The Mannar Urban Council was supported by The Asia Foundation in 2015 to transform the quality of citizen services offered to citizens of the area.
Prior to the TAF intervention, the council was poorly maintained, with low staff capacity and knowledge. The manner in which the staff process applications, and addressed citizen grievances reflected the state of the building. Their low interest in the work they do, despite its importance, reflected in the day to day conduct and the general efficiency of the council.
In an attempt to uplift the council and its engagement with citizens, The Asia Foundation introduced the automated and modernized front office concept to the council. Software to process Assessment tax payments was introduced, to increase efficiency of the tax collection process, especially to manage new-valuation rates. The software produced daily/monthly reports, generated arrears , processed sub division applications ,amalgamations and a range of other services offered by the council.
Prior to introducing the software, the council had to manually refer ledgers and process the payments, but the automated system reduced the time required by both the staff and citizens to make payments to the council.
The Urban Councils welfare association made the efforts to colour wash the building. The new outlook to the building catalyzed the staff to get more motivated and committed to their jobs. The effort taken by multiple parties to enhance the UC proved the staff that they play an important role in the daily lives of the public. The staff worked tirelessly to put up a modern, fully functioning front office, equipped with computers, printers, touch screen feedback systems, servers and televisions.
The automated front office was launched in 2015 and is maintained well by the Mannar Urban Council.