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Accenture Survey Reveals Agencies That Don’t Understand Government Analytics Could Be Missing Out
Accenture surveyed government decision makers across six countries to assess the international government analytics environment within revenue, tax, human services and social services organisations. According to our survey, more than half (52 percent) of government leaders interviewed cited lack of understanding of analytics and how it can help as a major barrier to using government analytics. Four out of 10 people surveyed were not as familiar with, or had never heard of, the term “analytic techniques.”
By not initiating or expanding a government analytics program due to a lack of understanding, government agencies are missing opportunities to save costs and make the most of existing resources. For example, agencies can save costs by identifying and reducing the amount of errors and non-compliance through government analytics.
By broadening their understanding of government analytics and focusing on building analytic capability, agencies can reap business value and cost savings during these difficult fiscal times.
In this point of view, Accenture shares three core goals that agencies should focus on to improve analytic capability and impact.
Accenture surveyed government decision makers across six countries (Australia, Canada, France, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States) to assess the current government analytics environment within revenue, tax, human services and social services organisations internationally.
Accenture’s in-depth research into high-performance businesses and governments shows that public-sector organisations target the same benefits as businesses do for their enterprise data systems: better decision making, improved financial management and faster, more accurate transactions. By not initiating or expanding a government analytics program due to a lack of understanding, agencies are missing opportunities to save costs and make the most of existing resources.
Government agencies that lack analytics knowledge may not pursue a government analytics program to tap the same benefits as those who understand and are actively applying analytics. According to Accenture’s recent analytics survey, organisations that are using analytics are more likely to have detected a decrease (versus no change) in errors and non-compliance during the past 12 months. For example, 67 percent of those surveyed in Australia, 50 percent in the US and 47 percent in Canada are using analytics to address errors and non-compliance.
Agencies can save costs by identifying and reducing the amount of errors and non-compliance through analytics. A social services agency in North America yielded annual savings of 4 percent on a $2.5 billion income assistance program through its non-compliance prevention program.
Government analytics is helping agencies to either get by with fewer staff, or free up existing staff to focus on the core mission rather than administrative tasks. Instead of spending time wrestling massive amounts of data, agencies can use analytics to harness insights from the data to inform better decisions and improve outcomes.
Agencies can improve analytic capability and impact by focusing on three core goals:
Develop a cross-functional, integrated analytics vision. Agencies need to educate their business leaders on analytics, helping clarify what it is and what it can and cannot do. Beyond that, agencies need an integrated analytics vision and knowledge of how this vision will be applied across business processes. Developing a framework of analytic capabilities can be helpful in making progress in a structured manner.
Create value by prioritising analytics. Focusing analytics on high-value processes, specifically those related to where value is being lost, will help find the money that can then be redirected to fuel improvements and growth. Agencies should use consistent criteria to prioritise value-focused analytic investments and, perhaps most importantly, put in place methods to track the value delivered from initial idea to realisation of results.
“Operationalise” analytics. Agencies need to take the insight delivered by analytics and apply the insights to business processes. This means that analytics can no longer be seen as a backroom activity undertaken in isolation from the front-line business. Agencies must consider a governance structure, processes, metrics and technology support to facilitate wider use of analytics and to expedite movement from analysis to actions that yield value.
September 11, 2012
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