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Assessing user centric egovernment performance in europe e government benchmark 2012

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The eGov Benchmark study highlights the significant cost savings that can accrue by moving as many users as possible to digital channels. However, it also points out that satisfaction with......

The eGov Benchmark study highlights the significant cost savings that can accrue by moving as many users as possible to digital channels. However, it also points out that satisfaction with eGovernment services lags that of eCommerce service, such as eBanking.
The three key findings are:
The shift in eGovernment thinking towards designing services around user needs is not yet fully embraced in Europe Governments are not fully reaping the possible benefits of eGovernment Transformation is needed to realize a new generation of eGovernment services

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  • 1. DigitalAgenda forEuropePublic Services Online‘Digital by Default or by Detour?’Assessing User Centric eGovernment performance inEurope – eGovernment Benchmark 2012FINAL INSIGHT REPORTA study prepared for the European CommissionDG Communications Networks, Content &Technology
  • 2. This study has been prepared by Capgemini, IDC, Sogeti, IS-practice and Indigov,RAND Europe and the Danish Technological Institute for the Directorate Generalfor Communications Networks, Content and Technology.For more information about this paper, please contact:European CommissionDirectorate General for Communications Networks, Content and TechnologyUnit F.4 Knowledge BaseGianluca Papa – Project Officer for the eGovernment BenchmarkE-mail: gianluca.papa@ec.europa.euProject TeamDinand Tinholt – Vice President, EU Lead, CapgeminiExecutive Lead eGovernment BenchmarkE-mail: dinand.tinholt@capgemini.comNiels van der Linden – Managing Consultant, CapgeminiProject Manager eGovernment BenchmarkE-mail: niels.vander.linden@capgemini.comWritten and reviewed by Dinand Tinholt, Graham Colclough, Sander Oudmaijer,Wendy Carrara, Trudy Tol, Mark Schouten, Niels van der Linden (Capgemini);Gabriella Cattaneo, Stefania Aguzzi (IDC); Laurent Jacquet (Sogeti); HugoKerschot (IS-practice); Roland van Gompel, Jo Steyaert (Indigov); Jeremy Millard(DTI); Rebecca Schindler (RAND Europe).Internal identificationContract number: 30-CE-0217203/00-72SMART number: 2012/0034-2DISCLAIMERBy the European Commission, Directorate-General of Communications Networks, Content &Technology.The information and views set out in this publication are those of the author(s) and do notnecessarily reflect the official opinion of the Commission. The Commission does not guaranteethe accuracy of the data included in this study. Neither the Commission nor any person actingon the Commission’s behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of theinformation contained therein.ISBN 978-92-79-29949-0DOI: 10.2759/13072© European Union, 2013. All rights reserved. Certain parts are licensed under conditions to theEU. Reproduction is authorized provided the source is acknowledged.
  • 3. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 3 of 74Executive SummaryContextThis “Insight Report” presents thefindings of the 2012 eGovernmentsurvey, discusses the implications,and makes some outlinerecommendations. It issupplemented by a more detailed“Background Report”, and openlyavailable “online survey data”; thelatter of which provide material forthose that design and manageeGovernment initiatives. Thecombination of reports, and theassessments made provide evidenceand insight to a number of differentgroups both within countries and ata European level. These includeleadership; policy advisers; publicservice owners, and technical staff.The report is titled, and poses thequestion of, “Digital by Default; orby Detour?” This could be read topre-suppose that digital is ‘the’answer; or that detour is ‘bad’.Neither is necessarily so. It is notmeant to be judgemental.The reality, and quite likely therecognition of most now, is thatdigital is happening; and in a waythat will have profound impact –positive impact, if embraced in aquality manner. The astonishingadoption and impact of socialmedia; the ever-intriguing andalmost daily innovations we see innew devices; the unseen yetextraordinary number of sensorsthat are embedded in what we buyand own; the vast canvas ofopportunity that big data offers us;the new provisioning models thatcloud technology opens up; are alltestament to the profoundlyimpactful role that information andtechnology play.What route to follow to makeadvances, indeed perhaps to ‘leap-frog’ improvements, and retainnational and European prominence?Europe comprises a diverse set ofcountries. Each with a multiplicity ofpublic services. Progressively, theneed for services to operate acrossborders rises in prominence. Thepeople they serve are mixed andvaried. There can therefore be nosingle route to follow; neither canwe deny the potential to learn fromothers!This comparative exercise seeks toinform and support individualnations and Europe at large as tohow we can employ technologies toadvance society, and our economy.In Europe, we are under intense andsustained pressures to remaincompetitive, on a global level, inresponding to a variety of now well-known and profound challenges(demographic change;environmental impacts; naturalresource shortfalls; social cohesion,worrisome waste streams, and thelike).Governments play a vital role in thisresponse. At a European level, policyinfluencing and setting throughHorizon 2020, the Digital Agenda forEurope (DAE), and the eGovernmentAction Plan are all important meansto guide our response. At a moreoperational level, the provision ofefficient and effective publicservices in each Member State is acore element of our response.However, for too many years wehave designed and delivered ourpublic services from the ‘inside out’– taking a department-centric view.The result too often has beendisjointed, inefficient and ineffective‘silo’ services.With the increased expectations andinfluence of the public we can nolonger continue to deliveradministration-centric services.Services must be designed anddelivered in a customer-centricmanner: ‘outside-in’. Services mustbe far more integrated acrossgovernment entities, and indeedacross borders. This represents afundamental transformation in theway services are constructed.The benefits are howeversubstantial: better quality services,more reliable delivery, far swifter,with less effort. Proof points areincreasingly emerging – yet we needmany more!Information and technology (ICT)play an increasingly vital role intransforming public service delivery.We must learn fast, and share ourknowledge openly, to help keepEurope most relevant.
  • 4. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 4 of 74MeasurementThe EU eGovernment survey hasprovided a benchmark for onlineservice evolution since 2001: initiallymeasuring basic service availabilityand sophistication. It has helpedinform policy makers; provokevaluable discussions; set newambitions; and identify countries tolearn from.The 2012 survey is redesigned toalign with current policy prioritiesand has innovated to keep thesurvey current and relevant. Weprovide insight and detail in threebroad areas:1. A demand-side citizen view ofpublic services – based on arepresentative sample, of 28,000European internet-using citizens.2. Three life-event assessments ofvery relevant customerexperiences: (i) starting andearly trading of a business (ii)losing and finding a job (iii)studying. Three elements thatare core to a healthy economy.3. Assessment of five keytechnology enablers – thefoundations on which servicescan be delivered in a moreconsistent interoperable cross-departmental and cross-bordermanner.This measurement could not besuccessfully delivered without thecollaboration of EU countryrepresentatives, who play a vitalrole in the design and validation ofthe instrument, and for which weremain most grateful.Results1. Demand-Side Survey: What EUCitizens think about onlinepublic servicesThe demand-side citizen surveypolled 28,000 internet-using citizensacross 32 countries – a samplesufficiently robust to provide 95%relevancy – and asked them 27questions about 19 common citizenservices. This is a new instrument in2012 that offers insights into thereal views of the 600 million EUcitizens. The results show that:46% of respondents whointeracted with publicadministrations used onlinepublic services, though thevariance by segment, bycountry, and by service is wideSatisfaction with eGovernmentservices lags that of eCommerceservices (e.g. eBanking) – andsatisfaction is dropping; yetwhere public services have beenmodernised (for instance onlinetax) there is clear recognition ofimprovement and satisfactionThere is a wide variation insatisfaction of online services,from 41% to 73%, emphasisingthe wide variety of types ofpublic service.There is still a significantproportion of public servicecustomers (54%) that arewedded to traditional channels,though a growing proportion ofthem(30%) are potential userswith an online channelpreferenceA significant group of users ofeGovernment services (29%) arepotential ‘drop-outs’; followingtheir less than desirable onlineexperience. A large proportionof the total (38%) remain non-believersConsiderably morecommunication is required toinform those that are unawareof what public services areavailable on line (21%).More is needed to address theneeds and concerns of citizensthat are unwilling to use onlinepublic services: preferringpersonal contact (62%),anticipating that the servicerequires face-to-face contact(34%), seeing other channels aremore convenient (19%), or whoare not convinced of thebenefits (11%). Of theseunwilling, many are howeverdaily Internet users (62%)Personal data security concernsare significant, though perhapssurprisingly modest (11%)Time saving and flexibility in useare the most prominent benefitscited by citizens, followed bysimplification and money saving.Quality is, it would seem,relatively less relevant.
  • 5. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 5 of 74Public agencies must put more focuson how they understand the needsand wants of their citizens. Andindeed align how this is done acrossagencies and government tiers. Onlythen will this customer insightprovide the clean signal by whichservices and channels can be bestdesigned, and the current barriersto use satisfactorily addressed.Much can be learned fromcomparison with practices used incommercial services.Given the variances that exist acrossservices, countries, and segments,there is considerable scope forstructured learning – contextuallyinformed of course!Given that this is the first year thatthis citizen demand-side survey hasbeen run, regular comparison overupcoming years will offer anintriguing picture to help us seewhat and where improvements lie.Importantly, this knowledgeprovides the food that shapes thenew “outside-in” model of servicedelivery.2. Life-Event ExperiencesCustomer-centricity and servicequality can also be assessed bymeans of life-events: i.e. baskets ofservices that are relevant in aparticular point in time to a businessor citizen. Importantly, such services– that are typically delivered in silosfrom individual agencies – arerequired to be streamlined acrosspublic (and at times private)organisations to adequately satisfythe customer.The life event measurement is avery contemporary and relevantway to look at the provision ofservices. It addresses the morecomplex (and costly) chains ofevents, more than perhaps thesimple, and at times frequent publicservices (like waste collection).Three life events have beenassessed – each including a basketof some 20-30 individual services; soa very thorough evaluation. Theseare:(i) Entrepreneur: “Starting abusiness, and early tradingoperations”(ii) Job Seeker: “Losing and findinga job”(iii) Student: “Studying”All three are all particularly relevantin the current economic conditions.This approach was first used in the2010 measurement, and has beenapplied again in 2012. Four morehigh-impact life-events will beassessed in 2013, which whencombined, will provide a suitablebasket of measures to comparecountry performance.The assessment addresses:availability of services (both basiccompliance services, and extendedvalue-added services), usability,transparency of service delivery,transparency of public organisa-tions, and transparency of personaldata. It also looks at cross borderdelivery where relevant.Life-Event results reveal:A very wide variance in results(51% for User Centricity)between countriesMore mature development forbusiness services – notablycompliance services (consistentwith previous years evolution)A growing pool of automatedservices (more is done withoutme having to do anything),which benefits from advancingalgorithms and data analyticstoolsA frustration for entrepreneurs,where their highest desiredbenefit is time saving, or at leastclarity of expectations on time –yet this is not well servedServices relating to finding a jobare the most available onlineacross Europe; however many ofthe associated supporting socialservices surrounding the eventare poorly served (housing, debt,health). This potentiallyintroduces a ‘spiral of decline’for this at risk group. Theseservices are also rated the mostusable of the three life events,though there is large variancebetween countries.Interesting approaches areobserved to channel mixthroughout the employment lifeevent (e.g. forced or coachedonline CV development)
  • 6. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 6 of 74Studying is well served online,though more on the aspects ofenrolment than on those ofgrants and the like. The users ofthis life event are the most tech-savvy, and most demanding ofall the three examined.Interestingly 82% would use theonline channel again, suggestinggood satisfaction levels.Transparency of service deliveryand personal data rate below50%, indicating scope forimprovement across all lifeevents.Cross border services seem toprove complicated (perhapsunderstandably) to orchestrate.Life-Events are at the core of cross-cutting and often very complexmulti-channel customer interactionsthat we seek to improve. Theyengage various service owners, andICT staff. They bring to light wherepublic services can provide goodcustomer experiences, or not. Assuch they provide a very usefulfocus for measurement anddiscussion about joined-up publicservice improvement planning.3. Key ICT EnablersHaving competent ICT buildingblocks behind the web front end isvital for public services to bedelivered competently, and forcustomers to be provided withquality services. Without thesethere is a limit to how wellcustomers will be served, and onlineinvestment is less likely to deliverreal return on investment.In 2010 we evaluated nine ICTbuilding blocks, based on countryself-assessments – proving resourceintensive, and offering a lessconsistent output. The 2012 KeyEnabler measurement has beenbased on a ‘transversal’ evaluationof the life-events; addressing theextent to which five key enablershave been made available, and areused. These include:1. eIdentity – to what extent can agovernment-issued electronicform of identification andauthentication be used withinthe process?2. eDocuments – to what extentare authenticated documents(i.e. by eSignature) used totransmit information through theprocess?3. Authentic Sources – are baseregistries used by public agenciesto store and retrieve customerdata for (suitably secure) usethroughout the process, thusenabling e.g. pre-filling of formswith consistent and accuratedata?4. eSafe – are there secureelectronic means for customersto store and retrieve documents?5. Single Sign On (SSO) – is itpossible for users to access tomultiple systems without theneed for multiple log-on?Such ICT enablers will (i) addresschallenges of interoperability andstandardisation, (ii) decrease overallICT costs for development andmaintenance, and (iii) break downbarriers between organisations andcountries. All three are verylaudable goals!Clearly, such facilities are ofparticular importance when one isdealing with a customer’s life-event,which typically involves interactionthrough various channels and acrossvarious different public serviceproviders.Interoperability, and thus commonapproaches and building blocks, areof increasing prominence as we seekto make it easier for Europeans to‘live, work and retire’ across a singleEurope. Various directives, andongoing large scale pilots (LSPs),seek to set goals and means to makethis a reality (for instance theServices Directive, and the SPOCSLSP, in the case of enabling businessstart-up across Europe).Key Enabler evaluation indicates:In aggregate (i.e. across all threelife events and all countriesassessed), all five key enablerswere used in 54% of cases.There is clearly a considerablegap to be filled.Business life event is betterserved (58%), than citizens lifeevents (53%), consistent perhapswith the more homogenousnature of business services andthe purpose they serve.Single-Sign-On scoresconsistently higher in all cases(66%).eSafe facilities are the leastemployed (38%).Cross-border interoperabilitywill continue to presentsignificant challenges as legaland operational conditions ineach country vary substantially.
  • 7. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 7 of 74Considering only those servicesthat are automated across thelife-events (i.e. requiring thepresence of key enablers), andmapping these against theextent to which key enablershave been integrated into theservice delivery chain shows awide variance of levels ofmaturity across Europe.We observe that some countrieshave a more advanced strategyclearly intended to establish keyenablers as a basis for streamliningservice delivery. The thesis beingthat a common set of interoperablecomponents should speed up theprocess by which services can betransformed from silo to cross-agency (cross-border) delivery. Wesee also examples where taking adigital approach to service deliverythrough establishing suchfoundations can lead to considerablesavings.However, there are a number of keyquestions that are raised as we lookto the future for these key enablers,notably (i) to what extent they canbe provided with mixed deliverymodels between public and privatesector providers (eg banks andauthentication), and (ii) howtechnology shifts like cloud, andsocial media can and will change howthese are provisioned and perceived.This cross-cutting agenda clearlywarrants further leadership focus,both within countries and across theEU, in order for it to bring thepromised rewards.Towards a new generation ofeGovernment servicesThree principal messages emerge:1. The shift in eGovernmentthinking towards designingservices around user needs is notyet fully embraced in Europe2. Governments are not yet fullyreaping the benefits ofeGovernment3. Transformation is needed torealize a new generation ofeGovernment services.Clearly then there is work to do. It iswork that must involve and connectthe technology community with the‘business’, and the customer.However that work needs to beinformed by other observations thatwe can make:Countries take different routesto increase take-up ofeGovernment servicesThere are mixed resultsregarding return on investmentsThe importance of soundtechnical foundations forimprovementDealing with decentralization isa challenge, but also anopportunityDigital by default, or by detour?Using legislation as a game-changerThe implications of these findingsand observations must be built intoplans for each Member State, andpolicy actions at a European level.Four considerations are made for EUCountries:1. Consideration 1: Implementstrategies to increase customercentricity, improve the design ofpublic services, and thusincrease online take-up2. Consideration 2: Increase use ofsocial media to involve hard-to-reach groups (‘non-believers’)3. Consideration 3: Open up datato unlock economic gains anddrive innovation4. Consideration 4: Addresscollaboration, commonality, andconsistent service foundationsThere are also some steps that areoffered at a European level:Consideration 1: Align and drawinsight from InternationalBenchmarksConsideration 2: Stimulatestructured learning andcollaboration between MemberStates up of servicesTransformation cannot beconsidered a short term fix. Thisreport highlights that it is bothnecessary, and desired (by customersat least!). The crisis that we faceoffers an opportunity for somecountries to put the leadershipcommitment in place to sustain therequired process. If not, thecustomer (and the ever-changingcapabilities of ICT) will provide anincreasingly vocal driver!
  • 8. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 8 of 74Table of Content1 INTRODUCTION...................................................................................................................................111.1 Context of this report ...................................................................................................................... 111.2 How we report the findings ............................................................................................................. 131.3 What has been measured................................................................................................................ 151.4 How it has been designed and measured......................................................................................... 152 DEMAND-SIDE SURVEY: CITIZEN INSIGHTS................................................................................................162.1 Introducing the demand-side citizen survey..................................................................................... 182.2 Four types of attitudes toward eGovernment .................................................................................. 182.3 Channel use and preferences........................................................................................................... 212.4 Barriers to using eGovernment services........................................................................................... 232.5 Citizen Satisfaction .......................................................................................................................... 242.6 Perceived Benefits........................................................................................................................... 263 LIFE-EVENT SERVICE PROVISION .............................................................................................................273.1 Introduction .................................................................................................................................... 273.2 Starting up a business and early trading operations......................................................................... 293.3 Losing and finding a job................................................................................................................... 383.4 Studying .......................................................................................................................................... 423.5 Cross-border mobility...................................................................................................................... 483.6 Transparency as an indicator for new attitudes towards change? .................................................... 504 KEY ENABLERS....................................................................................................................................544.1 Context............................................................................................................................................ 544.2 Introduction to the measurement ................................................................................................... 544.3 Findings: A gap to fulfil intentions.................................................................................................... 565 TOWARDS A NEW GENERATION OF EGOVERNMENT SERVICES.......................................................................605.1 Objective of the eGovernment survey ............................................................................................. 605.2 Key Findings .................................................................................................................................... 605.3 Implications for eGovernment Policies, Strategies, & Programmes .................................................. 615.4 Considerations for Member States to further stimulate progress..................................................... 665.5 Considerations for the European Commission to stimulate progress................................................ 72
  • 9. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 9 of 74Table of Figures/Graphs/TablesFigure 1.1: Explanation of objectives eGovernment Benchmark................................................................................. 14Table 2.1: Key Insights User Survey ........................................................................................................................... 16Figure 2.2: key findings Demand-side survey ............................................................................................................. 17Figure 2.3: Four types of attitudes toward eGovernment (EU-27+) ............................................................................ 19Figure 2.4: Illustration of user survey sample (to the left), distinguished types of users and sentiments that build thefollowing paragraphs (to the right)............................................................................................................................ 20Figure 2.5: Use of eChannel vs traditional channels for 19 citizen services (EU-27+, %) .............................................. 21Figure 2.6: Preference eChannel vs. traditional channels for 19 citizen services (EU-27+, %) ...................................... 22Figure 2.7: Reasons for not having used the eChannel in contact with public agencies or officials (EU-27+, %) ........... 23Figure 2.8: User Satisfaction with private online services (in red, to the left) and public online services (in grey, to theright) ........................................................................................................................................................................ 24Table 2.9: online government services with high and low satisfaction........................................................................ 24Figure 2.10: user satisfaction with private and public online services, comparison 2007-2012.................................... 25Figure 2.11: eGovernment users that ‘in the end, got what was wanted or needed’ (%) ............................................ 26Figure 2.12: Perceived benefits for using the eChannel compared to other channels (%) ........................................... 26Table 3.1: Key insights and results for three life event measurements ....................................................................... 28Figure 3.2: Generic process model for ‘Starting up a business and early trading activities’ ......................................... 31Figure 3.3: Key findings Business Life Event ‘Starting up a business and early trading activities’ ................................. 32Figure 3.4: Indicators for User-Centric Government in life event of ‘starting up a business and early trading activities’(%)............................................................................................................................................................................ 33Figure 3.5: Average time (in days, vertically) and costs (in euros, horizontally) to start up a business (EU-27)............. 34Figure 3.6: Maturity of the Life Event of ‘Starting up a business and early trading operations’ (EU-27+) ..................... 35Table 3.7: Top five a) services delivered automatically and b) fully available online (EU-27+) ..................................... 36Example of good practice: the Portuguese business portal. ....................................................................................... 37Figure 3.8: Key Findings Citizen Life Event ‘Losing and Finding a Job’ ......................................................................... 39Figure 3.9: Generic process model for the life event of ‘Losing and Finding a Job’...................................................... 40Figure 3.10: Maturity of the Life Event of ‘Losing and Finding a Job’ (EU-27+)............................................................ 41Figure 3.11: Generic process model for the life event of ‘Studying’............................................................................ 42Figure 3.12: Key Findings Citizen Life Event ‘Studying’ ............................................................................................... 43Figure 3.13: Maturity of the Life Event of ‘Studying’ (EU-27+).................................................................................... 45Example of good practice: Lithuania’s approach to providing online ‘Studying’ services............................................. 45Example of good practice: Germany’s approach to enrolling in higher education (at the University of Applied SciencesHarz)......................................................................................................................................................................... 47Figure 3.14: Indicators for cross-border assessment of ‘business start-up’ and ‘studying’ (%)..................................... 50Figure 3.15: Indicators for Transparent Government (EU-27+)................................................................................... 53
  • 10. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 10 of 74Figure 4.1: Key Findings Key Enablers........................................................................................................................ 55Figure 4.2: Integration of Key Enablers (eID, eDocuments, Authentic Sources) in life events (EU-27+)........................ 56Example of good practice: Estonia’s portal gateway .................................................................................................. 58Figure 4.3: Assessment of integration of key enablers, automated services and user satisfaction............................... 59Figure 5.1: Potential for cost savings in Denmark....................................................................................................... 61Figure 5.2: Online availability of services (average 3 life events) vs. ICT expenditure as percentage of GDP, with thesize of countries represented by percentage of eGovernment users.......................................................................... 63Figure 5.3: revealing percentage of citizens that came into contact with government (horizontal) and percentage ofcitizens that used the online channel when they came into contact with government (vertical)................................. 65All info graphs designed and produced in collaboration with Visual.ly (www.visual.ly).
  • 11. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionTo enable Europeancitizens, businesses andgovernments to fullybenefit from this digitalrevolution and to addresscurrent societal andeconomic challenges,governments have toactively anticipate andexploit technologicaldevelopments1 Introduction1.1 Context of this reportInformation and CommunicationsTechnologies (ICTs) play anincreasingly important role in ourlives. The advent of cloud; themassive uptake of social media; thedramatic shift to smart devices; theextraordinary analytical capabilitiesof ‘big & open data’ – all aretestament to this ongoingtransformation.These modern technologies presentvery substantial opportunities for usto advance in all areas. They can helpenhance the quality of life of theelderly; make things very mucheasier for the operation ofbusinesses (particularly SMEs); helpcitizens participate in the governanceof their community; enable living,working, studying across borders.Europe has developed much neededplans to extract maximum value fromthe use of ICTs to improve (indeedtransform) public services.Budget constraints are forcinggovernments to radically improveefficiency. Global competition ismuch tougher, and a strongEuropean internal market is neededmore than ever to drive sustainablegrowth. It is a key condition tostrengthen the competitiveness ofEuropean companies, stimulateinnovation and create jobs for ahealthy and resilient Europeaneconomy. That is precisely wherepublic services are needed.The European Commissioncontributes to these themes invarious ways: through the 2020Strategy and its flagships such as theDigital Agenda.The Europe 2020 strategy1proposesan ambitious schedule to exit fromthe economic crisis and to create asmart, sustainable and inclusiveEurope that is able to competeglobally, across sectors. The schedulefor action focuses on five key areas:Employment, Innovation, Education,Social Inclusion and Climate / Energy.Improvement on these domains canbe accelerated by better use of ICT.ICT provides innovative solutions forglobal issues that are addressed inthe Europe 2020 strategy.Furthermore, ICT has proven to be apowerful tool to include people insociety, e.g. the ‘Arab Spring’ couldnot have happened in the way it didwithout social media. Mobilecommunications technology andapplications enable citizens (thatmight have been excludedpreviously) to access information andservices anytime anywhere.Technology can thus empowercitizens, not only to connect to otherpeople, but also to connect togovernments.1 European Commission (2012). Europe 2020. Retrieved from http://ec.europa.eu/europe2020/index_en.htm.
  • 12. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionServing our end users isat the heart of what wedo, and remains ournumber one priorityLarry Page, one of the foundersof GoogleGovernments can more easilyexchange data and therefore betterinform citizens and businesses, andbetter engage them in policydevelopment, democratic decision-making and co-creation of servicesand content.Alongside benefits for citizens, ICTsoffer significant advantages forgovernments themselves. Smart useof data can provide governments’with valuable information toanticipate trends, combat crime, orincrease the effectiveness of publicservices. Through ‘crowd sourcing’opinion on policy, governments canuse ICT to solicit feedback fromcitizens to improve initiatives beforeimplementation. Importantly also,technology can be used bygovernments to significantly reducecosts, contribute to fiscal con-solidation, cause transform andinnovate. To enable Europeancitizens, businesses and governmentsto fully benefit from this digitalrevolution and to address currentsocietal and economic challenges,governments must activelyanticipate and exploit technologicaldevelopments. To be part of theglobal economy of the future, theynot only have to work towards aEuropean Single Market, but towardsa European Digital Single Market.One of the seven flagship initiativesof the Europe 2020 Strategy thatbuilds on this is the Digital Agendafor Europe2 (DAE).The DAE specifically addresses theneed for effective use of ICT basedon (very) fast Internet andinteroperable applications to deliversocial and economic benefits.The DAE targets are translated intospecific actions for governments inthe European eGovernment ActionPlan 2011-20153.The resulting eGovernment ActionPlan focuses on four areas:1. Empowerment of citizens andbusinesses2. Mobility in the Single Market3. Efficiency and Effectiveness ofgovernments andadministrations4. Legal and technical pre-conditionsActions are set out for each focusarea that help governments deployICT with the aim of using publicresources more efficiently, reducingpublic expenditure and at the sametime providing digital governmentservices across Europe that engage,enable and empower citizens.2 European Commission (2012). Digital Agenda for Europe. Retrieved from http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/digital-agenda/index_en.htm.3 European Commission (2010). The European eGovernment Action Plan 2011-2015 - Harnessing ICT to promote smart, sustainable &innovative Government. COM(2010) 743. Retrieved fromhttp://ec.europa.eu/information_society/activities/egovernment/action_plan_2011_2015/docs/action_plan_en_act_part1_v2.pdf
  • 13. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 13 of 74However, the emphasis shifts moreand more towards establishing theright pre-conditions to answer userneeds. “Serving our end users is atthe heart of what we do andremains our number one priority”,one of the founders of Google, LarryPage has stated numerous times.This quote demonstrates in similarfashion that governments shouldnot forget whom they represent andserve. Users, whether citizens orbusinesses, will be the instigators ofchange in bringing sustainablerecovery to the economy. Theemphasis on user needs is asignificant shift in eGovernmentthinking. The technologicaldevelopments described haveopened up opportunities for citizensand businesses and have raised theirexpectations.However, how well are we doing inusing modern technologies to makesuch improvements?Since 2001 there has been an annualprocess of benchmarking thedevelopment of eGovernmentacross Europe.This year our survey has developedfurther, and addresses three broadareas:1. Demand side citizen survey2. Life-event experiences3. ICT enablers1.2 How we report thefindingsThe results can be found in threeparts:This Insight report. Here weprovide context; summarymethod and factual findings;parallels with observedinternational leading practices;and draw some insights andconclusions as regards thefindings of the survey. This isaimed at Government leadership.A full “Background eGovBenchmark Report”; containingthe method, detailed pan-EUfindings, and country-specific factsheets. This is aimed at officersthat design, lead and implementeGovernment initiatives in EUcountries.The underpinning validated Data,which is made available onhttps://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/pillar-7-ict-enabled-benefits-eu-societyPDF version of both written reportscan be found on the EC website:https://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/pillar-7-ict-enabled-benefits-eu-society.The reports and the research dataallow countries and other parties tomake detailed country level analysisto further drive out learning.The emphasis onuser needs is asignificant shift ineGovernment thinking
  • 14. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroductionPage 14 of 74Figure 1.1: Explanation of objectives eGovernment Benchmark
  • 15. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportIntroduction28,000 internet-usingcitizens across all EU-27+ countries havebeen surveyed,exploring 27questions, and 19typical user events.This provides apicture, with 95%confidence(relevancy), of theviews of the 600million Europeancitizens1.3 What has beenmeasuredThis report reveals the main insightsfrom the 2012 benchmark, whichbuilds on a new measurementframework, moving with the fastchanging times of ICT developments inpublic service delivery. It mixes provenindicators with substantial innovation.It links directly to the European policypriorities, and has adopted the shift todemand-side measurement. Itprovides a new start to eGovernmentbenchmarking.There are three broad areas ofmeasurement:Firstly, a new and true demand-side picture of how EuropeanCitizens perceive online publicservices.Secondly, an elaborate measure ofpublic service provision throughlife-event assessment.– We assess three high-impact life-events: (i) business start-up andearly operations (ii) losing andfinding a job (iii) studying. Eachone assesses 15 to 30 specificservices, looking at the user-centricity of provider services.These explore in-countryservices, as well as cross-borderservices, and transparency. Allthese life-events are relevant tofuelling and sustaining a healthyEuropean economy. With100,000+ data points thisprovides a very rich and in-depthanalysis of the state of play of theservices in these life eventsacross Europe.– These three life-events will bere-assessed again in 2014. In2013 a further four additionallife-events will be measured.The compilation of this basketof citizen and business life-events will then continue tobe biennially measured.Thirdly, as assessment of theunderpinning and vitalinformation and technicalenablers– Based on the thorough life-event analysis we take atransversal view of the use ineach country of five keyenablers, assessing how theyare integrated in servicedelivery.1.4 How it has beendesigned and measuredEuropean Member States and otherparticipating countries continue toplay a vital collaborative role in themeasurement process.Country representatives continue toplay an active role in the design of themeasurement instrument; in validationof the findings for their country, andthrough workshops, in the sharing ofideas and experiences in addressingpolicy and programmes as a result ofthe findings.The continued active engagement inthis learning process will enhance thevalue that can be derived from thiscomprehensive survey.
  • 16. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsPage 16 of 742 Demand-sidesurvey: CitizenInsightsThe User Survey exercise provides anew and true-demand picture ofhow European Citizens perceiveonline public services. As far asknown, it is the first time thisexercise has been completed onthis scale, revealing representativeinsights at both country and EUlevel. The survey reached 28,000internet-using citizens across 32 EUcountries, exploring 27 questions,and 19 most common citizenservices. This provides a picturewith 95% confidence (relevancy) ofthe views of the 600 millionEuropean citizens.Building on the complete set ofdata per country, the results allowfor country specific analysis andwill provide useful insights forgovernments to improve theireGovernment strategy as well asspecific public services. Thebackground report and the datasets to be published will enablecountries to do so. The 2012e-Government benchmark is asignificant enhancement of the e-Government benchmark ofprevious years, moving with thefast changing times of ICTdevelopments in public servicedelivery. This insights report athand will focus on the insights atthe EU level regarding:eGovernment use and channelpreferences: explaining howmany citizens have usedeGovernment services andprefer the online channelBarriers for using online publicservices: describing reasons fornot using eGovernment services,providing governments withdirect recommendations forimproving take-upeGovernment satisfaction: withonline public and privateservicesFulfilment and benefits:revealing reasons for usingeGovernment services andindicating whether governmentsare able to meet expectationscitizens have when usingeGovernment servicesTable 2.1: Key Insights User SurveyeGovernment Use eGovernment use eGovernment SatisfactioneGovernment use46% of users of public servicesused eGovernment services54% preferred traditionalchannelsHowever 50% of all respondentsindicated to prefer theeChannel next time when theycontact governmentMost popular eGov service(among the 19 servicesexamined): ‘declaring incometaxes’ (73% of user will use theeChannel for this service nexttime), ‘moving/changingaddress within country’ (57%)and ‘enrolling in highereducation and/or applying forstudent grant’ (56%)Least popular eGov service:‘reporting a crime’ (41%),‘starting a new job’ (41%) and‘starting a procedure fordisability allowance’ (42%)21% was notaware of theexistence of relevant websitesor online services, mainlyyounger people (especiallystudents), who are moreable/skilled and willing to useeGov BUT less aware of relevantservices existing online80% indicates a lack ofwillingness to use eGovservices. This group consists ofrelatively more women andolder people but also 62% ofdaily Internet users11% did not use Internetbecause of concerns aboutprotection andsecurity ofpersonal data24% was not able to use eGovservices. Mainly older people,but also young people whoabandoned because the servicewas too difficult to useSatisfaction with eGovernmentservices is significantly (-2,0)lower than the satisfaction witheBanking services (resp. 6,5 &8,5)Satisfaction with eGovernmentservices is dropping since 2007,with 1,3 %‘Declaring income tax showsthat eGovernment services canlive up to citizens expectationsServices around(un)employment receive lowsatisfaction scores, reflectingtoday’s economic situation47% of eGovernment users fullygot what he wanted from thepublic administration46% only partially receives whatwas looked for5% did not get what hewanted at allTime and flexibility gains aremost important to users,followed by saving money andsimplification of a deliveryprocess. Apparently, quality of aservice is less relevant tocitizensBarriers that prevent Fulfillment & Benefits of
  • 17. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsPage 17 of 74Figure 2.2: key findings Demand-side survey
  • 18. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen Insights2.1 Introducing thedemand-side citizensurveyThis survey targeted the Internetpopulation of 32 countries with atotal of more than 600 millioninhabitants. This Internet populationrepresents 72% of the totalpopulation between 16 and 74 yearsold (based on Eurostat data onInternet use by individuals in the last12 months). For each country, arepresentative sample of theInternet population (interlaced age /gender and representative for NUTS1 regions) was determined4. Thetarget population was reached viaonline survey panels5. The resultsfrom the user survey on a Europeanscale represent a total of 28,177respondents. The survey examinesthrough 27 questions:User profiles and target groups:categorisation of eGovernmentusers / non-users(demographics, Internet use,levels of trust in using theInternet, contacts withGovernment, …)Usage of eGovernment servicesduring the last 12 months,including channel use andpreferences, and likelihood offuture useUser satisfaction: satisfaction incomparison to other explanatoryfactors such as satisfaction withnon-governmental eServices(eBanking, social networks,eCommerce), user expectationsand achievement of objectivesPerceived benefits (impact):perceived benefits of usingeGovernment channels andservicesBarriers to use for eGovernmentservices including awareness:explanatory factors that preventcitizens from using the onlinechannel including lack ofawareness.These parameters are key foreGovernment decision makers toposition eGovernment services inthe online market and ensure theefficiency and effectiveness ofGovernment operations.An extensive explanation of themethod can be found in theBackground report.2.2 Four types of attitudestoward eGovernmentTo gain insights into how usersexperienced their contact withgovernment and which types ofusers can be distinguished, it is firstnecessary to set two groups ofrespondents apart: on the one handthose that did get into contact withgovernment and on the other handa group with those who did not. Onaverage, 79% of citizens came intocontact with government withregard to one or more of the 19public services listed. Importantly,the eGovernment use indicators arebased on the percentage of thepopulation that expressed a “need”to contact public services. This isquite diverse in the differentcountries (between 62% and 91% ofthe Internet population).The respondents that came intocontact with government can bedivided in two groups: citizens whoused the online channel and thosethat did not. A remaining 54% canbe referred to as ‘non-eGovernmentusers’.46% of the Internetpopulation that cameinto contact withgovernment used theonline channel4 For 27 countries the minimum sample was 1000 respondents (confidence interval = +3,1%/-3,1% with a reliability of 95%);Luxemburg, Iceland, Malta, Cyprus and Croatia were represented with a sample of minimum 200 (confidence interval =+6,93%/-6,93% with a reliability of 95%). Please see background report how panels were constructed.5 With the exception of Cyprus where telephone surveys were used. Please see background report how panels were constructed.
  • 19. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsWe also segmented users by theireChannel preference. This indicateswhether people are willing to usethe online channel in their nextcontact with government. This hasbeen asked to both theeGovernment users and non-eGovernment users.Combining the insights ofeGovernment use and channelpreferences four groups emerge(see adjoining figure).13% indicate thatthey will use anotherchannel next time(‘potential drop outs’)Figure 2.3: Four types of attitudes toward eGovernment (EU-27+)BELIEVERS (or loyal users) = % ofcurrent eGovernment Users withan eChannel preference(average % across life events)POTENTIAL DROP OUTS = % ofcurrent eGovernment Users withNO eChannel Preference(average % across life events)POTENTIAL USERS = % ofcurrent eGovernment Non Userswith an eChannel preference(average % across life events)NON-BELIEVERS = % ofeGovernment Non Users withNO eChannel Preference(average % across life events)Figure 2.3 indicates that 33% ofeGovernment users, prefer to keepusing online channels in theirgovernment contacts. Of all peoplethat came into contact withgovernment (‘government users’),54% did not use the online channel.However, approximately a third ofall non-users (16% in total) doesprefer the online channel and soneed to be convinced to use it in thefuture. Finally, the 4th group are‘non-believers’ that is ‘hard to getonline’. This group includes 38% ofall respondents that came intocontact with government over thepast 12 months. When consideringthat the panels for this user surveyconsist of people that belong to theInternet population – it is likely thatthe number of people that do notwant to use the online channel forgovernment services is even biggerif the total population would beconsidered.In this study, a quite strict definitionof eGovernment use is applied.This benchmark builds on thequalitative approach that citizensprefer eChannels for all contact withpublic administrations and not onlyfor some of the most successfulones. At least the priority servicesmust have a valuable eGovernmentsolution. Hence, calculatingeGovernment USE as the averageacross all 19 services is moreaccurate and reveals politicallyrelevant insights.Typology of attitude towardeGovernmenteChannel PreferenceYES NOeGovernment UseYES BELIEVER POTENTIAL DROP OUTNO POTENTIAL USER NON-BELIEVER33% 13% 16% 38%0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50% 55% 60% 65% 70% 75% 80% 85% 90% 95% 100%BELIEVER: eGov User with eChannel Preference (loyal user) POTENTIAL DROP OUT: eGov Users NO eChannel PreferencePOTENTIAL USERS: eGov Non-UsereChannel PreferenceNON-BELIEVER: eGov Non-UserNO eChannel Preference (hard to get)
  • 20. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsThis approach leads to an overalleGovernment use of 46%. ThougheGovernment use is defineddifferently by Eurostat, the overallfigure of 46% is very similar to the(slightly lower) Eurostat figures oneGovernment use6 (53%). Bothsurveys assess the Internetpopulation, however use ofeGovernment is defined by Eurostatas: “obtaining information frompublic authorities’ web sites,downloading official forms andsending filled in forms”, which is amore general definition ofeGovernment use compared to theassessment of eGovernment useacross 19 citizen services.The above typology will serve as thestarting point to further analyse theuser experience of:eGovernment users: channelpreferences, satisfaction,perceived benefits andfulfilment of expectationsnon-eGovernment users:channel preferences, thebarriers they perceived and howthese could be overcome toincrease useFigure 2.4 illustrates how the totalpanel of the user survey is composedand it also provides a reading guidefor the following paragraphs. Itshows that the user survey resultsrepresent (e)Government users thatare part of the Internet population.The answers to the questionnaire areprovided by regular Internet users.This should be kept in mind wheninterpreting results.Figure 2.4: Illustration of user survey sample (to the left), distinguished types of users and sentiments that build thefollowing paragraphs (to the right)6 More information on this EuroStat indicator see Digital Agenda Scoreboard: http://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/scoreboard
  • 21. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsPage 21 of 742.3 Channel use andpreferencesFigure 2.5 shows that ‘looking for ajob’ is currently the service thatrespondents have used most whencoming into contact withgovernment online. It is even higherthan ‘declaring income taxes’. Thefigure also shows that ‘enrolling inhigher education’ and ‘moving orpreparing to move to anothercountry’ are commonly used onlineeGovernment services. One can seequite a difference (35%) between themost-used online services (e.g.Looking for a job and Declaringincome taxes) and the least usedones.When looking at the preferences ofrespondents when coming intocontact with government for one ofthe 19 services, in general theeChannel preference has increasedfrom 47% to 50% after people used aservice. In other words: from all thepeople that came into contact withgovernment through either thetraditional or online channel, anincreased number will use the onlinechannel next time.Figure 2.5: Use of eChannel vs traditional channels for 19 citizen services (EU-27+, %)However, looking closely at theservices, the general increase doesnot apply for individual services.There are services that - after use -have increased in the number ofcitizens preferring the eChannel.These services include: ‘registering acar’ (+16%), ‘applying for a driver’slicense’ (+12%), and ‘needing apassport to travel to anothercountry’ (+12%). In general ‘declaringincome taxes’ is by far the servicewith the highest eChannelpreference (73% of users will use theeChannel for this service next time),‘moving / changing address withincountry’ (57%) and ‘enrolling inhigher education and / or applyingfor student grant’ (56%).There are also some services thatdrop as regards eChannelpreference. These services are:‘Looking for a job’ (-15%), ‘Buying,building or renovating a house’ (-5%)and ‘Starting a new job’ (-5%). Thehuge decrease as regards eChannelpreference for ‘looking for a job’ is ofparticular relevance in the currentclimate of high unemploymentacross Europe, where citizens stillprefer face-to-face contact. In somecases this is quite understandable,however coaching people to use theonline channel could lead to benefitsall round.Users are more critical towardsservices such as ‘reporting a crime’(41%), ‘starting a new job’ (41%) and‘starting a procedure for disabilityallowance’ (42%). These services alsoreceive lower satisfaction scoresthan other services, indicating thereis room for improvement.0 20 40 60 80 100Makinga doctor’sappointmentina hospitalReportingacrime (smaller offences, e.g. theft, burglaryetc.)RegisteringacarNeedingapassporttotravelto anothercountryDeathof a close relative and/orstarting an inheritance procedureApplyingfora driver’slicence (orrenewingan existingone)Startinga procedure fora disability allowanceMarryingor changing marital statusDeclaringthe birth of a child and/orapplying for a birth grantStarting a newjobBecomingunemployedMovingandchanging addresswithin one countryRetiringBuying, buildingor renovatinga houseMakinguse of the public libraryMoving orpreparing to move toanothercountry(ex. tostudy, work, retire…)Enrolling in higher educationand/orapplying fora study grantDeclaringincome taxesLookingfora job
  • 22. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsFigure 2.6: Preference eChannel vs. traditional channels for 19 citizen services (EU-27+, %)0102030405060708090100Enrolling in higher educationand/orapplyingfora studygrantStartinga procedure fora disabilityallowanceRegisteringacarNeedingapassporttotravel to anothercountryMovingandchanging addresswithinonecountryApplyingfora driver’slicence (orrenewinganexistingone)Movingorpreparing to move toanothercountry (ex.to study, work,retire…)Buying,buildingor renovatinga houseRetiringLooking fora jobBecomingunemployedStarting a newjobMarryingor changing marital statusDeathof a close relative and/orstarting aninheritance procedureDeclaringthe birth of a child and/orapplyingfora birth grantMakinga doctor’sappointmentin a hospitalReportingacrime (smaller offences, e.g.theft,burglaryetc.)Declaringincome taxesMaking use of the public library%that usedthe eChannelforgovernment service%of usersthat indicated to preferthe eChannelnexttime fora governmentservice
  • 23. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsPage 23 of 742.4 Barriers to usingeGovernment servicesWhy are people not using theonline channel?Four main barriers have beenidentified, based on the results ofthe ~5000 individuals who declaredthey used traditional channels for allof their contact with government.These eGov non-users aresignificantly in the oldest age group(55+ years old), among lower-educated people, and in groups whodo not use the Internet daily and /or via a mobile device.1. Lack of awareness: 21% of therespondents indicated they wereunaware of eGovernmentservices. Awareness can beincreased by communicationand information campaigns,tailored to specific segments.Key segments include those atrisk of digital exclusion; youngerpeople (especially students),who are more skilled, able, andwilling to use eGovernmenthowever are less aware thatrelevant online services exist.2. Lack of willingness to use: 80%highlight this as one of thearguments for non-use. Thisgroup consists of relatively morewomen and older people,however 62% of them are dailyInternet users!3. Lack of trust to use: 11% arenon-users due to concerns aboutprotection and security ofpersonal data. Perhaps lowerthan one might expect. All usergroups are more or less equallyrepresented.4. Lack of ability to use: 24% citeconcerns of ability as reason fornon-use.These barriers to use need morethan straightforwardcommunication. Consequentargument building is needed here:potential users need proof thateGov services save time and at theend of the day are more efficient. Soin some of the cases the servicesthemselves warrant robustinspection. Governments mustdeliver services that are easy to findand easy to use. This in conjunctionwith a focus on eSkills to address the‘ability’ barrier, can increase take-up.Figure 2.7: Reasons for not having used the eChannel in contact with public agencies or officials (EU-27+, %)11% did notuse the Internetbecause ofconcernsaboutprotection andsecurity ofpersonaldata21% wasnot aware of the existence ofrelevantwebsitesoronline servicesNotaware(21%)Notwiling(80%)Notable(24%)Nottrusting(11%)8% said not to have the skills or did not knowhowtogetwhat they wanted/neededviatheInternet13% (mostly olderpeople)couldnotfind oraccess the informationorservices theywanted/needed5%(mostlyyoung& students)tried butabandonedtheservice,because the service wastoodifficultto use5%(mostlyolderpeople) triedbutabandonedtheservice,because the serviceswebsite orapplicationhad technicalfailures11% did notexpecttosave time by using theInternettogetwhatthey wanted/needed62% preferredto have personalcontactto getwhatthey wanted/needed19% expectedto have things done more easilybyusingotherchannels34% thoughtthe relevantserviceswill requirepersonalvisits or papersubmission anyway
  • 24. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen Insights2.5 Citizen SatisfactionPublic eServices lag behindcommercial eServicesAn important indicator to determinewhether users will return orcontinue to use an online service istheir user satisfaction. It isinteresting to make the comparisonwith private service providers, suchas banks, to see how expectations ofusers are being satisfied across thevarious sectors. The below figurereveals that citizens are significantlymore satisfied by the servicesprovided by banks (satisfaction 8.5)than for regular public services(satisfaction 6.5).The table to the right ranks theeGovernment services citizens weremost and least satisfied with.The fact that services aroundunemployment are ranked relativelylow is particularly pertinent givencurrent economic times, with highunemployment rates across Europe.It could also indicate that servicesaround unemployment are relativelycomplex compared to othergovernment services. Governmentsshould perhaps consider variousstrategies – further discussed in the‘losing and finding a job’ life eventassessment in section 3.3.That said, ‘declaring income tax’leads the way and proves thatgovernment services can live up tousers’ expectations. It would appearthat citizens are satisfied when aservice is effectively provided – evenwhen it concerns paying taxes!Figure 2.8: User Satisfaction with private online services (in red, to the left)and public online services (in grey, to the right)Citizens are significantly more satisfied by theservices provide by banks (satisfaction 8.5) than forregular public services (satisfaction 6.5).Table 2.9: online government services with high and low satisfaction7.68.56.56.96.07.6012345678910eCommerce eBanking eGovernmentServices(averageof 19services)Enrolling inhighereducationand/orapplying for astudy grantLooking for ajobDeclaringincometaxesServices with high satisfaction Services with low satisfaction1 Declaringincome taxes 7,6 Becoming unemployed 5,52 Making use of the public library 7,6 Starting a procedure for adisability allowance5,83 Making a doctor’s appointment in ahospital7,2 Lookingfor a job 6,04 Enrollingin higher education and/or applying for a study grant6,9 Retiring 6,05 Needinga passport to travel toanother country6,7 Death of a close relativeand/or starting aninheritance procedure6,1
  • 25. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen InsightsPage 25 of 74User satisfaction has droppedsince 2007The user survey was piloted in 10Member States during 2007. Acomparison for these countriesshows that the satisfaction ofcitizens with both private and publiconline services is decreasing. Theexception is social networks, wheresatisfaction remains more or lessunchanged. ICT is also changingcitizen expectations towards(government) services.Although availability of digital publicservices in Europe has risen, usersatisfaction is dropping. The onlypositive exception is ‘Declaringincome taxes’ which as we haveseen reaches satisfaction ratescomparable to eCommerce services.In 1985, two renowned salesmenstated “Bad news travels fast. Adissatisfied shopper tells around 10other people about the shopper’sbad experience.” Today, withwidespread communication, thisquote could not be any further fromtruth. As depicted in figure below,results show that satisfaction withinteracting through social networksand blogs has only slightly decreasedover the past years (-0.4%), whilstsatisfaction with other onlineservices (both commercial andpublic) has significantly droppedsince 20077. Besides Social Mediaapplications, struggling to keep itsown level of satisfaction,satisfaction with governmentservices drops significantly(-1.1 for eGovernment information/ -1.3% for eGovernment services)in line with the decrease insatisfaction in the private sectorservices (-1.3 and -1.2 for resp.eCommerce and eBanking). Citizensbecome more critical when they aremore aware and use more publicand commercial services.Note: the comparison is madebetween results for 10 MemberStates who participated in the 2007pilot measurement, and the resultsfor these 10 countries in 2012. Thethird line represents the EU-27+ in2012 which is almost similar withresults for the 10 countries.Figure 2.10: user satisfaction with private and public online services,comparison 2007-201287 Comparison between user survey pilot in 2007 and 2012, based on 10 pilot countries in 2007/2012.8 eGov information is defined as: To obtain information from public administrations websites (for example: via search enginessuch as Google, via government portals or via websites of public agencies) eGov services is defined as: To send (upload)completed web forms that are necessary to obtain a public service (for example: to obtain a certificate, permit or subsidy)eGov participation consists of several questions: to contact political representatives, to consult policy documents on websites,to participate in online consultations and/or interactive discussions on policy issues, to participate in collaborative platforms5678910eCommerceserviceseBankingDeclaringincometaxesSocNetworkseGovInformationeGovServiceseParticipation2007 (10MS) 2012 (10MS) 2012 (27+)
  • 26. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportDemand-side survey: Citizen Insights2.6 Perceived BenefitsDelivery of the service is notoptimalThe adjacent pie chart reveals thatalmost all users of an eGovernmentservice at least partially receivedwhat they needed. Albeit, half thisgroup remain only partially satisfied.Perceived benefits ofeGovernment useAll respondents that used onlinepublic services were asked whatthey perceived to be the benefits ofusing the online channel comparedto other traditional channels.Time and flexibility are seen to bethe key benefits.Money saving and simplification arein a second group.Quality of a service, interestingly, isless relevant to citizens (perhaps notthe case for public agencies’business customers?).There are however interestingdifferences when comparing atcountry level.Youngsters more often (strongly)disagree with the benefitstatements; older people morefrequently agree (or strongly agree).This suggests younger people sethigher expectations with regard toeGovernment services and addedvalue. They are the future, so wecannot be complacent in designingservices.Figure 2.11: eGovernment users that ‘in the end, got what was wanted orneeded’ (%)Time and flexibility gains are most important tousers, followed by saving money and simplificationof delivery processesFigure 2.12: Perceived benefits for using the eChannel compared to otherchannels (%)47%46%5% 2% Yes, totallyPartiallyNo, not at allI can’t say, myinteractions withpublic agencies arestill ongoing344448616276800 20 40 60 80 100I got better quality of serviceThe process of service deliverybecame more transparentI got better control over theprocess of service deliveryThe process of servicedelivery was simplifiedI savedmoneyI gained flexibility(intime and place)I saved time
  • 27. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionLife events are packagedGovernment services,which are usuallyprovided by multipleGovernment agencies,around a subject thatmakes sense to thecitizen. The systems ofthe participating publicagencies then co-operate(interoperate) to provideseamless delivery of thee-services93 Life-Event Serviceprovision3.1 IntroductionWhereas the Demand-Side Surveyprovided insights into citizen demands,the life-event measurement revealsthe supply side of Governmentservices.This year’s benchmark assesses threelife events, and their consecutivechains of services: relevant toentrepreneurs (‘Starting up a Businessand Early Trading Operations’), jobseekers (‘Losing and finding a job’),and students (‘Studying’).A life-event approach changes the wayorganisations need to collaborate toprovide a seamless experience acrossagencies, and at times across borders.In each country two mystery shoppersassessed these life events againstseven criteria:1. Online availability of services:whether a service is fully online or onlyinformation about a service is availableonline, and assessing whether this canbe done through dedicated portals.A distinction is made between:- Basic services: services andprocedures needed to fulfil theessential ‘compliant’requirements of a Life Event, i.e.core registration and othertransactional services.– Extended services: services andprocedures that go beyond thebasic requirements of a Life Event,i.e. Government providing data orservices for convenience andcompetitiveness, facilitating andeasing the user on his journey.2. Online usability of services: theextent to which support, help andfeedback functions are online and apersonal assessment by the shoppers oftheir experience regarding ‘ease of use’and ‘speed of use’.3. Transparency of service delivery: keyaspects of service delivery such asestimates of time, service levels andreceipt of notification.4. Transparency of public organisation:the extent to which public organisationspublish relevant information andempower users.5. Transparency of personal data:whether it is possible to access andmodify the data the Governmentstores on the user.6. Key Enablers: the integration of keyIT enablers (such as eID and authenticsources) in the service delivery.7. Cross-border availability & usabilityof services: these assessments weremade by a foreign mystery shopper;the scope was slightly narrower.9 http://ec.europa.eu/idabc/en/document/1644/5848
  • 28. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 28 of 74Table 3.1: Key insights and results for three life event measurements(EU27+)Business Start-up and EarlyTrading OperationsLosing and Finding a Job StudyingKey insights Key services concerningregistration of business andTax are fairly mature acrossEurope7% of services in businesslife event is automatedImprovement possiblewhen authentic sources areused to take administrativerequirements and proofs ofqualification out of thehands of the entrepreneurEntrepreneur cannot makean accurate estimation ofthe time it will take touse/apply for a certainservice – whereas these arehis strongest perceivedbenefits of using the onlinechannelServices related tosearching for a job have thehighest online availabilityacross EuropeSocial support mechanisms(housing, debt counselling,health support) are notsufficiently integrated inthe life event. In currenttimes, these services areimportant in preventingpeople from becomingfurther alienated fromsocietySome countries prefer face-to-face contact at the startof this life event, whileothers choose to makeonline services mandatoryThe average usability ofeGovernment services forlosing and finding a job ishighest of all three lifeevents, indicating thatonline support andfeedback options aregenerally provided.However, there are bigdifferences amongcountries.Although only few servicesare automated, mostservices are to a largeextent online. However, theportal function does notwork as efficiently as inother life events.Services related to finances(‘student grants’, ‘socialbenefits’, ‘financial advise’)lag behind compared to‘enrolment’ and servicesprovided by universities.Providing transactionalstudy services cross-borderremains a challenge forgovernments.Students are used toparticipating in socialmedia, but onlinediscussion fora orconsultations provided bygovernment are onlysatisfactory in 25% of thecases.Online availabilityof services75% 73% 72%Online usability ofservices74% 79% 76%Ease of use 63% 65% 66%Speed of use 59% 61% 62%Transparency ofPublicOrganisations66% 72% 61%Transparency ofPersonal Data43% 41% 44%Transparency ofService Delivery47% 39% 37%Key Enablers 58% 56% 49%Cross-borderdimension56% (average for onlineavailability and usability)n.a. 46% (average for onlineavailability and usability)The results (with the exception of Ease and Speed of use) have been validated by Member States to ensure qualityinsights. The table above provides an overview of key insights and the most relevant statistics.
  • 29. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionEurope lags behind itscompetitors inentrepreneurial attitudes.Yet at the same time weknow that SMEs are thebiggest source of new jobsand related growth103.2 Starting up a businessand early tradingoperationsThe importance of stimulatingand facilitatingentrepreneurshipEleven percent of European citizensare entrepreneurs, 45% would like tobe their own boss if they could.11Since 2008, Europe has beenexperiencing heavy economicweather: at the European level andglobally. With 17 countries in theeuro area, plus 10 additionalMember States, Europe is theworld’s largest economic bloc, aheadof the USA or China. To maintain itscompetitive positioning, businesses,entrepreneurship, pertaining jobsand growth have to be placed at theheart of the political action. Smalland Medium-sized Enterprises(SMEs) are of especially greatimportance for the Europeaneconomy in this respect.SMEs (enterprises with employeesbetween 1-249 employees) accountfor over 99% of all enterprises inEurope, accounting for around 70%of the total employment12. “Everyyear start-up firms in the EU createover 4 million jobs,” EuropeanCommission President, José ManuelBarroso, pointed out in his 2012State of the Union Address13. Thus, itis clear that SME businesses are atthe heart of the economy, they arecritical for economic growth in thenear future. SMEs can be seen as thebackbone of the economy, given theadded value and employment theycreate.10 European Commission Press Release, Entrepreneurship: consultation on future action at the EU level, Brussels, 17 July 2012.IP/12/797; quotation from Antonio Tajani, EC Vice President of the European Commission, Commissioner for Industry andEntrepreneurship11 European Commission Press Release, Entrepreneurship: consultation on future action at the EU level, Brussels, 17 July 2012.IP/12/79712 http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/portal/page/portal/product_details/publication?p_product_code=KS-SF-08-03113 State of the Union 2012 Address President Barroso, http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=SPEECH/12/596
  • 30. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionAccording to EuropeanCommission PresidentBarroso, the SmallBusiness Act for Europe is“a step towards a Europeof entrepreneurs, withless red tape and morered carpet for Europe’s 23million SMEs”The EU has understood the need tofurther promote entrepreneurshipand is taking action. In March 2012,the European Council14 concludedthat “Europe must focus on creatingthe best possible environment forentrepreneurs to commercialisetheir ideas and create jobs.”Additional initiatives include DGEnterprise and Industry’s focus on‘digital entrepreneurship’, increasingthe digital possibilities forentrepreneurs. Another example isthe ‘promoting entrepreneurship’campaign15. Member States havecommitted to further leverage theSmall Business Act (SBA) for Europe,adopted by the European Council inDecember 2008 as part of theEuropean Economic Recovery Planwhich calls for additional reductionsin the procedures for starting up acompany16. The Act focuses onaccess to finance, on ways ofpreserving SMEs from bankruptcy,on promoting entrepreneurshipamong ethnic minorities andwomen, on attracting and recruitingthe first employee, and on helpingstart-ups by setting up one-stopshops for SME support.To achieve the goals stipulated in theSmall Business Act and to furthersupport entrepreneurship, seamlessGovernment can be of great help inreducing the complexity forbusinesses of all kinds of questionsand formalities related to starting upa business. Online services not onlyreduce travel costs by makingprocedures and forms availableremotely, they are in principlesimpler, faster and more flexible.The Services Directive 2006/123/EC,constituted a first a stepping stone insimplifying business start-upprocedures and bringing them onlinefor service providers via Points ofSingle Contact. Such points of singlecontact or one-stop shops forbusiness start-ups can provide all therequisite procedures going beyondthe requirements of the Directive(e.g. registration, tax, VAT and socialsecurity) and thus make way for anenhanced competitive landscape.This chapter will seek to understandhow progress is being made inEurope thanks to the ‘Business start-up life event.’14 European Council, Council Conclusions, 2 March 201215 http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/promoting-entrepreneurship/index_en.htm16 Small Business Act for Europe, European Commission, 25 June 2008, COM(2008) 394 final.http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/small-business-act/index_en.htm
  • 31. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 31 of 74Figure 3.2: Generic process model for‘Starting up a business and earlytrading activities’What has been measured inthis benchmark?There is a broad range of factors inthe business / economicenvironment factors that areconsidered to determine a country’sentrepreneurial performance. Theseindicators can cover aspects asdiverse as labour-market regulation,the dissemination rate oftechnology, the patent regime, theavailability and ease of access todebt finance, or bankruptcy andother administrative regulations. Onthe other hand, the regulatoryframework can hinder or impedeentrepreneurship if the opportunitycost of start-up outweighs thebenefits. Such costs can be the resultof the administrative burden – e.g.over-regulated professions,complexity of obligation schemes,health and safety, and labourregulation, and social security andtax regimes. One means of easingthe burden is through the use ofeGovernment ‘by simplifyingprocedures and putting them online.Thus, benchmarking is a valuabletool to monitor the provision ofeGovernment services for businessesand raise Governments’ awarenessin order to further stimulate theprovision of eGovernment services.The life event ‘Business Start-up andearly trading activities’ measureshow eGovernment services aredelivered and showcases practicesaround Europe. Comparisons canalso be made in assessing theprogress made since the previousmeasurement in 2010. Furthermore,this year’s benchmark providesinsights from a user perspective,showing entrepreneur’s preferencesand how they perceive eGovernmentservices.The process model used for this lifeevent is shown in the Figure on thispage. Three main stages have beendefined (pre-registration, regis-tration and early trading activities) tomeasure the different underlyingactivities, referred to as servicesduring the measurement of this lifeevent. To depict the journey of apossible entrepreneur a ‘persona’has been described for this lifeevent. The most important aspect totake into account is that the personaoperates as a sole proprietor17.17 For a more detailed description, please look at the process models and persona description in the Method Paper.Early tradingactivitiesHiringanemployeeRequestenvironmentalpermitRegistrationBasic registrationApproval ofregistrationMembershipsTax and insurancePublicationPre-registrationOrientationProofs ofqualificationAdministrativerequirements
  • 32. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 32 of 74Figure 3.3: Key findings Business Life Event ‘Starting up a business and early trading activities’
  • 33. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 33 of 74Insights into the user profileof an entrepreneurEntrepreneurs compared to average:Make more use of publicInternet applications (5% aboveaverage), mostly to obtaininformation from websites(91%), download forms (80%)and contact publicadministrations by e-mail (72%).Have more face-to-face contactwith government (11% aboveaverage) themselves or throughintermediaries (5% aboveaverage).Are less satisfied than theaverage respondent (-0.2) withboth eCommerce, eBanking andpublic services. These are valuedat 7.5 and 5.8 respectively. At 5.2on average, their satisfactionwith the quality of servicesprovided by publicadministrations is not sufficient.Entrepreneurs perceive thefollowing benefits when usingonline Government services:flexibility gains (79%), timesavings (77%), money savings(66%).The main reasons for not usingthe online channel are:preference for personal contact(64%), personal visits aremandatory (39%), absence ofawareness of the existence ofrelevant websites or onlineservices (23%)At the same time eChannelpreference for interaction withpublic administrations is at 42%slightly higher than the averageof 39%From these user insights we canconclude that entrepreneurs areused to going online to search forinformation as such and prefer theeChannel in their contacts withGovernments, but that the onlinechannel is not always a satisfactoryanswer and entrepreneurs willchoose to have personal contactinstead to get things done.It might also be that in certain casesservice delivery via a specific civilservant is efficient and the leasttime-consuming way for theentrepreneur.Insights into online serviceprovisionThe previous paragraph depicted thedemand side of Internet applicationsfrom an entrepreneurial point ofview. The reverse side of this coin iswhether eGovernment services areavailable online and user friendly.The spider chart in figure 3.4represents the scores for Europewith regard to four elements of user-centricity within the business lifeevent:Online availability of basic andextended services: the EU-27+average is 75%, indicating thatservice provision in Europe ishalfway between providingonline information (50%) andproviding a service online(100%).Online usability of basic andextended services: the EU-27+average is 74%, which meansthat for the majority of servicesin this life event, support, helpand feedback functionalities areavailable online.Figure 3.4: Indicators for User-Centric Government in life event of ‘startingup a business and early trading activities’ (%)75746359 020406080100OnlineavailabilityUsabilityEase of useSpeed of use
  • 34. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionEase of use: this reflects thepersonal experience of themystery shoppers whoperformed the journey throughthe life event services. ‘Ease ofuse’ captures whether the userwas able to complete therequired process steps smoothly(logical succession of processsteps, clear instructions) andachieve his goal. This indicatoraverages 63% for EU-27+ whichequals a rating of 6.3.Speed of use: similar to ease ofuse, this indicator reflectswhether mystery shoppers wereable to complete the requiredprocess steps within areasonable amount of time. Ascore of 59% as depicted belowequals a rating of 5.9. Mysteryshoppers were not so positiveabout the time aspect. Theymade observations aboutwhether one could prepareproperly in order to go throughthe services as quickly aspossible, about expectations ofthe amount of time it would taketo complete the service andwhether the life event wasdesigned to facilitate the user incompleting the required servicesin the shortest amount of time.Time is an issue!Following the publication of theSmall Business Act in December200818, the Competitiveness Councilissued its “Conclusions on ThinkSmall First – A Small Business Act forEurope”19. This document includedthe Council’s Action Plan for a SmallBusiness Act for Europe underlininginter alia the ambition of reducingthe time taken to register a newbusiness to three days.This would be a tremendousachievement throughout Europe, ifwe take the figures below intoaccount20.Entrepreneurs expect that they canmake an accurate estimation of thetime it will take them to complete acertain activity. In most countriesthis is not the case.They need to plan carefully. The lowscores regarding ‘speed of use’ (5.9on average) indicate Governmentsare not living up to this expectation.This conclusion is further supportedwhen we look at the followingquestions which were assessed andvalidated in the mystery shoppingexercise:The time to start up abusiness has been halvedover the past five years.However, what is neededis to cut it in half againFigure 3.5: Average time (in days,vertically) and costs (in euros,horizontally) to start up a business(EU-27)18 Council of the European Union, Conclusions on "Think Small First – A Small Business Act for Europe" 2891st Competitiveness,Internal Market, Industry and Research Council Meeting, Brussels, 1 and 2 December 2008http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/files/docs/sba/council_conclusions_dec08_en.pdf19 The Councils Action Plan for a Small Business Act for Europe, Annex to the Council Conclusions of 1-2 December 2008http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/files/docs/sba/sba_action_plan_en.pdf20 http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/business-environment/start-up-procedures/progress-2011/index_en.htm
  • 35. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionEntrepreneurs expectthat they can make anaccurate estimation ofthe time it will take themto complete a certainactivity. In most countriesthis is not the case.30% of Government websitescommunicate expectations onhow long the entire process isestimated to take42% of Government websitesmake clear what the deliverytimelines of the service are41% of Government websitesindicate the maximum time limitwithin which the administrationhas to deliverMaturity of the life eventchainLife event measurement makes itpossible to assess the adequacy andcoherence of service provision. Thefigure below depicts per service forthe EU-27+ how it is being delivered:automatically (without the userhaving to do anything), fully online(and possibly through a portal),online but limited to informationabout the service (and possiblythrough a portal) or offline.Core services are the mostmatureTwo categories score particularlywell on online availability: ‘basicregistration services’ and ‘tax-related matters’. For these keycategories of service, there are nooffline services, i.e. at leastinformation about the service can befound online. Moreover, it isavailable almost everywhere througha business portal. More important,these services achieve the highestscores for onlineFigure 3.6: Maturity of the Life Event of ‘Starting up a business and early trading operations’ (EU-27+)0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%11.2 Submit an application for environmental permit11.1Find out if you need to register for an environmental permit or register as an exemption11 Request an environmental permit10.7 Obligations related to training10.6Obligations related to work place security10.5 Obligations regarding reporting and documentation10.4 Obligations related to socialsecurity10.3Tax related obligations10.2 Register employee before first work day10.1 Register your company as an employer10 Hiring afirst employee9.1 Publish registrationin Official Journalor equivalent9 Publication8.4 Register with mandatory civil insurance8.3 Register withcompulsory healthcare8.2Register with mandatory pension insurance8.1 Register with SocialSecurity Office8Insurance-related matters7.2 Obtain VAT collector number7.1Obtain taxidentification card/number7 Tax-related matters6.1 Register withTrade Association/Chamber of Commerce6Memberships5.3Register with Trade Register/ Craft Register5.2 Register withcentral/regional/local government5.1Register with CommercialCourt/Court of First Instance or equivalent5 Approval of registration4.4 Formalvalidation of signatures of representatives of the business4.3 Register domicileof business4.2 Register company name4.1 Fill instandard form for registration deed4 Basicregistration3.4 Obtain certificatefrom bank of capital deposited3.3 Obtain certificate of no outstanding social security and/or healthcare charges3.2Obtain character reference3.1 Obtain certificate of no outstanding taxes3Administrative requirements2.2 Confirm activity-specificqualifications with authorities.2.1 Confirm general management qualifications withauthorities.2Proofs of Qualification1.3 Explore financial possibilities1.2Setting up a business plan1.1 Obtaining information about starting abusiness1OrientationAutomatedserviceService onlineand throughportalService onlinebut not throughportalInformationonline andthrough portalInformationonline but notthrough portalOffline1 Orientation2 Proofs of Qualification3 Administrative requirements4 Basic registration5 Approval of registration6 Memberships7 Tax-related matters8 Insurance-related matters9 Publication10 Hiring a first employee11 Request an environmental permit
  • 36. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionavailability. In particular it seemsthat the organisations responsiblefor company registration and the taxauthorities are cooperating well,because in quite a few countries thetax identification and / or VATnumbers are provided automatically– without the entrepreneur havingto do anything. The most automatedservice across Europe is ‘thepublication in Official Journal orequivalent’. Many Governments nowlink this publication to theregistration process, again withoutthe entrepreneurs having to doanything.The picture is diverse for servicesrelated to ‘hiring a first employee’:on the one hand, most of theservices in this cluster achieve morethan 50% online availability; on theother, in those cases whereinformation is only available online,the portal function in some countriesis not functioning as well as in otherparts of the life event.The table 3.7 below indicates the topfive services delivered automatically(without the entrepreneur having todo anything) and the top fiveservices available online.Use of authentic sources willincrease automated serviceprovisionThe most room for improvement canbe found in services related to‘proofs of qualification’ and‘administrative requirements’. Theseclusters consist of services related tothe certificates required, such as a‘character reference’, ‘certificate ofno outstanding taxes’ or‘confirmation of generalmanagement qualifications’. Most ofthese services are only requiredonce and not on a regular norrecurrent basis, so these in particularare services that can be automatedin the back office.The same is true for the services inthe cluster ‘insurance relatedmatters’: compulsory registrationwith social security, healthcare, orpension insurance is something theGovernment could take off theentrepreneur’s hands by providingthese registrations as a follow-up ofthe initial registration.The Portuguese business portalprovides an excellent example ofhow to enable full online serviceprovision. The background reportincludes another example: Malta’sone stop shop for businesses.Following the principle of‘once-only registration’,by using authenticsources to re-useinformation from theperson starting up abusiness, the burden caneasily be decreased andthe process of servicedelivery acceleratedTable 3.7: Top five a) services delivered automatically and b) fully availableonline (EU-27+)Automated services Services online available (through portal)1 9.1 Publish registration in OfficialJournalor equivalent1.1 Obtaining information aboutstarting a business2 7.2 Obtain VAT collector number 4.1 Fill in standard form forregistration deed3 7.1 Obtain tax identificationcard/number4.3 Register domicile of business4 8.1 Register with Social SecurityOffice11.2 Submit application environmentalpermit5 8.2 Register with mandatorypension insurance10.3 Tax related obligations
  • 37. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionExample of good practice: the Portuguese business portal.The Portuguese approach to the process of business creationcombines integration of key enablers that allow for full online serviceprovision with focus on the requirements and demands ofentrepreneursThe process of business creation is totally integrated anddematerialised. It allows the entrepreneur to create a new company,register the trademark and name through a centralised monitoring ofthe entire process.The formal validation of signature is provided through eID (thePortuguese Citizen’s Card) and a set of effective and secure featuressupport the whole process, namely a national online paymentplatform system, SMS services between the State and the citizen,registration of contracts automatically in the Back Office andstreamlined communication between national entities for validationof information.The process uses the Public Administration Interoperability Platform(iAP), in line with the concept of “government as a platform”. iAP is atechnological platform of reference which provides transversalelectronic services to national entities, allowing public informationsystems to respond better to current requirements in the provisionof services to civil society. Based on open standards, with high safety,reliability and availability parameters, this platform aims to increasethe efficiency of public services through the reuse of the installedcapacity in public administration, providing a variety of services via asingle point of access.
  • 38. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionTwenty-three millionEuropean citizenscurrently do not have ajob3.3 Losing and findinga jobAs a result of the financial andeconomic crisis, the overallunemployment rate in the EU-27has risen year-by-year from 6.7%of the EU population in 200821 to10.5% in 201222. The youthunemployment rate (15-24 yearsold) was 22.7% in 2012 comparedto 16% in 200823.High unemployment ratesnegatively affect the financial andsocial situation of individuals andhave led, at the macro-level, tostagnating economic growth, lowertax revenues in tax revenue andincreased Government spendingon social benefits. The EUMacroeconomic Report for theAnnual Growth Survey24 warnsthat ‘unemployment may becomeincreasingly structural with anegative effect on long-termgrowth potential’ and calls forstructural reforms to tackle thisemerging risk, strengthenconfidence and gain renewed trust.European policies such as theEuropean Employment Strategy(EES)25, the Europe 2020 strategyand the Agenda for new skills andjobs26 have also stressed theimportance of stimulating labourmarket participation. NationalGovernments invest in Governmentservices to create more flexiblelabour markets, facilitate job mobilityand lifelong learning, promote jobcreation and entrepreneurship andimprove support to those seeking ajob.What has been measured inthis benchmark?The eGovernment Benchmarkmeasures the engagement,facilitation and support of theunemployed by Governments, bylooking at the availability, usabilityand transparency of digital servicesMember States are providing in thefield of losing and finding a job. Theservices are approached from theperspective of an unemployed citizen:what steps does the unemployedperson have to take when losing theirand trying to find a new one. Thesesteps can be summarised in acustomer journey map as depicted infigure 3.9.21 Eurostat yearbook 2011, http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/cache/ITY_OFFPUB/KS-CD-11-001/EN/KS-CD-11-001-EN.PDF22 Eurostat, code teilm02023 Eurostat, code teilm02124 http://ec.europa.eu/europe2020/pdf/ags2013_mer_en.pdf25 Also see: http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=101&langId=en26 Also see: http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?langId=en&catId=958
  • 39. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 39 of 74Figure 3.8: Key Findings Citizen Life Event ‘Losing and Finding a Job’
  • 40. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionFigure 3.9: Generic process modelfor the life event of ‘Losing andFinding a Job’Social supportmechanisms (housing,debt counselling, healthsupport) are notsufficiently integrated inthe life event. Theseservices are important forpreventing people frombecoming furtheralienated from societyInsights into the user profileof an unemployed personWhen segmenting the unemployedtarget group in the user survey, itwas possible to distinguish thefollowing characteristics ofunemployed citizens:They are less likely to use onlinechannels for public, as well asfor private services;They are more likely toparticipate in online socialnetworking and entertainment-related activities such as onlinegaming;Their level of satisfaction withall public Internet applicationsand services is below average;Only 28% achieved theirobjectives when using publicservices;They have a higher preferencefor personal contact thanaverage (48%);A large number would use theeChannel again for publicservices in the future (79%).Availability of eGovernmentServicesUnemployed citizens are often ahard-to-reach group forGovernments, especially throughthe traditional digital channel.Results from this benchmark’s usersurvey show that unemployedcitizens use eGovernment servicesless than average.The majority prefer face-to-facecontact. Citizens who do useeGovernment services are lesssatisfied with the services. On theother hand, when looking for a job,most unemployed do prefer to usethe Internet.This could be explained by looking atthe online availability of Governmentservices for losing and finding a job.Figure 3.10 shows that servicesrelated to searching for a job havethe highest online availability acrossEurope. Citizens can search for jobs,find information on the labourmarket and set up a personal spaceto administer their work experienceor save applications both onwebsites of specific service providersand via online portals. Applying forsocial benefits is generally notpossible online, but often limited toprovision of information.Some countries deliberately requirepersonal visits by law or policy.Germany, for example, requires thecitizen to register as unemployed inperson at one of the offices of theFederal Employment Agency(Bundesagentur für Arbeit - BA). Thisenables them to have a fullunderstanding of the specific jobprofile of the applicant, and thus toprovide the best possible tailoring ofthe Job Centre offer to individualskills and requirements. All furthercontact once registered can beelectronic. This policy is deemedhighly effective in Germany.Finding a jobSearchingfor a jobparticipating intraining programmesLosing a jobImmediate actionsfor unemployedApplying foradditional benefitsand allowancesReceiving benefits
  • 41. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionIn the Netherlands, a differentapproach is used. In order to cutcosts and because the DutchGovernment’s policy is that the firstresponsibility always lies with jobseekers and employers, they havemade the use of digital services forjob seekers mandatory in the firstthree months of unemployment.Citizens who prove to be strugglingto use the online services after threemonths of unemployment (10%) areprovided with face-to-face servicesfrom then onwards.This approach has savedthe Dutch Governmentmore than 100 millioneuro in job mediation /reintegration budgetsand more than 200million euro ofoperational budget.Usability of eGovernmentservices for losing andfinding a jobTo support hard-to-reach groupssuch as unemployed citizensthrough eGovernment services,services should not only be availableonline, but should also be truly user-friendly. They should be easy to useand quick, and should support thecitizen in their journey of losing andfinding a job. The average usabilityof eGovernment services for losingand finding a job is highest of allthree life events. However, thereare big differences betweencountries. Room for improvementlies within the indication of thespeed of use, i.e. the amount oftime it took theuser to obtain the service and theextent to which the user canestimate the time obtaining aservice will take. Although mostGovernments do enable citizens toobtain a service quite quickly bylisting what information is neededfrom them and by structuring theservices efficiently, they couldestablish more clearly expectationsof the amount of time it takes tocomplete the required steps and toreceive feedback fromGovernments. The French job portalpole-emploi.fr, for example,provides a clear ‘demo’ of theprocess of obtaining the service andcommunicates a time period withinwhich the public administration willconfirm the service has beenobtained.Figure 3.10: Maturity of the Life Event of ‘Losing and Finding a Job’ (EU-27+)0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%5.2 Subscribing to vocational/careersadvice5.1Subscribing to training and education programmes5 Participating in training programs4.4 Setting up a personal space4.3 Receiving ‘job alerts’4.2 Job search4.1 Orientation on labor market4 Searching for a job3.2 Obtaining a tax refund or any other tax-relatedbenefits3.1 Provide evidence that you are looking for work3 Receivingbenefitswhich apply to you2.11Accessing social welfare appeals2.10 Obtainingfinancial aid for startingup as a self-employed2.9 Obtaining guidance in case of invalidity, sickness, employment injuries2.8 Accessing health promotion programs2.7 Accessing Debt counselling services2.6 Obtaining guidance related to housing2.5 Ensuring continuity of pension payments2.4 Ensuring continuity of medical insurance2.3 Understanding whatdocuments are required when applying for additional benefits2.2 Being assistedby a public officer2.1Doing a means test2 Applying for additional benefitsand allowances1.3 Accessing personalized information1.2 Registering for unemployment benefits1.1 Registering asunemployed1 Immediate actions for unemployedAutomatedserviceService onlineand throughportalService onlinebut not throughportalInformationonline andthrough portalInformationonline but notthrough portalOffline1 Immediate actions for unemployed2 Applying additional benefits/allowances4 Searching for a job5 Participating in training programs
  • 42. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 42 of 74Figure 3.11: Generic process modelfor the life event of ‘Studying’3.4 StudyingIn economically challenging times,high quality education becomesincreasingly important. Having aneducation enables people to get,keep or change their jobs moreeasily. OECD studies have shownthat in 2010, for people without anupper secondary education, theunemployment rate was 12.5%,which for those with uppersecondary education theunemployment rate was 7.6%. Forthose with tertiary education theaverage unemployment rate waseven lower, at 4.7%. For all OECDcountries together, theunemployment rate for men withhigher education was roughly one-third less than for men with uppersecondary education27. Moreover,those with high educationalattainments find their first jobposition faster than people withonly secondary education.Education thus both increasesemployability and decreases thelength of transition from educationto work.In general, one could say thateducation pays for itself. The OECDhas estimated that on average thelong-term personal economic gainfrom having a tertiary degree isover USD 160 000 for men and USD110 000 for women. TheGovernment gain in terms of taxincome and other savings has beenestimated to increase by USD100 000 for each man in highereducation.28It is thus not surprising thateducation is one of the keypriorities of the European Union.The Europe 2020 flagships Agendafor new skills and jobs29 and Youthon the Move30 both stimulateGovernments to invest in educationand set targets to increase thecompletion of tertiary education,decrease the number of earlyleavers, increase student mobility,develop more flexible learningpathways, provide comprehensivelifelong learning, improveinformation provision abouteducation, and develop qualitycareer guidance services.27 European Commission, Eurostat, Eurostudent.eu, Eurydice, (2012), The European Higher Education Area in 2012:Bolognaprocess implementation, also see: http://www.ehea.info/Uploads/(1)/Bologna%20Process%20Implementation%20Report.pdf28 http://www.eua.be/News/11-01-07/Impact_of_the_economic_crisis_on_European_higher_education_EUA_publishes_latest_update_ahead_of_major_new_report.aspx29 http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?langId=en&catId=95830 http://ec.europa.eu/youthonthemove/SupportPortability of student grantAdditional coursesPersonal pageInternational officeCareer advice - internshipsGraduationEnrolmentRecognition diplomaEnrollingin highereducationStudent grantsSocial benefitsFinancial adviceOrientationCourse searchAssessment testsAdmission requirements
  • 43. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 43 of 74Figure 3.12: Key Findings Citizen Life Event ‘Studying’
  • 44. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provision95%of students use theInternet daily and80%use mobile Internet dailyWhat has been measured inthis benchmark?The eGovernment Benchmark aimsto measure to what extentGovernments provide onlineservices that engage, facilitate andsupport students, in order to reachthe EU policy targets and create afuture-proof, skilled workforce forthe European knowledge economy.The Government services shouldsupport the student throughout thestudy journey.Insights into the user profileof a studentWhen segmenting the studenttarget group in the user survey, itwas possible to distinguish thefollowing characteristics:80% of students use mobileInternet daily, compared to 62%of all respondents;Most students use the Internet ifthey are looking for informationfrom Public Administrations;Student use the Internet forprofessional purposes more oftenthan the average respondent;The percentage of studentsindicating they achieved theirobjectives when using publicservices was 41%;when enrolling in highereducation, 60% of Europeancitizens use the eChannel;The average satisfaction rate forenrolling in higher educationonline is 6.9;Of students using the eChannelfor public services, 82% said theywould use it again in the future.Availability of eGovernmentservices for studying: takingthe centralised or de-centralised approachStudents are intensive Internetusers, using the Internet daily frommultiple devices. They use publicand private Internet applicationsmore than the average population.This also means that theirexpectations of eGovernmentservices are higher. The user surveyresults show that only 39% ofstudents experienced theeGovernment services to be betterthan they expected. Fifty-threepercent of the students found theeGovernment services met theirexpectations.Given students’ high Internet usagerate, it might be expected thatGovernments would mainly providetheir study services via the Internet.The Figure below shows that theonline availability of Governmentservices for study is indeedreasonable. Although only a fewservices are automated, mostservices are to a large extentavailable online. The service that isprovided online most is that of apersonal space to access personaldata and information on coursesand grades. Almost all Governmentsprovide this service.Services related to finances(‘student grants’, ‘social benefits’,‘financial advice’) lag behindcompared to ‘enrolment’ andservices provided by universities.The services that are least onlineare ‘requesting recognition of a
  • 45. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionDiploma’ and ‘portability of studentgrants’. As these services both havea cross-border dimension, theresults indicate that providingtransactional services cross-borderremains a challenge forGovernments.Compared to other life events, theportal function does not work asefficiently. The reason could be thatstudy services are mainly providedby universities. The decentralisednature of study services might alsoexplain the higher usage of specificauthentication identifiers, asopposed to national identifiers, andthe lower usage of other keyenablers compared to other lifeevents.Figure 3.13: Maturity of the Life Event of ‘Studying’ (EU-27+)Example of good practice: Lithuania’s approach to providing online ‘Studying’ services0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%3.6 Registerforgraduation ceremony3.5 Career advice - internships3.4 International office3.3 Personal profile3.2 Enrolment additional courses (eg language)3.1 Portability of student grant (abroad)3 Support (during study/studying)2.5 Financial advise2.4 Applying for social benefits2.3 Applying for student grants2.2 Enrolling inhigher education2.1 Request recognition of diploma2 Enrolment1.3 Understand admissionrequirements1.2 Perform assessment tests1.1 Advanced course search1 OrientationAutomatedserviceService onlineand throughportalService onlinebut not throughportalInformationonline andthrough portalInformationonline but notthrough portalOffline1Orientation2 Enrolment3 Support (duringstudy/studying)Lithuania has chosen to provide all study services, from applying for student grants to careercounselling, for 45 universities and colleges through one national portal. Their reasons forchoosing this option are flexibility in service provision, small maintenance costs, a unified dataexchange method, the possibility of using open source standards and having data exchange andconstruction management in one place. The portal also uses key enablers like eIdentification andeSignature. It connects more than 150 public institutions and the usage of the portal is growingsteadily each year.
  • 46. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provision78%of European Governmentsprovide online discussionfora and social mediapages on studying25%of students were satisfiedwhen participating inonline consultation orinteractive discussionsabout policy issuesKeeping up with the newgeneration: Social Media andOnline discussion foraThe results of the user survey showthat 95% of students use socialmedia. This is considerably morethan other groups of citizens.Students are used to getting theirinformation online, networkingonline and expressing their opiniononline. To engage students,Governments should use thechannels they use and provide themwith the opportunity to express theiropinion and to network online.Seventy-eight percent of EuropeanGovernments provide onlinediscussion fora and social mediapages on studying. This is the highestavailability rate for social media of alllife events investigated. More thanhalf of Governments provide onlinefeedback mechanisms. However,only 25% of students were trulysatisfied when participating inonline consultations on policy issuesorganised by local, regional, nationalor European Government (forexample: via polls or panels) or ininteractive discussions about local,regional, national or Europeanpolicy issues (for example: via onlinediscussion fora). Clearly, public socialmedia pages do not yet live up tostudents’ expectations – especiallywhen the expectations are as highas they are with students who areintensive users of social media. Theuser survey reveals that ‘enrolling inuniversity and / or applying for astudent grant’ is with 60% averageuse one of the most used servicesonline. Though satisfaction is aboveaverage (6.9), the eChannelpreference dropped slightly afterusing the online service (to 56%).This could be interpreted as awarning for Governments. Banksknow that people are very likely tostay loyal for life to the bank withwhich they open their first accountand hence put effort into gainingnew prospects among students bysponsoring student events anduniversity life activities. Similarthinking should make Governmentsaware that if they want to increasetake up in the future, and keepstudents online in their futurecapacities as employee,entrepreneur or carer, Governmentsshould start convincing them in theirfirst encounter with Government touse the online channel in doing so.Countries should analyse theinsights of the user survey in-depthand use a mystery shoppingapproach to define for each relevanttarget group a strategic, custom-made approach.
  • 47. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionExample of good practice: Germany’s approach to enrolling in highereducation (at the University of Applied Sciences Harz)Applying (enrolling) for specific services at theUniversity of Applied Sciences Harz (Hochschule Harz)in GermanyThe standard procedure for enrolling students in auniversity or another institution of higher education inGermany requires personal authentication that is to alarge extent paper-based. To provide a procedure that isfully available online, the University of Applied SciencesHarz is installing an application with the new Germanelectronic Identity Card. The application with the newGerman electronic Identity Card offers students thepossibility of applying or registering for specific servicesoffered by the University such as registration forworking in a laboratory. Further applications with thenew German electronic Identity Card are alreadyplanned by the University in the fields of administration,mobility, geographic services and tourism.The University of Applied Sciences Harz is the firstGerman university to use the online function of the newGerman electronic Identity Card for contact with itsstudents. Previously, lecturers handled registration andadministration of the students using paper-based listswith personal data and signatures; the data was savedelectronically conducted later based on thematriculation numbers. This was very time- and effort-consuming especially in terms of satisfying dataprotection recommendations.Thanks to this new procedure, which was developed inthe Innovation Laboratory SecInfPro-Geo at theUniversity of Applied Sciences Harz, students use thenew German electronic Identity Card and registerdirectly by means of an ID application. The subsequentdata transfer to the examination authority is carried outonline on this basis – and is fully electronic andcompliant with the data protection laws and securedwith pseudonyms, encryptions and signatures inaccordance with eGovernment standards.
  • 48. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provision“The EU aims to fast-track the roll out ofdigital services (especiallytheir cross borderinteroperability)”and underlines thateGovernment can reducethe costsof administrationby 15-20 %313.5 Cross-border mobilityWhy mobility is importantFor several years now, cross-bordermobility has been a leitmotiv inopening up services of generalinterest. The Commission’s AnnualGrowth Survey 2013Communication32 aims to lay “thefoundation for return to growth andjob creation.” Among a series ofinitiatives, the document refers to“cross-border labour mobility” andmore particularly to “cross-borderinteroperability of online services.”which are described as “particularlyimportant.”In December 2010, mobility in theSingle Market was defined as one ofthe four focus areas of theEuropean eGovernment Action Plan2011-201533.This priority has beenreiterated in the ‘Digital ‘to-do’ list:new digital priorities for 2013-2014’as part of the “seven new prioritiesfor the digital economy andsociety.34The business case for movingforward with cross-border serviceswas demonstrated by the study onthe needs and demands for cross-border services, costs benefits andbarriers analysis35. The studyestimated that there wereapproximately 1,790,000immigrants and commutersbetween EU Member States in2009. It predicted that this figurewould by more than 22% by 2020.In terms of business mobility,140,000 branches and immigrantbusiness start-ups were recordedbetween EU Member States.Where does the EU-27+ stand whenit comes to setting up cross-borderservices? As more and morereferences are made to mobility, abetter understanding of the state ofthe art seems urgent in defining abaseline for comparison andgrowth.31 Op.Cit32 European Commission. Annual Growth Survey 2013, COM(2012) 750 final Brussels, 28.11.2012,33 European Commission (2010). The European eGovernment Action Plan 2011-2015 - Harnessing ICT to promote smart,sustainable & innovative Government. COM(2010) 74334 European Commission. Digital "to-do" list: new digital priorities for 2013-2014, IP/12/1389 Brussels, 18 December 201235 Inventory of cross-border eGovernment services & Existing and future needs and demand for cross-border eGovernmentservices (SMART2011/0074) http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/newsroom/cf/dae/itemdetail.cfm?item_id=9369
  • 49. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionPage 49 of 74Student and Business Mobilityacross Europe: is the glasshalf full or half empty?The results of this year’smeasurement clearly show that theEU-27+ are not there yet when itcomes to cross-border transactionalonline services. The results showthat initial steps have been taken interms of online availability of cross-border services, i.e. figures of 42%on average for studying in the EU-27+ and 55% for starting up abusiness. Despite the promisingnature of these figures, EU countriesare still far behind when comparingaverages for national serviceprovision and cross-borderavailability of services.Even provision of information is seenas a challenge. The citizen mobilityavailability score falls far below thefull informational phase marked bythe threshold of 50%. Only 9countries complete theinformational phase related to thelife event “Studying” and 17countries when it comes to businessmobility.Consequently, the cross-bordertransactional stages of the servicesalso experience drawbacks. For thelife event ‘Studying’, only nine EU-27+ countries have reached thetransactional phase, five of whichhave barely passed the toll-gate of50% online availability. Looking moreclosely at the assessment of thecountries scoring above 50%, threeof these are ranked below averagewhen it comes to the EU-27+average for usability, ease of use andspeed. Broadening the picture andtaking into consideration the 16countries ranking above the EU-27+availability average, almost half ofthe countries score below averageon at least one indicator.However, business services enjoygreater maturity levels than citizenservices. Thanks to a total of 17countries scoring above average interms of availability as well as havingreached the transactional stage ofbringing the service online, businessservices could be seen as paving theway for cross-border services ingeneral. Twelve countries have ausability indicator of 100%, 20 areabove the EU-27+ average of 63%;16 countries rank above the ease ofuse average of 50% and finally 13countries have a speed of use abovethe average of 46%.What does this mean? The relativenature of the performance ofcountries in business mobilityindicates that similar usabilitychallenges are being faced by citizenservices. Countries scoring higher incitizen mobility are not necessarilythose scoring higher in businessmobility. Whereas the EU-27+average scores indicate a clearprioritisation of business services,again, there is a nuance, as 9countries have followed the oppositeapproach in favouring citizenservices. Of the 16 countries scoringabove average in either category,only eight score above average inboth categories. The discrepancy isfurther underlined whenunderstanding that only fourcountries’ scores for both businessand citizen mobility remain within+/- 5 percentage points of eachother. When it comes to thechallenges faced by both categoriesof service, business services are lesseasy to use (50% compared to 56%for citizens) and less swift (46%compared to 50% for citizens). Thisfinding is similar to that for nationalservice provision, where the citizenlife events achieve higher rates for‘ease of use’ and ‘speed of use’ thanthe business life event.
  • 50. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionMoving forward withcross-border servicesimplies moving towardmore mature and usableservices on the one handand raising awarenessaround the existence ofthese servicesFigure 3.14: Indicators for cross-border assessment of ‘business start-up’ and‘studying’ (%)As indicated in the report from DGEmployment and Social Affairs, thereis an overall lack of awareness interms of rights and practicalitieswhen choosing mobility36. The FinalReport of the study on needs anddemands for cross-border servicesmakes recommendations in terms ofthe set-up of portals combiningdifferent services, which couldsimplify both access to informationand use of services. Building onthese recommendations, bringingtogether basic and extended servicescould drive usage and moreimportantly usability.3.6 Transparency as anindicator for newattitudes towardschange?The European Commission andMember States have jointlydescribed the future Governmentthey aim for as ‘open, flexible andcollaborative in their relations withcitizens and businesses’.Transparency is one element thatcontributes to these characteristics.Transparency builds trust andimproves accountability. It reflectsthe attitude of a publicadministration more than otherelements in the Action Plan do. If theCommission and Member States areworking towards a ‘new generationof eGovernment services’, this canonly be achieved when Governmentsopen up as well and operate in waysthat are fully transparent to theoutside world. Changes in attitudedo not come overnight, but needtime, patience and continuousmonitoring.36 Association of European Border Regions for DG Employment and Social Affairs. Information services for cross-border workers inEuropean border regions, October 2012 ““Accordingly, the number of cross-border workers could most probably be higher, ifpotential cross-border workers could receive better information about possible risks and particularities of working in anothercountry”55685045 020406080100OnlineavailabilityUsabilityEase ofuseSpeed ofuseBUSINESSMOBILITY42575650 020406080100OnlineavailabilityUsabilityEase ofuseSpeed ofuseCITIZEN MOBILITY
  • 51. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionICT can play an importantrole in improvingtransparency, not only byenabling informationprovision but alsoopening up new ways ofinteraction (participation,collaboration) andenabling citizens andbusiness to take control oftheir personal data)What has been measured inthis benchmark?The eGovernment Action Plan setthree goals:Establish common voluntarytransparency targets and exchangeof available experiencesOnline access to information onGovernment laws and regulations,policies and financeInformation and electronic accesson personal data held by MemberStates.Building on these goals, theeGovernment benchmark hasmeasured three indicators throughlife event mystery shopping:Transparency of publicorganisations means thatGovernments provide citizens withinsight into finance, regulations,laws, organisational structure andresponsibilities, and decision-makingprocesses. That enables citizens toanticipate and respond toGovernment decisions that affectthem and they are able to holdpolicy makers responsible for theirdecisions and performance. Itincreases policy makers’accountability and fiscalresponsibility, and decreases the riskof fraud and corruption.Transparency of public organisationsrequires policymakers to have a true‘transparent’ mindset and to informcitizens proactively of their activitiesand to encourage them to providefeedback, make complaints orsuggestions with regard to theirorganisation and policy actions. Itcan be driven by specific laws or actsthat grant citizens the right to accessinformation and / or by ‘transparent-by default’ policies.Transparency of service deliveryspecifically focuses on how publicadministrations give citizens insightin administrative processes, i.e. fromthe citizen’s request for a serviceuntil service provision. Providingcitizens with transparency on howthe service will be delivered meansthey can set expectations on time,process and delivery. By providingthem with insight into serviceperformance, they are given a voiceto make suggestions to improveexisting or implement newGovernment services.Transparency of personal datameans that Governments proactivelyinform citizens on how theirpersonal data is being processed,when and by whom and providecitizens with easy, electronic accessto their personal data. It increasesthe legitimacy and security of dataprocessing and it improves thequality and accuracy of the personaldata kept. This in turn increasescitizens’ trust in Government. Thetransparency of personal data islargely driven by legislation. Mostnational Governments havelegislation on how to deal withpersonal data in place and there hasbeen an EU Directive since 1995 (theEuropean Data ProtectionDirective95/46/EC37).37 http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:31995L0046:en:HTML
  • 52. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionOnly 25% of respondentsin the user surveyindicated they weresatisfied when consultingpolicy documents ordecisions on local,regional, national orEuropean GovernmentwebsitesBuilding trust?Although most Governments inEurope have transparency targets,legislation and / or policies in place,the level of transparency isperceived to be insufficient byEuropean citizens. According toTransparency International’s GlobalCorruption Barometer for 2010-2011, a very large majority ofEuropean citizens argued thattransparency had decreased in theircountry over the past three years38.The User Survey in this benchmarkalso provides an idea of usersatisfaction with transparency. Only25% of respondents in the usersurvey indicated that they weresatisfied when consulting policydocuments or decisions on local,regional, national or EuropeanGovernment websites.Another example is the use ofdiscussion fora or social media onGovernment websites. Thesefeatures are available in 78% ofwebsites measured in the mysteryshopping life events. However, only26% of respondents were satisfiedwith participating in interactivediscussions about policy issues viachannels such as online discussionfora.These examples indicate thatGovernments have taken the firststeps to be more transparent andopen, but need to make furtherprogress in meeting citizen’sexpectations and trusting citizenswhen involving them in the process.Stronger governance is neededto grow towards maturetransparency standardsResults from the measurementperformed in the three domains(business start-up, losing and findinga job and studying) show a widevariety between and withincountries. There is a range betweenthe top performers and those whoare lagging behind of 83 percentagepoints (with the EU average at 50%).The European averages for the threecomponents are shown in graph3.13. Transparency of publicorganisations averages 66%,whereas transparency of servicedelivery (41%) and transparency ofpersonal data (43%) are lessdeveloped. Looking at individualcountries, there are variations inscores across the three componentsassessed. Thus, although manyinitiatives are being deployed inrelation to various aspects oftransparency, overall maturity is notyet sufficient. Central governance,and at European level, could help inmaking progress towards maturetransparency standards across allaspects and contribute to thechanging mindsets.38 Transparency International (2011), Global Corruption Barometer 2010-2011, retrieved from:http://archive.transparency.org/policy_research/surveys_indices/gcb
  • 53. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportLife-Event Service provisionFigure 3.15: Indicators forTransparent Government (EU-27+)Only a quarter toa third of countriesshare the insights fromperformance measure-ments online – ifcountries are monitoringtheir performance /achieved satisfactionat all.From passively informing toproactively collaboratingWhat is most striking is that aspectsof transparency of publicorganisations that involve theprovision of information aboutpublic organisations and theirmissions, structures and finances,are in general pretty availableonline:98% of Governments provideinformation on their mission andresponsibilities64% of Governments providefinancial information (annualaccounts, budgets, investments)93% of Government websitesprovides information on how theuser can ask for additionalinformation.However, when looking at aspectsthat empower or motivate citizens toact, European Governments seem tobe more cautious. For instance, only31% of public administrationsprovide information for citizens onhow to participate in the policymaking process. The figures aresimilar scores for access tocomplaints procedures: in only 30%of the countries, citizens andbusinesses can find clear informationabout procedures for complainingonline about their personal data.Another area where publicadministrations could improve is theonline publication of performancemeasurements (such as externalreviews, user satisfaction surveys).ICT holds the potential tofurther improveICT enables transparency andprovides the means forGovernments to further open up,involve citizens in policymaking, andprovide access to and control overtheir own data. From themeasurement it appears that specialfacilities online, where citizens canaccess and/or modify their data arerare. In only 40% of countries areEuropean citizens able to modifypersonal data the Governmentregisters or notify theirGovernments of required changesthrough a special online facility.Some countries have developed‘MyPages’ (‘MyGov’) where, aftersecure authentication, citizens canview personal data the Governmentholds. The Dutch ‘MijnOverheid.nl’allows citizens to view data on theiraddress, social security, tax, property(land register) and is connectingother registers to further informcitizens about the informationGovernments store.Thus, European countries have takenthe first steps towards ‘open, flexibleand collaborative’ government, butfurther improvement is required toachieve these goals, especially interms of involving citizens andincreasing their satisfaction.Transparency is more than justproviding general information aboutgovernment, it should really reachout to citizens and provide themwith the means to control their owndata as well as collaborating withand holding Governmentsaccountable for their performances.Transparency can build trust, whichis of eminent importance and willalso help increase the use ofeGovernment services as such.416643020406080100Service deliveryPublicorganisationsPresonal dataTRANSPARENTGOVERNMENTPersonal data
  • 54. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportKey EnablersPage 54 of 744 Key Enablers4.1 ContextWithout competent underpinningtechnical foundations there is a limitto the ability of any public agency, ormore importantly group of agencies,to provide quality public services.Looking ‘behind the web front end’at what technical building blocks arein place, and what strategy is takento deliver ICT enabled services,provides clarity on how well acountry (and how well Europe on atrans / pan-EU basis) delivers ajoined up seamless customerexperience.Key enablers can (i) addresschallenges of interoperability andstandardisation to improve services,(ii) decrease overall IT developmentand maintenance costs and (iii)break down barriers betweenorganisations as well as betweencountries.As service provisioning increasinglytranscends organisation as well ascountry boundaries, concerns suchas trust and security also must beaddressed at these levels. So thisagenda fully warrants a realcollaboration between business andICT owners, across agency andacross Europe.Member States and the EuropeanCommission have recognised theimportance of key enablers as acrucial element to realise andimprove online public services.The eGovernment Action Plan 2011-1539, identified actions to stimulateimplementation and use of keyenablers. It focuses on enablers forthe provisioning of cross-borderpublic services (priority 4.2 containsthree actions related to e-Signaturesand e-ID).Several of the EU initiatives aroundkey enablers, including Large ScalePilots (LSPs), focus on realising thenecessary interoperability for cross-border public services. This focusdoes not however preclude themhaving benefits for purely nationalservices. Quite the contrary,European initiatives have shown tohave stimulating effects on thedevelopment and deployment ofnational key enablers, for example inthe case of eIdentity.The Connecting Europe Facility (CEF)could become a new investmentinstrument proposed by theEuropean Commission, which alsocreates a digital infrastructure forpublic services. Public service digitalnetworks are key to ensuring socialand economic cohesion. This willpave the way for the deployment ofinteroperable, digital public servicesacross Europe, and supportinnovation and competitiveness –thus increasing chances to reach the2020 targets.4.2 Introduction to themeasurementIn this benchmark, we will lookspecifically at the five key back officeenablers (depicted in the followinggraphic):Electronic identificationElectronic documentsAuthentic sourcesElectronic SafeSingle Sign OnThe measurement assesses theavailability of these enablers withinthe services that compose each lifeevent process model. Themeasurement will be continued in2013, when four new life events willbe the objective of the research.39 http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2010:0743:FIN:EN:pdf
  • 55. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportKey EnablersPage 55 of 74Figure 4.1: Key Findings Key Enablers
  • 56. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportKey EnablersIn just over half the threelife-event cases were allfive key enablers actuallyin use4.3 Findings: A gap to fulfilintentionsAggregated resultsThe 2012 benchmark looked at theactual usage of the five key enablersacross three life events. The resultsshow that on average, for all keyenablers and all three life eventscombined, in only a little more thanhalf of the cases (54%) all enablerswere used.Looking at the results per life eventdoes however show an increasedusage of the enablers in favour ofthe business life event: 58%,whereas for the studying life eventthis was 49%. The employment lifeevent was average of 55%.The 2010 Benchmark included anoverview of key horizontal enablers,based on the results of a self-assessment survey filled in by all thecountries measured. This assessmentlooked at nine key enablers, andfocused on whether they wereavailable (not necessarily used).The current benchmark looks at fivekey enablers, focusing on those thatcan be used by a mystery shopper,taking an ‘outside-in’ perspective.In 2010, three-quarters of countriesreported at least six out of the nineenablers in place, with somecountries having the entire set ofenablers available – at a generic level(i.e. not related to a specific serviceor life event).There is a gap between the caseswhere a particular key enabler couldbe used versus where it actually isused, as demonstrated by the graphbelow.What is shown here for three keyenablers is that given an existingrequirement, there is a gap of onaverage 24% of lost opportunity touse a specific key enabler for the lifeevents studied.For most cases (58%) whereauthentication was required and aneID functionality was available, itwas also possible to authenticateFigure 4.2: Integration of Key Enablers (eID, eDocuments, Authentic Sources) in life events (EU-27+)0% 50% 100%StudyingBusinessStart-UpsLosingandFinding a JobOveralleIDOnlineauthentication notpossible0% 50% 100%eDocumentsNoauthenticated eDocumentcouldbe sent/received0% 50% 100%Authentic sourcesNo(personal) informationprefilled
  • 57. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportKey EnablersPage 57 of 74using a national eID. For the businesslife event this rises to 80%. STORK,the Large Scale Pilot on eID, maywell have gone some way to help inthis regard.The least available key enabler waseSAFE.The enabler with the highestavailability was Single Sign On (SSO).Life-Event specific resultsLooking in depth into the results perlife event, at a service level, thefollowing observations can be made:Business life event: two clustersof services (‘administrativerequirements’ and ‘proofs ofqualification’) show a relativelylow online services availability.However, as the services in theseclusters involve requirementsthat are well known togovernment (and the variouspublic agencies involved), such as‘certificates of no outstandingtaxes’ or ‘proof of good conduct’,there is considerable scope forrapid improvement to be madeby opening up registers withingovernment and delivering theserequirements automatically –without having to burden theentrepreneur on this. Authenticsources are key to improve thevalue chain for the entrepreneur.Belgium is a good example of acountry that has automatedmany services in the back officeand in doing so reducing theburden on businesses.Losing and finding a job:although countries choosedifferent strategies to reduceunemployment, services around‘losing a job’ are less online thanservices related to ‘finding a job’.The extent to which key enablersare integrated show a similardevelopment. Interestingly, mostcountries re-use known dataabout unemployed to onlineenable services such as ‘ensuringcontinuity of medical insurance’and ‘ensuring continuity ofpension payments’. Pursuing adigital approach to this life eventin the Netherlands has shownthat significant cost reductionscan be achieved (€300+ million).Studying: compared to the othertwo life events, the integrationof key enablers in the servicedelivery chain is lower. This isbecause services in this life eventare either delivered by centralgovernment or by universitiesthemselves. Universitiesgenerally provide personal pagesto students, accessible online butthrough specific identifiers. Themost important aspect of this lifeevent however concerns the useof eDocuments, also from across-border perspective. Inmost cases students still have toprovide certified copies ofdiplomas, or need recognition oftheir diploma when enrollingabroad. eDocuments could helpto reduce the burden forstudents, and also lighten theworkload in back offices.The eSafe functionality is also leastpresent in the Studying life event. Asstudents are only just starting theirrelation with governments andpublic services, it could beconsidered a perfect target group tomake acquainted with an eSafefunctionality and – as early adapters– re-use it for other purposes duringtheir next (post study) life phases asemployee, entrepreneur, family(wo)men and so on.When comparing the data about keyenabler availability as assessedthrough mystery shopping on theone hand and looking at the resultsfrom the user survey on the otherhand, some interesting observationscan be made regarding an apparent(lack of) consistency between thetwo. As an example, 11% of theusers indicated a lack of trust as abarrier for usage in the user survey.Nevertheless, the use ofauthentication enablers such as eIDand SSO are relatively high, whichshould stimulate the perception ofsecurity and trust. On the otherhand, regarding the perceivedbenefits of online public services,80% of the user survey respondentsindicated they considered timesavings as most important whenusing eGovernment services, whichcan be enabled through the use ofauthentic sources and informationpublic authorities already holdautomatically.
  • 58. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportKey EnablersWhen looking at theintegration of keyenablers across thedifferent life events,there appears to beuntapped potential toimprove matters, both interms of quality of serviceas well as efficiency ofservice deliveryDoes integration & auto-mation lead to Satisfaction?Figure 4.3 below maps countries onthree dimensions to assess therelationship between integration ofkey enablers in the chain, andautomation of services.The horizontal axis shows thepercentage of automated services ina country. This indicates the extent towhich countries succeed to share andre-use data and align services to oneanother across government domains.The vertical axis shows theintegration of key enablers in thethree life event service chains.Both data combined demonstrateshow countries are on the journeyfrom working in government silo’stowards achieving a form of ‘joinedup government’, whereby variouspublic administrations in onecountry collaborate to deliverservices as smooth as possible to thecitizen or business involved. This canbe done through taking careof some requirements in the backoffice and hence diminishingburdens, aligning regulations, and /or through providing services asmuch online as possible andconsequently reducing burdens.The third dimension shown concernsthe general user satisfaction witheGovernment services in a country(this is represented by the size of theballs). Although countries withhigher integration of key enablersgenerally speaking show higher usersatisfaction, this is not always thecase, which could mean thatgovernments need to improve eitherthe user friendliness of theseenablers or a lack of trust to use ITenablers withholds reaching the fullpotential.Concluding, when looking at theintegration of key enablers acrossthe different life events, thereappears to be untapped potential toimprove matters, both in terms ofquality of service as well as efficiencyof service delivery.Example of good practice: Estonia’s portal gatewayEstonia has developed a portal gateway that integrates various key enablers and improvescustomer experience. The Estonian state portal www.eesti.ee is a secure Internet environmentthrough which Estonian residents can easily access the state’s (more than 100) e-services andinformation. Users can log in using ID-cards and enter a personal, user-based environment. Itallows to create documents, digitally sign these and send to other for signature. The servicesprovided through the portal withdraw information from various databases and registries,enabling pre-filling of information and consequently reducing the burden for its users.The aim of the portal is to have citizens, business, public administrations and society benefit.
  • 59. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportKey EnablersPage 59 of 74Figure 4.3: Assessment of integration of key enablers, automated services and user satisfactionATBEBGCHCYCZDEDKEEELESEU27+FIFRHRHUIEISITLTLULVMTNLNOPLPTROSESISKTRUK01020304050607080901001100 5 10 15 20 25 30 35% of automatedservices (Average 3 LEs)%keyenablersintegration(Average3LEs)User satisfactionSilo approachJoined upgovernment
  • 60. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 60 of 745 Towards a newgeneration ofeGovernmentservicesThis section provides: (i) aconsolidated summary of theeGovernment benchmark (ii) the keyfindings (iii) implications foreGovernment policy, strategy, andprogrammes (iv) recommendationsfor Member States, and (v)considerations for the EuropeanCommission.5.1 Objective of theeGovernment surveyThe context is changing fast. Toenable European citizens,businesses and governments to fullybenefit from the digital revolutionand to address current societal andeconomic challenges, governmentshave to actively anticipate andexploit technological developments.ICT impacts the way organisationswork and offers enormous potentialfor Government and its users. Incurrent times of austerity andbudget deficits, public organisationscan use ICT to realise innovativeservices for citizens and businesses,whilst also increasing efficiency andminimising costs. An efficient SingleMarket can also stimulate growth.The EU Macroeconomic report forthe Annual Growth Survey40 urgescountries to improve the businessenvironment by seeking ways toincrease public sector efficiency.eGovernment is mentioned as asolution for both fiscal consolidationand for improving competitivenessand growth prospects. Althoughstructural improvements arerequired, the Commission estimates,for example, that the currentimplementation of the ServicesDirective can add 0.8% to EU GDPwhich can be increased by a further0.4% - 1.8% depending on theambitions countries display whenimplementing.Users expect simple, easilyaccessible and swift services,especially in a society where thesense of immediacy has become acommon place habit thanks to theuse of ICT. Technologicaldevelopments have opened up newopportunities, and have raisedexpectations. We expect publicservices to: help unemployed getback into work quickly, facilitate andstimulate entrepreneurs, enablestudents to grow through foreignexperiences and so on. For suchservices, the emphasis on user needsis a significant shift in eGovernmentthinking.This assessment set out to measurethe extent to which governmentsuse modern technology toimprove public service provision andrealising cheaper, better and fasterservices. We did so through (i) ademand-side citizen survey (ii)assessing services through three life-events (iii) assessing use of commoncross-cutting key IT enablers.5.2 Key FindingsThree principal messagesemerge:1. The shift in eGovernmentthinking towards designingservices around user needs isnot yet fully embraced inEurope. A clear gap insatisfaction scores reveals thatcitizens remain critical aboutpublic services when comparingtheir experience to commercialsector services. Results also showthat satisfaction has droppedover the years, highlighting theincreasing challenge to meetever-growing expectations,particularly of what moderntechnologies can do. An in-depthreview of three life events showsthat, on average in Europe, basicservice provision at the heart ofthese events is fairly mature;however improvements are stillpossible in terms of optimisingthe overall customer journey.40 http://ec.europa.eu/europe2020/pdf/ags2013_mer_en.pdf
  • 61. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 61 of 74For instance by using keyenablers to increase number ofautomatically delivered servicesand / or improve onlineavailability of services. This isparticularly true for establishingonline service provision acrossborders to realise a digital singlemarket. Legislation andregulation needs to be aligned totechnological developments.2. Governments are not fullyreaping the possible benefits ofeGovernment. Currently,eGovernment use is at 46% andalthough more citizens haveindicated to prefer the eChannelnext time they come into contactwith government (50%), we seeslow progress in usage in contrastwith the number of services thatare made available fully online.This causes the requiredinvestments in ICT for publicservice provision to be inefficient.The Danish government recentlycalculated the transaction costsfor the various channels theyprovided, which shows that thetelephone channel is twice asexpensive as the online channeland face-to-face service provisioneven three-and-a-half times moreexpensive. These figures give anindication of potential costsavings for governments. Severalother studies indicate an evenwider cost ratio.Figure 5.1: Potential for cost savings in Denmark41The Study on the Needs andDemands for Cross-borderservices quoted previously hasassessed the cost of not bringingservices online and estimatedthe potential for administrativeburden reduction for the endusers worth €180 million perannum for the six servicesassessed in depth. This begs thequestion of how effectivelyEuropean countries are atgetting citizens to use onlineservices.3. Transformation is needed torealise a new generation ofeGovernment servicesPublic services are still designedtoo much through the eyes ofthe provider (governments); notthrough the eyes of the user(citizens and businesses). This is‘inside-out’ thinking. Motives toadopt new ways of designingand delivery services areevident: economic recovery,severe budget constraints,customer expectations. Thisimplies new ways of working forpublic administrations –fundamental change, notincremental – an ‘outside-in’approach. A new perspective; anew paradigm; likely therefore, atransformational shift. Publicadministrations mustcontinuously adapt to a fastchanging world and adopt a pro-active form of service delivery.So, agile and fully interoperableorganisations and systems areneeded.5.3 Implications foreGovernment Policies,Strategies, &ProgrammesResults show that there isconsiderable potential for countriesto increase take-up of eGovernmentservices and reduce costs. The onlinechannel is cheaper and often themost suitable. The question is how.When do investments in ICT becomeworthwhile? What are the minimumtechnical foundations to enableprogress? How can legislation andregulation accelerate (or hinder)progress? We have made a numberof observations that may haveimplications on eGovernment policy,strategies, or programmes.41 Source: Agency for Digitisation, Ministry of Finance, Denmark, 2012ChanneleServices/self-servicesTelephonecalls E-mailsReceivedletters (paper)Personal services(face2face)Cost pertransaction (EUR)4.2 7.8 11.0 11.7 14.0
  • 62. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 62 of 74Observation 1: Countries takedifferent routes to increase take-upof eGovernment servicesCountries develop their strategies onspecific cultural / geographical /historical differences. Digitallyadvanced countries are moretempted to make eServicesmandatory, and or seek tounderstand how to changebehaviours through economic orother incentives. Others seek toprovide very mature services toconvince citizens and businesses touse eGovernment services. Somecountries focus on the back office toincrease the automation of services.A few operate in specific cultural orhistorical contexts and focus onbuilding trust, thus tend to take onestep at the time. ‘All roads lead toRome’ however; some just quickerthan others. It is important to bear inmind the targets that EU MemberStates have agreed upon. For some,the agreed targets may requirecountries to structurally change theirefforts (policy, strategy, andprogrammes) to deliver ‘cheaper,better, faster’ services.Observation 2: There are mixedresults regarding return oninvestmentsData on ICT expenditure (aspresented in below graph) includesprivate and public expenditure. Atthe moment, there is no source forpublic expenditure data, which isalso recognised by other institutions.However, addressing return oninvestments and using suitable datato build business cases would be animportant step forward and is worthbeing addressed. We recognize thatprivate sector and citizens will bespending money on technology forconnection with public institutions.It could be a fair indication, asperhaps overall spending for privateand public expenditure couldprovide a proxy for publicexpenditure.When looking at the correlationprovided, taking into accountmentioned caveats, countries withthe largest ICT investment tend toachieve the highest number ofeGovernment users. However forcountries with small to medium ICTexpenditure the results are diffuse.Figure 5.2 shows the correlationbetween ICT expenditure and onlineavailability of services for the threelife events assessed.The figure clearly shows that thepercentage of eGovernment users(size of the balls, indicated by thecitizen survey) is larger towards theright hand side of the picture, whichrepresents high online availability.Thus higher availability doescorrelate to more users.It also reveals that some countriescan achieve higher take-up and / oronline availability with similarbudgets. Austria, Portugal and Italyfor example have both achievedhigh online availability (for the threelife-events) with modest budgets.(These observations will be validatedfurther after the next measurementwhen four additional life events willbe assessed and usage andavailability can be evaluated withmore certainty).Discounting those countries withlarge ICT budgets and high eServicetake-up (UK, Finland, Sweden,Denmark); the remaining countriespresent a mixed view. Somecountries with smaller budgets, suchas the Baltic States (Estonia,Lithuania and Latvia), Norway andLuxembourg, can still achieve goodusage levels. It alsoreveals those countries that haveinvested more heavily and have notyet seen sound return oninvestment.Observation 3: The importance ofsound technical foundations forimprovementDifferent approaches to increasetake-up first depend on the ITbaseline of countries. Countriesshould first develop a common ITinfrastructure from where onlineservice provision can be developed.Specific enablers such as nationaleID’s can accelerate online serviceprovision.
  • 63. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 63 of 74Lithuania for instance has shownthat by realising an interoperabilityplatform for state informationresources, that ensures dataexchange between the major publiccitizens. This has increased take-upof eGovernment services signify-cantly42. This approach focuses onboth the back and front office. dataregisters and information systems,many e-services could bestreamlined and made available in auser friendly one-stop-shop portalto citizens.Estonia has shown similar progressin recent years and shows to be ableto manage progress with relativelysmall budgets.The internet penetration,broadband coverage and the extentto which citizens are accustomed touse the internet of course plays avery important role as is madeexplicit in the Digital Agenda targets.Figure 5.2: Online availability of services (average 3 life events) vs. ICT expenditure as percentage of GDP43, withthe size of countries represented by percentage of eGovernment users4442 Increase of 16% in 3 years according to Lithuanian statistics.43 Eurostat 2010 - http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/portal/page/portal/information_society/data/database. Numbers unknownfor countries depicted at the bottom: Croatia (HR), Switzerland (CH), Cyprus (CY), Iceland (IS), Norway (NO), Turkey (TR) andMalta (MT).44 ICT expenditue for Malta is is 6.24% (2009) as provided by their statistical office. It concerns value added at factor cost in the ICTsector (source: SBS, variable V12150), Definition of the ICT sector is based on NACE Rev. 2 classification as follows: ICT total, ICTmanufacturing, ICT ServicesATBEBGHR CYCZDKEEEU27+FIFRDEELHUISIEITLVLTLUMTNLNOPLPTROSKSIESSECH TRUK01234540 50 60 70 80 90 100ICTexpenditure(%ofGDP)Online availability of services in 3 LEsThe size of ballons corresponds to the % eGov usersICT expenditure unknown
  • 64. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 64 of 74Observation 4: Dealing withdecentralisation is a challenge, butalso offers opportunityCountries in Europe arecharacterised by differentconstitutional settings. The 2009survey indicated that size andconstruct were not a determinant ofeGov performance; however theyare central to strategy and approach.The Baltic States manage toovercome boundaries betweenpublic administrations and hencerealise quick progress. Germany andSwitzerland are federal states, anddepend largely on democraticmechanisms to convince theBundesländer and Cantons to takeparticular steps. Growth is then bydefinition more incremental as itlacks stronger governance. Diligentcoordination of eGovernmentactivities can still achieve progress.In Germany, the implementation ofthe new article 91c of the GermanConstitution (Grundgesetz)established a new IT PlanningCouncil in 2010. The new bodyconsists of representatives offederal, state and local level togovern important cross-cutting ITissues such as secure ITinfrastructure and standardisation.For Germany, trust is the context inwhich citizens are approached andstimulated to use eGovernmentservices, which implies a thoroughapproach when developing onlinepublic services, possibly causingdesired effects to come to fruitionon the longer term.Belgium is an interesting example. Itis a federal state, with a lot ofcompetencies being decentralised,and has achieved agreementbetween the federal, regional,community and local authorities tostimulate eGovernment, andprovide integrated services acrossorganisational boundaries andadministrative layers. Belgium hasprioritised back office integrationand protection of personal data.Belgium ranks first based on thethree life events, seen in terms ofnumber of services that aredelivered to a user without the userhaving to do anything (‘automatic’).Decentralisation can be a challenge,but can be turned to achievepositive effects. Estonia has provedthis true. The e-Estonia digitalsociety is made possible largely dueto its infrastructure. Instead ofdeveloping a single, all-encompassing central system,Estonia created an open,decentralized system that linkstogether various services anddatabases. The flexibility providedby this open set-up has allowed newcomponents of the digital society tobe developed and added throughthe years. Its that power to expandthat has allowed Estonia to growinto one of Europe’s success storiesof the last decade.Observation 5: Digital by default, orby detour? Using legislation asgame changer?Denmark has already achieved mostof the Digital Agenda targets andhas set ambitious goals, whereby amajority of services will be mademandatory online in 2015. Thespecific context in Denmark allowsgovernment to do so: internetpenetration rates are high, 89% ofthe population uses internet at leastonce a week, 91% of companieshave interacted online with publicauthorities. The Danish governmentuses legislation as a ‘game changer’to support a transition toward bettersolutions and higher volumesthrough digital channels. By makingthe online channel mandatory, thehigher volumes justify investment inbetter user friendly solutions. Onlineself-service becomes the norm, thusreducing questions, errors, andcomplaints and really fulfilling thepotential of the online channel –with better return of investment.This can only be achieved with adeep knowledge of the target group,and after thorough assessment anduser tests of solutions. Digitalexclusion cannot be neglected: asafety net must remain for the 10%that really don’t manage or are notable to use the online channel.Typically, this can be accommodatedby the savings realised in cuttingunnecessary face-to-face contact.The Netherlands and the UnitedKingdom are also developingapproaches to tighten requirementsfor online services, and usingbehavioural economics to incentivisetake-up. It might not be acoincidence that these countriesstand out in below figure 5.3. In anycase, this figure shows thecorrelation between the number ofpeople that came into contact withgovernment during the past year andthe people using the online channelfor that contact. It shows that in theUnited Kingdom, the Netherlands,Denmark and directly behind thesethree, the other Scandinaviancountries (Sweden, Norway,Finland), less citizens need to contactGovernment – but when citizens do,they prefer the online channel.
  • 65. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 65 of 74An elaborate explanation of theDanish approach can be found in theBackground report45. Mandatoryonline services are not (at least inthe short term) a solution for manycountries and incentives are beingdeployed to increase take-upthrough different routes. In Spainfor instance public administrationsare obliged to provide new servicesonline. We have seen the successfulmixing of channels by the Germanunemployment agency being veryeffective in reducing unemployment.Malta sees similar high maturity ofonline services, mostly centralised inone-stop-shop portals. Portugal hasan advanced e-Governmentinfrastructure, providing manyservices completely online. WithBelgium and Ireland, these countriesappear to follow the set example.Figure 5.3: revealing percentage of citizens that came into contact with government (horizontal) and percentage ofcitizens that used the online channel when they came into contact with government (vertical)45 Background report, par. 3.5. Source for statistics used her: Statistics Denmark, 2012, and: Digital Agenda for Europe Scoreboard,2011 data. European CommissionATBEBGHRCYCZDKEEEU27+FIFRDEELHUISIEITLVLT LUMTNLNOPLPTROSKSIESSECHTRUK10%20%30%40%50%60%70%50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%eGovernmentUSERS(%internetpopulationthatusedtheonlinechannelforcontactwithgovernment)Government USERS (% internet population that came into contact with governmentby any channel)
  • 66. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 66 of 745.4 Considerations forMember States tofurther stimulateprogressEurope is diverse. Many differentapproaches, building from differentcultural and political settings, thoughaiming to achieve similar goals and(EU) targets: better services in amore efficient way. Respecting thesedifferences, this final section offersfour considerations to driveinnovation towards a newgeneration of eGovernment servicesand increase take-up ofeGovernment services.5.4.1 Consideration 1:Implement strategies toincrease customercentricity, improve thedesign of publicservices, and thusincrease online take-up.Government data, for example fromDenmark, the Netherlands and theUK, have shown the significant costsavings that can accrue by moving asmany users as possible to the digitalchannel. The user survey reveals thatthere is great potential amongst alarge number of users for increasingtheir usage of eGovernmentservices. The combination of thesetwo facts provides a solid businesscase for adopting strategies tosignificantly increase take-up. Eachgovernment needs to tailor suchservice design strategies to itsspecific needs however there arecommon elements to consider.A core service design tenet shouldbe ‘customer-centric by default’; inparticular a focus on simplifying lifeevent services which, from theusers’ perspective, seamlesslycombine service building blocksfrom different government entities.High levels of accessibility andusability must be prioritised,including easy navigation andsearch, which reduce the number ofsteps and makes as many of these aspossible automatic through the re-use of user data via the ‘once-only’principle. Conscious effort should beplaced on saving users time and,where appropriate, money, and thiscan be measured and the resultspublished. Much can also beachieved through offering simpleuser support, such as short ‘how-to’videos, online chat, links toadditional information like ‘what toexpect’ information and FAQs, andoffer the possibility to provideinstant feedback.Customer-centric service designshould start with gaining deepinsights into strategic customersegments, for example for studentsor older people, and also prioritiseservice personalisation as much aspossible. This can be done either bygovernments deploying user data tooffer individual and, where relevant,automatic services, as well aspermitting users to adjust or designtheir own service portfolio through‘MyPage’ type approaches (egDenmark and the Netherlands).Currently, only 11% of services arebeing delivered automatically acrossEurope, ie without the user havingto do anything. Belgium is leadingthe way in the Business life event, byproviding almost half (48%) of theservices ‘automatically’.The deployment of ‘big data’ toachieve these goals is increasinglypossible, and governments shouldalso be aware of the potential ofincorporating the users’ own data,crowdsourced data, and relevantdata from legitimate third parties. Inthe near future much of this data willbe accessible in the cloud andavailable for use by manystakeholders, not just governments,to develop and co-create their ownservices.Improved eGovernment services atlocal and city levels attract bothgreater use and increased trust, notleast because of their greaterrelevance and closeness to daily life.Most current eGovernment servicesare the so-called basic services whichenable governments to achieve theirnational statutory obligations, andmost of these are already widelyavailable to a high standard. There issignificant potential, alreadyrecognised in many localities, for alarge number of ‘extended’ value-adding services in areas like health,social care, education, employment,transport, environment, etc., whichmany users can benefit from quitefrequently. Such ‘everyday’ servicesare often location-driven and mayinvolve mobile devices (62% ofrespondents to this year’s usersurvey indicate to use mobiledevices, for young people / studentsthis is 80%). They can be tailoreddepending on where users are, whothey are, and what they are doing.
  • 67. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 67 of 74A good example of a co-createdservice is the ‘Love Clean Streets’smart phone service developed bythe London Borough of Lewisham,for citizens to report problems intheir local areas by uploading geo-coded images and data to engagewith civil servants in solvingenvironmental problems. Manyother local services are also startingto be developed by opening upgovernment data sets for use bynon-government actors whether ornot in cooperation with localauthorities. The potential here ishuge, and could even attracteGovernment ‘potential drop-outs’and ‘non-believers’. The 2013edition of the eGovernmentbenchmark will have an increasedfocus on local service delivery.Many governments could also bemore systematic and targeted inraising awareness of online services,and communication through onlinechannels. For example, when otherchannels are used the user could bereminded about the online service,and where appropriate shownhands-on how to use it. This couldalso include outreach activities,online and offline training andcompetitions, promoting the valueproposition and incentives ofeGovernment like jumping thequeue, lower costs, quicker delivery,as well as faster, cheaper, better,services. In the online environmentitself, greater promotion mightinclude clear government policystatements, publishing data onusage, encouraging feedback,publicising responses to feedbackand public consultation, as well asanalyses of feedback, usersatisfaction and of archivedmaterial.Particular targets could, of course,include the ‘potential drop-outs’ and‘non-believers’, as mentioned above.These are typically quite hard-to-reach groups but this can be done,for example, by focused out-reachefforts such as road-shows atuniversities or at old-peoples’homes. The importance of‘intermediaries’ linking to hard-to-reach groups should also beexplored, for example viacommunity centres, old-people’sorganisations, housing associations,unemployed clubs, etc. The dataalso show, however, that suchgroups are increasingly using mobileand social media and these channelsmight be prioritised even more inthis case. The ‘everyday location-driven’ services mentioned aboveare a good example, and there isalso much potential to employ boththe social media and mobilechannels more effectively, as thefollowing paragraph will point out.5.4.2 Consideration 2: Increaseuse of social media toinvolve hard-to-reachgroups (‘non believers’)The measurement shows that in thethree measured life events socialmedia forums are available on publicservices websites (78%), thoughsatisfaction when using these forumsto discuss policy issues across tiers ofgovernment is rather low (25%) –especially amongst younger usersand students. Whilst the use of bothsocial media and mobile becomesincreasingly ubiquitous for personalor commercial activities,governments have tended to beslow in exploiting these newchannels. Although there are goodreasons for this because of additionalcost and the uncertainties in legaland operational terms as to how thiscan be done, experience from anumber of European countries andelsewhere is starting to provideinteresting evidence of successfuladoption by governments. Socialmedia and mobile have potentialbeyond their traditional deploymentin eParticipation, but can be effectivein improving the business case ofservices and reaching otherwisehard-to-reach groups.The evidence to date tends to fallinto two main types across the publicsector and across the spectrum ofservice delivery.
  • 68. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 68 of 74First, shorter-term quick winexamples where business caseswere formulated and whichhave demonstrated or claimedconcrete efficiency savingsthrough encouraging users toshift to cheaper channels, withincreased staff productivity. Theexample of ‘Love Clean Streets’in Lewisham above is indicative.The initiative’s objectives are tobecome a social-networking hubby empowering residents,council staff, partners andpoliticians to engage in theirlocal environment by uploadingimages and other information viasmart phones or other devicesand to participate in debateswith peers and civil servants. Thishas provided a robust way forthe local authority to process theinformation and deal with it,while easily keeping the publicinformed of progress throughlinking with and sharing datathrough a public API. The impacthas been significant includingfinancial savings well beyondcosts, including a 70% reductionin report handling costs, 21%reduction in environmentalcasework, 30% increase inresident satisfaction and 73%reduction in graffiti.Example of good practice: ‘311 service’ San FransiscoIn an effort to improve the ‘311 service’ (i.e. non-emergency telephone information and complaint service)and simultaneously lower costs, the City of San Franciscolaunched ‘SF 311’ on Twitter in June 2009. This allowsresidents to access 311 services online in addition to bytelephone, and is now the dominant channel for thisservice. Twitter 311 offers a number of quick winadvantages over the phone service which benefit both Cityofficials and residents. For example, fewer 311 staffmembers are able to respond to more requests than theypreviously could by phone alone. When residents submitrequests through Twitter, they can also attach pictures ofproblems they need addressed, clarifying why the issuerequires resolution. After a Twitter request has beenmade, 311 staff can easily provide follow-up, allowingresidents to track resolution of the problem. Twitter andTwitter 311 have together now become an important toolfor interaction between the City and residents. Much morethan simply registering complaints, Twitter is now used forreceiving and commenting on suggestions and helping tobuild a vibrant citizen community. A new phase benefitingthe longer-term started in early in 2012 by using the datagenerated as empirical evidence for service and policydevelopment across all City functions. Indeed, since 2008the data collected with local information covers 855,906cases, derived from both Twitter 311 and telephone 311services. This data is now being used in the broaderresource-deployment and decision-making process toimprove service planning and outreach.
  • 69. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 69 of 74The second type of impact is ongovernment’s longer-term,preventative and developmentrequirements which, inparticular address ‘hard-to-reach’ groups as well as enablesuch groups to change theirbehaviour and to participate inshaping their own futures. In2009 research showed thatwhilst the number of youngpeople drinking alcohol in the UKhad previously fallen, this was nolonger happening, and theamount being consumed bythose who were still drinking hadrisen. As part of the UK’sDepartment for Children, Schoolsand Families Youth AlcoholAction Plan (launched in June2008) and the Department ofTransport’s Moment of DoubtAction Plan (launched in 2007), acommunications campaign waslaunched aimed at parents, andparticularly young peoplethemselves, focusing on drinkdriving. The traditional campaigntactics that build public outrageand admonishment were foundto become meaningless andineffective, as were thetraditional channels ofmainstream media. The newcampaign instead focused onpersuading the target audiencethat drink driving could haveimmediate negativeconsequences for thempersonally and used a mixedsocial media strategy.This consisted of 4 main portals(parents, teens, children andstakeholders), 1 Facebook App, 1Bluetooth game, 4 children’sgames, 5 videos with therespected expert / media medic,and 6 display adverts. The totalcost was £205,000, but the mainoutcome of the campaign foryoung people was a measurablerise in perception from58% to 75% that drink drivingwas dangerous and that theywould be caught by the police.The number of peoplebreathalysed rose by 6.4%, whilethe number testing positive fellby 19.5%. The number of deathsand serious injuries caused bydrink driving fell for the first timein six years, from 560 to 410 overjust one year.Example of good practice: ‘Text4Baby’ USAA second example from the USA is the ‘Text4Baby’ mobileservice which provides information to expectant and newmothers about how to take care of themselves and thebaby while pregnant and during the first year of the babyslife. On the basis that women most at risk usually camefrom a disadvantaged background and have limited accessto the internet, while at the same time usually have accessto a mobile phone, relevant information is sent once aweek to women who sign up. A recent study showed “veryhigh satisfaction with the service, increase in users’ healthknowledge, improved interaction with healthcareproviders, improved adherence to appointments andimmunizations, and increased access to health resources.”The study also showed that 81% of users have an annualhousehold income well below the average and that 65%are either uninsured or enrolled in Medicaid programs.Most said the service helped them remember anappointment or immunization that they or their childneeded, they learned a medical warning sign they didn’tknow previously, consulted their doctor or other foundother support as a direct result.
  • 70. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 70 of 74Although service strategies usingsocial and mobile media are still intheir early days, some tentativeconclusions can be drawn from theevidence to date. Most examplesdemonstrating or claiming short-term quick wins do so for both thepublic sector and for users. Theseinclude the following:Shifting channels, i.e. reducingthe use of, or closing, moreexpensive traditional channelsand replacing these with the useof social and mobile media.There is some concern by publicauthorities that needing to runboth new media channels andtraditional channels at the sametime, where the latter are notclosed down, will increase costs,and this danger is real. However,successful examples have solvedthis problem by shiftingcustomers sufficiently rapidly tocheaper new media and in largeenough numbers so that overallcosts are lower.Increasing staff productivity, forexample the number of casessuccessfully handled in a giventime or for a given resource.This is both due to the lowertransaction costs of social andmobile media, but also toreductions in customer contacttime because the quality ofservice delivered in a given timeunit is improved as staff knowcustomers and their (oftenindividual and specific) needsmuch better through socialmedia engagement.Back-office processes areimproved as this customerknowledge increases, leading toimproved segmentation andtargeting using social media. Thechallenge, which manygovernments have not yetsolved, is that social mediaengagement might lead to moreextensive (i.e. time consuming)and expensive contact.Successful examples, however,show that the goal of themajority of customers is to savetime rather than use the servicemore. Customer satisfaction inthese examples is derived from aconvenient, quick, efficient aswell as highly effective, service.Experience in terms of longer-termdevelopmental benefits shows that:The main focus is typicallydescribed as preventive, pre-emptive or early intervention,i.e. removing, or circumscribingproblems highly likely to arise inthe medium to longer-termwhich would otherwise imposelarge costs on the public sector,apart from depriving customersof personal benefits. Initiativesare thus seen mainly as long-term programmes, or ascontributions to suchprogrammes. They do imposesome (but typically not large) up-front costs, but the confidentexpectation, which is alreadybeing achieved in some cases, isthat they will later achieve muchlarger savings.Although many savings aremade through back-officeorganisational and processchanges, the main focus is onchanging user behaviour. Socialand mobile media are, by nature,interactive tools in which theuser’s inputs, activity andbehaviour are just as important –perhaps more important – thanthose of the public sector. Thepublic sector has less controlover user behaviour than over itsown, so this can increase therisk. Another issue is that savingsand other business benefitsmight not directly accrue to thepublic sector department oragency which made the initialinvestment, but instead couldbenefit other entities. Silothinking and working in thepublic sector might resist suchinitiatives, so a more holistic,whole-of-government approachis required.5.4.3 Consideration 3:Open up data to unlockeconomic gains anddrive innovationWhere governments are searchingfor ways to come out of the crisis andto develop more sustainable businessmodels, adapting new technologies intheir daily routines, the need forreliable and solid data is increasing.This is also linked to capacity buildingaround the interpretation of data anddisseminate clear messages andinsights for policy makers.
  • 71. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 71 of 74Again, the government may seeksolutions outside of its ownorganisation. An example in the UKdemonstrates the power of openingup data and new ways of collectingbetter evidence for policy making,while reducing costs.Public administration officials arenow beginning to realise the valuethat opening up data can have. Forinstance, the direct impact of OpenData on the EU-27 economy wasestimated at €32 Billion in 2010, withan estimated annual growth rate of7%46. However, very fewgovernments are taking the rightmeasures in realising the economicbenefits out of Open Data. Politicalsupport, breadth and refresh rate ofdata released, the ease in sourcingdata and participation from usercommunity determine the degree ofmaturity of an Open Data program.Opening up data holds the key tounlocking economic gains frommultiple perspectives. Governmentsand public authorities need to viewOpen Data not just as an opportunityto bring in transparency andaccountability in their functioning,but also as an enabler of economicgrowth and a driver of innovation. Inthe near future much of this data willbe accessible in the cloud andavailable for use by manystakeholders, not just governments,to develop and co-create their ownservices.Example of good practice: Open Data, NHS, England46“Review of recent studies on PSI re-use and related market developments”; Final Version, Graham VickeryOpen Data identifies possible prescription savings worthmillionsIn 2011-12, the NHS in England spent more than £400m onstatins, a class of drugs used to prevent cardiovascularproblems, out of a total drug budget of £12.7 billion. Someof these drugs are more expensive than others: patentedones can cost 20 times more than generic versions.The current evidence shows that all drugs from this classare equally safe and effective, so doctors are usuallyadvised to use the generic versions initially. With the aimof analyzing the prescription pattern of these drugs -Mastodon C, a big data start-up company incubated at theOpen Data Institute and Open Health care UK (aconsortium of NHS doctors and technologists dedicated toimproving patient care by opening up health data), workedwith publicly available NHS prescription data. They lookedat the entire prescriptions dataset (over 37 million rows ofdata) and analyzed how much money was spent in eacharea on more expensive drugs. It was found that on anaverage £27m a month of potentially unnecessaryexpenditure on the two proprietary statins took place in2011 in the NHS in England. And savings of over £200mcould have been achieved for the NHS, had every doctorprescribed cheap statins. Encouraged by the findings, theteam intends to go further ahead and identify similarpotential savings in different prescription categories aswell.
  • 72. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesPage 72 of 74In these challenging times, it offersthe opportunity to drive tangibleeconomic value and stimulategrowth and innovation.Governments wishing to establishtheir position in tomorrow’s digitalworld should leverage the potentialthat Open Data holds. Data analyticstools enable new ways to extractvalue not just for data that isreleased externally, it also enablespublic agencies tools to improvecustomer insight and service deliverythrough applying such tools tointernal operational data – oftentermed ‘big data’.5.4.4 Consideration 4:Address collaboration,commonality, andconsistent servicefoundationsOur third finding stated thattransformation is required to a new‘outside-in’ model. Embracing thethree recommendations above: (i) tofocus on customer-centricity (ii)increase use of social media (iii)open data, is good. It is not howevergood enough!Service transformation requires,digital transformation, whichrequires establishing some commonbuilding blocks that all public serviceproviders can use consistently tocollaborate between providers andthrough service delivery chains togenuinely transform outcomes.Without these key enablers there isa limit to how good the customerexperience will be – in country, andcross-EU!5.5 Considerations for theEuropean Commissionto stimulate progressThe eGovernment benchmark hasmade clear where and how countriescan improve. However there is alsoan important role for the EuropeanCommission to play. Two points ofconsideration are tabled.5.5.1 Consideration 1: Alignand draw insight fromInternationalBenchmarksThere are various globaleGovernment benchmarks andresponsible institutions to consider.Global assessments of eGovernmentdevelopments, such as initiated bythe United Nations, the OECD andWaseda University, provide insightsinto good practice from around theworld and comparisons betweenEuropean countries and interna-tional front runners.These provide interesting and freshideas that stimulate countries acrossthe globe to improve online publicservices; and also ensure that wedeal with how Europe is progressingagainst other major regions of theworld. Examples include therevolutionary uptake of m-Pesa inKenya where 15 million citizens arenow using their mobile to pay fortheir daily groceries and make smallpayments between businesspartners; or the adoption of socialnetworking platforms inQueensland, Australia, to ensureprovision of vitally importantinformation to citizens and tolistening and answering to questionsfrom citizens, to inform media, andmonitor public opinion during aflood crisis where all traditionalchannels failed. Internationaldevelopments can stimulateprogress in Europe.5.5.2 Consideration 2:Stimulate structuredlearning andcollaboration betweenMember StatesThe exchange of good practice andsharing of insights from internationalbenchmarks and benchmarkinginstitutions is an aspect of this role,however exchange of ideasoriginated within the Europeancontext are just as relevant.The European Commission canstimulate the collaboration andexchange of ideas at European level,through structured knowledgemanagement activities – and couldalso play a role to drive ‘active’learning through a virtualcommunity, ‘bench learning’,initiating peer reviews, and / orprovide countries with instrumentsfor self assessment.
  • 73. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesEuropean CommissionPublic Services Online‘Digital by default, or by Detour?’Assessing User Centric eGovernment performance in Europe – 2012BenchmarkInsight reportLuxembourg, Publications Office of the European Union2013 – 72 pagesISBN 978-92-79-29949-0DOI: 10.2759/13072
  • 74. eGovernment Benchmark 2012 – INSIGHT reportTowards a new generation of eGovernment servicesKK-02-13-026-EN-NDOI: 10.2759/13072 ISBN 978-92-79-29949-0