Single agency oversees eGovt to ensure all initiatives are collaborative and not silo based.
Thanks to the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) initiative in 1996, Malaysia has, very early on, seen the value of using technology as an enabler to deliver better information and services. Not just the private sector, even government has been quick to seize the opportunity and use the internet as another channel to serve citizens.
Infact, it is interesting to see how the Letters to the Editor section of the papers, seem to have more citizens complaining about public services and asking why they can’t be delivered online.
The agency that acts as the project manager to ensure all the government efforts online are as synergistic as possible is the Malaysia Administrative, Modernisation and Management Planning Unit (Mampu) in the Prime Minister’s Department.
Business Circle asked its Deputy Director General of ICT, Datuk Dr Nor Aliah Mohd Zahri about how it is handling the pressure and aiming to deliver better services online.
According to Nor Aliah, the feedback shows the needs of citizen in getting services through the internet. “Their comments and suggestions allow us the opportunity to deliver innovative services that allow citizens to communicate directly with government.”
A fact not well known is that more than 56 % of government services are available online through various channels, such as the MyGovernment portal, mobile devices and kiosks. The target is 90% of services by 2015.
Some current services are renewal of driver’s license and car road tax, e-lodgement for registration of business, myIdentity services for citizen to update their personal data to four agencies (National Registration Department, Immigration Department, Inland Revenue Board and Road Transport Department), eFilling for tax declaration and myBayar for making online payments with government agencies.
The mobile phone is also seen as a key channel with MySMS as one of the signature services which allow citizens to communicate directly with government agencies through one number 15888. MySMS services include examination results from Ministry of Education and university as well National Service selection.
Well aware that citizens do not want to be swamped by messages, Nur Aliah shares that the new online services have improved and have integrated processes across agencies. “For instance, filling a single online form will enable citizens to send this information to multiple agencies for action and decision. These services which include starting a business, getting approval to advertise and making payments in one click to multiple agencies are available at the myGovernment portal,” says Nur Aliah.
The expectations of business are even higher when it comes to being able to cut through bureaucracy. Government is aware of this, acknowledges Nur Aliah and quietly initiated a major transformation exercise. “For the business community the initiative under the Government Regional Electronic Advancement Transformation (or G.R.E.A.T.) provides a portal for investors to invest in the five economic development regions i.e. Iskandar Malaysia, Northern, Eastern, Sabah and Sarawak. This initiative integrates existing online services at federal, state and local authorities,” says Nur Aliah.
With so many services online and more coming onstream every month, constant efforts in change management are needed. “Firstly, it is important to address the internal resources on the transformation approach,” she says. Here, Mampu has several programs such as Mind Exchange and Technology Update Sessions on the innovative initiatives being introduced. Nur Aliah says the expectations are that this will trigger a change in mind set within government agencies.
But there is also the challenge of getting citizens to fully embrace eGovernment and various promotions have been undertaken through the various media – broadcast, radio, print and online.
To inform and encourage citizen to communicate using the services made available online, Mampu has initiated several awareness and promotional programs at federal, state and local authorities and at district level. These programmes aim to reach both rural and urban communittees. “We organize them with various agencies such as the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission and the Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry.”
Meanwhile constant enhancements are being made. The latest addition to enhance government services are the 1Malaysia One Call Center (1MOCC) and 1Malaysia Training Center. 1MOCC aims at facilitating communication between citizen and government agencies for enquiries, complaints and suggestions by calling the one reference number 03-8000-8000. Agencies from all ministries are involved including front line agencies such as Immigration Department, Road Transport Department, National Registration Department and agencies under the Prime Minister’s Department including Mampu.
Highlighting the 1Malaysia Training Center, according to Nur Aliah, “this will enable the utilisation of facilities in public training institutes through an online application by both citizens and private sector.” It started with five institutes and is expected to be rolled out to 324 training institutes.
Tomorrow: Nur Aliah talks about how Mampu has charted the strategies and directions for implementing eGovt through the Public Sector ICT Strategic Plan and how progress is measured.