than the global average, with 82% choosing proactive services.

The more you know about a person, the better you can tailor services to their personal experiences and needs. As the level of personalization and proactivity matures, government agencies will need more data to gain a more complete view of constituents’ needs. 

Learn how the City of Toronto reinvented its internal systems and improved how they communicate with their community.

Only 14% of respondents globally are willing to give the government access to any data, even if it makes their life easier. But, 54% will provide access to related data at a minimum, and 91% will give access to at least the bare minimum of data needed. 

But, to implement personalized and proactive services, the government needs to be data driven. Personalized and proactive services feature multiple layers of maturity, all providing different levels of value:

There is some hope for government agencies looking to personalize their online services. Our survey showed that 89% of U.S. and 91% of Canadian respondents are willing to share data at or above minimum requirements.

While people are willing to share data with their government to make their online interactions run smoother, there’s still a gap of trust that the data will be used responsibly. By personalizing digital services, the public sector can embed empathy in all customer interactions – human and digital – and ultimately increase trust in government services.

Learn why trust is the biggest issue keeping the public sector from personalizing their services. Our newest report with the Boston Consulting Group tells the story with data.