Private Sector Role in e-Gov Programs
The e-Government Program relies heavily on the private sector to implement its plans and achieve its objectives. The private sector is actually considered a real partner in the e-Government Program through the following roles:
- An important customer for the e-government concepts.
- A developer of e-government applications.
- An implementer of e-government projects.
The government organization prepares a comprehensive study to investigate the feasibility of implementing its electronic applications with high efficiency as per the principle of sharing expected revenue. The study should include the following:
- A clear definition of the services to be provided, the target customers, and the standards that decide how suitable they are to such customers.
- Identify the human, financial and technical resources required for providing these services, funding means, and the distribution of financial revenues between the government organization and the implementing private sector organization (revenues collected from subscriptions, service fees, advertising, intellectual property rights relevant to e-Government and all other dues).
- The necessary security requirements needed to provide electronic services in the government organization.
- The department is to coordinate with the Ministry of Finance regarding financial resources and their distribution.
- If the study conducted reveals that the project is feasible, the government organization should put forth the project in a public tender and select the qualified companies.
- The duty of preparing the study and the public tender documents is the responsibility of the respective government organization.
- The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the Communications and Information Technology Commission should prepare unified standards for the regulations used by government organizations to prepare the required studies as well as tender terms and conditions. Both of the above government organizations are to work with the relevant organizations in analyzing bids, selection and follow up of project implementation.
- A partnership contract should be signed between the government organization and the private sector organization, who is to execute the project, to create, operate and provide the electronic services offered by the government organization. The contract should specify the period, authorities, liabilities, ownership rights, distribution of duties, funding, revenue percentages, penalties, etc.
- A joint team from the government organization and the executing private sector organization should be formed to cooperate in specifying work mechanisms; providing, exchanging and updating relevant information; and responding to technical developments and work needs.
- The executing private sector organization should provide the necessary training programs that enable the government organization to operate and maintain the electronic services efficiently and securely.
- The respective government organization is required to provide the necessary information and flexibility during project phases to ensure provision of services with a high degree of efficiency and capability.
- The government organization should coordinate with other organizations (from public or private sectors) who are related to the services provided. The executing organization should be required to observe that when specifying work scope and mechanisms.
- The executing private sector organization is required to observe all regulations relating to information confidentiality and should apply the best security and protection programs which ensure a secure environment for electronic transactions.
- The executing private sector organization should apply technical and technological specifications of open and flexible systems. The organization should avoid standards that render the government department dependent on a single product, and hence hinder future efforts to promote its infrastructure as it becomes limited to using a particular technology.
- Government organizations and the Ministry of Finance are required to give priority to e- Government projects in their budget allocations.