Golden opportunity for historic government innovation, KPMG report finds


KPMG’s Modernising Government: Global Trends report has shown that COVID-19 has given governments around the world an unexpected but highly revealing glimpse into what is possible.

The pandemic has proven the potential of governments to dramatically heighten their agility and slash response times to meet public needs.

Paul Low, National Leader, Infrastructure, Government and Healthcare, KPMG Australia said: “The key trends and recommendations that emerged from our report showed a modern government is trusted, agile and embraces technology in order to rapidly meet the needs and expectations of its constituents and the community.”

Global key findings from the report include

  • 29 percent of government organisations count their customer-centric strategy as a top priority, while 46 percent are making it a high priority.
  • More than 50 percent of government organisations rate their customer-centric capabilities as average at best: 16 percent call them ‘less mature’ and about 42 percent rate their customer centricity as ‘about average’
  • 35 percent cited data security and privacy concerns as the leading barrier to their successful execution of customer-centric strategies.
  • 30 percent of government organisations cited a lack of qualified staff as a barrier to executing customer-centric strategies.
  • 56 percent will be prioritising near-term investment in creating an aligned and empowered workforce.

The report shows forward-looking governments are leveraging the momentum they created during the pandemic to focus on innovative initiatives and agile regulations, designed to give them a much deeper role as economic stewards working in closer partnership with private industry to grow their economies out of debt and enhance future prosperity.

“Collaborative public-private partnerships between various levels of government and business in the last decade have demonstrated the speed and efficiency with which public services and infrastructure can emerge. The future is clearly collaborative and opportunity rich when we look for shared interest.”

Investment in revolutionary technologies, platforms, systems and processes should be a priority and will reshape governments into a newly responsive, cost-efficient, customer focused model.

Cath Ingram, Lead Partner for Federal Government, KPMG Australia, said: “Even if complete transformation is not immediately feasible, a challenge that many governments are already facing, it will be extremely important to possess a clear roadmap for how each capability contributes to the evolution of a government organisation and infrastructure for a new era.”

The report argues that reliance on robust business cases, costly and time-consuming planning, and extensive program ‘big builds’ is now poised to give way to a different model built on digital technology, cloud platforms, collaboration with other governments, partnerships with industry, and customer centricity, supported by new and upskilled civil servants, ultimately revolutionising how governments function in the 21st century.

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