Open Government Products (OGP), an experimental product team at GovTech Singapore, knows the value of clear communication better than most: they literally build it.
As one of the teams responsible for helping to digitize the Singapore government, OGP has released several platform solutions to aid with everything from digitizing forms, distributing masks, to sending mass message notifications.
Their goal is clear: design, implement, and distribute technological solutions to real world problems using data to determine best practices.
For COVID-19, this means building the infrastructure to deliver fast, accurate, trustworthy communication to multiple large communities in Singapore.
Doing so requires small product teams that work quickly to develop simple, well-designed digital solutions that are easy to use by both public officers and the community. Let’s explore how they accomplish these communication goals with the solutions below.
What: Postman is a user-friendly, custom-built tool that allows any agency to send mass ad-hoc SMS or email messages to specific communities.
Why: Postman enables the Singapore government to share daily updates to citizens regarding new COVID-19 cases, safe distancing measures, and other important information through their Gov.sg channel (WhatsApp). 1-2 million messages are sent a day to over 650k people. This not only helps inform citizens but also enables transparency and prevents the spread of misinformation with a central authority dispensing COVID-19 news.
Learn more about how to build a contact tracing text messaging strategy in your community.
What: Homer is a compliance reporting tool for COVID-19 Stay Home Notice and Leave of Absence quarantine programs that has monitored more than 300k users to date. Homer submits users' current location to authorities at intervals throughout the day to ensure compliance with COVID-19 measures.
Why: Singapore citizens who’ve been exposed to COVID-19 are required by law to report their current location to the appropriate agency. Homer makes this quarantine reporting easy for both parties.
What: Isomer is a static site builder that reduces the production time from content creation to information dissemination to Singapore citizens.
Why: Using this time-saving tool, agencies and government entities were able to quickly launch sites like covid.gobusiness.gov.sg (COVID-19 information for businesses and links to apply for exemptions and additional manpower) and sgunited.gov.sg (information on how to volunteer and donate and other government community efforts) in a matter of days.
AskGov artificial intelligence bot
What: An AI bot that quickly answers businesses’ common COVID-19-related questions with better accuracy and provides an improved user experience and analytics.
Why: This self-service tool allows the Singapore government to more easily provide citizens with the information they need, enabling a more efficient and successful interaction between the public and the government.