Digital Government towards Thailand 4.0
As the government has officially announced the 12th National Economic and Social Development Plan, people from the private sector have come up with several questions on how to get the plan started, while government officials are also uncertain of what they should adjust or how to cope efficiently with the newly developed plan. In fact, the government issued the plan, also known as “Digital Thailand”, in April 2016, encouraging Thai people to make better use of the digital technology in the most efficient ways, ranging from seeking a better career opportunity to developing learning skills in general. The digital technology has been evolved to provide greater convenience and higher efficiency, backed by the ability to reduce excessive costs and eliminate restrictions in all aspects for the public and private sectors, conforming to the “Power of Less” concept.
The government has developed Digital Thailand to cover six major areas. The first strategy is to establish the fundamental communication infrastructure to facilitate people as a whole. Perceived as a digital communication route, the fundamental communication infrastructure is anticipated to access all areas throughout Thailand in 2017. The second strategy focuses on the development of the digital communication route, which is expected to offer a greater economic and commercial opportunity for Thai people, where the digital technology will play a significant role in increasing productivity, reducing redundant costs, and maximizing distribution channels.
Additionally, the third strategy is to make all Thai people prepared for the development of digital social measures as the government is undoubtedly forced to transform itself into Digital Government. The fourth strategy is concerned with the preparedness of digital manpower at all levels of various government organizations. The fifth strategy aims to maximize people’s digital capacity, motivating them to focus more on digital technology and make use of it in the most efficient and appropriate ways. Finally, the sixth strategy is to create confidence in using the digital technology and online media.
In fact, Thai people are quite familiar with the term “Electronic Government” or “e-Government” as it has been promoted to the general public over the past few years. However, despite whether it is known as “e-Government” or renamed as “Digital Government, the objectives of the establishment remain unchanged. Obviously, the definition of Digital Government unveils a broader scope of work and responsibilities as the government is expecting to see all Thai people own a portable computer gadget in their hands, which is appropriate for individual use. With the use of these preferred technology devices, it will be more efficient and convenient for people to directly access public information. As Digital Government is progressed, people will not only be considered users of the digital technology, but they will become an integral part of the entire digital system advanced with integration.
Consequently, to push forward the existence of Digital Government, several government agencies are required to seek further solutions for their daily operations, particularly public services. Nowadays, it is very common to see people shopping for goods and services via the Line application. However, government officials are often suggested to rely on paper-based systems for managing the massive numbers of documents. People’s smart ID cards have been introduced for more than a decade, but the majority of government agencies fail to make use of them in a more productive way. People can only use their smart ID cards whenever they are required to proceed with government-based transactions, particularly at certain government offices, and there is no point relying on any duplicated document used as a transactional reference anymore. These actual facts unveil the inefficiency and inferiority of both operational and management systems developed among different government organizations.
The government has set its sights on achieving the aforementioned ideas in accordance with the Digital Government plan within the next five years.
Stay tuned for further development of Digital Government.