A network of digital advocates welcomed the launching of the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s Finance and Management Service-For Your Information (FMS-FYI) portal.
Digital Pinoys national campaigner Ronald Gustilo said that the digitalization being undertaken by DSWD will provide ease of transactions for indigent clients of the agency. Previous administrations of the DSWD saw long lines of people requesting assistance to the agency, the peak of which was the financial assistance brouhaha wherein thousands swarmed the main offices of DSWD and its field offices.
“The digitalization of DSWD services is very much welcome as it will make transacting with the agency much easier. We are hoping that this will lead to faster turnover of assistance for indigent clients and lesser queues of people requesting for assistance in DSWD offices.”
Gustilo added that the chatbot that DSWD will use should be easily understood by the clients and must be able to easily direct them to the answer to their queries and requests.
“The DSWD chatbot should be different than the usual chatbot experience. It should be able to direct clearly the requesting party to the services that they need to avail. It should also have a fast turnover of concerned DSWD personnel for processing of requests and real time link and endorsement to the concerned department in case of emergency or urgent cases.”
Gustilo said that with the digitalization of DSWD services, transactions will also be transparent and lesser prone to abuse by unscrupulous individuals.
It can be recalled that there were previous incidents wherein fixers were caught trying to transact on behalf of hapless victims in exchange for a portion of the assistance received. There were also attempts to seek financial assistance, using fake requirements.
“We are hoping that with the digitalization of the social welfare department’s services, cases of fake claims and fixers in the agency will dwindle and eventually eradicated. We are confident that this is possible under the current DSWD leadership of Secretary Rex Gatchalian.”