Digital Government Policy

The Digital Government Policy is part of the Digital Government Regulatory Framework and sets the overall direction to achieve sustainable long-term government digital transformation in the Kingdom. The Digital Government Policy supports the development of government entities' strategic plans that are fully aligned with the Digital Government Strategy. It also supports the implementation of such plans.

The Digital Government Policy sets the overall direction to achieve sustainable long-term government digital transformation in the Kingdom. The Digital Government Policy supports the development of government entities' strategic plans that are fully aligned with the National Digital Government Strategy. It also supports the implementation of such plans. Five specialized policies derived from the Digital Government Policy cover critical digital government areas: governance; digital services management; augmenting beneficiaries’ engagement; developing the necessary human capabilities; and adopting modern technologies and methodologies. The DGA leads the Digital Government Policy implementation by developing and publishing standards and procedures, supporting their adoption across the government, and monitoring compliance while collaborating closely with all relevant government entities. That ensures the alignment of digital government across sectors, increases efficiency and optimizes the use of technical resources and investments, all contributing to achieving the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.

Policy Objectives

The Digital Government Policy aims to:

  • Create a comprehensive digital government ecosystem focused on beneficiaries.
  • Facilitate government sector digital transformation by enhancing its responsiveness to the needs and priorities of beneficiaries.
  • Define the principles, enablers and driving factors, and the governance structures needed to achieve the strategic goals and objectives of the National Digital Government Strategy.
  • Improve the Kingdom’s rankings in the United Nations E-Government Development Index.

Components of the Framework

The Digital Government Policy comprises four pillars:

Pillar 1: Engagement

The engagement requires the participation of and collaboration with institutions from the government, the private sector, civil society and benefi¬ciaries so they can provide valuable inputs for digital government implementation.
The Engagement Pillar comprises the following six principles:
  • Transparency: Government entities shall foster increased participation, which fosters public trust in government, and active citizen involvement ranging from basic consultation and information sharing to joint development and co-creation. Government entities shall also use digital technologies and innovation to support effective communication among participants.
  • Collaboration: Government entities shall work collaboratively with all groups active in the digital government ecosystem – namely, government, the private sector, and civil society organizations. The broad collaboration will help identify gaps and priorities in the provision of services and information thus propelling a more efficient allocation of resources – people, funding, and technology. Current gaps between supply (government) and demand (benefi¬ciaries and other targeted institutions) will be minimized, resulting in increased benefi¬ciary satisfaction with government services.
  • Data and privacy: Government entities shall align regulations related to data management, security, and privacy with existing legislation issued by the relevant government entities. Government entities shall also encourage benefi¬ciaries’ participation to share data comprehensively while ensuring benefi¬ciaries’ data protection and facilitating easy access to personal data.
  • Information sharing: Government entities shall make available data that is classified as public information in accordance with existing regulations issued by relevant government entities. As a result, bene¬ficiaries will be fully informed when accessing government services that offer engagement and participation mechanisms. Government entities shall also comply with policies and regulations protecting con¬fidential information as per existing regulations issued by other relevant government entities.
  • Innovative Government Culture: Government entities shall create a culture of information, data sharing, and collaboration, and promote interaction across institutions from different sectors – government, the private sector, and civil society - to foster a more effective digital government and contribute to the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 goals.
  • Inclusion: Government entities shall adopt an inclusive approach to ensure information access by people with disabilities and from vulnerable communities so that they can engage with the government effectively.

Pillar 2: Transformation

The transformation includes the enablers that drive the development of government – the main emphasis being on modernization, not technology. Transformation demands an integrated approach to institutional modernization – changes to managerial, organizational, technical, and business processes – that will drive high-quality digital government platforms and services.

The Transformation Pillar is based on the following four principles:

  • Government Modernization: Government entities shall link their digital transformation and use of new technologies to broader government modernization processes in order to build enhanced capabilities and increase the availability and quality of both digital services and whole-of-government platforms.
  • Structural & Operational Models: Government shall take a comprehensive approach to transformation, not limited to technology. Government entities will align their existing business model to the priorities of the National Digital Government Strategy while updating required management skills, internal structures, and administration processes.
  • IT governance: Government entities shall strengthen internal governance of information technology in accordance with related standards while ensuring alignment with policies and standards issued by DGA, the latter already aligned with international bodies such as ISO.
  • Shared resources: Government entities shall give priority to shared resources and capabilities available on whole-of-government platforms. Government entities shall also identify and address the current challenges and gaps in skilled resources by engaging with relevant government entities.

Pillar 3: Capacity

The pillars of engagement and transformation require access to an e-client digital government ecosystem, including the local private sector, that facilitates the much-needed change in government entities. Change and process management overall Capability, as well as technical expertise, is needed to strengthen an enabled government workforce and drive complex transformation processes.

The Capability Pillar comprises six principles:

  • Bene¬ficiaries’ Capability: Government entities shall increase benefi¬ciaries’ (government entities) awareness and promote digital skills by conducting awareness workshops that will digitally empower benefi¬ciaries to interact effectively and efficiently with the government, actively use participation platforms, and be part of decision-making processes.
  • Technical Capability: Government entities shall strengthen their technical capabilities to support the National Digital Government Strategy implementation, including understanding the impact of new technologies on government operations to adopt and encourage their use. Government entities shall build a capable and empowered technical workforce to ensure the successful adoption of digital transformation.
  • Workforce Digital Capability: Government entities shall develop the digital capabilities of all employees so that the entire workforce contributes to the transformation of the workplace needed for digital government. Government entities shall develop and adopt initiatives that aim at closing current digital skills gaps and thus meet labor market demand.
  • Managerial Capability: Government entities shall enhance administrative and managerial capabilities to achieve an effective return on digital investments. Digital Government projects require high-quality project management for successful implementation.
  • Business Capability: Government entities shall enhance the business capabilities of staff through feasibility studies and business case development for digital initiatives, following regional and global best practices and experience.
  • Cross-cutting Capability: Government entities shall increase the efficiency and effectiveness of working across government and strengthen the capabilities required to respond collectively, especially in crisis times.

Pillar 4: Governance

The governance contributes to the realization of all the principles mentioned above through (1) overseeing and monitoring the adoption of the Digital Government Policy by DGA and other relevant government entities, as well as compliance with standards and procedures published by DGA; (2) encouraging collaboration across the digital government ecosystem; (3) ensuring continuous engagement and communication between government entities driving digital transformation; (4) ensuring policy coherence across government entities, and (5) justifying the costs of government digital services within the government sector.

The Governance Pillar comprises six principles:

  • Adherence to Policies and Standards: Government entities shall comply with policies and standards issued by DGA, the technical standards on digital transformation models, and digital government regulations issued by other government entities. DGA will monitor and report compliance, as will provide advisory services to raise the level of compliance across government.
  • Designing Policies: Government entities shall work closely with DGA in the development of digital government policies, regulations, and principles. The DGA will also support gap identification and their closing.
  • Taking Responsibility: Government entities shall be responsible for the proper and effective implementation of digital government, including full compliance with policies and standards by any of the service providers contracted to furnish digital government services.
  • Multi-stakeholder Dynamics: Government entities shall engage external parties such as businesses, civil society, and citizens in executing the initiatives and overall strategic direction of the National Digital Government Strategy.
  • Digital Government Products: Government entities shall adhere to the standards envisaged for digital government products and work directly with DGA to oversee their implementation in cooperation with the relevant authorities.
  • Provisioning of Services: Government entities’ service providers (developers and service operators) shall adhere with the Framework and all relevant decisions issued by DGA.