Speaking at the recent Gauteng Shared Services Centre (GSSC) conference, chairman of Sasuka George Negota urged companies to embrace the challenge of bridging the perceived chasm between the public and private sector.
"Shared Services as a concept, is something which is by now well understood, but to ensure that Shared Services as an ideology lives up to its expectations we need to ensure that the relationship between the role players, namely the public and private sectors, succeeds," says Negota.
"The private sector is critical to the success of the public sector, as it provides the knowledge and know how, needed by governments looking to improve their own service delivery."
A central theme emerging from the conference, sponsored by SAS Institute's partner Sasuka, is that although important to the bigger picture, technology, processes and state of the art systems and applications are not what drives the critical success factors of a Shared Services environment.
The effective implementation thereof depends on the resources most often overlooked and taken for granted – people; and, as summarised by conference chairman Tebogo Mosupi from Liberty Life, people with all the right ABCs, namely attitude, behaviour and culture.
While the concept of the public private partnership (ppp) is not a new concept, Negota went on to say that the private sector is obligated to making a difference in the public sector. An effective way by which to achieve this, is according to him, through constructive and purposeful skills transfer, assisting in the upliftment of the public sector.
"It is all about sharing risks. But to get the public sector on the same footing as its private sector counterparts will take a serious mind shift. We need to squash the current image of the public sector which is one of non-delivery, by transforming attitudes," adds Negota.
"When you get bad service from a private sector company, you walk out the door, look for a competitor and take your business to them we don't have that luxury when we are dealing with the public sector as there is only one supplier."
In conclusion he says: ³Let governments embrace that which is within the private sector and transform it, Shared Services is a positive step towards changing the slow pace in which government usually works. It is with this that I again urge that ppp's be developed to close the chasm between the two sectors, for the benefit of the people of a country as well as its businesses."