Top 6 Benefits of AI for UK Local Government Digital Transformation

February 07, 2024

8 min read

Alexandra Khomenok

Government Digital Transformation


The UK’s local government is facing a constant challenge as the demand for digital public services rises and resources become more constrained. This drives an urgent need to refine service delivery and resources to meet the demand for enhanced accessibility and align with the societal shift towards digital technologies. Key in local government digital transformation is leveraging technology to enhance staff productivity, eliminate time-consuming manual tasks and manage tight resources. 


Automation stands at the forefront of this shift, propelling digital transformation in government by integrating advanced features like machine learning and artificial intelligence. These digital government solutions can juggle various responsibilities, from running contact centres and managing healthcare and family services to helping employees in automating some of their tasks.


The advantages of implementing AI in government operations are vast. Let’s explore how these benefits sync up with council strategies for embracing local government digital transformation, ensuring services are delivered smarter and more efficiently.


Benefits of AI for local government digital transformation

1. Enhanced efficiency through automation

AI-driven digital government solutions are at the forefront of automating many routine tasks, thereby liberating staff to focus on more high-value activities. In some functions, the deflection rate, which refers to the percentage of issues resolved without the need to contact human agents, can reach as high as 90% when using AI.


Take, for instance, the domain of social care, where AI can partially automate the assessment process, ensuring a uniform and standardised approach. This technological assistance allows social workers to focus on intricate casework and critical decision-making responsibilities.


Integrating AI in public services helps centralise various processes, saving time. A case in point is the experience of Norfolk County Council, which streamlined its payment procedure for carers. The traditional approach demanded monthly data submissions to HM Revenue and Customs using spreadsheets. This labour-intensive process occupied a dedicated team for five days each month. The transition to an automated data entry system not only trimmed the processing time from 20 to 4 minutes but also markedly improved the quality of the data handled.


Local governments considering using a chatbot for their digital public services should learn how to measure the effectiveness of the AI solution. This ensures informed decision-making and optimisation of resources, ultimately leading to better service delivery and enhanced user satisfaction. For a detailed guide on implementing chatbot solutions and measuring their impact, consult our comprehensive guide covering AI solution effectiveness and the relevant key performance indicators (KPIs) to monitor.



2. Flexible communication options for citizens

AI solutions in local government allow people to engage with public services through their preferred channels: telephone, app, website, or live chat. This approach provides a centralised digital entry point that simplifies access to various services in one place, breaking down the barriers of traditionally isolated services and efficiently directing citizens to the appropriate resources. As a result, the service level is maintained as expected by the public, while staff are relieved from the monotony of simple, repetitive tasks.


Through AI, public services become accessible 24/7, offering instant answers to resident inquiries and eliminating the need for additional searches on the web. Chatbots and voice bots simplify tasks like appointment bookings and offer the choice to connect with live agents when a more personalised approach is needed. This seamless integration of AI communication tools enhances the overall citizen experience, making public service interactions more convenient and user-friendly.

The Directorate of Adult Social Care and Public Health of Richmond and Wandsworth Councils has implemented an AI voice solution provided by Tovie AI. The project aims to enhance the councils’ communication with residents, mainly through outbound calls—a preferred contact method for many. The AI assistant will update those on the waiting lists about their status and solicit current personal information. It will also reach out to individuals, including vulnerable populations, who use council-provided devices, offering support and channelling feedback to the council.


The AI ensures clear and conversational interactions by utilising advanced speech recognition and natural language understanding (NLP). This personalised approach via telephone caters to citizens’ preferred communication style. It also eases the load on support staff by autonomously handling routine inquiries.

3. Substantial cost savings

Local councils can achieve significant cost savings by investing in AI technology, balancing fiscal responsibility with maintaining high service standards. AI streamlines workflows by automatically extracting and integrating data into existing case management systems, substantially decreasing document processing costs.


Also, AI solutions accurately handle routine inquiries, reducing the need for in-person service, minimising call centre delays, and decreasing the volume of unnecessary customer communications, like calls and emails. This efficiency lowers costs and enhances the speed and quality of services delivered to the public.


Dorset Council reports that 60% of local care providers have adopted digital social care records, aligning with the national initiative to digitise care documentation. This move has improved operational efficiency and decision-making in care delivery while reducing administrative costs through less reliance on paper. The council is actively promoting further adoption of electronic records, emphasising the benefits of real-time data access, better care continuity, and secure information handling, as observed by care home directors in the region.


4. Commitment to inclusivity and accessibility

For public institutions, inclusivity isn’t just a legal obligation. It’s essential for creating a fair and accessible working environment. Digital government transformation initiatives must incorporate solutions that comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 AA or higher to ensure accessibility for all users.


In the UK, public organisations serve people with varied cultural and linguistic needs. Therefore, e-government software must communicate with customers in multiple languages.


AI-powered solutions are particularly adept at offering multilingual support. An example is Swindon Borough Council, which sought to provide services to its multicultural communities while managing translation costs. 


By leveraging AI within their private cloud, the council’s system can translate documents into 75 different languages, handling multiple translations simultaneously, retaining the original format of the papers, and smartly identifying which terms should not be translated from English. This innovative use of AI technology decreased the time and expense required for translations, alongside an impressive return on investment, calculated at an impressive 6.3 million per cent.


5. Variety of AI applications in local government services

AI technology is being applied across various digital government services, enhancing how these services are delivered to the community. 


AI-driven chatbots and virtual assistants are improving services by handling high volumes of inquiries through multi-channel communication, from contact centres to online platforms. They streamline processes for various demographics, such as children, families, and older people. They efficiently address routine public health and social care questions while directing more complex issues to experts. 


AI also automates internal functions, including HR and recruitment inquiries. The technology offers rapid responses tailored to an organisation’s specific data. It can analyse patterns in request types, operating hours, and the frequency of call transfers to human agents. This allows for more efficient resource allocation and a better understanding of service demands.


AI proves invaluable in emergencies, such as extreme weather events or public health crises. Voice AI assistants can manage a surge in calls, reducing wait times and resident frustration by handling numerous calls simultaneously. Similarly, online AI assistants are pivotal in providing timely, accurate information on disaster relief, emergency service availability, or safety measures, serving as a reliable information hub for the community during critical times.

Not sure how to implement AI in your organisation? Explore Conversational and Generative AI benefits with our consulting services. Collaborate with our team for seamless integration and a personalised strategy to enhance performance. Contact us for a transformative journey.

6. Generative AI: Bringing benefits to e-government services

Generative AI tools open new possibilities for public communication and service delivery for local governments, presenting exciting opportunities for digital transformation.


One of the most promising applications of AI in local governments is using Generative AI to assist employees. Through the automation of research and data analysis, GenAI empowers government departments to access data distributed across various databases and channels, addressing the needs of their constituents more effectively.


The GOV.UK team in the Government Digital Service (GDS) is utilising Generative AI to enhance user experience through a chatbot. The goal is to create new interaction methods, reducing complexity, saving time, and making interactions with the government simpler and faster.


The chatbot, powered by a Large Language Model (LLM), answers questions using content from the website’s 800,000 pages without relying on personal information. Testing involved internal assessments of tone and brevity, language restrictions, and reflecting GOV.UK’s style. The first results of the tests revealed that nearly 70% of users found the responses helpful.


Also, the London Office of Technology and Innovation (LOTI) has published comprehensive guidance on using Generative AI in local government.


If you want to learn more about the use of Generative AI in organisations with large amounts of data, visit this page or get in touch with our team of experts.

What are the benefits of digital transformation for local government?

The adoption of digital transformation, especially with the use of AI tools, has proven to significantly enhance public services’ efficiency while reducing costs via automation. This transformation allows residents to access digital services 24/7, ensuring their inquiries and concerns are addressed promptly.


The data derived from these digital interactions is valuable for informed strategic planning. This data-driven approach improves the quality of services provided. It aligns with eco-friendly practices by reducing reliance on paper and minimising the need for travel.


Ultimately, digital transformation fosters a mutually beneficial relationship between local governments and their communities, with streamlined processes that benefit everyone by elevating the standard of public service delivery.

Do you have a project in mind but don’t know where to start?

Get a demo

Please tell us about yourself and we’ll get back as soon as we can.


Business email

Company name

Work phone


Contact Us

Please, fill in the form and we will contact you shortly.


Business email

Company name


Thank you for reaching out!

We appreciate you contacting Tovie AI and will get back to you as soon as we can.

Obrigado por estender a mão!

Agradecemos o seu contato e entraremos em contato o mais rápido possível.

Thank you for reaching out!

We appreciate you contacting Tovie AI and will get back to you as soon as we can.