CRM Featured Article
July 17, 2008
Study: Politicians to Use CRM to Woo Voters
Government spending on CRM solutions in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and France will grow from $2.9 billion this year to $4.4 billion in 2013, according to a new report from an international market research firm based in London.
The 52 percent increase will be spurred by the government’s need to better manage its own relationships with voters, according to Datamonitor. Those voters are the same as any other type of customer who expects good service, according to Ben Madgett, a public sector technology analyst at Datamonitor.
“The operating environment for public sector agencies is characterized by the need to do more with less,” said Madgett, who authored the report, “CRM and the Move to Constituent-Centric Government.”
“As governments strive to provide more personalized public services, they are looking to CRM solutions, which can help align service delivery with constituent needs and address numerous pain points,” Madgett continued.
The new use of CRM, for public officials to ingratiate themselves with voters, marks another step for a technology originally used by private sector companies seeking to improve sales, service and marketing channels.
But with public sector adoption of CRM, Datamonitor says, governments are using these features to meet their own unique needs. For example, firm officials say, CRM’s service function facilitates the provision of information to constituents. One of the key drivers is a surge in government contact centers for constituent inquiries, such as the numerous non-emergency contact center initiatives which have been rolled out across North America and Europe, officials say.
Yet CRM technologies are expected to fill a sorely needed gap for government agencies and vote-seekers, Datamonitor says.
“Governments are able to automate workflow and consistently track cases as they move through the system, agency to agency, in order to be resolved,” Madgett said. “For example, social services departments are using case management to improve efficiency and ensure consistency in how they track and record interactions with their clients.”
Yet, despite CRM’s benefits, problems are expected in actually implementing CRM solutions for security-minded government agencies, officials say.
According to Madgett, government agencies often operate in “silos,” so that sharing information about constituents becomes a problem.
“As customers, we’ve become accustomed to the personalized, 24/7 service we get from the private sector,” Madgett said. “As constituents of government, that same expectation is still there. As such, governments have realized they’ve had to catch up by jumping on the CRM bandwagon.”
Michael Dinan is a TMCNet Editor. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.
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