Academic journal article The Public Manager

Strategies for Surviving in the E-Government Evolution: How Government Organizations Are Using Technology to Manage Performance and Align Organization, Citizens, and Suppliers in One Strategic Direction. (Technology/Performance Management)

Academic journal article The Public Manager

Strategies for Surviving in the E-Government Evolution: How Government Organizations Are Using Technology to Manage Performance and Align Organization, Citizens, and Suppliers in One Strategic Direction. (Technology/Performance Management)

Article excerpt

The e-government evolution has forever changed how the government conducts business and interacts with internal and external audiences. Agencies need to overturn decades of embedded business culture to tackle the processes of the new government. They need to focus on being market-driven, citizen-centric, and results-oriented. They need to manage the total enterprise and align organization, citizens, and suppliers in one strategic direction--a direction established at the highest levels and cascaded down throughout the organization. Managers and employees must be empowered to make effective decisions in rapidly reduced timeframes.

Strategic Performance Management

The answer to these needs is strategic performance management (SPM), a business model that is more efficient and dynamic than traditional business practices. SPM combines recognized strategic frameworks, such as balanced scorecard, with intelligent software systems that span the enterprise to provide both a strategic "heads up" and the power to know how to act.

This article discusses eight key action strategies organizations can implement to maximize their technology investments and to be successful in today's new era in government.

Where Does the Trouble Begin?

There is no one weak link in agencies' inability to adapt to the new order. The root causes of inefficiency are evident across all functional areas:

* Financial management. Lack of integrating complex financial structures and not being able to link financial information to performance, including budget information.

* Customer relationship management. What does it mean to be citizen-centric, and how do agencies need to transform how they do business? How does the agency improve customer contact?

* Human resources (HR) management. HR systems should foster decisions that acknowledge intangible assets, such as unique personnel skills, intrinsic value, and hidden costs to adhere to workforce planning issues.

* Information technology (IT) management. No longer just a support system, an agency's IT infrastructure is the critical underpinning for all operational functions. IT systems should be managed as an integrated whole, not as a spaghetti network of segregated systems with limited data sharing.

* Supplier relationship management. With the increasing pressure of outsourcing requirements (including commercial sourcing constraints of Office of Management and Budget Circular A-76), procurement officials must look at sourcing options and link performance information to related decisions.

What Could You Do Differently?

How do you change decades of embedded business culture to tackle the new evolution in government? How do you quickly and intelligently identify and measure both the impact and value of changes in strategy? How do you manage the total enterprise and align organizational, citizen-centric, and supplier goals in the right direction? How do you empower managers and employees to make effective decisions in rapidly reduced timeframes? These are the types of questions today's government executives are facing.

Clearly, business processes must be more efficient and dynamic to build and sustain value across the organization. It is no easy task to redefine the fundamental paradigm of strategic performance management, but a solid roadmap begins with these key strategies:

Automate Best Practices

Business processes should be self-learning and self-tuning, able to automatically capture and share best practices, benchmarks, and experience. Only by understanding the full context and impact of historical actions can an organization identify early indicators of success or failure, and collaborate on options by tapping the knowledge of the entire organization. A successful system empowers individuals to make effective decisions that apply past knowledge as part of a strategic learning loop. …

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