COVID-19 & beyond: why government self-service kiosks are here to stay

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic compelled local governments to accelerate the pace of technology adoption. As many governments across cities and counties closed their offices or restricted in-person services to help protect staff and public health, several turned to contactless, self-service kiosks to ensure all citizens would have the option to safely make in-person payments for utility bills, taxes, and other fees.

AdComp Clients Use JACK To Provide Safe Payment Solution Amid COVID-19

Self-service kiosks allow cities and counties to provide residents with an accessible in-person payment solution, thereby creating a key touchpoint to facilitate positive government-citizen engagement in the absence of consistent face-to-face interaction.

Many public sector agencies have relied on AdComp’s 24/7, bilingual Justified Automated Cashiering Kiosk (JACK) to provide residents with a safe option to pay their bills in person, while minimizing contact during the pandemic.

“Many citizens were uncomfortable coming into City Hall. The kiosk assisted those that needed to pay their bill without coming face to face with an employee,” said Ms Victoria B. Solis, HR Director with the City of Pleasanton, Texas. Similarly, Ms Rhonda Thompson, Billing Supervisor with the City of Terrell, Texas, noted that, “Paying in person was an issue, many more people started using the kiosk at that point.”

The Future Of Self-Service Kiosks Post COVID-19

Self-service kiosks, such as AdComp’s JACK, are a key resource for local governments looking to implement a long-term solution to ensure citizens have an accessible, inclusive and easy in-person payment option.

In fact, self-service kiosks offer local governments’ staff and citizens many benefits that will likely outlive the pandemic, making it certain that these kiosks are here to stay.

● 24/7 In-Person Payments

Ms Thompson listed “24/7 payment availability” as a key long-term benefit of the kiosk. With 24/7, outdoor self-service kiosks, governments can allow citizens to make payments at a time that’s convenient for them. This helps create a seamless payment experience for citizens, many of whom must often contend with time and work constraints to make in-person payments during their local government’s regular business hours.

“We hope the long-term benefits [of the kiosk] will be not only for COVID outbreaks, but will be beneficial to our customers as another resource of being able to conduct business after hours,” another AdComp client, City of Sallisaw, Oklahoma, said.

● Cash-Based Payment Solution For The Unbanked & Underbanked:

A 2019 Federal Reserve report indicated that nearly 22% of U.S. adults were either unbanked or underbanked. These citizens, who have little to no access to traditional banking services, often rely on cash to make payments. By providing this population with a convenient cash-based payment solution, self-service kiosks allow governments to offer a more inclusive service.

● Less Indoor Foot Traffic & Crowding

With self-service payment kiosks, local governments can minimize indoor foot traffic, allowing staff to focus on those citizens that specifically require one-on-one assistance, as well as other more pressing tasks. “The kiosk provided double reassurance on any discrepancies on bills and allowed for the staff to focus on in-house customers and payments at the front desk,” Ms Solis said. The self-service system also allows citizens to quickly initiate and complete a transaction on their own, thereby minimizing long lines.

● Easy Integration & Real-Time Reports

Self-service payment kiosks provide integrated, real-time transaction reports so government staff can securely manage and track revenue collection.

To schedule a demo of AdComp’s government payment solutions, click here.