Improving the Quality of Public Service using e-Citiz
In the world of goods, the advantages of “self- service” have been demonstrated many times over. Very few people in our society do not regularly use a shopping cart or a cafeteria tray. Self-Service allows greater numbers of customers to be managed more rapidly, using fewer qualified staff, thus reducing operating costs. Customers also benefit from this system: they have access to a broader choice of products, lower prices and faster transactions.
Currently, this phenomenon initially limited to shopping mall car parks, is now expanding to the Web. The Gartner Group defines “Web Self-Service” as a system enabling customers or users to perform transactions or obtain information without human intervention. A large number of solutions have already been rolled out for information.
e-Citiz provides the necessary complement by covering the transactional aspect, thus allowing the deployment of fully functional Web Self-Service (WSS).
Delivering Public Service
To date, this type of relation was provided either by a physical counter, or by phone, requiring direct confrontation.
One can but note that it is impossible to extend opening hours infinitely, to constantly have enough representatives to welcome citizens, or to provide access to offices that meet these requirements, close to where the citizens live.
In this context, user expectations are: availability, simplicity, speed, competence, respect, amiability, consistency and transparency. For the Public Service director, the representative and for the citizen, the provision of the Public Service is a source of tension. The ability to guarantee Public Service quality while conforming to management constraints is like trying to square a circle for the Director. The staff in charge of the Public Service and of interactions with citizens is faced with the stress inherent to all situations involving demanding and rushed individuals, often required to accomplish a specific task. Finally, citizens must take steps to ensure their availability during opening hours, to go to the required location, to wait in the queue, only to realize that they are missing some supporting document or that they must return anyway because the procedure involves several steps.
On the other side of the counter, the demands on customer relations managers are: hiding the complexity, managing all processes, demonstrating relational skills, possessing a large workforce and being able to rapidly grasp the citizen’s context.