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Ensuring a Smooth Digital Transition

This post was originally published on the Carahsoft Community Blog

This year, our nation is anticipating one of the biggest takeovers in our history. As the White House changes leadership, public sector agencies will feel the impact as over 4,000 new leaders are appointed and new initiatives are introduced.

In the midst of the many changes, we know that ensuring an effective digital transition is a critical component, and is a top priority for the White House. Just as past administrations preserved handwritten notes and faxes, everything from tweets to snaps to YouTube videos will be preserved with the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

In a time when our world is becoming increasingly digital, a major transition like a presidential shift could be a perfect opportunity for public sector organizations to assess their digital strategies and make necessary changes.

Digital Changes in a Digital World

To move ahead, we first must recognize where we stand in the realm of digital adoption. According to this Deloitte survey – which surveyed more than 1,200 government officials on digital transformation – there’s progress to be made. A whopping 76 percent of respondents said digital technologies are “disrupting the public sector.” Conversely, only 13 percent of respondents believed they were on track to keep pace with the constant transformation.

At the same time, we’re becoming more connected than ever. An overwhelmingly large percentage of Americans – 83 percent to be exact – have a social media account. What’s more, Natalie Fedie, Vice President of Client Success for GovDelivery, said at a recent event that citizen expectations are rising – they want the same level of service from the public sector as they receive from the private sector. This desire is especially true when it comes to digital growth and change, and here are a few suggestions from Fedie in order to ensure a smooth transition in the new year:

  1. Assess Digital Engagement Efforts

Think about what communications strategies worked well in the past year at your organization, how many subscribers you have, and your overall engagement rate. From this, present your findings in a meaningful way to your executives and make your case for what digital engagement strategies to maintain.

  1. Align Digital Communications with Strategic Priorities for 2017

Most likely, there will be some sort of change in your organization’s strategic priorities in 2017. Think about what you know will change and determine if your tools and tactics should also change in the new year to better align yourself and your organization with the incoming administration.

  1. Execute Digital Communications Strategies to Impact Outcomes

Once you know what’s worked in the past, and what you need to accomplish now, you need to dive right in to reaching, engaging, and converting your audience using digital communications. To increase your agency’s reach, try adding a subscriber signup overlay to the most visited pages on your website. You could also try using text messaging to connect with new members, or increase enrollment in your programs with custom messages.

  1. Report on Your Success

To really make an impact with what you’re achieving with digital communications and engagement at your agency, it’s crucial to demonstrate the return of investment of your efforts. Presenting your findings again will show that you’ve impacted change and made a difference.

Looking to the Future

Only a few days into the new year and just a couple days away from a new White House administration, it is clear that government must begin thinking of digital as a policy enabler, regardless of who’s in office. The public sector should be creating innovative digital strategies and finding the most effective outlets to improve efficiency and citizen experience. Just as crucial is the need for government agencies to be collaborative – and this is especially true in a time of transition. Agencies should remember that the process of becoming digitally connected isn’t a competition. Instead, it is through working together and learning from each other that public sector organizations increase the likelihood of generating true innovation.

To learn more about digital engagement and elevating communication efforts, don’t miss GovDelivery’s Public Sector Seminar on April 10th, 2017. Register here!