When will your public authority consistently provide services online?
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E-commerce and online banking have become a part of everyday life. This and many other digital services make life easier for people. Is digital access to your services still in the development stage? Bridging this gap is essential and provides benefits to residents and public authorities alike.
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People have become accustomed to conducting their daily business online and the practice is becoming increasingly common. The exceptional coronavirus situation only served to reinforce this trend and showed us all how important digitization is. Many activities previously carried out in analogue format took on a new dimension online: working from home, virtual teaching, online food orders, e-aperos, etc. Yet for public services, digital access is frequently lacking. Residents have to visit public authorities in person. But it could be different. An online service portal would, for example, offer them a simple way of ordering and paying for official certificates, extracts from registers or parking passes.
Catching up with digital progress
All market participants are affected by digitization and public administration is no exception. The fact that the Confederation, cantons, cities and municipalities have set up the eGovernment Switzerland organization shows how determined they are to drive digitization forward together. Whether it’s eBau, ordering an extract from the debt collection register or eMoving... there are countless digital administration projects. Both the public and companies appreciate the option of visiting the authorities online because the process is location- and time independent. The fact that well-conceived solutions are widely accepted is shown by tax returns, for example. The majority of taxpayers now submit their tax returns online. Yet, many other services are still in the development stage. The national eGovernment Study 2019 conducted by the Confederation concludes that, “Generally speaking, the range of consistently available services among the public authorities is poorly developed.” In contrast, some 70 percent of respondents in the study indicated that they would like to see a small or even major increase in public services available online.
Online portals: customer-friendly and efficient
On an online portal, it’s important that the members of the public who use public services can pay for them directly online. What’s vital is to avoid the media disruption which is inconvenient to both customers and the authorities themselves. Without a payment option on the portal, the authorities would have to create and send invoices which the customers would then pay. Using an online payment solution avoids the need for this additional work. Such a solution offers customers flexibility in terms of time and place and makes it possible for everyone to conduct their administrative business easily online.
Do you want to create an online portal for your public authority?
Contact the provider of your IT system or an IT company specializing in online portals for municipalities that offers the relevant software. Discuss the project in detail with the provider and go through the processes relating to the services that are to be provided online. The provider may see additional ways to optimize the procedures. The provider also needs to know that you’re looking for a modern online payment solution.
Payment solution: what’s important
- A single contractual partner
- Available payment methods
- Efficient operation and central support
- High standards of security (PCI standard)
Swiss Post’s BillingOnline payment solution meets all the mandatory criteria mentioned. The workload for customers is reduced as Swiss Post is their only contact partner and it handles all negotiations with the payment service providers. BillingOnline consolidates cash flows for all payment providers, credits the revenue collected and provides reports. The highest security standards are maintained throughout the entire BillingOnline process.
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Advantages of BillingOnline
- A single point of contact
- All leading payment methods can be integrated
- Monthly revenue reports
- Increased efficiency
- High level of security thanks to PCI certification
BillingOnline used by public authorities
Swiss Post has implemented BillingOnline for a number of public authorities and incorporated it into different portals. One example is the eMoving app, which enables residents to notify municipalities electronically of a change of residence. Thanks to BillingOnline, the fees incurred can be paid directly online.
BillingOnline handles the transactions, assigns the incoming payments to the municipalities and transfers the total amount to them every month together with a detailed invoice. BillingOnline is also already used on the fines portal: members of the public can pay fines quickly and conveniently via the online portal.