Accenture's federal services business and the Partnership for Public Service have released an issue brief that calls on government agencies to adopt three strategies in order to change the way they deliver services to citizens.
Kathy Conrad, director of digital government at Accenture Federal Services, wrote in a guest piece posted Wednesday on Government Executive that one of those strategies is to use virtual assistants and other technology platforms that work to automate functions and streamline service delivery.
Conrad co-wrote the piece with Eric Keller, senior program manager for research at the Partnership for Public Service.
Keller and Conrad discussed how the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services uses a virtual assistant called Emma and a live chat platform to address immigration-related queries.
They called on agencies to understand citizens' needs through data gathering, observations and interviews.
Agency leaders should also coordinate and integrate interactions and other efforts across all channels to facilitate the delivery of services to citizens, they wrote.
The General Services Administration's USA.gov website works to help citizens “use their preferred device or method of interaction to get quick and straightforward answers to their questions,” they added.