Pacific Harbour, Fiji – A pilot service delivery tracking system, launched this week, will ensure citizens are able to track and monitor their applications for services offered by the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, starting with the Poverty Benefit Scheme, which offers financial support to the most vulnerable Fijians.
Referred to as the Start to Finish (S2F) Service Tracker, this new innovative approach will be able to track, monitor and update users on the progress of individual service delivery requests and approvals including automated updates and notifications involved in the process.
Currently, members of the public tend to spend money, time and considerable hassle to apply for and access public services, often times involving multiple trips and phone calls, which can be challenging for those living in remote areas, the elderly and persons living with disabilities.
Through this approach, people in remote communities will be able to check the status and confirm final delivery of individual service delivery requests for the Poverty Benefit Scheme, as well as communicate directly with Government officers regarding their service requests through the mobile application and via SMS from the comfort of their own homes.
The launch of the pilot of the S2F tracker was attended by over 100 community members from diverse groups in the Navua corridor who were excited about the potential this application would have for their access to basic welfare services.
In his opening address, the Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Dr Josefa Koroivueta, highlighted how this technological innovation has the potential to boost the performance of the Ministry.
“The Start to Finish Service Delivery Tracker is a noble initiative that will benefit the officers of the Ministry by promoting a paperless society and a transformative workforce whereby at the end of the day the digital system will provide greater satisfaction to the very people that we are entrusted to serve”
“The launching today is something new and very exciting, it will cut down the time clients use to visit the office, tracks the application and also they can measure the turnaround time for the application request to be approved. It is also a very noble initiative that allows users irrespective of their location, whether in the interior or the furthest maritime island, to access the digital system” said Dr. Koroivueta
He added, “The Ministry acknowledged the Bangladesh team for having flexibility in the application and also the ability to align the system to suite and be adaptable to Fiji’s situation considering Fiji’s landscape, geography and demography. Even though it is still in a research and development model, it is ready to be used. The application will also be very useful to the women economic empowerment and women entrepreneurs”
The S2F is a component under the Rights, Empowerment and Cohesion (REACH) project, an initiative implemented by the UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji which is funded by the Government of Japan.
This approach is adapted from a model applied in Bangladesh called Access to Information (a2i), which was created to increase transparency, improve governance and public services and reducing inefficiencies in their delivery.
The Programme Manager for the REACH Project with the UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji, Andrew Harrington, emphasized how the S2F is a great example of South-South collaboration and an innovative way to empower citizens and facilitate greater accountability and transparency in government services.
“Under the REACH project, while service delivery is being provided on-the-spot in targeted rural, urban and maritime communities in Fiji, the challenge lies in ensuring start-to-finish service provision for the longer-term services which cannot be delivered instantaneously,” said Harrington.
“The S2F Tracker will develop improved business processes by generating data and information on service request processing times, including fully disaggregated data on applicants based on geographic distribution, age, gender and so forth.”
He added, “Tracking case flows and timing will help to identify systemic bottlenecks, successes and to verify staff performance.”
The participants at the pilot launch were given the opportunity to test out the S2F platform and provide feedback to the Ministry staff present.
For more information:
Jone Tuiipelehaki Raqauqau, Communications Associate, Effective Governance Team, UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji. E: firstname.lastname@example.org, P: (679) 3227 552