Motivational factors influencing citizens to use M-Government services: a case of Kenyan ministries
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Information Communication Technologies (ICTS) have offered a wide range of opportunities to transform traditional governance in ways government services are offered. Growing research demonstrates the potential of mobile communications to radically transform service delivery by the government. M-Government is therefore emerging as the next big wave for ICT use in the public sector. This paper is based on a research done in 2012 at @iLabAfrica in Strathmore University as part of findings from a Masters dissertation. The purpose of the study was to investigate the role of m-government projects on service delivery to citizens in Kenya in order to enhance public service delivery. One of the study objectives was to evaluate motivational factors that influence citizens to use m-Government services. The study used a descriptive survey design and employed questionnaire and interview techniques to collect data. It was carried out in all the headquarters of 31 Ministries of the Government of Kenya in Nairobi County. Random sampling was used to select citizens in each Ministry. Purposive sampling was used to identify the government officials working in the ICT units. A questionnaire was designed to gather information. Data was analyzed and presented in frequency and percentage outcomes or tables. The findings reveal that most Kenyans contact the Government Ministries via Mobile phone mostly to enquire about a particular service, entitlement, or application. In terms of citizens’ awareness about m-Government services, 58.8% respondents were not aware of any m-Government services. Data on citizen interactions with m-government service reveals that the respondents on the whole had more negative experiences than positive experiences. This indicates that there is room for improvement in Kenyan service delivery. Kenyan citizens prefer services communicated or delivered via mobile phones because: relatively lower cost of mobile phone technology; access through shared usage and ownership; and mobile phones reach areas where there is no other ICT infrastructure. Recommendations included: services must be easy to use with valuable and timely content in order to ensure the service is relevant for end users; true transformation needs governments to pay close attention to re-engineering processes, reforming institutions, and creating an environment for greater accountability and transparency.