Helping the Singapore Ministry of Defence personalise engagement with the National Service community
Digital technologies have brought tremendous benefits globally to billions of people—making their lives better by meeting their everyday needs more fully, and in ever more convenient and compelling ways.
In Singapore, an adept Accenture team has helped the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) transform its National Service Portal (NS Portal) to better engage and reach out to the National Service (NS) community, which comprises National Servicemen and other stakeholders such as their employers and parents. A personalised journey for each serviceman has been created and the user experience has been taken to a whole new level.
Singapore is using digital technologies to improve the lives of its citizens. Its drive to create positive human experiences is epitomised by its “Smart Nation” initiative—harnessing powerful networks, data and communication technologies to create economic opportunity and build a closer community. The smart use of digital technologies for the benefit of all is integral to MINDEF. The NS Portal offers digital services to the entire NS population—enabling interaction, engagement and exploration into their respective capacity to serve the nation and contribute to keeping its citizens safe and secure.
Revamping the NS portal
In 2015, as part of its efforts to better engage and reach out to the NS community, MINDEF embarked on a revamp of the NS Portal. They wanted to provide a multichannel, hassle-free experience by making portal access and administrative activities more user-friendly. After a competitive tendering process, Accenture secured its place as the end-to-end service provider. Accenture's key work included designing the digital user experience and developing multi-channel touchpoints. Accenture developed and integrated the back-end infrastructure with the migration of more than thirty existing e-Services. We established a 24/7 call centre, with a comprehensive customer relationship management system and infrastructure operations. The NS Portal was integrated with numerous sub-systems to provide a comprehensive view of backgrounds and transaction histories. Business intelligence dashboards monitor case management and performance, and e-Services’ frontend design has improved with application programming interfaces (APIs).
Benefits for the entire NS community
The whole NS community is benefiting from an entirely new user experience—with streamlined, easy-to-use services tailored to individual needs. Since launching, the NS Portal has gained an average of 10 million page views per month. Servicemen, families, employers and other interested stakeholders have welcomed the ability to access the information they need with far more effective and efficient transactions, thanks to the new portal's user-friendly design and interface. This user-centric design has enhanced the communication and engagement with the NS community.
"I can easily accomplish what is required at any given time because I am well guided by the portal on what to do next."
– CHEE YONG, 25-year old National Serviceman
Creating a win-win
At the heart of the new portal is the transformed user experience for each individual. Personalisation of the services, based on individual NS journeys and milestones, means servicemen can leave behind confusing details or transactions. Upon log in, they can now access personalised services, relevant to their specific profiles. Servicemen are shown personalised dashboards, tasks, service content and directions, tailored to their NS journey. The new portal’s task-based personalisation prompts servicemen to the next stage or task, and highlights any immediate actions required—leading to a smoother, more focused and more efficient user experience. Information is now faster and easier to access.
Servicemen now have a better understanding of policies that affect them, as these are now linked to their personal profiles. By moving away from siloed services, the new portal provides a one-stop destination for all NS needs—enabling servicemen to truly discover their wider NS community by “walking in the shoes” of various other users.
Servicemen now require less help and support for online transactions and navigations, and MINDEF can focus more on strategic initiatives for the NS community. Making MINDEF’s NS Portal more user-centric has been a win-win for everyone—from the servicemen, to their communities, to MINDEF and finally to the society. That’s innovation at work.
"We’re receiving great feedback on the new portal, and people say they’re delighted with the user-centric way it’s designed and organised. They could look at all tasks at a glance and easily identify what needed attention."
– MINDEF NS Portal Project Team