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Local governments make a big impact on the constituents in their communities. The decisions they make every day have a big impact on the way people in the community live their lives. Because of this, it is crucial that local governments gain the trust of their constituents. There are many ways for local governments to gain the trust of their community. Increased transparency, actively listening to the community, and being digitally accessible are all great ways to start.
In this article, we will take a look at how local governments can gain the trust of their community, and how digital transformation can help increase success.
One-way local governments can gain the trust of their constituents is by being transparent in their decision-making process. When constituents can see how decisions are being made, they are more likely to trust that their best interests are being taken into account. There are a few ways to increase transparency.
One way is to publish all the meetings of the local government online. This will allow people to see what is being discussed and make it easier for them to provide input. Additionally, local governments can post the agendas for upcoming meetings on their website and on their social media channels so people know what to expect. Posting the meetings online also makes it possible for people who couldn’t make the meeting to stay caught up when they have time.
Another way to be transparent is by sharing data with the public. Certain data such as updates on current city projects, data about crime in the community, data about the city budget, and more can be really helpful for constituents. It allows them to see where the community is headed and make informed decisions about their own lives. When data is published online, it makes it accessible to everyone in the community. Being transparent with data also helps show the community that you have nothing to hide, which in turn instills trust.
An important part of gaining trust is being able to listen to the community and take their opinions and concerns seriously. One way to do this is by holding community forums or town halls. This gives community members a chance to voice their concerns and be heard. Additionally, it shows that you are taking the time to listen to what they have to say. Town halls have the benefit of being more personal than more traditional ways of reporting concerns such as surveys or forms. It gives constituents the chance to ask questions and have them answered right away, they could even ask follow-up questions if needed. Town halls can even be done digitally so people who need to stay home can still participate. Digital town halls also give the option of posting the recording to the government website once it is over for people to review or for people who missed it.
Another way to actively listen to the community is by setting up an online platform where people can submit their ideas for things they would like to see in their community. This could be anything from a new park to a community event. The government can then take these ideas and work on making them a reality. It would also give the government valuable data about what people in the community really want. For example, if a lot of people submit the suggestion to make a new community park, it is clear that is something that would benefit numerous members of the community. Setting up online platforms for ideas and feedback shows that the community is being heard and that their ideas are being taken into account.
Digital transformation is a huge part of gaining the trust of the community. Local governments need to be online and easily accessible. By being digitally accessible, local governments can show their constituents that they are open to feedback and want to make decisions that work for everyone in the community. Being digitally accessible also makes it much easier for constituents to find the information they need when they need it. But what does it mean to be digitally accessible?
For starters, it means having an up-to-date and user-friendly website. The website should be easy to navigate and have all the information a community member might need. In today’s digital age, many people look for their information online. In order for local governments to effectively communicate with the growing percentage of their population who find their information online, they need to have a good website. This is a very basic step local government can take towards being digitally accessible.
Next, local government can undergo a digital transformation that changes the way they offer services to constituents. For example, many people now pay their bills online. If a local government only offers the option to pay in person or by mail, they are not being as accessible as they could be. The same goes for things like permit issuing and license requests. Being digitally accessible means making it possible for constituents to get as many services as possible online and at their convenience. With that being said, it is important to remember that being digitally accessible will also largely help the local government as well as the constituents. For example, their processes will become more efficient, saving them time and money. They will also be able to collect, access, and store valuable data that will help them make decisions in the future with the support of statistical evidence.
At the end of the day, being digitally accessible is an important step local governments can take towards gaining the trust of people in the community. There are many digital solutions available today that can help local governments embark on their digital transformation journey and increase their digital accessibility. To learn more about the products and services MuniLogic offers to help local governments with their digital transformation visit us here.
Gaining the trust of the community is essential for a local government to be successful. There are many ways they can do this, but some key ways are by actively listening to the community, being digitally accessible, and having an open and transparent government. All three of these together will help create a community that trusts its local government and is more likely to support them in efforts to make their community a better place.
About the authors:
Hannah is a professional content creator and writer. After graduation from the Public Relations program at Cambrian College, Hannah has gone on to start a successful freelance writing career. She is passionate about bringing words to life in a way that makes complicated topics more approachable. From website content to full articles, Hannah loves to find ways to communicate with any audience effectively. She currently lives and works in Sudbury Ontario.
Joseph founded INVORG focusing on a client-centric service delivery platform for innovating local organizations, not-for-profits, home and community support organizations, and small to medium-sized businesses. Joseph holds a Chief Information Officer Certification from Carnegie Melon University, USA, and from the US General Services Administration. He is an IT veteran with over 20 years of leadership in technology, including four years as CTO for the city of London.