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Implementing Change In Local Government: Strategies for Training the Older Workforce on GovTech

By Anna Figliola

The successful operation of local governments is dependent on the cooperation of many different facets and departments, all of which likely hire independently from each other. Many local government departments have workers who have held their positions for years, and sometimes the entirety of their career. These workers often resort to traditional or sometimes even inefficient methods in the workplace as a result of limited exposure to modern technology during their formative professional years. This can also be attributed to  a lack of comprehensive training programs to help their departments undergo a digital transformation. The use of Government technology yields numerous benefits including enhanced operational efficiency, improved citizen engagement, streamlined processes and data-driven decision making

By embracing modern technology and implementing Government Management Software, local governments can reduce overall costs, provide more responsive and effective services to constituents, and adapt swiftly to evolving challenges. Pushing past the resistance to change is crucial for local governments to stay up-to-date and enhance the efficiency of public service in your community. 

Local government officials encounter several challenges when attempting to train the older generation workforce on new technology solutions. These workers often have a resistance to change, a fear of technology, and a lack of familiarity that often creates barriers in government technology training. When all government workers of varying age groups can proficiently utilize government software and eliminate outdated paper-based workflows, operational efficiency significantly increases. 

Read more about the Ways Governments Use Technology

Why It Is Imperative To Train The Older Workforce 

Training the older workforce to utilize modern technology solutions is crucial to bridge the digital divide and unlock the full potential of experienced professionals. Older generation workers typically use manual, paper-based workflows that frequently cause problems for productivity and efficiency, and lead to avoidable mistakes and unnecessary time consumption. By harnessing the wealth of experience coupled with modern skills, local governments can maximize productivity and better serve their communities. 

Learn everything you need to know about Going Paperless In Operations here. 

Why The Older Generation Often Needs GovTech Training 

Government technology is designed to simplify operations for municipal workers. Here are some key reasons it is so important to keep the older workforce up to date: 

  • Lack Of Understanding For Technology Processes 

Seasoned government employees often require government technology training due to a historical lack of exposure to advanced digital tools during their formative professional years. The rapid evolution of technology has outpaced their skills and contributed to a digital divide. To ensure inclusivity and efficiency, it is crucial to provide tailored training. 

Check out our resource on Disability Inclusion Planning in Government, Improving Accessibility for All in Your Municipality to learn more. 

  • Digital Inclusion

Government technology training for the older generation’s workforce helps bridge the digital divide, ensuring that older individuals are not left behind in the technology-driven era. Carefully curated technology training for adults promotes a sense of unity throughout the learning curve, as opposed to feelings of exclusion that further a resistance to change. 

  • Time Waste

Oftentimes, workers who have been in the same position for multiple years become accustomed to routines and methods that are inefficient and time consuming. Time waste is not exclusive to specific departments but instead impacts the overall operational efficiency of local government institutions. Government technology training encourages a seamless transition to government based software programs that significantly cut down on time waste by reducing manual effort and simplifying complex processes.  

Check out how GovPilot can help you utilize  The Best Automated Workflows for Government

  • Communication Silos

Without the integration of modern technology solutions into local government, interdepartmental communications take longer and are likely to be inaccurate or misinterpreted. Using communication channels, like MicrosoftTeams or Zoom, allows personnel to instantly relay relevant info and simultaneously share updates with pertinent teams and departments. 

Further, utilize the government cloud for easy and instant access to all shared documents and files between departments. 

  • Human Error Roadblocks

Government technology solutions, like the software offered at GovPilot, reduce the possibility of human error with automated workflows and centralized databases. When outdated manual labor methods are used, the likelihood of mistakes due to fatigue or oversight becomes consequential. Automated processes follow predefined rules and data validation protocols, ensuring accuracy and consistency. 

Consider GovPilots Software to simplify Workflow Automation For Governments here. 

What To Highlight When Training The Older Workforce

Training the older generation of municipal workers on technology, paperless workflows and AI automation is vital and here are a few key ways to get it done: 

1. Explain The Benefits

Despite the initial learning curve of government technology, there are a multitude of benefits to modern government software that directly improve the workflow of the older workforce. Modern technology allows experienced personnel to reach their full potential by creating time to focus on more strategic and impactful aspects of their roles.

Explain to hesitant workers how automated workflows reduce manual effort, simplify needlessly complicated processes, and enhance communication between departments. Make sure the older workers understand that implementing government software benefits all departments and will make their lives easier by fostering innovation, improving resource allocation, and enhancing security features

Read more about The Benefits of Digital Transformation for Local Governments.

2. Recognize Their Experience and Assess Current Skills

When training the older workforce in government technology, it is crucial to reinforce the ways technology can complement and enhance their existing capabilities. Older workers bring valuable experience and skills to the table that should not go unacknowledged, but instead used as framework to further comprehension and efficiency. 

Government technology training for adults should begin with an assessment of the individual's current skills in order to gain an understanding of their familiarity with modern technology. Once current skills are assessed, specific areas that need improvement can easily be identified and further developed to enhance their existing skill set. 

Learn about how GovPilot’s Municipal and County Clerks’ Software processes and filters digital records to improve operational efficiency. 

3. Establish Customized Training Programs

Government technology training for personnel of an older generation eases the transition from traditional manual labor to technology based automated workflows. Customized training programs acknowledge the diverse learning needs and experiences of the individuals by catering to their specific skill levels and ensuring relevance to their roles and responsibilities. 

Local officials can tailor technology training to the specific needs and varying learning styles of older employees by offering both group and one-on-one training. Customized training programs for workers of an older generation is more likely to result in long-term retention and practical application. 

Learn how to help your department streamline Government Data Storage here. 

4. Use Familiar Examples

Local government officials should be incorporating familiar examples and concepts into adult technology training to improve contextual understanding and reduce anxiety for personnel. By drawing parallels with tools and devices older workers already understand, new information is easier to grasp and apply to their position.

Officials need to relate technology training to familiar concepts to resonate with learners, accelerate learning, and make the learning experience more relevant, engaging, and effective. 

5. Provide Hands-On Training

Hands-on training is essential when training older government workers in modern technology solutions for several key reasons. Practical experience reinforces theoretical knowledge and builds confidence by offering time and space to think through each procedure with the support of trained professionals to offer assistance. Hands-on training includes real-world simulations and examples coupled with interactive exercises to prepare adult learners for complexities they may encounter on the job. 

Learn everything about the cloud with our article on Azure for Government.

6. Use Intuitive Technology

The transition from paper-based workflows to cloud-based software programs can feel overwhelming to the older generation workforce, amplifying the resistance to change. This exaggerated fear can be dispelled by avoiding complex systems and implementing user-friendly programs with clear interfaces and straightforward navigation. Intuitive technology refers to technology that is easy to understand, like applications with the most common functions presented in one menu rather than hidden among multiple menus that would require extensive technology proficiency to utilize. 

Check out the ease of GovPilot’s Department of Public Works Software, featuring an interactive, public-facing map to reflect project status. 

7. Promote an Ongoing Learning Culture

Encourage resilience during the Government technology training process by cultivating a culture of continuous learning. Officials should emphasize that technology is constantly evolving and employees will continue to be provided with ongoing training and support. Develop personalized learning plans and encourage a growth mindset to keep employees engaged and motivated to face new challenges during adult technology training. 

Implement Positive Change With Technology Training In Your Municipality

Local government officials need to dedicate time to training older members of their workforce to improve efficiency of operations and save time otherwise used on unnecessary manual input. By utilizing modern technology and implementing government based software, officials can reduce overall costs, provide more responsive services to constituents, and adapt to evolving challenges. When personnel of varying age groups are proficient in government software use, officials can eliminate human errors and improve efficiency across all departments. 

Book a consultation with GovPilot today to learn more.

Training Older Employees FAQ

  • Why is it important to keep older workers on track with govtech? 

Keeping older workers on track with GovTech allows them to reach their full potential by combining work experience and technology proficiency. Adult government technology training helps to bridge the digital divide and prevent skill obsolescence. 

  • What is government technology? 

Government technology is online government software that digitizes government processes to save localities time and money, enable efficient operations, and improve constituent quality of life. 

Learn more about Artificial Intelligence in Government

  • Why do older generations use tech less in their work? 

Older generations use less tech in their work due to a lack of exposure to advanced digital tools during their formative professional years. Many workers of older generations are comfortable with their current workflows and resistant to change because they are intimidated by modern technology. 

  • What are the benefits of Gov Tech? 

The benefits of GovTech are numerous and include improved operation efficiency, decreased possibility of human error, automation across departments, saving time and money, streamlined data collection, and seamless communications. 

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Tags: Government Efficiency, Digital Transformation, GovTech