Thursday, May 31, 2012

Quality of Government

The Government of a country plays a critical role in ensuring safety and security of its citizens and foreign visitors.  To ensure high standard of living, the quality of services offered by the Government must be high. Government's role is important in ensuring high quality of services in sectors such as education, health care, communication and Information Technology(IT).  The quality of a government is often reflected in the services it offer and the economic status of the country.  Thus, developed countries are often seen a step ahead of developing countries in providing quality services.

I lived in the United States during the period 2002 and 2009.  I have observed that the government of United States is doing a relatively good job in offering quality government services when compared to several other countries, including India.  I believe that government's superior IT system enables US government to achieve service excellence. The Police, Motor Vehicles Department, Social Security, IRS etc., offer excellent and prompt service.  Getting things done right the very first time is the mantra visible at various government offices.  Social Security Number (SSN) serves as a great tool in tracking citizen requests and ensuring quality across the country.  Not many countries have such an efficient mechanism to track and provide service to its residents. 

That being said, things are improving in developing nations such as India.  Planning Commission of Government of India has come up with the "Aadhar" project of UIDAI, the Unique Identification Authority of India, focused to provide identification for each resident across the country.  Considering the high population in India, UIDAI has build an efficient platform to deliver welfare services to Indian residents.  Another great initiative by the Indian government is the RTI (Right To Information) act.  The RTI mandates timely response to citizen requests for government information.  The benefits offered by RTI are amazing and every Indian now understands the value it provides to its citizens.   Information Technology in India is growing at an extremely high pace.  India can now issue fresh passports in as quick as 7 days, one of the quickest across the world.

While it is glad to see quality initiatives of various governments, inefficiencies can also observed in some areas.  At times, politicians misuse their powers which bring the quality of government services down.  Poor economic policies and extreme market conditions often create turbulence in offering quality services in certain nations. 

It is nice to see Paul coming up with such an important topic for this month's discussion.  Way to go ASQ in spreading the voice of quality - as always, across continents.

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