Students launch their start up following their participation in the public policy incubator
YOU ARE JUST LAUNCHING YOUR START'UP, PUBLIC +, HOW DID YOUR PROJECT COME ABOUT AND COULD YOU TELL US IN A FEW WORDS WHAT IT IS ABOUT?
Our project was born from a challenge launched by the préfecture of Ille-et-Vilaine for the Sciences Po Public Policy Incubator in January 2020. The project consisted of shaping and developing an "innovative" France Services system for the town of Châtillon-en-Vendelais in Brittany. The France Services policy makes it possible to bring together within hosting structures (town halls, prefectures, etc.) various public services, through two administrative agents capable of responding to the majority of citizens' requests. It is a system introduced by the French President after the Great National Debate, which revealed that only 52% of French people have access to the public services they need.
Public + was born to respond to this reality, creating an amplifier of public policies with the ambition of a public service that is more human, more innovative and more efficient. During the project, we developed a double-entry portal to expand France Services. "Mon Espace France Services" provides better access to user information and support for the day-to-day work of staff.
IN CONCRETE TERMS, IF I AM A PUBLIC SERVICE USER, WHAT CAN THE PUBLIC + SOLUTION DO FOR ME? IF I AM A PUBLIC SERVICE AGENT, WHAT CAN THE PUBLIC + SOLUTION OFFER ME?
For users, the Public + solution makes it possible to centralise information, personalise and modernise the public service. For example, thanks to a geolocation tool, I can access information from the nearest France Services. A simple appointment scheduling tool and an automatic document generator allow me to prepare my appointment in advance. Lastly, video-conferencing and the France Services evaluation form make it easier to access France Services from your living room and to continuously improve public services.
Through a survey conducted among 250+ France Services multi-skilled agents, they expressed their desire to have tools to provide better support, better organisation and better training. In order to give them the means to carry out their missions effectively, we provide them with an appointment management tool, and a generator of "administrative reports" (a pre-filled document summarising the key points of the appointment, given to the user). Agent training is at the heart of our solution. In order to compensate for the lack of training felt by many agents, we have integrated a continuous training path through the centralisation of technical data sheets, online training on cross-functional subjects, and fun quizzes to test and refresh their knowledge.
HOW DID THE COACHING YOU RECEIVED DURING THE PUBLIC POLICY INCUBATOR WORKSHOPS HELP YOU SET UP YOUR PROJECT?
Our start-up is based on innovation and it was at the Public Policy Incubator that we really learned how to innovate. First of all, the workshops allowed us to discover the methods of design thinking in order to elaborate user paths, create personas... These methods of reflection took us out of our "academic" framework by conceptualising our ideas in a visual, anticipatory and agile way, in order to allow the shaping of a relevant and functional project. Starting from the field, listening and creating synergies between the actors are the keys to the success of all of our projects. In a way, at the Public Policy Incubator we have learned how to become the engineers of tomorrow's public services.
STUDENTS AND ENTREPRENEURS, HOW EASY IS IT TO MANAGE?
We see it rather as a strength. The knowledge accumulated during our studies allows us to integrate theoretical elements into a concrete practical case and enrich it with our experiences. The idea is to put our Sciences Po backgrounds at the service of everyday life for the French people. Moreover, our profiles are different, but they are united in the desire to think about and improve the public services of tomorrow. Public + is the project of 5 young people who want to serve the common good. But we're not going to lie to you, it helps to be 5 co-founders when several appointments follow one after the other and one of us has a public law presentation to finish!
AT WHAT STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT ARE YOU AT AND WHAT DO YOU NEED TO DEVELOP?
Public + has now been set up and is in talks with various institutional players in order to launch an initial trial of our digital tool "Mon Espace France Services". In the short and medium term, we hope to roll out our digital portal nationwide to enable the France Services system to reach its full potential. We are also initiating a diversification of our activity beyond the scope of France Services in order to improve other public policies. Our digital portal can be useful for other public policies and we are ready to work with stakeholders in the field to enhance their public policies.
We don't want to leave the “house” any time soon and we are considering integrating Public + into the Sciences Po incubator to help us achieve these goals.
WHAT VALUES IS YOUR PROJECT BASED ON?
The whole project is based on the ambition to make Public + service more human, more innovative and more efficient. To achieve this, we have committed ourselves to 11 points in a manifesto that guides all our decisions and helps us guarantee our freedom to innovate. We believe that innovation in the public sector is a result of this commitment, which has always created a relationship of trust with all our partners. This backbone will be the guarantee of our success as a full-fledged player within the ecosystem of public innovation.