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Collaborative Outcomes in the Public Sector – Examples and Architecture

Since introducing and defining the concept of “Collaborative Outcomes in the Public Sector” in my first Defining Shared Services and Collaborative Outcomes in the Public Sector, we’ve produced two White Papers that provide detailed, illustrative examples of collaborative outcomes, and describe the technology needed to enable collaborative outcomes. Not surprisingly, SAP’s business process platform is such a technology. Furthermore, collaborative outcomes is a thought-leadership platform that distinguishes SAP against our competition in the public service industries.


The execution of collaborative outcomes within the public sector is moving from something occasionally and haphazardly accomplished through informal or manual methods to an approach that is being accomplished in real time, online, via automation and enabling technologies.


This progression is driven by the tremendous potential benefits that collaborative outcomes afford the public sector and its stakeholders. Governments are looking at collaborative outcomes as a way to reduce cost, improve service, and maximize the value they deliver among, between, and outside their organizational boundaries. The emphasis on collaborative outcomes is growing because governments increasingly realize that technology provides the collective power to share information and processes that deliver operational, social, and political benefits. With such enabling technology, governments can break down layers of bureaucracy, deliver responsive services, and ultimately achieve positive collaborative outcomes for their stakeholders.


In our first SAP White Paper – Delivering Public Value, we highlight four illustrative examples of collaborative outcomes. One crosses different levels or segments of government, involving a federal government passport agency and a state government child support agency. Here, a citizen requests a passport renewal for a planned trip abroad. Before processing this passport renewal, the passport agency cross-checks with the family services department in the citizen’s state of residence, specifically the child support enforcement agency. The CSE informs the passport agency that the citizen is a noncustodial mother who owes child support to her ex-husband and has an outstanding warrant for failure to attend a related court hearing. Given this shared information, the passport agency rejects the passport renewal for the woman, who is in fact intending to leave the country permanently. In this case, the federal passport agency accomplishes its mission and desired outcome, which is to issue, renew, or decline passports for citizens. The state child support enforcement agency accomplishes its mission of identifying and pursuing delinquent noncustodial parents to pay back child support.


In our second SAP White Paper – Processes and Architecture, we discuss the needed

technology capabilities to support collaborative outcomes, all of which SAP provides:

  1. A business process platform that includes process-modeling technology so that opportunities for collaborative outcomes can be effectively analyzed, modeled and implemented
  2. Enterprise application software that supports both the core public administrative “back-office” areas of government, along with the various “front-office”, constituent-facing services lines of business, such as tax and revenue and public security, for example.
  3. A partner ecosystem that allows different solutions to be integrated
  4. Service-oriented architecture to provide reuse and incremental approach to development, providing faster results with less effort
  5. A means of cataloguing and discovering all available Web services through a repository
  6. Enterprise content management
  7. Enterprise search

There is renewed interest in collaborative outcomes across all levels of government as a way to increase efficiency and productivity while maximizing public value. Within SAP, the topic has gained attention all the way to Henning Kagermann, who has included it in his market-facing presentations – see a recent speech transcript.

In light of rapidly aging and retiring workforces, governments need to attract the next generation of workers who are familiar and used to Wiki’s, Blogs, social networking, and related collaborative tools as a way of life. Meanwhile, the complexity of government’s mission is increasing, along with citizens demand for transparency. The success of government agencies will hinge on their ability to share and use information and business processes among, between and across organizational boundaries.

Let me know your thoughts on the collaborative outcomes concept and the content in our two new White Papers.  

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