Administrative Burdens for Citizens and ICT Peter Rem

Burdens for
Citizens and ICT
Peter Rem
The Hague
5 March 2008
Who is Gert?
• Disability benefit
• Lost his leg in accident at
• Unemployed due to
• Administrative burdens
relate to:
– Obtaining aids in the
house (wheelchair, new
– Getting a new driving
– Claiming benefits
• “I filled in more forms
the last two years than
the number of taps I
repaired in 25 year as a
Why reducing administrative burdens for citizens?
New government Coalition agreement (2007) states
“ A serving government is a government that puts the
citizens and companies in the central position. For
this, less rules and bureaucratic burdens and a high
quality of public services are necessary.”
So close cooperation between programme on reducing
administrative burdens for citizens and E-government
programme: ICT is an important tool to be able to
reduce administrative burdens and to improve the
quality of public services
Administrative burdens are costs to businesses and
citizens complying with the information obligations
resulting from government imposed legislation and
How did we measure? (1)
Standard Cost Model for Citizens
measures in:
Time in hours
Out of pocket costs
(e.g. notary, travel costs,
stamps) in Euros
AB citizens= T x Q and C x Q
T= Time in hours
C= Out of pocket costs in
Q= Number of people affected by the AB
• People find time more burdensome than costs (in Euros)
Some facts:
Total AB Citizen the Netherlands (16 mln inhabitants):
110 mln hours
€ 1,275 billion out of pocket costs
We measured 165 laws and regulations with AB for
citizens (=20% of the total number of information
Regulations with the highest number of AB were:
Income Tax Act: 15 mln hours and € 156 mln
Passport Act: 12.7 mln hours and € 18 mln
Road Traffic Act 12.5 mln hours and € 174 mln
But also Voting Act: 3.3 mln hours and € 79.000
Administrative burdens of Gert:
An example:
What do citizens want?
Less administrative burdens (bureaucracy)
One front office (‘no wrong door’)
Easy access to the right information
One-off data delivery
An ‘easy’ relationship while interacting
Good treatment by government (‘be taken seriously’)
How did we reduce burdens?
Coordinating programme on reducing burdens of
citizens within the Ministry of the Interior and
Kingdom Relations
Reduction proposals of 8 ministries adding up to
- 25% reduction of AB citizens
Specific focus on reducing burdens for target
groups: handicapped and chronically ill, elderly,
benefit claimants, unemployed and volunteers
Ministerial AB ceilings (compensation)
Complaints office and kafka brigade
Smart ICT solutions on the basis of a common ICT
What did we do for Gert?
Amongst others:
Renewal of the parking card for handicapped
people happens automatically
Single electronic file for people who receive an
unemployment benefit: people will have to provide
information only once
Prefilled electronic forms on income tax
Benefit claimants are automatically exempted from
local taxes
Several other forms are electronically available and
the language in the forms has been made simpler
Results by end 2007
Overall result of AB target groups
Mother on social security (Maria)
Volunteer (Henk)
Handicapped child (Bart)
Old person in need (Thea)
Average family (Verstappen)
Vital old person (Mikel)
Chronically ill (Pauline)
Benefit claimant (Gert)
Unemployed (Johan)
Change in approach 2007-2011
New focus on solutions that matter -> reduction of
burdens relating to top ten annoyances of citizens
Broader approach including service delivery
Working together with the local government (new
target in CA: -25% of local admin burden for citizens)
Quantification mainly to monitor:
Departmental admin burden ceilings and new
Consequences for the admin burden of target groups
New focus on qualitative burdens of citizens
Top 10 solutions (1):
1. Fast and secure service: waiting time will be transparent
and shorter
2. Simple application and accountability with social security
3. Single provision of data: all income-related arrangements
in one personal internet page
4. Passports are easily obtainable
5. Reduction of permits, towards general rules
New focus on qualitative burdens of citizens
Top 10 solutions (2):
6. Comprehensible language in forms
7. More trust: more free-of-accountability
8. Mediation
9. Volunteer work: treated like citizens, not enterprises
10. Quality of services: 7/10
Conditions for success: combine quality with quantity
Focus on real issues that matter for citizens
Make a top ten of measurable and noticeable (for
political debate) reductions (on the level of
central/decentralised government and role models)
Get political support in government and parliament for
this top ten
Independent watchdog `Actal´
Departmental admin burden ceilings for a net result
Awareness: citizen perspective central: ask citizens
whether they notice the reductions
What are we proud of:
By means of the complaints office, we are able to help
people with administrative burdens in a very practical
There is close cooperation with local government
(Association of Netherlands municipalities) to reduce
burdens on the local level
Government has approved a norm of simplicity to
make forms easily understandable for citizens
Digid: electronic password for government services is
used by 6 million people
Uniform Citizens Service number: enables government
organisations to exchange information about citizens
more easily
International activities
Cooperation with other European Countries to
exchange knowledge, good practices and experiences
What a relief network: focuses
on better services with less bureaucracy for citizens
Learning team on reducing administrative burdens of
citizens within the European Public Administration
Network: more than 18 countries participate
European Union: lobby European Commission for more
attention to the administrative burdens of citizens: New
EU-legislation must include information about
consequences for citizens
Thank you for your attention!
For more information:
Peter Rem
[email protected]
+31 70 426 7487