The Government is giving a big push towards digitization, and this includes all transactions and operations by the governing bodies and their offices. The workflows in Government offices is very different from other transactional workflows. It has the reputation of moving at a snail’s pace due to the lack of automation. Also, most of the decision-making processes in these offices are highly collaborative and demands communication between many departments internally or externally.
With the passage of time and increase in numbers, there has been a massive surge of documents received in Government offices and a vast backlog created because of it. This again leads to storage and safety issues. The challenge to do all this is the major push towards digitization and also lay the challenge of competing with Governments across the world catering to their citizens efficiently and quickly. Automation or BPM was the most viable solution to this mounting challenge, a massive push towards e-governance. With the enablement of BPM and ECM platforms, most citizen-centric, as well as internal processes, have become a lot less cluttered. Services have also reached citizens’ doorstep.
BPM in e-governance
Schemes like e-governance, e-Kranti and ‘Information for all’ have increased the demand for business process management (BPM) services and is expected to touch INR 500-600 crore by 2020! Initiatives taken by the central and state governments which include income tax management, maintenance of voter IDs, registration of companies, land records digitization, birth and death certificates, driving licenses, allocation of seats and admission to colleges in different sectors of educations, providing licenses for farmers to sell and buy commodities etc. also demand BPM for their smooth functioning. Thus ensuring documents are given a digital, centralized repository for archival and can be easily retrieved anytime from it when needed making the process silos free. The only way to achieve this is by deploying an efficient ECM and BPM based platform. Areas where BPM is being leveraged increasingly:
- The opportunity is larger in the Indian Railways where customer centric BPM services such as ticket issuance, contact centers, maintenance of Wi-Fi, and lounge services on railway platforms pave the way for the growth of domestic BPM market.
- Contact centers with multilingual capabilities to enable the electronic delivery of citizen services and help first-time customers to use digital services, passport applications, PAN cards, Aadhar cards, etc. use the services of BPM providers to deliver multilingual voice-based services from limited centers.
- Issuing birth or death certificates had been tedious, and the procedure could take months to complete. The absence of such records brings along with it a plethora of problems in the context of tracking of such population. Bringing the whole process to a single-window portal through an efficient BPM has already solved this issue for a majority of the population.
- The presence of the digital locker for the citizen’s certificate has minimized the hassle of carrying physical certificates and request for providing duplicate certificates in case of loose or damage.
- Filing tax returns has always been a taxing process. However, with the implementation of online facilities, taxes are being filed, verified and collected online along with real-time status updates making things easier and faster for citizens.
- Reforming several administrative processes like correspondence management, RTI management, and committee and meeting management, BPM ensures end-to-end automation of internal business processes. Valuable time is lost, in moving request files from one department to another. With RTIs being managed within 30 days of them being filed, the case for automation in government offices has gotten a lot stronger.
- Automation in government offices has now come a long way from just e-governance and is also incorporating mobile governance. For most people, smartphones are a way of life, and the Governments is also taking advantage of this and smartly invading the mobile space. Citizens are now making payments, tweeting their issues to government departments and most agencies being available on SMS services, mobile governance is fast catching up and is here to stay.
While there exists a huge BPM opportunity in the government sector, comprehensive change management is required at both central and state governments to create a more open mindset for contracting third-party BPM providers to execute these citizen services efficiently. There still has to be a lot of effort put in to make the governance paperless and processes more streamlined.