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Improving Customer Service : Digital Transformation for Local Government

Tuesday, 27th of December 2022

Electronic Governance is the modern method of providing government services through Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and as well as Artificial Intelligence (AI). E-Governance can be considered an effective government service delivery in the most convenient and transparent manner. Professor Shirantha Heenkenda, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences of the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, said that implementing various information technology aspects and E-governance services will be the most practical path to improving customer service and satisfaction be increased with the government agencies.

Delivering the keynote speech at the Annual Diploma Awarding Ceremony conducted by the Sri Lanka Institute of Local Governance at the BMICH on the 08th of November, he said that Sri Lanka is projected to be struggling within the area of customer service and the government, perhaps due to the unalignment of a proper way in implementing a practical method hence proving, that the improvement of customer service and their satisfaction relies on moving the government services towards the digitalized world. Accordingly, implementing various information technology aspects and E-governance services will be the most practical path to improving customer service and satisfaction.

“Electronic Governance is the modern method of providing government services through Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and as well as Artificial Intelligence (AI). Therefore, E-Governance can be considered as an effective government service delivery most conveniently and transparently”, he added. He further said that the E-Government Development Index (EGDI) is used to measure national administrations’ capacity to use information and communication technologies to deliver public services. “This index presents the state of E-Government Development of the United Nations Member States, which incorporates a country’s infrastructure and educational level.

According to the E-Government development index in the United Nations E-government survey 2022, Denmark has been able to hold up the first rank and many European countries accordingly. On the other hand, Sri Lanka holds the 95th rank in this index with a 0.6285 value this year, which clearly depicts a high use of technology to deliver customer services despite the pandemic and the challenging economic crisis. However, in 2020 Sri Lanka held the 85th rank, which might have been due to the crucial pandemic crisis”, he said. Moreover, he said that the E-Participation Index (EPI) is derived as a supplementary index to the United Nations E-Government Survey.

Within this index, Sri Lanka held the 66th rank in 2020 and currently holds the 107th rank in 2022. Therefore, both the EGDI and the EPI are slightly hinting that there needs to be an upliftment in the E-governance services within the country that it needs more e-governance services to interact with the public. He also pointed out that initiatives must be taken to promote rural E-Governance since many in the country lack basic knowledge of using technology. “Awareness programmes regarding E-Governance (E-literacy) should be promoted within every rural area, including educating them with the basic IT skills and awareness of e-governance services that would be available for them.

The availability of sufficient infrastructures, such as a 4G network, mobile connections, telecom towers, etc., is the initial necessity if E-governance needs to be ruled in society. Furthermore, for every customer to be the heart of the E-governance, the availability of local content that promotes local business and tourism specified to the rural areas is important. This could be initiated by creating local websites for each rural area with unique features”, he highlighted.

Dinuli Francisco

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