There have also been changes in the way citizens and companies choose to transact with councils. Whilst Direct Debit remains the easiest way for councils to recover permanent accounts such as Council Tax or Business Rates, for one off or less regular transactions the industry has yet to see the “citizen account” take off right across the sector.
Whilst many councils have looked at (and some have implemented) solutions that deliver a single view of the customer through CRM solutions, much of the data held is in disparate solutions that are for specific services like social care, housing rents, council tax, business rates, parking, etc. The data captured often lacks the quality / standards needed to ensure that the data matching routines are reliable. Much of the data is also historical and there are obvious constraints around how it can be used.
We are starting to see some real advances in these areas, but most these are currently focused on developing models for service planning and demand and are some distance away from providing fully managed citizens account to which to an embedded payment card or direct debit instruction could be attached.
HeyCentric’s solutions are focused on delivering a contemporary solution that is ERP / Finance system agnostic and can easily integrate with any ERP or Finance system, bank or line of business (LoB) software. All HeyCentric’s products and services are linked to forward thinking / modern payment platforms that are scalable and flexible enough to meet the continuously changing requirements and demand that Local Authority’s face as well as deep integrations to .gov.uk services.
Now might not be the right time for all Local Authorities to rethink their income management strategies. Clearly the current situation is unfolding in very different ways for different public sector organisations across the spectrum. However, for those that are tasked with identifying real cost savings (whilst simultaneously enhancing services to citizens and improving internal reporting and visibility of income) there is much that can be done when concentrating on the central solution that pulls together all the disparate sources of revenue and presents it to the decision makers in real-time.