The global pandemic brought a new normal and slowly started pushing regulators and their inspection services to a new digital reality. The long term effects of this crisis change are yet to be defined, but it made one thing sure – technology is the future of regulatory inspection services.
The pandemic boosted the digital changes in the public sector, but it also revealed that these changes started way before the pandemic swamped the world. So that makes two things that public sector IT leaders must acknowledge:
- that the debate whether regulators need digital transformation is over;
- public sector institutions must work together to accelerate and optimise the use of technology to bring public services closer to the public.
To optimise the use of technology, regulators must not only merge technology with inspection services but also ensure that it’s done in a manner that will make them resilient in times of changes and challenges.
Based on the changes that were brought by the ongoing global pandemic, it’s evident that technology transformed many public services. The regulators had to transform their inspection models so that they can deal with the growing backlog of inspection requests in terms of limited capabilities to perform inspections due to social distance requirements, etc.
The digital transformation conversation before the pandemic
For the public sector regulators, the conversation about digital transformation was on a relatively early stage before the pandemic. But the crisis changed that and now everything happens faster than before. Regulators had to change their pace and start transforming overnight. The fast change directed their focus to the use of cloud-based saas inspection software – a convenient type of solution for the urgent necessity of the new reality.
Those who successfully transformed their regulatory inspection services before the pandemic, moved their operation workloads in the cloud and scaled their inspection models for the digital world with workflows for remote inspections or self-submission portals for self-inspections. Since many regulators saw growth of inspection requests during lockdowns and after lockdowns, these kind of changes enabled them to continue their oversight function effectively. They were able to score the complexity of each inspection request and assign self-inspections to low complexity requests and on-site visits by an inspector on high complexity cases. In other words they had the tool to react to the crisis and respond with adapted inspection service model.
Whether regulators were ready or not for this kind of change, it happened and it is here to stay. So what’s going to happen in the next couple of months in terms of digital transformation in regulatory agencies? The answer is digital optimisation.
The digital optimisation conversation after the pandemic
Saying that the conversation about whether regulators need digital transformation or not is over doesn’t mean that the regulators achieved digital maturity and mastered the power of digitalisation to perfection. It means that it’s not a question anymore, it’s an integral part of regulatory inspections. In other words, digitalisation and inspection services are going to be intertwined from now on and regulators need to find the way to optimisation in technology usage and deployment.
The pandemic as a stress test for the digital adoption go inspection software
Even though billions were spent on digital transformation in the public sector before the pandemic, most of the initiatives in the regulatory sector were in constant progress aiming to change the data infrastructure, moving operations to the cloud and leveraging on AI for different use cases – automatically assessing the complexity and risk level of cases and assigning the most optimal inspection routes. However, the challenges that accompany the transformation of an old legacy system made these initiatives take significantly longer. Therefore the progress often was slow.
The lack of urgency made institutions reactionary towards changes. Their digital transformation efforts were seen only as a reaction to the changing habits of their customers – the public. The pandemic situation brought urgency into the digital transformation strategy of many institutions including regulatory agencies. The regulators themselves recommended institutions to examine their disaster recovery plans and prioritise coordination with their technology and cloud providers. The pandemic brought regulators not only to the realisation that digital transformation is urgent, but it also provided a path from transformation to optimisation and digital acceleration of regulatory inspections.
Lessons for the inspection services after the big pandemic stress test
The pandemic has shown that regulators can grow their efficiency in the reality of the new normal. So what are the key considerations for IT leaders and CIOS from regulatory agencies? For regulators technology optimisation is linked to the efficiency of their oversight function. The way to acceleration and optimisation for them goes through inspection data analytics tools, AI systems and resource management tools that enable them to scale and continue to provide their critical oversight functions. The harmony between technology and inspection services is yet to be found, but the acceleration for that to happen is turned on. Canalix is an inspection software platform that is built to address the urgency of the new post-pandemic reality and the challenges it created for regulators. Contact us to help you with your digital acceleration strategy now.