Availability and utilisation of information and communication technologies for service delivery: a South African case study

Mduduzi Aubrey Ntetha, Bertha Jantine Mostert

Abstract


This study is based on a Masters thesis that investigated whether the availability of information and
communication technologies (ICTs) in government offices within the boundaries of uMhlatuze Municipality
improved their ability to deliver effective e-services. The South African government has initiated several ICT
initiatives to enable its departments to improve and speed up service delivery to the public. Government
departments have been endowed with a number of ICT tools to assist in this process. Despite these efforts,
complaints about the lack of service delivery still abound. Three government departments were targeted using
questionnaires and interviews. The major findings suggest that various ICTs are available and are used by the staff,
but not necessarily for service delivery. Lack of computers and Internet access was identified as a major challenge.
The study also found that there is an urgent need for basic training on all the ICT tools available in the offices. It is
recommended that a resource and capacity survey is necessary in all the offices to identify shortcomings in the
system in order to improve service delivery. Failing this, e-government service delivery will not meet its potential.
Additionally, governmental databases should be made available in all the offices so that the services can be
delivered locally and not have to be re-routed through either regional or head offices.

Keywords


E-government, service delivery; information and communication technology applications; public services; uMhlatuze City

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7553/77-2-55

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