An evaluation of e–Government as a support system in public schools
Knuppe, Peter Johan
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The objective of the study was to develop a framework for the implementation of a Business Information Management System in order to increase the efficiency of the knowledge management strategy in the ultimate quest to deliver administrative support to public schools at the Gauteng Department of Education within the Sedibeng East District Office geographical area. A literature investigation was done on the concepts of e–Government, eplatforms, information technology and enablers to determine if Government models are working effectively and efficiently. Based on the findings of the literature study, a questionnaire was designed and used to measure the efficiency of the knowledge management strategy in the base of administrative support to public schools. Government to Government models are the ability to interact and support services through the availability of e–platforms in the ultimate support, and sharing of knowledge through effective knowledge management. Knowledge in an organisation alternates between tacit and explicit knowledge as it goes from an idea to explicit knowledge that can be shared throughout the whole organisation and in the process gives the necessary administrative support to public schools and learners. Proper managed and implemented systems are important for the management of knowledge in an organisation. Knowledge management is a never–ending cycle that starts at discovering knowledge and goes through generating knowledge, evaluating knowledge, sharing the newly found knowledge to leveraging the knowledge. This cycle forms the heart of a knowledge management model like the different education e–platforms that is available. It was concluded that the knowledge in an organisation can be managed with the help of one standardized e–platform model throughout the entire Education Department. Knowledge in an organisation is a very important resource and ought to be strategically managed. The knowledge management strategy starts by determining what knowledge is needed and what is available in the organisation. The chosen standardized model will form the central part of a successful knowledge management strategy. The test for the success of a knowledge management strategy is determined with a knowledge audit. The state of the knowledge management strategy at Gauteng Department of Education, Sedibeng East District Office was assessed by employing convenience survey questionnaires to extract the data. Sedibeng East District Office and therefore the Department of Education, still have a long way to go in order to optimise the management of knowledge. The key area of concern is a lack of a written knowledge management strategy and policy which results in informal e–platform usage and therefore different ways of managing knowledge. A large portion of the indecisiveness seen in the analysis of the questionnaires could be attributed to the lack of a formal knowledge management strategy. It was further concluded that a knowledge gap assessment is the start of the knowledge management strategy and will give direction to the strategy. The culture at Sedibeng East District Office was not tested to determine if the staff will be supportive of a knowledge management strategy. However, the survey indicated that much needed administrative support to public schools needs to be formalized in order to optimize the services and standards of support. A practical knowledge management framework is proposed in order to assist the Department in the implementation of a knowledge management strategy and bridging the gaps found after analysing the questionnaires.