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The digitisation of Denmark – how Denmark has become a digital frontrunner

The digitisation of Denmark is a success story. Not only in Danish history, but internationally with Denmark claiming the top spot in the UN’s list of most advanced countries when it comes to digitisation in both 2018 and 2020. New Zealand also features in the top ten countries in the world; however, we choose to focus on Demark as it is KMD, an NEC company, that is at the heart of the digital success in Denmark.

For over 40 years, KMD has played a key role in creating and developing the foundation that Denmark’s public sector digitisation rests on.

When foreign delegations visit Denmark to learn more about why and how the country has succeeded in digitalising major parts of the public sector, they often stop by KMD’s headquarters.

But who are KMD and what do they do? Let’s find out more.

Who are KMD?

KMD mainly provides software and IT services in Denmark through business models that generate profit continuously on a recurring basis, such as software as a service (SaaS) offerings. Specifically, KMD has a strong customer base among central and local governments and has a wide variety of software for supporting the digitisation of Denmark. In addition, KMD has a successful track record of executing strategic M&A which has broadened its service offering in a number of key verticals.

NEC acquired KMD, the largest Danish IT company in December 2018, seeing the acquisition as a good match with its strategic ambitions within the public sector. KMD has solid experience and a strong portfolio of software in this market segment. NEC technology and KMD software have many synergistic opportunities and both parties are benefitting from the exchange and integration of products, know-how and competencies.

How has Denmark become a frontrunner in the digital government space?

To understand the secret behind the Danish success, the public sector digitisation approach can be broken into three key areas:

  1. Establishing and maintaining the joint public digitisation strategy
  2. The relationship between transparency and trust in the public IT solutions
  3. Development with the citizen at the centre

You can read more about each of these areas in a recent case study published on the KMD website where you can learn more about the success of their work with the Danish government in driving Denmark to be the leading country in the world when it comes to digitisation.

How governments can be transformed through digitisation

KMD’s work in Denmark is a remarkable story and one that countries around the world are trying to replicate. Whilst many companies around the world have transformed themselves with digital technologies, people are increasingly calling for governments to do the same.

KMD were frontrunners in spotting an opportunity and their work in Denmark has set the bar for other countries aspiring for better digitalisation within the government.

By digitising, governments can provide services that meet the evolving expectations of citizens and businesses, even in a period of tight budgets and increasingly complex challenges.

Estimates by McKinsey suggest that, “government digitisation, using current technology, could generate over $1 trillion annually, worldwide.”

In a recent article by Bjarne Corydon, Vidhya Ganesan and Martin Lundqvist writing for McKinsey, they highlighted four key areas required to enable success in digital government:

  1. Strategy
  2. Governance and organisation
  3. Leadership, talent, and culture
  4. Technology

“We have seen two approaches that can help governments incorporate digital concepts into their strategies. The first is to align the goals for digital transformation with the government’s overall priorities. The government of Denmark designed its digitization strategy for 2011 to 2015 to advance a broader cost-cutting agenda. This helped to speed the execution of the strategy and led to cost reductions that the government had sought.

“The second is to evaluate regularly whether digital programs are performing well and to adjust them as conditions change. Governments should also be aware that digitizing services can make those services less accessible or usable to certain groups.”

Digital Government in New Zealand

New Zealand was identified in the 2020 UN report of leading countries in terms of digital government, placing eighth on the list behind Denmark, Republic of Korea, Estonia, Finland, Australia, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the need for countries and municipalities to pursue digital government strategies, many with innovative initiatives. According to the report, “The pandemic has renewed and anchored the role of digital government – both in its conventional delivery of digital services as well as new innovative efforts in managing the crisis,” said Mr. Liu Zhenmin, UN Under‑Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs.

Here in New Zealand, Digital Government is a dedicated arm of the New Zealand government leading New Zealand’s digital transformation.

According to their website, “Digital government is about putting people first. We’re focusing on what people need from government in these fast-changing times and how we can meet their needs using emerging technologies, data and changes to government culture, practices and processes.”

Digital is about more than improving IT systems and processes. In the broadest sense, it means doing things differently in an increasingly connected world — using new mindsets, skillsets, technologies and data to benefit people, government and the economy.

Accelerating the New Zealand Government’s digital transformation will help people access personalised services when and where they need them, engage in decisions about issues they care about, and trust in an open, transparent and inclusive government.

How can NEC New Zealand help to accelerate New Zealand government’s digital transformation?

NEC New Zealand is delighted to bring to New Zealand an innovative digital solution from KMD. KMD WorkZone is an Enterprise Information Management solution that offers the functionality to cover organisation’s need for knowledge sharing, knowledge management systems, case management, calendar management, meeting and archiving of e-mails as well as general secretarial tasks.

WorkZone makes it possible to collect and store all communication with citizens, customers, and businesses, including letters, forms, telephone notes, emails, meeting minutes, pictures, sound, and video files in one system.

KMD WorkZone has been widely deployed in Denmark where several major public institutions have implemented the solution including Copenhagen Regional Government, Danish Defense, Danish Customs and Tax Administration and the Ministry of Environment.

Here in New Zealand, government agencies who could benefit from KMD WorkZone include those who recognise:

  • A need for consolidation of bespoke IT systems with a standard Case Management system.
  • A wish to drive faster case processing through use of common standard processes.
  • A need for optimising the flow of information to/from citizens.
  • A lack of usability in existing solutions and processes.

NEC New Zealand is committed to accelerating the digitisation of New Zealand government and through KMD WorkZone, we believe we have a solution that can improve efficiency and workflow procedures.

Read more about our Enterprise Information Management solution and get in touch with one of the team today.


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