Department of Community College Education, Ministry of Higher Education, MALAYSIA

The Problem

Currently, there are two officers at DCCE who are incharge of monitoring the LLL programme in Community Colleges. Initially in 2002, there were only 12 CCs in Malaysia. The LLL reporting on implementation and statistics of participants was done manually . It was still manageable then. The data was collected manually from colleges and analysed using MS Office Worksheet (Excel, Word and Powerpoint). At that time, the participants who applied for the LLL course could do so by filling application form and send via postal or by hand (walk-in application).

In 2010, the number of CCs operated has been increased to 68 in Malaysia. Reporting and analysing data manually are quite tough and challenging. Furthermore, it consumes a lot of time. The officers spend a lot of time in processing numerous application forms. A lot of problems also arise in the previously LLL management, monitoring and reporting such as:
i. Inadequate information and inaccurate data especially when the desk officers change or been transferred
ii. It is difficult to make interference and integration of information
iii. It takes a longer time to collect and process the application
iv. It takes a longer time to access information such as participant demographic information (gender, academic background, age, etc). Officers do not have ample time to analyze and make plans
v. Unable to disseminate information in a timely manner and in appropriate format
vi. A lot of application forms were not processed on time

The groups affected in the initiative are the officers in DCCE, lectures in CCs and the LLL participants in general.

Solution and Key Benefits

 What is the initiative about? (the solution)
ePSH system is an adaptation of Integrated Database Management System (iDBMS) that was used in monitoring formal certificate programme offered in Community Colleges. ePSH system was developed to monitor and manage the nonformal programme offered in Community Colleges. This system can be implemented with modifications as necessary without incurring high cost. It is designed and maintained by the lecturers and officers in Community Colleges. No consultant or private company is used in the development and maintainance of the system.

Actors and Stakeholders

 Who proposed the solution, who implemented it and who were the stakeholders?
The solution was proposed by the Innovation team of DCCE that consist of Directors, Principal Assistant Directors, Assistant Directors and also officers from Community Colleges. The system is used by officers in DCCE and Community Colleges. The stakeholders were Economic Planning Unit of Prime Minister Office (EPU), MoHE, Community Colleges, community and also based on demand by other agencies who are also players in LLL programme in Malaysia.

(a) Strategies

 Describe how and when the initiative was implemented by answering these questions
 a.      What were the strategies used to implement the initiative? In no more than 500 words, provide a summary of the main objectives and strategies of the initiative, how they were established and by whom.
The strategy used in ePSH is to adapt the existing Integrated Database Management System (iDBMS) that was been used in monitoring formal certificate programme offered in Community Colleges. The main objectives are:
• To provide online application for LLL courses
• To develop a systematic database for LLL management
• To provide information and data system of LLL participants

A special task force committee headed by the Academic Division Director General and the LLL Unit in DCCE was established in March 2010 and approved by the Director General of DCCE himself. This is followed by a series of training to officers involve in managing the LLL participants data at CCs.

(b) Implementation

 b.      What were the key development and implementation steps and the chronology? No more than 500 words
On March 2010, a special task force committee was formed to rectify the problem of monitoring lifelong learning programme conducted by community colleges. The task force then strategize on using the current human capital and ICT experts in Community College to build a system to monitor the LLL programme an the federal level. A series of workshops were done since July 2010 using train and build concept. The trial system was completed at the end of 2010. The system is fully utilized in all the CCs in 2011 for managing the One Malaysia Skill Programme (PL1M). On Jan 2011, the special task force committee has been renamed as ePSH innovation team committee by the consent of the Principal Director General of DCCE. The monitoring of the system was also done by the technical team at some randomly selected colleges to rectify any problem at the grassroot level. The workshop and training is still continued as an ongoing process.

(c) Overcoming Obstacles

 c.      What were the main obstacles encountered? How were they overcome? No more than 500 words
As the number of CCs increases, managing data and record of LLL participants from all CCs are quite tough and consumes longer time. Since CCs were also known as the hub of lifelong learning (LLL) in Malaysia, many stakeholders are interested in having CCs LLL participants profiling information to help them create better policies for the development of knowledgeable and skilled community. The main obstacles encountered when the team first initiate this project was there is no directory/code of courses been developed. Numerous types and names of courses were recorded by the CCs. It leads to redundancy of data, missing information and it was hard to standardize all the LLL courses offered by CCs. The team also faced some peroblems with the system development in terms of which software to use or more user-friendly or resilient from virusses and hackers. Using the existing expertise at the CCs is another problem as the officers were also have other commitment in teaching and learning or maintaining ICT system at CCs. However, a series of brainstormings, workshops and training sessions were held involving the innovation team, the DCCE and CCs officers and staff. The result was that a directory of courses has been created and the innovation team also developed ePSH system manual as a reference to DCCE and CCs staff.

(d) Use of Resources

 d.      What resources were used for the initiative and what were its key benefits? In no more than 500 words, specify what were the financial, technical and human resources’ costs associated with this initiative. Describe how resources were mobilized
The resources used in developing the system: financial resources by using the existence yearly allocation of DCCE and CCs; and human resources by using DCCE and CCs existing officers who are expert in ICT, documentation and planning. The major key benefits of implementing ePSH system are that it help to promote productivity by better managing knowledge, information and data, which helps employees to avoid re-invent processes, to streamline tasks, to learn from practice, to avoid duplication of work, to reduce costly mistakes through peer-to-peer learning, achieve objectives faster and at less cost through a better use of latent knowledge, and retain knowledge; However to upgrade the system to international standard, a special allocation of fund should be initiated. As an education and skills training provider, CCs are fortunate to have the technical and human resources among the staff. However more officers should be involved in the innovation team in order to ensure the sustainability of the system and to continously maintainance and upgraded of the system.

Sustainability and Transferability

  Is the initiative sustainable and transferable?
Yes, it is sustainable and transferable. From time to time, the innovation team has done some changes and improvement to the system as required by the stakeholders due to changes in social, economic, environment and regulatory. This changed was informed to officers in CCs who are incharge of the system through an internal chat message system called Helpdesk (it was built in the ePSH system). The innovation team has held an internal lab and training regarding of using and maintaining the system regularly (every 3 months) since July 2010 to DCCE and CCs officers.

In 2011, ePSH is fully used at 72 Community Colleges in Malaysia. It is designed and maintained by the officers in Community Colleges. No consultant or private company is used in the developing and maintaining the system. Full support from the management and commitment from officers at DCCE and CCs have contributed a lot in sustaining the system. The success of ePSH system is mainly because that DCCE and CCs staff are committed, capable, focus and resilient.

Lessons Learned

 What are the impact of your initiative and the lessons learned?
The impact gain from this innovation can be narrowed down in terms of data handling, processing and analysing, cost reduction, timeliness, accuracy, productivity and efficiency. By implementing this ePSH system, the management and CCs officers found that data can be analysed quickly, easily and information integration are much easier and meet to the stakeholder needs (timeliness). Utility and postal cost was reduced as more communication is done online. Furthermore, it creates a paperless environment. The participants of LLL programme can also apply through online. This is much cheaper as compared to the application forms send via mail or submitted personally to the college. As to the officers in DCCE and CCs, ePSH system help them process the application in time and easy to make selection, access data profiling of LLL participants at their finger tip and do not consumes longer time. Officers can focus on other important tasks such as attending meetings, make plans, preparing presentation, preparing report / papers or focus on teaching and learning without being burden with clerical works. The lessons learned is nothing is impossible if there is a desire and will to do things. Besides that, the teamwork effort, commitment, capability and focus have benefited not only to the community colleges but to the community and other stakeholders as well. The innovation team was also very grateful to the acceptance and readiness of our DCCE and CCs staff to any changes and transformation done. It showed how resilient they are. Quoting from Steve Jobs , innovation is the ability to see change as an apportunity, not a threat and Woody Allen once said if you’re not failing every now and again, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative.
1. Cost Reduction (utility bill, paper usage, postage)
2. Timelines
3. Accuracy
4. Real- time information
5. Paperless environment
6. Increase productivity
7. Increase efficiency
8. Increase number of LLL participants (from 123,061 in 2010 to 188, 291 as 20th Dec 2011)
9. Increase accessibility (user-friendly online application system)
Total cost reduction (estimation) : RM450,000.00 a year

1. Department of Community College Education (DCCE) √
2. Community Colleges √
3. Community / Participant √
4. Other stakeholders (Minister, MoHE, EPU, LLL players etc) √

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Department of Community College Education, Ministry of Higher Education, MALAYSIA
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Noriah Abdul Malek
Title:   Dr.  
Telephone/ Fax:   603-88882680/ 6019-2755167
Institution's / Project's Website:   http://online.kkkla.edu.my/e_psh_v7s/login
E-mail:   noriah@mohe.gov.my  
Address:   6th Floor, PjH Gallery, P4W Street, Perdana Boulevard, Precintc 4
Postal Code:   62570
City:   Putrajaya
State/Province:   Federal Territory Putrajaya
Country:   Malaysia

          Go Back

Print friendly Page