This nation in the Caribbean islands has a governing system that is a combination of parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy. The governance structure is layered, and paper-intensive processes often add to their woes.
Four major government departments responsible for finance and planning realized the need to automate day-to-day functions and transform paper-based systems in order to speed up processes. The Customs Department, and Ministry of Finance and Planning, were among the four departments that decided it was essential to become more digitally sound in the way they function.
In order to ensure better governance and quicker response to requests initiated by citizens, it was important to manage documents and process requests faster. The four departments which recognized this need are:
Tax Administration, the country’s premiere revenue collection agency whose primary goal is to foster voluntary compliance, collect revenue in an equitable and efficient manner, contribute to a competitive business environment, and facilitate economic growth and development.
Customs Department, primarily responsible for the equitable collection of revenue, protection of the nation’s borders against illicit imports, and facilitation of trade.
Ministry of Finance & Planning, responsible for the Government’s fiscal and economic policy, collection and allocation of public revenue, and socio-economic development of the nation.
Accountant General Department, a legal entity within the Ministry of Finance & Planning, and consists of a single incorporated office that is charged with facilitation and reporting of the flow of funds within the public sector.
Goals of the Project
Ensuring equitable collection of revenue, reducing and maintaining the national debt at sustainable levels, and preventing illegal trade practices within the nation’s borders are among the few goals these departments look to achieve.
They were looking for a technology partner to help transform their paper-intensive processes, and attain the following objectives:
- Provide an efficient, effective, and easily accessible document archival repository
- Enable exchange of information and help build a knowledge base for information
- Ensure faster processing of requests
- Reduce storage and purchase-related costs
- Foster collaboration by ensuring documents are easily accessible across departments
- Integration with their in-house application for document retrieval
Prior to the implementation, the absence of a centralized knowledge repository caused restrictions in access to information. There was the absence of structured work allocation and a lack of standardization leading to accountability issues.
As a result of the implementation, the following improvements were seen:
- Initiation of application with the help of relevant data and documents
- Operational efficiency and cost reduction
- Increased performance visibility and Transparency
- Improved consistency in following best practices
- Easier Long Term archival of documents and records
- Electronic circulation of application to the members/officers
- Alerts and reminders issued through email notifications
- Increase in productivity through instant access to digitized case content
- Fast-tracking of cases by reducing the number of hand-offs
- Tracking of case files, managing user access, and identification of security breaches