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Avoiding eGov Failure 5

lesson 10 part 6


Avoiding eGov Failure: Ideas About Design

This page offers ideas about how to address one factor identified as important to the success or failure of e-government projects. Follow this link for more information about such factors (and some related case examples).

Idea 1: Prototype And/Or Pilot Your Project

Taking project requirements, disappearing off to a darkened room for several months, and then implementing the entire e-government project is not a great recipe for success. Instead, an iterative and incremental approach should be used. First, this involves prototyping - the use of a working model of the final system, which users can see, comment on, and have revised before the final version is produced. This has been shown to increase the rate of e-government project success by making the design match real user needs, and by making users more realistic in their expectations of the system.

Second, this can involve piloting - typically implementing the e-government system at a single site; observing, learning and reviising the system; and only then rolling it out to other sites. Again, this has been a proven way to increase the chance of project success.

(From: Richard Heeks)

Idea 2: Stakeholder Involvement Is A Must

The Cameroon government initiated the SIGIPES project: introducing e-government into the process of human resource management within government. The first attempt at the project - which took a top-down approach - was a failure. The second attempt ensured that general staff, including administrators and other lower-/middle-level system users, were involved with the project. Their ideas were incorporated into the design, ensuring that the design did meet the real - rather than imagined - needs of these key stakeholders.

(From: Olivier Kenhago)