Granicus Acquires Leading Compliance Software Provider GovQA To Help Government Agencies Manage Exponential Increase In Public Records Requests
GovQA streamlines increasingly complex public records process for more transparent governments, connected residents
Granicus, the leading provider of cloud-based digital experience solutions for the public sector, announced the acquisition of GovQA, the nation’s leading provider of public records and compliance workflow solutions for government.
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With the addition of GovQA, Granicus continues to extend the capabilities of its Civic Engagement Platform, helping government officials deliver consistent, unified digital experiences to their communities while automating, streamlining and transforming internal process workflows.
“Governments are experiencing a massive influx of records requests filed by the public, corporations, and media; with some seeing a 500% increase in requests and even greater increases in the resources needed to fulfill these requests compared to only a few years ago,” said Mark Hynes, CEO of Granicus. “These trends have correlated with the public’s interest in pandemic response, an increase in social tensions and an overall erosion of government trust. Local and State government agencies have the opportunity to re-shape the trust narrative by embracing digital civic engagement and experience solutions that consistently demonstrate government transparency, efficiency, responsiveness, equity, empathy and reliance on truth. GovQA is an important and powerful addition to the Granicus platform that amplifies our customers’ ability to support healthy communities through deeper transparency, engagement and connection, while ensuring they remain compliant with their state’s unique regulations.”
Access to public records is a vital pillar in the foundation of government trust. In many cases, fulfillment controls, processes and timeline compliance rules are mandated by local, state and federal regulations—such as the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)—to drive consistency, reliability and faith in the process. But request fulfillment can be incredibly fragmented, complex and time-consuming for government officials—making their ability to remain compliant and meet public expectations a serious challenge, with the introduction of new data streams such as police body camera footage, social media posts, and smart cities technologies only making it more difficult. According to GovQA’s recent research, public records fulfillment and compliance complexity has increased 150% over the last three years alone.
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“Governments today are inundated with information requests. As volume continues to skyrocket, and requests become increasingly complex, traditional public records processes are no longer able to satisfy these demands,” said Tim Callahan, CEO of GovQA. “The stakes for governments are way too high to do this poorly or below standards; it’s why hundreds of government agencies have turned to GovQA to help them drive the efficiency and compliance required in today’s environment. And now, as part of Granicus, public records request management can more seamlessly be integrated into a government’s overall digital approach to community transparency, engagement, communications and workflow management.”
GovQA has a proven track record of transforming public records management to make government processes simpler, easier and more transparent. To date, they’ve completed millions of information requests for nearly 800 government customers. With their public request compliance automation solution, GovQA offers:
- Enhanced efficiency: Information requests have grown significantly in recent years, and many governments have yet to invest in purpose-built automation solutions to help manage the influx —forcing them to rely on manual processes, spreadsheets or other tools ill-equipped to support increased volumes and compliance requirements. As a result, requests can take weeks or months to fulfill, creating a poor community experience and putting agencies at risk of compliance failures. GovQA overhauls and automates these processes, creating a fast, intuitive workflow that saves government personnel valuable time, ensures they remain in compliance, and delivers a positive community experience.
- Redundant request matching: GovQA’s software provides patented tools to quickly identify redundant requests, enabling residents to get fast access to the information they requested without requiring government personnel to unnecessarily duplicate time-consuming work.
- Risk mitigation: Governments have a legal responsibility to provide access to public information while protecting certain personal, private information. Through increased workflow automation, proprietary private information redaction technologies, and a digital audit trail, GovQA makes it possible for governments to remain compliant with public record laws while delivering on public requests at speed.
- Flexible customization: GovQA offers highly-configurable, no-code technology that enables government personnel to create custom workflows built for their unique needs. Agencies can securely collect and control time sensitive information within, across and outside government boundaries—eliminating silos, increasing efficiency, ensuring compliance and reducing the most common record request redundancies.
- Cost recovery: Many regulations governing public requests allow for agencies to charge fees to help cover the high costs of request fulfillment; GovQA with Granicus supports a variety of charge models and payment processing capabilities for funds capture.
In combination with Granicus’ Civic Engagement Platform, GovQA accelerates Granicus’ vision for intelligent, connected digital government experiences for both government agencies and officials, and the communities they serve.
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