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#SmartConnectedCity Series: Accessing Remote Experts for Government Services

June 24, 2014 at 1:17 pm PST

Following last week’s New Cities Summit, I have renewed interest in some of the technologies being implemented to improve citizen services. For example, as a citizen of the Dallas metroplex, I was intrigued by many of the solutions and applications the City of Dallas has put into place on its quest to become a smart and connected city.

With so many cities being pressured with the need to spend less yet meet growing citizen needs, we are seeing a growing interest in solutions such as the Remote Expert Smart Solution for Government Services (REGS). Many of us don’t have frequent need to engage with a city expert or professional, but when I have, the experience has been less than stellar. Too often, citizens end up in lines, waiting, having to take off work and in the worst case scenario – leaving without the information we needed.

Let’s say my grandfather needed to renew his driver’s license. With the REGS solution, the city could place a REGS units (or POD) inside a REGS_podlocal commercial complex, within the public library or even the local bank. My grandfather wouldn’t have to go all the way to the Department of Motor Vehicles.  He could simply go to the local POD location, enter the POD, be greeted and start a virtual face-to-face consultation immediately with an expert who would walk him through the process. The expert and my grandfather could see one another and the expert could share a browser or document and even print off any forms my grandfather needs before he leaves.

REGS_howitworksAs Cecile Willems wrote yesterday, citizen engagement is critical to making our cities better. With solutions that make services easier to access, easier to use, and more effective for both the citizen and the city, we may just see that  an engaged citizen is a happy citizen.

 

Is your city taking steps to improve citizen services? (check out what they are doing with REGS in Brisbane, Australia, by the way)

Interested in learning more about Smart+Connected Solutions such as REGS? 

To learn more about what cities are doing to create new possibilities for improved citizen engagement and a better citizen experience, register  for the entire #SmartConnectedCity blog series, or visit Cisco’s Smart+Connected Communities page and Government page on Cisco.com.

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#SmartConnectedCity Series: IoE-fficiency through Interactive Citizen Services

One of the key themes that emerged this year from local government leaders at the New Cities Summit is that citizen engagement is a critical component to make our cities better. This theme was reiterated over and over throughout the sessions to really underscore its importance: more effective citizen engagement leads to better outcomes for cities and communities.

Customer Experience in the 21st Century and IoE

Technology is enabling a changing customer engagement model across the city landscape. There are now new options to get information and to create engagement. To engage citizens effectively and to improve the citizen experience, local government leaders and cities have to provide a compelling user experience and relevant information and services anytime, anywhere.

This brings in the concept of the Internet of Everything (IoE). IoE is the catalyst that can transform the citizen services of yesterday into interactive, citizen engagement for today. It’s a platform to connect the previously unconnected thereby creating smarter, more connected, more efficient government agencies and cities that deliver better, faster, real-time services through improved citizen engagement.

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