Erlina Ke, Deputy Director, Application and Business Management Services, Ministry of Law, GovTech, Singapore

By Medha Basu

Women in GovTech 2018 Special Report.

How do you use technology/policy to improve citizens’ lives? Tell us about your role or organisation.

Being a GovTech officer deployed to Ministry of Law, my role evolves around managing a team of officers in implementing and maintaining the application systems for the agency.

What has been the most exciting thing that you worked on in 2018?

One of the key implementations that my team and I are working on in 2018 involves re-designing the way we manage and interact with members of the public with the revamp of a key business system.

Having earlier experience in agile development, the team set out to develop the new system in the iterative process and continuously engaged end users, with the release of minimal viable products. With this process, we have seen a vast improvement in the quality of the releases over the traditional waterfall implementations. At the Ministry of Law, we will continue delivery application systems this way and fully leverage the benefits of Agile development.

If you were to share one piece of advice that you learned in 2018, what would it be?

2018 has been an eventful year for technology development at Government Agencies. First, with the Ministry Family Digitalisation Plan, the Digital Government Blueprint and also Public Service Transformation. Being in the thick of such developments for both the Agency and GovTech has opened my eyes to many possibilities. From policies to breaking-down barriers and facilitating collaboration between agencies (especially in terms of data sharing), to caring for our staff to develop their technical skills to be future-ready, these are some of the developments which will be important to all staff in GovTech.

To stay on top of things, we have our daily stand-ups* to find out the progress and work on issues faced. Agile practices may not be just for application development, but in our day-to-day work too. :)

Coffee, yoga, music... what powers you through your day?

Aside from work, I return home every day and am recharged by my 3 energiser bunnies (aka princesses). They provide me with a different perspective from a Digital Native, and they make me ponder on how I can play my part to make Singapore a better place for them to live in.

*This is an Agile Scrum practice, where the team has 15 – 30 mins each day to say three things: (1) what have I done yesterday; (2) what I will be doing today; (3) any impediment I’m facing.