If a private company makes an offer to provide services to the public sector, be it the simplest task of school cleaning to rocket science, the private company most likely will be able to undertake this task more efficiently, effectively and at less cost. This is simply because the private company is a specialist in the area of its services and the public sector focus should remain on serving the citizens. What are the factors that both of them should put on their radar to make this engagement the best one in the world!
Amazon believes in customer obsession, but public-sector thrives on citizen obsession. This obsession helps companies to offer high-quality products that users believe in, instilling more trust in the company that offers them and creating a more powerful impetus to provide the feedback needed to continue prioritizing the user experience.
Think big but start small!
A practical-minded public-sector leader might argue that the bigger the goal, the more daunting the delivery challenge. There are often bigger rocks to be cleared when it comes to forcing changes into public sector processes. Nevertheless, that should not intimidate anyone. The wisdom from experience tells to focus on what they call minimally viable products, which offer just enough features to satisfy early adopters, and rapid user testing. Amazon, for example, describes what it calls a “two pizza” rule of thumb that keeps working teams small enough to communicate effectively and generate ideas and pilots rapidly — two pizzas should be enough to feed any team. These are core elements in a delivery model that helps innovators to control the scope, scale, and focus of projects. Pilots that carefully manage these three elements reconcile the need for bold aspirations with feasible, value-driven delivery. In fact, starting small and eventually scaling can be more effective than rolling out all at once.
Starting small and growing big becomes easy if scalability is a built-in goal right from the beginning. Public sector agencies often neglect this factor. It is easy to make mistakes. Fix all known issues before scaling. Think performance optimization and walk through all scenarios to check the vulnerability.
Public sector agencies come in a garden variety. The solution should cater to the young, old, the inexperienced, the learned, the simple and sophisticated ones. For example, National Park Foundation develops immersive digital tools aimed at attracting younger visitors to the parks. They’re also working with the US Department of Education to improve the experience of taking out and paying back student loans. On the other hand, Medicare application users are often the 65+, technologically challenged. The private company should know the audience well in advance and design UI/UX in a way that is simple and intuitive to all kinds of people.
The list is not over yet! In my next article, I am going to talk about the challenges that more abstract in nature — security, compliance, and Interoperability. If you are stepping into the public sector transformational journey, reach out to me or stay tuned on this channel!