4 in 10 citizens are still not satisfied with digital services from government. What is your agency doing to improve?

The Internet of Things (IoT) has evolved our expectations of the world around us. From personal assistants in our kitchens alerting us when to reorder groceries to video cameras pinging us when someone rings the doorbell to phones buzzing when we get a new delivery, the moment something changes, we know about it. 

And it’s not just about knowing right away; it’s about needing to know right away.

We have become so interconnected in our personal lives that we expect local government to operate the same way; in fact, 85 percent of citizens do. Changes in traffic, the weather, the way we pay our utilities – whatever it is – citizens want to know. Everything is immediate, and everything is fast. Everything is now. But limited government budgets and resources have slowed the ability of local agencies to keep pace with the progress of IoT in the private sector.

Innovative companies are working on bridging the gap. One way they’ve been succeeding is by connecting local agencies’ assets to the IoT. Smart management of assets in coordination with IoT has led to smart sensors being able to improve the lives of citizens. Some opportunities are already being leveraged while other innovating ideas are just around the corner in the future of IoT:

Traffic sensors: Smart traffic sensors can help alleviate road congestion during peak hours, coordinating traffic lights to help traffic flow, identify alternate routes, reduce the likelihood of traffic accidents and cut down on wasted fuel.

Smart cameras: In the event of a traffic accident, smart cameras may one day be able to alert dispatchers and send the appropriate emergency response without a call having to be made.

Geo-safety warnings: Smart sensors are extending the warning time between weather-related incidents and the moment of impact. Whether it’s sensors in flood-prone waterways or ground sensors in earthquake country, citizens can get a warning alert before the point of impact much earlier, potentially saving lives and property.

Improved conservation efforts: IoT can be used to track and control water resources and energy consumption. Heating, cooling and water sensors can automatically adjust to environmental changes to reduce energy costs.

These types of smart sensors also have to fit in with an efficient enterprise asset management system, otherwise they risk creating more problems than they solve. Some examples of how EAM helps smart IoT sensors work better include:

  • Monitoring and proactive maintenance
  • Smarter allocation of budget and staff resources
  • Being alerted to usage, age, condition, etc.
  • Tracking locations and placements of sensors

The potential for IoT to connect local government to the values of its citizens is endless. Conservation, increased public safety and a high quality of life are all goals that smart IoT sensors can achieve. Agencies that leverage the power of data and analytical insight brought on by IoT are best positioning themselves and their citizens to easily evolve with the rapidly changing world around them.