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Strengthening competences to service the public efficiently through eGovernment

Publication Date: Jul 22, 2015
The ESF-funded project Public Services Online came to an end with a closing seminar addressing citizens, public officials and businesses. During the seminar, addressed by Principal Permanent Secretary Mario Cutajar, Parliamentary Secretary for Competitiveness and Economic Growth José Herrera and MITA’s Executive Chairman Tony Sultana, achieved results and policy guidelines were presented to guide Government in the development of future eGovernment services thus ensuring that eServices are made easy, efficient and convenient. 

The results of the research study on the public’s opinion on the use of public services online shows that the majority of respondents (56%) make use of traditional government services while 28% make exclusive use of eGovernment services.  81% of the public are interested to learn more about public services offered online and 63% actually think that there should be more awareness campaigns.   

The research also showed that the majority (88%) would like to see Government services offered from within their community.  Moreover, the vast majority (92%) agreed that they would like to have the ability to get assistance via telephone or by online chat whilst using e-services.  63% of the public said that they posses an eID and 39% only use it to access e-services. Encouragingly, 79% said that trust Government in their transactions.


Principal Permanent Secretary Mario Cutajar said that whilst strengthening the use of public services online, this administration is also strengthening its outreach in the community. The launch of the regional one-stop-shops in the coming months, in collaboration with the private sector, will further enhance Government services especially amongst citizens who are not computer literate or who prefer face-to-face communication.

On the other hand, public services online need to be made more accessible, said Mr Cutajar. He stated that it is futile embarking on educational campaigns if online services are still difficult to access.
​Even Hon José Herrera, Parliamentary Secretary for Competitiveness and Economic Growth said that when we are developing a new service, we have to take the end-user into account.  We need to develop a service which is simple enough to make citizens and businesses prefer to use the online service instead of the traditional form. 
Hon Herrera added that public officials should be given the necessary training on the use of eGovernment services and should also be made aware of any new e-services. “We want these people to appreciate the benefits that technology can bring to their work and thus direct people to the respective online services.”

MITA’s Executive Chairman, Mr Tony Sultana, said that we now need to adopt a set of principles to better guide the development and provision of these e-services. These principles will instigate a culture to positively discriminate the use of online services over traditional over-the-counter delivery, and to involve the end-users in the further development of highly relevant public services. The availability of online public services will also move towards clustered and connected services around life events so as to be more conveniently accessible and improve the take-up.

This project was the first of its kind in Malta, synergising resources and Ministries in the bid to increase the use of eGovernment services. Feedback on the awareness campaign conducted by MITA and the stakeholders through national media indicates that there should be continuous effort in this regard. MITA will be providing central Government with recommendations on future actions that will further support the use of online services.  

For more information visit www.gov.mt 
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