VMware Inc. unveiled research titled “Digital Smart: Advancing digital government for citizens in the Asia-Pacific”, which found APAC citizens are more digitally engaged than ever, but governments still lag in the delivery of those services.
The study, conducted by Deloitte, found that the use of in-person government services halved across APAC nations in the last two years, and 77% of citizens now primarily use a digital platform to access government services.
However, 67% of respondents expected the quality of government services to be on par with those offered by the private sector with 41% of people struggling to access digital services on their own, with a lack of basic digital skills and shortfalls in digital infrastructure. With 900 million new internet users expected to be added to the region (Australia, Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, India, Japan, and South Korea) by 2025, the need for investment in digital services by governments continues to grow.
Sylvain Cazard, senior vice president and general manager, Asia Pacific and Japan, VMware said: “It’s clear from the Deloitte research that citizens expect the same level of services – and quality – as those delivered by private companies or organizations. Service delivery in terms of multi-cloud infrastructure as well as modern containerized applications and services are the way forward, so governments also need to align thinking and resourcing along these major trends to meet their citizens’ needs.”
Pradeep Nair, Vice President & Managing Director at VMware India, said, “According to the Deloitte study, 81% of Indian respondents agree that government services have become easier to use, and 78% indicate the quality of services has improved. The study calls out raised expectations too – 86% of Indian respondents expect most government services to be available online over the next five years, and 86% agree that government needs to invest more in technology to better prepare for the future. Easier access, greater transparency and increased data security are specific areas to focus.”
Deloitte India partner, Swati Agarwal said, “Integrated digital government services are redefining the citizen-government engagement and delivery models. The focus on citizen experience through digital, human-centric, real time and personalized delivery of services is leading to an improved perception of trust and responsiveness while improving access, operational efficiency, and agility.”
Governments’ readiness to embrace digitization going forward varies widely between emerging and developing economies. Here are some of the highlights:
- Singapore: 84% of Singaporean respondents expect to access government services the same or more frequently in the next five years and 76% agree or strongly agree that government needs to invest more in technology to better prepare for the future.
- Vietnam: 85% of respondents in Vietnam are willing to learn new digital skills or use a new platform and 80% expect to access government services the same or more frequently in the next five years.
- India: Respondents in India are the most likely to say that a positive experience using online government services will improve their trust in government and currently, 89% are more willing to learn new digital skills or use a new platform.
- Indonesia: 81% of Indonesian respondents are more comfortable engaging with digital technologies, and notably, government websites have replaced in-person services as the most common medium when accessing government services today.
- South Korea: 90% of Korean respondents expect to access government services more frequently in the next five years. The report finds that South Korea is ranked 1st globally on the World Bank GTMI and is recognized as a GovTech world leader with a score of 98 out of 100.
- Japan: 90% of Japanese respondents expect to access government services more frequently in the next five years and only 27% expect the quality of government services to be the same as services offered by the private sector.
- Australia: 82% of Australian respondents expect most government services to be available online over the next five years and look forward to a more integrated experience. 55% of Australians are willing to provide personal data if it makes accessing services easier. Data security is also top of mind for Australians when accessing government services.
The commissioned study was conducted by Deloitte Access Economics on behalf of VMware and surveyed 3,840 people.