Please briefly describe the initiative, what issue or challenge it aims to address and specify its objectives (300 words maximum)
Service by appointment is a solution whereby citizens book an appointment to access Government services at Huduma Centres.Previously, customers used to visit the physical Huduma centres which was evidenced by long queues before and after working hours. Customers could get served after hours of waiting causing anguish and expenses were incurred. The initiative was developed to manage crowd control, serve citizens efficiently and helped in adherence to the stipulated Covid-19 measures of maintaining social distance.The objective of this solution is to provide a platform where citizens will be able to book an appointment at their convenience to visit a Huduma Centre for the Government service.
Please explain how the initiative is linked to the selected category (100 words maximum)
During the coronavirus pandemic which affected the entire world and to be compliant with the WHO guidelines to contain the pandemic, SBA initiative which is a technological solution was developed to help manage huge crowds and maintain social distance at the Huduma Centres and provide efficient delivery of Government services.
a. Please specify which SDGs and target(s) the initiative supports and describe concretely how the initiative has contributed to their implementation (200 words maximum)
Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification.Previously, customers used to visit the physical Huduma centres which was evidenced by long queues before and after working hours. The solution is developed to assist customers’ book at their own convenience. The appointment can be accessed through Unstructured Supplementary Service Data on *191*9#, web portal (hudumakenya.go.ke) and self-assisted services at the 52 Huduma Centres across the country and contact centre through a single prefix +254 20 6900020. The appointment system encompasses a variety of Government services for the whole of Government
b. Please describe what makes the initiative sustainable in social, economic and environmental terms (100 words maximum)
Before Service by Appointment initiative, Citizens would physically visit the centre where they would queue for long hours to access services by use of the queuing management system (QMS).The QMS which assisted in customer traffic management and smooth service delivery was a paper ticketing service which endangered the trees and consumed resources in terms of maintenance.Service by Appointment initiative is a technological solution which has reduced wastage of resources and was developed to help manage huge crowds, enhance citizen time management and enhance service delivery.
a. Please explain how the initiative has addressed a significant shortfall in governance, public administration or public service within the context of a given country or region. (200 words maximum)
Previously, citizens would line up before opening hours at Huduma Centres to access Government services on a first come first served basis using the queuing management system. For highly sought services e.g. national identification card, Kenyans would queue for hours to get the service. The appointment system was developed to ease the customers’ burden to physically line up and has assisted in time management.
b. Please describe how your initiative addresses gender inequality in the country context. (100 words maximum)
Previously women with children and men would free up their day to physically visit Huduma Centres to access Government services. With Huduma service by appointment, women and equally men across the country have benefited greatly through time management and ease of attaining government documents at their own convenience.
c. Please describe who the target group(s) were, and explain how the initiative improved outcomes for these target groups. (200 words maximum)
The initiative targeted all citizens from all walks of life. The technological savvy, the not technological savvy who are assisted by staff at the Huduma contact centre agents or the Huduma centres staff, the old, youth, all gender, every social class and economical class and people living with disability.
The initiative improved the citizens’ time management and crowd control management.
a. Please describe how the initiative was implemented including key developments and steps, monitoring and evaluation activities, and the chronology. (300 words)
The implementation stages were as follows:
Development of the service by appointment system, testing of the system, deploying changes to the system, training of Trainers of trainers on the system, training of the system to the Huduma staff, Mock system trial, monitoring and evaluation, deploying changes after the mock trials, piloting of the system, monitoring and evaluation, communication to citizens, launch and full rollout out to the whole country.
b. Please clearly explain the obstacles encountered and how they were overcome. (100 words)
SBA had a few obstacles namely:
1. System downtime which was addressed by system back up and routine hardware and software maintenance
2. Down times on specific service platforms and that was addressed by resolving to manual processes routine hardware and software maintenance
3. Variance in the appointment arrival time and service time this was addressed by Serving citizens who were at the service hall irrespective of the time
4. Conflict with other existing service appointment systems by other government agencies that are at the huduma centres this was addressed by harmonized/ aligned the appointment system
5. Risk of system security this addressed by Installing network security firewalls
a. Please explain in what ways the initiative is innovative in the context of your country or region. (100 words maximum)
Most Government services are not on appointment system for ease of service delivery.
Prior to SBA, most Government services were accessed by walking in customers which led to long queue thus poor service delivery and work overload. With SBA the customers are able to access Government service at their convenience, improved service delivery and reduced work load.
b. Please describe, if relevant, how the initiative drew inspiration from successful initiatives in other regions, countries and localities. (100 words maximum)
Globally Government’s agencies/institutions have adopted the use of an appointment system to not only improve service efficiency but also protect the safety of staff and customers, data protection and help to mitigate the impact of Covid -19. Some of these agencies are as follows;
▪ Philippine Consulate in Saudi Arabia - passport renewal service is by appointment ; and
▪ Maryland State, USA : motor vehicle services such as learner’s permits, driving tests, DL renewal are by appointment.
c. If emerging and frontier technologies were used, please state how those were integrated into the initiative and/or how the initiative embraced digital government. (100 words maximum)
Citizens used the queuing management system when they physically visited the Huduma Centres to access a service but the Service by appointment solution can be used at their convenience
a. Has the initiative been transferred and/or adapted to other contexts (e.g. other cities, countries or regions) to your organization’s knowledge? If yes, please explain where and how. (200 words maximum)
The solution has been adapted in all 47 counties across Kenya and across all government services on Huduma platform. The initiative has t’s has been adapted by other government agencies including passport services, good conduct services and drivers license services.
b. If not yet transferred/adapted to other contexts, please describe the potential for transferability. (200 words maximum)
a. What specific resources (i.e. financial, human or others) were used to implement the initiative? (100 words maximum)
The solution relied heavily on human resources and they included Leadership for support and approval, Developers to develop the system, test users for UATs, trainers to capacitate staff and citizens, Huduma staff to assist citizens book an appointment and citizens to book for the appointment
b. Please explain what makes the initiative sustainable over time, in financial and institutional terms. (100 words maximum)
It is a technological solution which has been tested and helps in provision of service delivery seamlessly. The solution has no financial implication therefore sustainable.
a. Was the initiative formally evaluated either internally or externally?
b. Please describe how it was evaluated and by whom? (100 words maximum)
By use of customer feedback surveys by the monitoring team and SBA statistics from the system database.
c. Please describe the indicators and tools used (100 words maximum)
Customer feedback surveys were carried out by use of questionnaires. The monitoring team would visit various centres and interview customers on the solution. Additionally statistics from the system would be analyzed and recommendations put in place
d. What were the main findings of the evaluation (e.g. adequacy of resources mobilized for the initiative, quality of implementation and challenges faced, main outcomes, sustainability of the initiative, impacts) and how this information is being used to inform the initiative’s implementation. (200 words maximum)
The system was able to:
a) Enable Citizens effectively booked for services
b) Customer convenience enhanced.
c) Better planned customer visits to the Huduma Centres
d) Better time management for customers
e) Customer traffic at the Huduma Centres effectively managed;
f) Huge number of customers at the Huduma Centres managed
g) Adhere to Covid 19 Government’s regulations
Please describe how the initiative is inscribed in the relevant institutional landscape (for example, how it was situated with respect to relevant government agencies, and how the institutional relationships with those have been operating). (200 words maximum)
SBA was used at all Huduma centres across the Country. Huduma Centres are physical facilities set up as one-stop-shop service delivery points in which the National and County Government provide their services. Huduma Centres are located in every county in Kenya with Nairobi County which is the capital city of Kenya having five (5) Huduma Centres and Kajiado County having two (2).
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development puts emphasis on collaboration, engagement, partnerships, and inclusion. Please describe which stakeholders were engaged in designing, implementing and evaluating the initiative and how this engagement took place. (200 words maximum)
The solution was developed by staff at the Huduma Kenya Secretariat. The stakeholders were the leadership, developers, management, Staff at the secretariat and centres, various government agencies and the Kenyan citizens. The engagement was through physical meetings, letters, memos, emails, social media and calls.
Please describe the key lessons learned, and how your organization plans to improve the initiative. (200 words maximum)
The Kenyan market was not technologically ready for online booking of essential Government services. This caused uneasiness, reluctance and resistance by MDACs (Ministries, Department, Agencies and Counties), staff and the customers.
The lessons learnt were:
• Understand the target audience and package the product.
• Communication is a key component in rolling out the systems
• It is crucial to conduct training of staff to assist before rollout