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Digitisation still has a long way to go in municipalities

Press Release   •   Jul 07, 2016 06:30 BST

(Oslo, 7 July 2016) Just a few Norwegian municipalities live up to their residents’ expectations relating to self-service solutions. Digitised municipalities are deemed the most attractive to work and live in.

This is according to the annual survey of the population recently carried out by Telenor on a sample of residents in Norwegian municipalities. 

This year’s survey makes clear that municipal Norway has not made much progress in terms of offering its employees good quality digital tools or by offering its residents good self-service solutions.

Self-service solutions are particularly sought after in the health and care sector, as well as in the teaching and technical sectors. Residents also want to interface with the municipality on digital platforms and make use of various services online, ranging from building permit applications and school applications to applying for nursing home care.

Here are the most important findings from this year’s survey

  • 42 per cent of residents think the municipality they live in should get better at using new technology.
  • 63 per cent of residents would like their municipality to develop an app covering all of the municipality’s digital services.
  • 73 per cent of residents prefer to receive notifications from the municipality by email.
  • 59 per cent of residents would like to be able to apply for nursery places, building permits, etc. digitally.
  • 20 per cent of residents would like to engage in contact with their municipality through face-to-face meetings.
  • 49 per cent of residents would like digital access to property and mapping services.
  • 60 per cent of residents would like digital notification from the municipality in connection with deviations/delays to public transportation.
  • 67 per cent of residents would like digital notification from the municipality in connection with landslides, the release of hazardous substances or other contamination.
  • 55 per cent of residents would like to be contacted digitally by the municipality in connection with fire inspections and chimney sweeping.
  • 46 per cent of residents would like to be contacted digitally with information for next of kin in connection with community nursing services.

More municipalities are contacting Telenor for advice related to digitisation. Telenor is currently acting as an adviser to around 30 municipalities around the country. Telenor offers a dedicated programme for the digitisation of municipal services.Haugesund and Karmøy are just two of the municipalities cooperating with Telenor to kick start their digitisation processes.

Offering advice and training
‘We can provide municipalities with advice and offer training to their employees and residents,’ explains Ove Fredheim, CMO Business at Telenor.

Telenor can map the requirements for digitisation and implement measures that will allow municipalities to offer their residents digital services. This involves training in the use of digital tools for municipal employees while also offering residents the chance to receive training in the use of smartphones and tablets by means of the Internet For All course.

‘We see that the need for digital education and knowledge is huge, particularly for the older segment of the population. The majority of respondents in the survey say they lack the skills needed to keep up with digital developments,’ says Fredheim.

Attractive to live and work in
The survey shows that there are many good reasons why municipalities should offer employees and residents digital tools and the ability to use self-service solutions.

‘A majority of respondents who work in the municipalities consider themselves to be more digital in their private life than at work. This means they don’t feel they have adequate tools to do a good job. The findings show that a municipality’s digital tools can be critical when people are deciding whether or not to move there. It’s therefore reasonable to assume that municipalities that have made more progress in offering digital services are the most attractive to live and work in,’ says Fredheim.

About Telenor Norway

Telenor Norway is the biggest supplier of mobile and network services in Norway.

We deliver services within telephony, broadband and cable TV  through our mobile and fixed network all over Norway. We also provide our services to other telecom operators.

We have 4200 employees in over 30 workplaces all over Norway, including Svalbard.