Holistic Program for New Vehicle Registration and Registration Renewal
General Directorate of Traffic/ eGovernment Authority

A. Problem Analysis

 1. What was the problem before the implementation of the initiative?
Over the past 12 years the Kingdom of Bahrain has seen an exponential growth in vehicle registrations. While there were just 125,000 car registrations in 2000, in 2012 this figure rose by over 250% to an all time high of 439,000! Because cars in Bahrain must be registered each year, this growth understandably placed tremendous pressure on the capacity of the registration infrastructure to help individual car owners and car dealers in a timely and efficient manner – so much so that numerous websites have sprung up offering citizens and migrant workers tips on how best to avoid long queues and shorten the process. Simply put, the old manual process for registration could not keep pace with the rate of growth. The old process entailed: CAR DEALERS FOR NEW CAR REGISTRATION 1. Car dealers register new vehicles sold by their dealership by filling in a GDT form and attaching required documents: personal ID, bank letter in case of installments and insurance document. 2. Car dealer physically submits this form in person to the GDT. 3. Once submitted, GDT manually checks it along with required documents and enters approved applications into the system. 4. Car dealer must then revisit GDT to pay fees and receive a receipt, registration badge, ownership documentation, and plate number. INDIVIDUAL VEHICLE OWNERS FOR RENEWAL OF REGISTRATION 1. Owner starts the process by obtaining an insurance policy 2. Owner physically visits the Post Office to fill the registration renewal form, pay required fees, and submit the insurance policy as evidence of vehicle insurance. 3. Post Office forwards all required documents and fees to General Directorate of Traffic (GDT). 4. GDT verifies the documents and then checks with Contravention Department to verify the traffic offense record for the vehicle 5. If an offence is found, the owner is contacted and asked to visit the Contravention Department at GDT to settle these offences. 6. Finally, GDT sends the renewed registration badge and insurance policy card back to the Post Office in order to deliver it to the vehicle owner. MAJOR PROBLEMS - This lengthy manual process could take more than two days to complete – requiring numerous trips by citizens and migrants to government offices. - Unnecessary back office paperwork and steps, and multiple data entry points (with the associated risk of data inaccuracy and the subsequent need to reissue registration badges and documents). - Whilst this process placed a burden on all car drivers, it was especially difficult for 1) the elderly and disabled as it required them to drive back and forth between the Post Office and GDT (which is located far away from where most citizens live), wait in long queues and navigate a complex bureaucracy and 2) women who also faced the additional challenge of dealing with a predominantly complex and exhaustive approval cycle. Many migrant workers were also severely disadvantaged as they often had to lose days at work to complete the process. Finally, the environment was negatively impacted by carbon emissions from all the trips to varying government offices.

B. Strategic Approach

 2. What was the solution?
The eGovernment Strategy for Kingdom of Bahrain can be summed up as “Delivering Customer Value through Collaborative Government.” The Kingdom regards the recipients of government services as ‘customers’ with the right to demand ‘value for time and money.’ To help Ministries and government agencies across the Kingdom deliver on this vision, the eGovernment Authority in Bahrain has developed a Customer Charter Framework which consists of the general components necessary to ensure outstanding customer service. In line with this Charter, the eGovernment Authority worked with the General Directorate of Traffic to undertake business process reengineering and automation initiative to improve the GDT’s overall service delivery. The new GDT service was one of the key services envisaged as a part of the Kingdom’s eGovernment strategy. The ultimate objective of the initiative was to provide faster, more efficient and ‘greener’ eServices to vehicle owners and car dealers by introducing automated registrations of new vehicles and the renewal of vehicles less than 4 years old. More specifically, the BPR aimed to: 1. Eliminate unnecessary steps 2. Reduce cost, time and resources 3. Eliminate excessive checks and controls 4. Improve performance 5. Increase customer satisfaction The new eService mapped the ‘existing’ workflow against the desired ‘to be’ state in order to reduce the overall customer involvement steps from 15 to just 3 by increasing the number of back office steps from 12 to 19. In other words, the initiative shifted the burden from citizens to administrators whilst at the same time deploying ICT to reduce costs, time and resources. In so doing, the new system resolved the problems with the old manual system by enabling vehicle owners and car dealers with valid insurance to handle all of their transactions online including the payment of registration fees and traffic fines. It does so through back office integration between: 1. The GDT Vehicle Registration and Contravention department (which eliminates the need to shuffle documents between offices) 2. Car dealers and GDT (which eliminates the need for multiple manual data entries of new vehicle specification such as chassis number and motor number) 3. Insurance companies and GDT (which enables insurance policy information to be updated directly in GDT via a web service) New automated functionalities include: 1. Online Registration Form 2. Online Generation of registration badge and ownership cards from the system 3. Online Registration of badge with barcode containing vehicle information 4. Online Generation of plates’ numbers 5. Online Payment of Fees and Fines Online vehicle registration and renewal facilitates the provision of statistical reports on the number of received vehicle registration and renewal requests and online payments, whilst eliminating the need for data entry and auditing by GDT officers. It also eliminates the usage of unnecessary paper resources such as faxes and significantly reduces the time required to process applications. Most importantly from a customer perspective, the new eService can be done from the comfort of one’s home. It eliminates the need for physical visits to government offices, is available 24X7 and provides for the easy availability of service information. In addition to being available online, it is available as Mobile Application across all platforms – making it easier than ever before for time-pressured professional to use the service. At the same time, the service portal is also available at eService Centres which have been established as external outlets in public areas and key Government entities across the Kingdom to provide personal assistance to customers with special needs such as the disabled, elderly and illiterate.

 3. How did the initiative solve the problem and improve people’s lives?
What makes this initiative unique is that it was specifically designed and tailored to meet the balanced needs of customers and government administrators. The entire initiative was based upon a comprehensive study of the difficulties car owners and dealers faced as they attempted to register their vehicle manually, thereby ensuring a completely customer-centric service. The Service is the first among to implement a private public partnership model involving GDT, Car dealers and the insurance companies The eService is also creative in that it has been designed from the outset to be maximally accessible to all Bahraini’s, regardless of their income, literacy skills, gender or physical health. The new registration service is not just available online via the National eGovernment Portal (Bahrain.bh), users can also choose between a number of innovative additional channels: 1. Creative and user-friendly Mobile Applications available on IOS, Android and Blackberry platforms. 2. eGovernment self-service Kiosks available at conveniently located public areas across the Kingdom. 3. eGovernment eService Centers available in popular public areas and Government entities to support the elderly, disabled and other citizens who find it difficult accessing eGovernment channels on their own.

C. Execution and Implementation

 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
The BPR Strategy is based on a detailed assessment of the ‘As Is’ difficulties customers faced in registering their vehicles manually. It is designed to deliver services that help support both citizen and business lifecycles. At the outset of the initiative, a workforce representing various stakeholders was established to define service objectives and benefits. A detailed plan was then formulated outlining the rules and responsibilities of each participant along with expected outcome and delivery dates. Finally, technical and business teams were establish to define the requirements and functionality needed to achieve the projects objectives, as well as to identify any technical limitations. Key project development and implementation steps included the following: 1- Service Development: eGA used its own methodology for service development (Service Development Life Cycle) based on ITIL and CMMi methodlogies. The various phases of service development include the high level design, low level design; testing, QA and service roll out. 2- Monitoring: Implementation of the service was monitored throughout all stages to ensure that progress was on track and solutions existed for any issue that might rise during implementation 3- Business Continuity and Operations: eGA and GDT have worked together to combine and create processes for continued business operation to provide the services 24X7. The eGA contact centre provides the customer support and eGA payment gateway provides the payment facility. To implement the eGovenment strategy, several steps where followed: 1. Conceptualization Phase: Develop and maintain an appropriate work plan in which it will be the base to build the work required to deliver the service. This phase include: - Service Description: It provides information about the service in hand, who are the stakeholders (primary and secondary), type of services provided (G2G, G2B, G2C), the as-is process, the volume of transactions per year, and the channels responsible for delivering the service. In this case, For New Vehicle Registration, it is a G2B service that connects the car dealers with GDT to ease the process of registering a new car. On the other hand, for Vehicle Registration Renewal, the service is of type G2C which allows vehicle owners to renew their registration online. - Business Process Re-engineering (BPR): conduct a study among the various stakeholders – the Car Dealers, citizens, insurance companies, and the GDT employees in order to thoroughly understand the existing processes of As-Is service and to identify an innovative To-Be service. The To-Be process was based upon a detailed study and analysis of the existing manual service, and designed in alignment with process efficiency and change management principles. 2. Analysis and Design Phase: Depending on the as-is and to-be process reports conducted, - Business and Functional Requirements: Provide a detailed document about the business objectives, benefits, measures and risks. Also, describe the functionality and the requirements related to the implemented service. The objective is to achieve a fully automated solution that enables Car Dealers to register new vehicles and private vehicle owners to renew vehicle registration without the need to wait in queues at GDT counters. Seamless integration between the 2 biggest stakeholders, the Bahraini CIO and GDT, plays a vital role in ensuring that the transference of data between both systems is accurate and timely. - Use Case Specifications: Define interactions between a role (Car dealers, GDT officers and Citizens) and the system to fulfill a certain task. - Service Prototype: Develop or design a model that reflects the concept of the service and its functionality. 3. Production and Implementation Phase: - Development: Transform the designed prototype into a developed system consisting of front-end, back-end and web service applications. Through this part, the Interface and System Design documents are created. - Testing and QA: Executing the testing rounds for the system to determine whether there are any defects to be fixed. After that, the Quality Assurance (QA) start their own set of tests to ensure that the system is ready to be deployed to production. 4. Manage and Change: analyze any changes in the scope, requirements or design. Also, manage the service in operation by providing ongoing support and operation monitoring.

 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
The following stakeholders contributed to the design and implementation of the new eService for Vehicle Registration: *General Directorate of Traffic (GDT): The Primary owner of the service, providing the business requirements, development support with backend connections, updating of data, issue and dispatch of plates’ numbers, registration & renewal badge and ownership cards etc. *EGovernment Authority (eGA): Design and implement the service. Conduct as-is study, recommend to-be process with appropriate process reengineering, design and develop the solution, integrate with the GDT and CIO data bases, test and deploy the solution, undertake training to the users, oversee marketing and awareness raising of the service amongst the public. *Central Informatics Organization (CIO): Responsible for GDT database and eGovernment portal operation *Management Consultants: Support detailed assessment of ‘As Is’ and ‘To Be’ states *Technical Consultants: Support delivery of technical components *Bahrain Post: Deliver the new badges to the vehicle owners *Car Dealers: Consume the New Vehicle Registration service and provide GDT with accurate vehicle specification. *Insurance companies: Integrate their individual systems with GDT through eGA portal to provide insurance policies details *Vehicle Owners: Consume the Renewal of Vehicle Registration eService. *NGOs: Insurance Society encourages the Insurance companies to adopt this service and automate the process of registration and renewal of a vehicle.
 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
The new GDT eService was implemented as a part of the eGovernment Strategy of Bahrain, and therefore funded out of the eGovernment Authority’s budget. The solution was designed with the existing hardware and software capabilities of GDT and eGA. The back end was hosted at GDT and CIO. Front end services were provisioned on the National Portal of Bahrain. The project team blended dedicated skill sets from eGA and GDT. TECHNICAL AND HUMAN RESOURCES The human resource requirements for the initiative were as follows: 1. Service or project Manager responsible for end to end project management of the system and in charge of business continuity. Communicate with Service owners to follow up with their needs and demands, and keep them updated with the progress of the service. 2. Project Coordinator: provide different kinds of support to the project manager through constant follow ups with the team members and monitoring the progress of each phase. 3. BPR specialist: Conduct a thorough study about the current situation between GDT, Car Dealers, Insurance companies and car owners which is represented by the AS-IS document, and followed by the TO-BE document that demonstrate the solution for the current situation. 4. Business Analyst to provide the service prototype and how the system will look like once the business owner approves the model. 5. Technical Analyst to study the existing system in GDT and advice on the suitable architecture. 6. Developer to develop the front-end, back-end and the web services of the system. 7. QA and Testing team to ensure that the system lacks any defects, and provide end to end quality assessment of the service. FINANCIAL COSTS The associated costs were as follows: 1. BPR: USD 6,859 2. Channel Delivery & Enhancement: USD 114,159 3. Quality Assurance & Information Security USD1,830 4. Marketing USD 5,578 5. Govt. Entity (Inclusive of CIO) USD10,265 TOTAL: USD141,371

 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
Concrete outputs which contributed to the success of the initiative are: 1. Integrated Back Office Infrastructure: The initiative facilitated seamless online service delivery by integrating the back office functionalities of the General Directorate of Traffic and the Contravention Department, enabling these organizations to transfer data between them securely and efficiently. In so doing, the initiative eliminated the need for customers and paper forms to shuffle back and forth between offices. 2. Increased Service Choice: The initiative complimented the existing manual process with a full range of online offerings, including a web service portal which customers could access from home, a mobile application which works across platforms, self-service kiosks which are located throughout the Kingdom and Service Centers which provide special assistance to customers with special needs. In so doing, the initiative increased service accessibility for all members of the population. 3. Public-Private Partnership Model: The initiative linked the databases of the GDT and major private insurance companies in the Kingdom. In so doing, the initiative eliminated the need for customers to manually produce proof of insurance. 4. Government Entity Satisfaction: This was achieved by: 5. Better utilization of human resources 6. Reduction of manual processing 7. Cost and time savings 8. Integration with insurance companies to check car insurance validity 9. Elimination of visits required by applicants 10. Online payment of car registration renewal including contraventions 5. Customer Satisfaction 11. Increased service levels 12. Availability of service 24x7 13. Easy availability of service information 14. Elimination of physical visits 15. Online payment of car registration renewal including contraventions Reports Generation: This initiative provided the ability to generate various reports in which it can help monitoring the transactions done, and the progress of each one.

 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
Implementation of the new Vehicle Registration eService was conducted in line with the eGovernment Authority’s overarching strategy, and then closely monitored by the service delivery team. Extensive QA was conducted at each step throughout the implementation to ensure successful delivery of the service. Periodical meetings and reviews were conducted to monitor progress, ensure that implementation was on track and tackle any issue that might arise, real time and on the spot. MONITORING The eGA puts in place a rigorous system of KPIs for all ICT projects in order to ensure that milestones are met, and objectives achieved. KPIS for this initiative included: Monitoring did not stop after the service was launched. Rather, it continues to this day via the following means: *Periodical channel QA to ensure the working condition of the service. *Complaints management system for the users to log and track the complaints and issues. *A Dedicated support team to ensure immediate fixes to service. *Ongoing marketing analysis to identify usage vs. targeted audience ratios *Periodical roadshows to ensure constant penetration of the service to target user groups EVALUATION The new eService also provides statistical reports on the number of vehicle registration and renewal requests received. GDT uses these reports to monitor and evaluate overall performance. The number of online cars registrations and renewals is increasing rapidly, rising over 500% between when the service was first introduced in 2009 and 2012. Overall uptake is projected to increase by 700% by the end of 2103). Feedback from both users and GDT employees further demonstrates the increasing popularity of the service

 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
The main obstacles encountered during the implementation of the Vehicle Registration eService were as follows: 1. Change Management: Implementation of the new service required government departments to break down traditional divisions, and work together in new ways. It also required employees to alter their traditional ways of working to focus more on servicing customers and less on processing paper. Throughout the initiative ongoing staff training, education and awareness activities were undertaken to shift the organizational culture and ensure a smooth transition to the newly automated system. 2. Building Trust and Credibility Among Users: Traditionally, all GDT services required the physical presence of the service recipient. Moving from a physical, in-person process to an online one required the development of trust and confidence amongst government officials and customers alike. Apprehensions regarding the credibility of the new online system were overcome through the extensive deployment of awareness raising and marketing and training sessions. 3. Security: The new eService required the integration of numerous sensitive and personal database across multiple stakeholders. The project needed to ensure that this integration did not pose any threat to the data integrity. It also needed to ensure that no external connections could breach the security line. This obstacle was overcome by ensuring that all security standards within the Government Data Network were implemented, and that access points were only granted based on established permission protocols such as IP Address, User Accounts and location of use.

D. Impact and Sustainability

 10. What were the key benefits resulting from this initiative?
The new vehicle registration system eliminated unnecessary steps, reduced paperwork and generally made the entire process faster and more efficient for both the general public and government workers alike. Thanks to the new eService, load at GDT counters has been dramatically reduced, processing time has been minimized, and overall customer satisfaction has improved. Multiple mandatory car trips across the Kingdom to complete paperwork and payments are now a thing of the past, as is mandatory manual data entry and the accompanying human errors. Concrete examples of the how the new initiative made a difference in the delivery of public services include: 1. Time Savings: Instead of taking hours and sometimes days for customers to register their car, they can now do so from the comfort of their own homes in as little as 5 MINUTES, saving customers close to 350,000 hours cumulatively [Formula: (No. of customer visits * Average Time per Visit * Volume of Transactions * Year Service Uptake) + Previous Year Hourly Savings] Back office processing time has likewise been reduced from 1 week to just 2 days through the introduction of ICT-enabled intelligence and logic for process calculations, saving government over 44,000 staff hours in 2012 alone. [Formula: Emloyee Grade, No. of Employees, % Time, Year No. of Working Days (240), No of Working Hours (8)] 2. Government Cost Savings *Employee Tasks: 312,618 USD (staff reduced from 16 to just 2) *Pre-printed Forms: 36,870 USD (reduced from 3 forms to just 1) *Paper: USD 411 (paper use reduced from 5 to just 1) *Fuel Subsidy: USD 10,684 (no longer required) 3. Citizen Cost Savings: *Fuel: 50,355 BHD / 133,568 USD (because no physical visits are required) *Citizen Productivity: 109,719 BHD / 291,032 USD (because no physical visits are required) 4. Environmental Savings *Saved Fuel: 547,340 Litres *Reduced Green House Emissions: 93 Metric Tons *Saved Paper: 100, 415 Pieces *Saved Trees: 13 Trees Additional benefits include: 1. Increased Convenience: Thanks to the new eService the registration and renewal process is now available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As a result, customers are no longer bound to the working hours of the Directorate of Traffic. Instead, they can register online anytime, anywhere and at their own convenience. 2. Increased Accessibility: The new registration service is available to the entire population via a wide variety of channels: the National eGovernment, Mobile, Self-Service Kiosks and eGovernment eService Centers (which provide hands on support to the elderly, disabled and other citizens who find it difficult accessing eGovernment channels on their own.

 11. Did the initiative improve integrity and/or accountability in public service? (If applicable)
INSTITUTIONAL TRANSFERABILITY The GDT Service is one of the best integrated services in the eGA’s portfolio of over 250 eServices - connecting multiple organizations and workflows spanning across different ministries. It is developed based on Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and uses web services. Therefore, any future changes, integration, scalability in terms of new features can easily be added in the service – making it a model for replication across other public services throughout the Kingdom. eGA plans to transfer and extend the know-how developed through this implementation to other complex service developments and Ministries. FINANCIAL SUSTAINABILITY Online automation of the vehicle registration process has reduced employee numbers from 16 to just 2, saving the eGA close to 120,000 BHD / 318,302 USD in staff costs alone. The eGA projects that the new eService will save close to 1.3 million BHD / 3,448,276 USD - a figure which guarantees the ongoing sustainability of the initiative. SOCIAL SUSTAINABILITY The powerful focus on ensuring accessibility and usability of the new vehicle registration solution for all elements of society delivered a truly inclusive online service. Accommodating the needs of the illiterate, and the elderly as well as people with disabilities provides a powerful case study for replicable service inclusion for use by other government departments and organisations. ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY By eliminating the need to make multiple car visits to government offices across the Kingdom and reducing overall paper usage, the online vehicle registration service embeds environmental sustainability at its core. For example, the new eService is projected to reduce carbon emissions by over 90 metric tons and save close to 550,000 litres of fuel. At the same time, it is expected to save over 100,000 pieces of paper and as many as 13 trees.

 12. Were special measures put in place to ensure that the initiative benefits women and girls and improves the situation of the poorest and most vulnerable? (If applicable)
INVOLVE END USERS FROM THE START: Capturing user requirements from the key stakeholders who will be most impacted by the outcomes of the project will help avoid common accessibility issues. Early involvement in design will ensure that all end-users including the elderly and those with disabilities will be able to use the new services. For the GDT Vehicle Registration project, the eGovernment Authority worked through the As-Is and To-Be scenarios with a range of stakeholders across the full value chain of the project to help discover new ways of thinking about the solution. FOCUS ON DELIVERING BENEFITS NOT TECHNOLOGY: Outlining the expected benefits that a project should deliver helps to create an end vision for the use of the new processes. This vision acts as a goal for all team members, including the technical developers, to work towards. Using this tactic for the GDT project ensured the delivery team did not get stuck in the minutiae of product delivery but instead allowed the team to focus on the overall user experience. BUILD FOR SUCCESS: Thinking ahead about capacity demand and any external interfacing that may be needed in the next five to ten years will ensure that the solution is scalable and interoperable with other systems. The GDT team understands that transport cuts across many government services so for the purpose of future proofing wanted to create a back-office solution that could be easily integrated with services from other Government departments in the future. SUPPORT STAFF GROWTH: Front level staff live, eat and breathe service delivery and know the strengths, weaknesses and work-a-rounds of past and current processes. However, changing established ways of working can be daunting for some people and can result in an insecure organizational structure, with high levels of staff turnover. The eGovernment Authority avoided this mishap through the provision of strong, inclusive leadership, and a continuous focus on training and educating staff in order to make the transition to a new working culture as smooth as possible. KEEP STAKEHOLDERS UPDATED: In order to ensure high levels of customer satisfaction, it is not simplify good enough to improve services and hope citizens find and like them. Customers need to be informed about the change in advance of implementation, understand when it is going to happen, and know how to use the new services. This lesson is especially true for the migration of an off-line service, where people are comfortable dealing with a service operative, into a remote online service. GDT and the eGovernment Authority found that an extensive awareness raising campaign, with a significant marketing budget, was needed to engage and communicate with the citizens to make them understand and look forward to receiving the benefits from the new and improved vehicle registration process.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   General Directorate of Traffic/ eGovernment Authority
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Mohammed Al Shishani
Title:   Chief, eService Delivery  
Telephone/ Fax:  
Institution's / Project's Website:  
E-mail:   mshishani@ega.gov.bh  
Postal Code:  

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