According to the Hill (2006) there are many challenges that come from the implementation and administration of e-based projects. These constraints resemble the challenges that are faced in implementing information technology projects in the world. Many organizations are finding it very hard to manage information technology projects.
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The management of information technology based projects is hindered by a number of factors among them sourcing of the right talent as well as well as locational problems. Issues of governance and policy cycles as well as culture and differences in the organizational orientations in relation to the national programs also hinder the administration of the projects .
In the modern times, there has been the adoption of e-Procurement to help improve the efficiency in the procurement processes. Different types of procurement systems have been developed. Examples include buyer and seller e-Procurement systems as well as the online intermediaries.
The implementation of e-Procurement by governments that have tried using this system has proven to be difficult. Engagement of small suppliers in the system has been quite hard. This is majorly due to the magnitude of investment that has to be done fro such a project to work .
Failures have been reported in the e-procurement projects that have been tested in different states. The states include United States, New Zealand and United Kingdom. It is also argued that e-procurement encourages pumping resources in the e-procurement projects without the assurance of getting the full results out of it.
A number of cases concerning this have been reported. For instance, the United Kingdom government rejected to extend an e-tendering pilot project in Whitehall. The British Defense ministry has not yet attained services even after three years of the running of e- procurement service .
E-government Implementation Barriers
There are a number of problems that hinders the application of e-Commerce in governance. The problems also perceived as risks include uncertainties in prediction of time, cost and delay, poor decisions – making f decisions without proper thinking, full reliance on technology, security constraints and unpredictability of the nature of information and communication technologies .
Effective communication is one of the most important factors in in the implementation of e- governance projects. There must be effective communication between all parties that are involved in the projects. The government has to factor in citizens by ensuring that its citizenry is well trained. Training should be accompanied with access to public electronic and information and communication technology systems.
The engagement with the public servants may become electronic and automated using these technologies thereby forcing the citizens to communicate with public administrators only by way of using the electronic and information communication technology systems. Governments do sometimes provide very limited policies concerning the adoption and use of e-services.
Such cases bring a negative perception to the citizens concerning the use of information and communication technologies as most services utilize e- technologies in the private sector while these technologies are not available in the government and or public sector .
It has also been observed that majority of services in e-governance need a heightened investment level in resources that are related to technology. The resources range from hardware goods to software and specialized personnel. There needs to be proper collaboration because most public sectors and even governments in whole are deficient of means of achieving the requirements.
The use of information and communication technologies has not resulted in the betterment of public services. However, the considerations more so those that concern the provision of free services. This is common in the European Union where members follow the provisions of the treaties concerning regulations of procurement at the state level.
In the European Union, member countries that decide to give digital signature services related to electronic identification have to ensure that they do guarantee the utilization of other digital certificates which are provided by other Certified Providers in the public and private sectors .
Internet emergence and advancements made in processing capacities as well as the storage of data in the 1990s have changed the environment for the use of ICT services both in societies and also the government. The effects of the revolution in ICT have been so profound that they have already piled pressure on the public sectors to adopt the services in order to increase efficiency in the public sector.
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Modernization of technology gives an opportunity to beat the challenge in the modern public bodies. The implementation of e-governance services calls for high level cooperation between the public administrators and information technology firms. The reason behind the need for cooperation is that the process is marked with a lot of technological difficulties .
The embracing of e-services is a step towards success. Many of the benefits that come from adoption and use of e-services are proportionate the number of people who use the services. There is a need to full develop the e-services for use by the citizens. In Turkey, the share of people services that are fully operational is lower as compared to the business services.
The number of business services which are fully operational is very high compared to other European Union states. The e-services that are friendly to the consumers can be developed though consulting the consumers about the consumer needs and the satisfaction derived by the consumers in the prevailing services.
A survey that was carried out by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development concerning the needs of users indicated that the needs of users and their satisfaction levels with the prevailing e-services are not commonly used in ensuring the attainment of user focused services .
The European Union defined a set of twenty e-services. The organization carries out an assessment of the services in terms of the existence and levels of maturity of the e-services in a number of states that belong to the union. Majority of the states have made it a priority to put up the services. Some states have focused on prioritizing e-service development by focusing on the more intense services .
Application of e-service in infrastructure
Projects were set up in the year 2002 to implement the delivery of e-services. The projects were mostly undertaken in ITU regions. The main focus of the projects was to put to practice IP infrastructure that has the capability of delivering different kinds of e-service that focus on e-commerce. In the conference that was discussing this, there was representation from both developed and developing countries.
During that period, the e-service projects were set up in eight countries. Apart from the projects in the eight countries, many other projects were set up in different countries and are still in operation.
ITU and BDT played a crucial role in the provision of assistance in relation to feasibility, technological strategies, coordination of the projects as well as the technical expertise in the course of implementing the projects. Countries in which the e-service projects were established include Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Ivory Coast, Ecuador, Peru, Senegal, Turkey and Vietnam.
From the year 2003, more projects were launched in other countries which include Azerbaijan, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Georgia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mauritania, Mali, Mongolia, Paraguay and Seychelles .
Capacity building in e-service projects
Many initiatives and programs have been rolled out to strengthen the local capacity to adopt and use e-commerce, security technologies and legal parameters that appertain to the use of the e-technologies. A number of training workshops have been run in different parts of the world.
The workshops have been held in America region more specific in Chile, in Africa to be specific in Senegal, and in Pakistan for the Asia and the Pacific region.
In the workshops, over twenty seven seminars and courses on information and communication technologies have been issued out in the ‘Center for Training and Development’ which was set up in Venezuela. The creation of the center resulted from the ITU agreement that was reached with .
In the workshop, there was the providence of policy guide and assistance of countries on adoption of appropriate strategies from all parts of the globe though seminars, direct aid/assistance, workshops and conferences.
Many countries have been given support on adoption of national and even regional policies as well as strategies for introducing newer technologies more so in the field of Internet Protocol and e-service strategies. BDT further provided assistance to a number of countries to help the countries to adopt best legal framework appertaining to e-applications.
The countries and regions where the actions were undertaken include Pakistan, the Caribbean region, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde and the Andean Community. In this era where there is rapid technological evolution, streamlined policies and comprehensive legal frameworks are important tools in cultivating a favorable environment to enhance secure e-services and applications more so in the developing world .
Delivering of e-services in the Civil Society
The use of ICT e-services and applications by people in their daily chores has proven to be fruitful more so in the recent times. The mainstreaming of the information and communication technologies with ancient services improves efficiency in a big way besides saving time and energy.
It also aids in speeding up of processing, promotes the virtue of participation, it encourages participation, speeds up the dissemination of information and knowledge as well as bringing about newer economic opportunities. Owing to these benefits, state level and regional conferences and workshops have voiced the need to adopt and implement Information and communication technology services and applications.
The World Summit on Information and Society (WSIS) outlined the benefit of ICT and the role of applying it in public sector administration and also in sustainable development, in business, education, health, agriculture, science, environment and even employment .
Non- Governmental organizations are major stakeholders when it comes to the construction and shaping of the information society. They have diversities and approaches to many issues thus this makes them to be key players in ensuring that there is equitability and affordability in the access to ICTS, e-services and applications more so to disadvantaged society members.
The NGOs do have access to rural areas therefore giving them room to understand the culture of the citizens in those areas. This strengthens gives a plus to the NGOs in delivering of e- services to a wider populace .
Risk Assessment of e-service projects
In the recent years, there has been speedy development in the usage of the internet and other services related to it. Information technologies and its related applications are brought up through projects which in many instances last for longer periods of time. Moreover, the projects are run through a combination of efforts from different institutions and external actors.
Implementation of the e-projects and applications entail significant changes and alterations of technology, the processes and the functions performed by people. Therefore, the resultant e- government service has valuable influence on the life of the citizens. Because of the longevity of the projects, a lot of vacuums do come in therefore it is important to carry out a risk assessment for such projects before setting up the project .
Management of e-governance projects
E-governance has a big potential of bringing about positive developments more so in he delivery of better services to the citizenry. It also raises the potential of transforming the structures of the governments. Nonetheless, e-governance initiatives do face numerous constraints of complexities and risks thus it is not easy to handle e-government initiatives. Most e-service projects do fail.
Similar challenges are also encountered projects related to information development systems. Public servants usually find themselves in positions where they have to make decisions concerning information technology; something which they have too little information about.
A research on the e-projects is important. It helps in the understanding of reasons that stand behind the success of some projects and what causes other projects to fail. It is vital to learn from past projects and or initiatives in order to be able to launch and develop e-services in the public sector .
Inter governmental aspects play a central role in the development of e- government. Topics concerning intergovernmental organizations – e- service aspects are contained in the e-government research.
In e- governance research, identification of normative statement concerning the ways of dealing with e-governance problems can de done. This can be done in general as it applies to the project. It could also be displayed as critical success factors for instance top administration commitment, business linkages, technical inclinations as well as user involvement .
E-governance developmental constraints can also be likened to a number of issues among them information technology itself, issues to do with information and data, organizational and management issues, legal and regulatory issues and issues to do with the overall institution and the environment generated factors.
Another problem is that e-governance initiatives for example one-stop government solution more often than not require a combination of efforts from several agencies of the government. However, the major constraint is related to organizational problems .
In the structuring and organization of e-governance projects, the major thing that is needed is the understanding of the developmental process as in the different phases of development. The methods of developing systems tend to fall under four stages. The stages are analysis, design stage, construction and the implementation stage. Project assessment can be inserted in the stages .
E-government projects can be developed by following the following five stages. The stages are assessment of the project, analysis of the prevailing realities, designation of new systems, construction of the new system and implementation which is accompanied by other developments and improvements. All the steps below must be adhered to in order to attain positive results .
A survey that was conducted to ascertain the key strategies of ISD initiatives in government came up with a number of findings. The success factors in the government ISD initiatives include the commitment of the top administration, Linkage of the services or initiatives to business, knowledgeable personnel, technical alignment and involvement of users .
Implementation of e-service: Case Study of Lillesand Town
Lillesand town in Norway has been making efforts to raise the utilization of digital application forms to ease citizen access to services and interaction with the municipality while cutting administrative expenses and burdens on the employees. In the course of doing this, the municipality identified twenty businesses processes that lay in its documentation system. It realized that the twenty businesses could be digitalized.
The town has now developed a service on its website. Through the website, citizens of the town get access to their case files and get an opportunity to have a look at their query status and applications.
The achievements of this tracking system have come as a result of description and the reengineering of the process related to digital forms, use of specific designed databases warehousing of data as well as digital archives integration and multiplicity of publishing in different channels.
Most of the communication in the municipality happens through digital formats. Moreover, most of the administration functions of the municipality have also been digitalized easing communication .
Customers usually play a big role in the improvement of e-service. Customers take part in business processes. An instance is the triggering of process by virtue of submitting requests online through the website. Customers also act as co-producers and influence the way in which e-service projects perform. This depends on their ability as well as experience of the e-service at differing points of delivery of the services .
A range of improvements can be useful in the restructuring of prevailing e-service delivery in order to come up with better services therefore establishing new means of working as applied in municipalities.
It is very important to have a shared comprehension of the whole process in the development of customer service strategies and also complicated e-services before gaining the ability to link customer service for instance the website and the back services which entails the processes and systems of business.
Surveys that have been conducted have deduced that customers see municipalities as being single, integrated provider of service; therefore, e-services that involve different departments and other agencies of the government must be made available to the customers and experienced in a manner as it would be experienced when the service is provided by single and or integrated service providers .
Technical specifications of whatever products or services of information and communication technology e-services included have to be based on the full comprehension of all business operational processes.
E-services don’t just revolve around information technology but also needs the establishment of effective and efficient business processes and also the deployment of appropriate information and communication technologies to deliver customer friendly solutions .
Trust factor in E-service
In the modern days, web technologies enable business processing with the aid of ICT. Nonetheless, numerous questions remain pending before setting up and access of the information systems of partnering bodies.
In building e-services there is a need to have trust between the partnering parties. Protection of the information systems from unauthorized access and use is one of the means that are used to overcome the problem of trust .
According to Janowski, Estevez & Ojo (2007) many governments in the world involve themselves in setting up costly e-government projects.
The projects are established to cut down administration costs of governance, better public service delivery, widen the involvement of citizens in matters concerning the government, and also to achieve better results in different policy areas that matters the most to the government for example policies in health, taxation and social areas.
The success of the projects entirely depend on the level at which they satisfy the above objectives. The truth is that majority of e-government projects end up not succeeding .
A study of e-government programs in the developing economies found out that a majority approximately 85% of e-projects have only made partial success. The cited reasons for this are minimal or absence of internal ownership of the projects, lack of vision and strategies for developing and implementing the projects, poor management of the projects poor technological infrastructure and data interchange constraints.
Other reasons include absence of business cases for these projects, too much reliance on technology as a driving force for e-government and inadequate administrative reforms to pattern e-government .
E-tendering implementation: critical success factors
Introduction of e-documentation tackles most problems that come with manual documentation. Electronic tendering is a smart replacement of the ancient paper tendering that is used in the purchasing of goods and services. The system utilizes electronic notification in the vetting and selection of suppliers for buyers. For the sellers, e-tendering enables them to do bidding for contracts in an electronic manner.
Benefits of electronic tendering include the cut down of the cost of producing tender documentation, time saving from shortened tendering duration, security in terms of tender sending and receiving and a general systemic progressive working environment. It is easy to compile e-tenders. Moreover, such tenders are portable and cheap compared to paper tendering system .
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (2011) observes that construction organizations have become aware of electronic tendering systems and more so of the benefits that such systems have over the old system.
However, whenever new software or processes gets ushered in organizations, the employees become much cautious of their job security. Employees generally shun from responsibilities and fear changes in processes .
The major reasons for failure of new systems do not originate from technical problems. Such problems mostly come from ‘soft issues’ in the organization that reduces the capacity of the firm to successfully adopt new information systems and information technology. In many instances, information technology is still considered by many firms as a tool for cutting administration costs.
The ‘technology push’ only, even though still widely embraced in many industries for example the construction and engineering industries do not result in the attainment of the full potential of information systems or information technologies therefore it will not lead to competitive merit .
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