The coronavirus crisis over the past months has revealed the high price that governments, companies and even individuals may pay as a result of following rigid, outdated and immutable methodologies. There is an urgent need to abandon old practices and adapt to new, more flexible practices and methodologies. In the midst of a global crisis, Government entities around the world are amending their regulations, reusing infrastructure, rehiring employees and adopting innovative technologies at an unprecedented speed.
The success and prosperity of governments post-COVID-19 depends on developing this kind of response and bringing about a radical change in cultures and practices to encourage resilience, adaptability and continuous learning. In other words, Governments must develop their concepts and enrich the attributes of flexibility and ability to keep pace with change.
To achieve this, Countries need flexibility in policymaking, decision-making, and resource sharing (both within governments and across government, private and non-profit sectors); More adaptable structures must also be adopted. If we want to describe flexibilities, We can say that they are those that have the ability to adjust their policies and make decisions to keep pace with rapidly changing circumstances.
The current crisis has given us many opportunities to see this materialize. In Korea, for example, Manufacturing standards have been relaxed amid the shortage of containers used to dispose of medical waste by halving the inspection time of such products. In California, The government has granted startup Nuro permission to start testing driverless delivery vehicles, which promise a paradigm shift in contactless commerce.
In contrast to the traditional policymaking mechanism, which often conceals latent challenges that arise too late, This shortened, responsive mechanism enables governments to meet changing needs and requirements by identifying and addressing challenges as they arise. In many cases, it enables policymakers to avoid challenges by relying on innovative tools such as data analytics, artificial intelligence, scenarios, and simulation technology to recognize a challenge before it occurs, predict developments, and test and test different responses.
An example of this is what happened in Taiwan when the government took action quickly and succeeded in curbing the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic before confirming the nature of the virus. Taiwan began monitoring flights from Johan, China, in early January with the first infection with what was later known as the novel coronavirus. A database was then developed to enable hospitals to assess the risk of infection based on travel history at the time of the onset of the virus. In another example from the United Kingdom, In May, the British Finance Authority presented, After the virus was declared a global pandemic, A digital protection program that allows private sector companies to test different solutions to confront the coronavirus while monitoring their efforts by legislators.
The emerging government systems cooperated with the private sector to compensate for the lack of supply and help those in need, This is another aspect of flexibility. For example The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has relied on ride-sharing companies to transport food to veterans living in isolated areas at high risk. In addition to providing transportation services to shelters and people wishing to visit the doctor. Back in Taiwan, Her government has partnered with private companies to speed up the production of masks and organize distribution amid severe shortages.
Other governments have resorted to reusing their infrastructure to cope with conditions, such as in France, where high-speed trains were converted into ambulances and used to transport COVID-19 patients from areas with shortages of hospital beds to other regions. India has also turned trains into mobile isolation wards.
Flexible governments are able to move more quickly than is customary in government agencies. Speaking of speed, The UAE Government Accelerators initiative introduced the concept of accelerating results and fostering innovation through competitions and challenges involving frontline "accelerator teams" aimed at improving people's lives in 100 days or less. So far, The UAE conducted three hundred days competitions in addition to nearly thirty challenges in which around 1,200 employees in the government and private sectors participated.
Flexible government must apply the principle of flexibility to all its resources, Including human resources. This means being ready to rehire employees, relaxing associated laws, adapting to the policy of remote work and, in general, abandoning the usual way of performing tasks when it comes to human resources.
New York was one of the cities that gave us an example of this in March as coronavirus numbers soared and hospitals began to run out of capacity. This came after the governor issued a public call for medical care staff, which resulted in the mobilization of more than 40,000 volunteers of healthcare professionals, students and retirees who responded to the call to increase capacity in overburdened hospitals.
The Corona crisis has shown us that governments are able to adapt and amend their regulations at an unprecedented speed. As well as repurposing its existing resources and painting a new image of its workplaces. This resilience will prove invaluable in the post-COVID-19 era when governments are compelled to continue to manage their operations while preparing for future crises. Yes There are future crises and as with the Corona crisis, change is inevitable.