Income Management – The Technical Landscape is Changing

Published On: October 2nd, 2020

Cloud computing, EDGE computing, big data and all the other trends in the world of interconnected systems are finally starting to become the default position for public sector organisations with an increasing number finally adopting a ‘cloud first’ strategy for their IT infrastructure and enterprise applications. Whilst the government advocated its cloud first strategy back in 2013 the realities of austerity and the complexities of delivering services to citizens, business and internal stakeholders presents every individual Local Authority with a unique set of challenges.

There have been a huge number of articles written in both mainstream and sector-specific press that tell us about what these technologies can offer public sector organisations (and more specifically, Local Authorities) in general, but when addressing the area of income management there appears to be a significant gap in the information. Cloud computing in the public sector has previously been valued for the cost savings it provides. However, the cloud / SaaS applications are also at the forefront of implementing emerging technologies in the public sector and will be fundamental to driving innovative services for citizens.

These technologies have never been so crucial in assisting Local Authorities in Income Management. With the advent of COVID-19 and the extreme complications it has imposed on the public sector and the people that they serve it is imperative that Local Authorities not only ensure that they can collect and carefully manage the increasingly finite income streams afforded to them, but that they engage with their citizens in an intuitive, constructive and meaningful way as part of that equation.

Ensuring a Local Authority is running on a software platform that is safe, secure, fit for purpose, fully managed and (crucially) fit for purpose is precisely what SaaS applications have been designed to deliver. This is especially true of SaaS-based Income Management software. The total cost of ownership is typically low compared with an in-house implementation (think servers, security, updates, upgrades, accompanying licenses and all the staff required to feed and water the system).

Furthermore, given the ability for such systems to take payments via the internet, chip & pin devices and telephone payments (MOTO, ARP, etc) it’s even more crucial than ever that these systems and the supporting infrastructure is always on the latest version utilising the latest security updates, maximising resilience and providing 24/7 monitoring with advanced intrusion detection and intrusion prevention technologies.

The cost of licensing traditional Income Management systems is another aspect their cost of ownership that senior stakeholders in both Finance and the IT teams are painfully aware of. Often requiring expensive technologies such as commercial database RDBMS software, thin-client deployment and extensive, multi-layered security strategies, traditional Income Management solutions can be expensive applications to maintain (and further develop within the organisation) despite the critical nature of them for the tactical and strategic well-being of entities such as Local Authorities.

Against that backdrop a modern SaaS-based Income Management solution can provide the following benefits with immediacy:

  • No hardware or software requirements for the new application.
  • Seamless migration path with advanced ETL tools and data validation.
  • No reliance on internal architecture or hardware.
  • No requirement to recruit and maintain specialist IT staff or add additional roles and responsibilities to (likely already busy) existing IT departments.
  • Enterprise grade security, monitoring and resilience included in the total cost of ownership.
  • Clear and concise pricing model.
  • Extensive interoperability with existing systems through modern and effortless ETL (Extract, Transform and Load) functionality.
  • Always remain on the latest version of the software with no downtime or additional testing required.
  • Always on a supported platform with no need to plan platform upgrades i.e. completely avoid obsolescence.
  • Supports a multitude of PSP’s to maximise synergies with contracts the Local Authority might have with their PSP of choice.

These are just some of the multitude of issues that Local Authorities can avoid / embrace by using a modern SaaS-based solution versus having to manage an on-prem / legacy Income Management system on a regular basis when either implementing a new version and / or (importantly) maintaining such a system.

It is for this reason that many Local Authorities are now looking at their Income Management system estate and are seeking to modernise it to benefit from the plethora of advantages and cost savings that a modern SaaS solution typically introduces.

Easy to Deploy

No installation required, with typical deployments taking just minutes to deploy, configure and release for initial review.

Secure Payments

Payments via online, telephone, face-to-face, recurring card payments & automated bank channels are supported as standard.

User Friendly

All HeyCentric solutions are built with both the business user and the citizen in mind. Our apps are intuitive and accessible.

Detailed Analysis

Senior stakeholders can review an organisation’s cash position in real-time, giving the complete picture at the touch of a button.

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