The global health crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the digital transformation plans that are months or even years away to be executed within weeks.
What is digital transformation and how did it accelerate with the pandemic?
This is what the telematics engineer José Joskowicz, technology expert and consultant for the technology solutions firm Isbel, says in his study "Digital Transformation in Citizen Management and Services", presented at the sixth Smart Cities Meeting. Joskowicz describes digital transformation as the change associated with the application of digital technologies in all aspects of human society.
Examples of accelerated transformation highlighted by the study include meeting the population's need to continue to pay for public services, to have medical consultations and to carry out formalities, with shorter waiting times and reducing face-to-face visits to a minimum.
According to the expert, "the states have had to adapt quickly to incorporate themselves into the digital ecosystem of channels that citizens use more frequently in their daily lives (Whatsapp, social networks, webchat, among others)". He explains that in order to effectively and efficiently meet the volume of demand, "it is necessary to have systems that allow attention through all these channels and to develop computer applications that automate procedures, whether through voice or chat. All under strict information security protocols, and preserving personal data".
The case of the Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic is ranked 82nd in the United Nations Global Digital Government Index, showing a 51% growth between 2014 and 2020. The country currently has various platforms and tools with which it can accelerate its digital citizen transformation in various sectors such as health, with online consultation platforms like Doctari; and in customer service with chatbot platforms like Hey Now and multi-experience platforms like uContact and Avaya, technologies that are also perfectly applicable to the virtual education model to be implemented by the Ministry of Education.
In terms of mass consumption, according to the study "Consumer Sentiment" by McKinsey & Company, Dominicans show a higher frequency of online shopping. They also show a change in the type of channel, i.e. a migration towards online channels. Other data shows that by 2020, 85% of interactions will not require human customer service representatives.
"With this change in consumer habits, ecommerce becomes a vital option for those who want to create their own business and at the same time have the flexibility that the digital market provides," explains Neuston Galván, Isbel's manager for the Dominican Republic. "In this sense, Fenicio is an easy-to-manage online sales platform in the cloud that allows you to have your eCommerce site integrated with the internal systems of your business, payment methods, shipping methods, marketplaces, advertising platforms and much more," he adds.
Among the most important focuses for Isbel in terms of citizen digital transformation is the tourism and hospitality sector, with connectivity solutions, physical distancing bracelets, camera analytics to monitor the movement of guests, and virtual butlers.
"The digital transformation of citizens seeks to improve people's experience when dealing with the state, in conditions of equality for all citizens, through the incorporation of technologies that guarantee security and trust and facilitate procedures. The benefit of this is not only greater user (citizen) satisfaction, but also savings in costs and waiting times," concludes José Joskowicz.
José Joskowicz is an engineer in Uruguay, the second country in the Americas (after the USA) in the field of digital government.
Original article published in CDN.