Quality of digital services

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Objective of the assessment

The main question in the assessment was whether the digital services meet the customers’ needs in a high-quality manner. The sub-questions were: have the digital services required by customers been increased and is there a wide variety of them available; are the digital services high quality; and do the customers get the services they need as smoothly as possible. The assessment also examined how the costs of digital services are monitored at City level. The strategy states in general terms that Helsinki aims to be the city in the world that makes the best use of digitalisation.

Conclusions

The digital services meet the customers’ needs in a high-quality manner for the most part, but there is still room for improvement in customer orientation. A wide variety of digital services are available, but there are still many services that lack the option of digital service, or the services have parts that must be taken care of with other methods. Not all the digital services are particularly streamlined from the customers’ point of view. Only a small proportion of the services can be provided fully digitally from start to finish, through the same service channel. Among other reasons, services may be challenging to find because the structure of the City’s website is organisation-oriented instead of service-oriented. The digital services do not utilise previously gathered information about customers much, which causes inconvenience to customers, as they have to enter their information again. The City’s electronic services are not fully accessible from the perspective of individuals with disabilities, for example. The City also intends to retain the traditional option in all services to allow all customers to have equal access to services regardless of any disabilities or other limitations. From the customers’ point of view, the smoothest thing would be if the service were offered to them without a separate request when the City is already aware of the need for service. A good example of a successful anticipatory service is the application process for a placement in preschool education that was tested in Helsinki in January 2020.

The Audit Committee concludes that

the City divisions and the City Executive Office must

  • continue to identify services the City can offer before the customer takes the initiative when the City is aware of the need for services;
  • develop the interoperability of the services with regard to data that is provided by the customer or accessible to the City through another channel;
  • develop the digital services in such a way that customers can run their errands from start to finish through the same service channel;
  • retain traditional services alongside digital services in order to ensure equal access to services.

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In Assessment Report: