Sunday, 13 September 2015

How do I Explain GPR to Professionals New to e-Gov?

In developing countries, good governance can bring socio-economic changes required to improve standard of living and quality of life of citizens. Consistent efforts to change the existing system with deployment of modern technologies (like Information Technology (IT)) with the intent of improving governance has shown good result in many cases. Experts having experiences with different governments across the globe suggest that optimal use of IT in GPR (Government Process Re-engineering) is one of the key factors in improving the existing systems. These experts also insist on strategic and comprehensive GPR to be taken-up with an objective of taking the organization to next level in terms of good governance norms.

I have tried to put the summery of key learning I have got from experiences of e-Governance experts I have come across in my professional career. I have used mathematical formula to express the points. However, these are just representations intended to draw some kind of analogy and real mathematics may not hold true. These three points could be used as guide for strategic GPR :-

A. Corruption = (Monopoly + Discretion) – (Accountability + Transparency)
B. Efficiency = Process + Symmetry of Information + Skill + Correct Measurement + Delivery Time
C. Change = Continuous Process Improvement (Preferably on the basis of Representative Data) 

Introducing GPR to newly recruited IT professionals is a difficult task. This is so, because professionals from IT background usually have either limited or no experience of working with government organizations. The level of difficulty increases, if the professionals do not have an exposure to BPR (Business Process Re-engineering) or to Requirements Gathering at client site. My personal experience in mentoring young IT professionals to be groomed in the area of GPR suggests that these professionals feel comfortable with the idea of GPR and with the implementation process. But they find it difficult to apply suitable strategy. Typically, once AS-IS scenario analysis is completed, they find it difficult to do GAP analysis and propose a TO-BE scenario. 

In such cases, I have observed that putting the things as mentioned in the points above (A, B and C) is found helpful. Further, elaboration of these points in following way is appreciated and usually considered as a basic guide towards developing though process for GPR. However, it may be understood that GPR by design is a complex job. The team doing GPR needs to consult different subject matter experts to get the AS-IS and TO-BE scenarios validated before finalizing the GPR.  

Thus, based on above mentioned points A, B and C, the strategic focus areas for GPR could be:- 

1. Minimize Monopoly
2. Minimize Discretion
3. Maximize Accountability
4. Maximize Transparency
5. Optimize Processes and Introduce Tractability
6. Optimize Information Access
7. Map Skills with Roles to Required Precision
8. Introduce and Improve Appropriate Measurement Mechanisms  
9. Optimize Time to Deliver Results (through applied Processes)
10. Introduce scope for sensible Process Change Management 

However, while doing GPR as per above mentioned strategic focus areas, one must keep in mind the following aspects:-

1. Legal Feasibility
2. Social Significance 
3. Economic Significance
4. Cultural Significance
5. Service Orientation
6. Benefits and Ease of Implementation
7. Availability of Required Resources and Infrastructure
8. Assessment of Availability of Funds
9. Assessment of Scope for Flexibility in Processes (for appraisal of process and for introduction of further changes)
10. Assessment for Capturing Correct Feedback from Beneficiaries


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