This Intra-IMD Portal, popularly called METNET was launched on 27th July 2008 by the METNET Unit functioning under the Information Systems and Services Division, India Meteorological Department, as a first initiative to have a coordinated approach to standardize database and various in-house e-governance related activities. Our objectives is
to implement e-governance concepts in IMD,
to create a suitable platform for sharing of administrative information in IMD,
to coordinate the IT efforts of various sub-offices of the department,
bring efficiency and transparency in office works,
to reduce the delay in exchange information and making it available in proper format,
create an organisational setup which is tuned to use IT to optimise administrative and scientific activities.
Situation before the initiative :
The India Meteorological Department was one of the few organisations implementing the use of supercomputers in India. Since 1875, IMD has progressively expanded its ICT infrastructure for meteorological observations, communications and weather forecasting services.
However, the other side of the coin, the administrative and governance part of the department has realised the great potential of technology quite late. The department has six Regional Centers, twenty three Meteorological Centers and about 500 observatories spread all over the country. The Human Resource management has been a challenge for the suitable deployment of the personnel in every district of every state and union territory.
Prior to 2008, the administrative units were using traditional methods of delivery of notifications, orders, guidelines, etc. It was difficult for them to get connected to the end-users of the system under the hierarchical procedures. These units were not equipped with the tools of technology to deliver the service in a effective, reliable, time-bound and limpid and logical manner. Moreover the department had no electronic database of employees, no query mechanisms at the click of the button, and no real-time administrative management system. It was more person-dependent, less transparent with the hurdles of senior-junior controls, resulting in the failure of transfer of information on rules regulations, admin procedures, vulnerable to the wrong willful activities in the system and many a times, harassment to the employees.
The huge stock of human resources which the IMD possesses in the form of the officers and staff is generally submerged in files and papers with the result that neither its latent talents nor its obvious ones are noticed and/or recognized. The end result has been that the department was bound to be left with a large chunk of demotivated, demoralized and uninterested people who resist transformation.
Strategy Adopted :
The need was felt to design a suitable platform applicable to all cadres, all offices and sub-offices, wherein all administrative information can be made available on real-time to all the beneficiaries of the project. The same can be used to assist the administrative authorities and HR managers in effective decision making process.
The concept of Intra-IMD Portal was conceived and the project for its in-house development was taken up at the HQ level. An Intra-IMD Portal for e-governance, now popularly called 'METNET', was developed by the team of dedicated officer and staff of IMD.
The METNET Team had done pre-programming survey, study of rules regulations and procedures, software development, their implementation, imparting training, further maintenance and future up-gradation for more than 50 sub-projects and packages for the effective administrative reforms through METNET Service.
It was initialized with the preparation of the centralised database of the personals and as stated, the main challenge was to gather the information from the distributed service book records from all regional centers. For the personnel information system, some data is required to be collected from the beneficiaries also.
Information Availability :
The India Meteorological Department, with its headquarters as O/o Director General of Meteorology, New Delhi, has 9 other sub-offices, viz. O/o Deputy Director General of Meteorology (Upper Air Instruments) at New Delhi, 2 offices in Pune and 6 Regional Centers located at Delhi, Mumbai Kolkata, Chennai, Guwahati and Nagpur. There are twenty Meteorological Centers where some are under the administrative control of Regional Centers and some are directly under HQ. The department's functionality dependents on about 500 observatories spread all over the country, where some are under the administrative control of Meteorological Center, some under Regional Centers and some are directly under HQ.
The maintenance of service book records is physically distributed among these 10 offices. The administrative units at HQ update the information on the officials and their personal records in a conventional manner. With the beginning of this Government-to-Employee (G2E) type of e-governance project, the electronic maintenance of information is centralised and effectively managed.The METNET provides support to the office administration in delivering comprehensive reports and easy-to-use enquiry tools by direct secured access of information in an electronic format.
The METNET Coordinators are nominated at all the regional and sub-offices. Their responsibilities is to further coordinate with their respective admins and staff member to spread the importance and utilities of the e-governance sub-projects launched on the system.
For the convenience, the facility is available to search any employee, its basic information, official contacts, any observatory and persons posted thereof, and any circular / office order / notification. Since some particulars are updated by the employees themselves and also that they participate in the e-activities on METNET, a single contact point METNET MailDesk is created where on average in a month about 300-350 messages are addressed.
Result Achieved/ Value Delivered to beneficiary of the projects :
Being the direct beneficiary, the employees of the department now have the following facilities :
Access to the transparent Personnel Information System
Real-time access of circulars and office orders (related to promotions, transfers, trainings, etc.)
Online Attendance, Leave Application and records display
Salary and other payments records maintenance
Access to Online departmental publications and journals
Participate in weather discussion forum
Access to movement of files in the File Tracking System
Meteorological knowledge sharing and exchange with other officials
Entries in their personal e-Service Book Records
Access to Purchase Cases handled by the Central Purchase Unit
Facility to search official contact particulars of any official, any section of any office and any observatory of IMD
Monitoring the functionality of observatories
View and monitor the progress in various technical projects
Dairy of the occupations of the Director General of Meteorology
Data of Ex-India deputations
Complete Information on retired IMD employees
Data of Budget, Accounts and Expenditures
Centralised inventory and monitoring of the functioning of the Instruments under Surface Observation Network
Monitoring of the Projects under XII Five Year Plan
The offices of IMD including HQ are also facilitated with the always-updated data at the convenience of the click of the mouse related to :
Management of the e-Service Book Records and facility to extract any information thereof
Data on staff position, deployments, trainings, CCS and Financial rules and Guideline
Access to complete directory of contacts, official NIC domain e-mails of all employees
Facility to utilize Assets Inventory
Keep track of the vendors & visiting firms having the purchase dealings with IMD
Facility to generate reports and statement immediately as required by the Ministry of Earth Sciences and other government agencies
Assess the performance of the officers and staff with ease
Assess to Implemetation of the Plan Schemes and Projects
Information on the Court Cases at different offices of IMD available at one place
Ministry of Earth Sciences and other government agencies also monitors the status of functionality of the observatories of IMD and access the publications, journals and the developments going on in the department.
In addition, the retired personals also have the facility to access the portal, update themselves with the developments, so that the department in return, is also benefited by their expertise in the field.
Scope of Services/ Activities Covered :
The METNET Service is dedicated for G2E governance. The beneficiaries include each and every official of IMD, the various admin and technical units, Ministry of Earth Sciences, other government agencies and also the general public to limited area. With the participation of data input from the offices, given below is the list of online sub-projects designed, developed, implemented and maintained centrally meant for all the beneficiaries mentioned.
The list of sub-projects has no foreseeable end. With every package initiated, the extent of utility expands, the user gets more responsible, connected and satisfied, the office system gets more accountable, the and the e-governance project objectives are achieved.
ON-GOING PROJECTS ON METNET
AS ON 24-01-2020
Date of Commencement
Main Portal and Database
Development of main platform and centralised database architecture for hosting various in-house developed applications.
Personnel Information System
For HR Management and sharing real-time basic information of all IMD employees and statistics thereof.
Forms, Seniority Lists, IMD News, etc.
These are the facilities to view different Forms, Seniority Lists, IMD News, etc. User can also take the printout of them as per their requirement
File Tracking System
File Tracking System is the online application to monitor and keep track of the movement of the files being shared between Offices and Sections located at New Delhi.
Leave Management System is the online application in which a user can apply and track the leave applied by him/her and the section can approve and monitoring the leave records of their employees.
To facilitate Researchers in IMD with online access to the Papers, Arricles, Abstracts, etc. published in the journal MAUSAM of IMD. The documents are made available by the MAUSAM Publication Unit at IMD HQ.
Salary and Payments Display
It provides the online information about the salary and payments of particular employee after his/her login on METNET.
IMD Directory Search
IMD Directory Search is the online search engine. To locate a employees with his/her profile. Contact address of different sub-office under their main office, sections with their strength and observatories of IMD.
Progress Report Display & Upload
For Sharing the Progress Reports with the IMD Officials, made available by the RMCs, Offices at Pune, and those at HQ.
Pensioner's corner involves the details of registered retired users, their contact details, residential address, documents related to retirement and other useful links.
IMD AWAS (Online Guest House Booking and Management)
IMD AWAS, is a web-based application, which helps in the Online Booking of rooms in Guest House. The Employee can request room allotment online and the Incharge of guesthouse can process his request and take further action for allotment.
METNET Instant Messenger
An Intra-IMD facility for IMD Officials to communicate and exchange documents among themselves related to the office matters .
IMD Centralized E-Administration Support System - IMD CEASS
This is an online e-Service Book application for management of personal records of the officials, generation of reports of all sorts of admin matters.
भारत मौसम विज्ञान विभाग राजभाषा पटल
To provide all offices and employees, the information related to the celebration of IMD fourth Hindi Seminar on 1st July 2011. This is a single pont of access for the distribution of the media files of the event.
IMDBAMS - IMD Budget & Accounts Management System, Version 1.0
IMD Budget & Accounts Management System which gives details of Budget allocations and status of payments in IMD
IMD Personnel Information System
This system has been relauched with the inclusion of extra facilities about all IMD employees and statistics thereof.
IMDBAMS - IMD Budget & Accounts Management System, Version 1.1
IMD Budget & Accounts Management System which gives details of Budget allocations and status of payments in IMD with Display of Plan category for 1) Yearly Month-wise Expenditure Statement, 2)Scheme-wise Consolidated Expenditure Statement.
IMDBAMS - IMD Budget & Accounts Management System, Version 1.2
IMD Budget & Accounts Management System which gives details of Budget allocations and status of payments in IMD with facility of Reconciliation with PAO.
IMD CCMS - Court Cases Monitoring System
For online monitoring of all legal matters, court cases pending at District Court, CAT, High Court and Supreme Court so that timely and appropriate action may be taken at the earliest.
Briefcase/Handbag claim bill reimbursement
IMD Gazetted Officers can submit bill for Briefcase/Handbag claim reimbursement online and concerned Bill Section can process consolidated bill for approval.
Weather Forecast Verification Centre
This is a single-point access of precipitation forecast verification report , normals, etc. necessarily required by the forecasting officials working in operational units.
An online management of IMD store which includes online submission of requisition for store, receive and issue of stocks and their monitoring
Online management of the various cases handled by the Works Division in coordination with other sub-offices of IMD.
Distinctive Features / Accomplishments :
The Intra-IMD Portal (METNET) has become the single and central point of information on the administrative matters. The access log and statistics of the use of various applications confirms the expected improvement in the business process re-engineering, working methodology, timely delivery of service and transparency. The communications between employees and the system administrators reveals the extent to which this project is popular and its objectives are achieved.
The package named APARNA ver. 1.0 (Annual Performance Appraisal Report Notation and Administration) is unique in the Government and IMD is probably the only department to apply such online system.
The in-house system designing and development has addressed the complexity of the organisation structure where the human resource management itself is a big challenge in the department like India Meteorological Department.
Even though the portal is meant of e-governance, it also supports to the technical divisions to achieve the department's weather forecasting mandate.
Adaptability and Scalability :
The METNET portal has the ability to leverage the power and analytical sophistication of the NeGP infrastructure through a single, popular web interface. This portal is the complex development project integrating several applications, and then development of custom functionality on top of those integrations. This complexity is especially evident as the offices and officials demands for ever more sophisticated functionality increase. There is a significant benefit in working on a single environment compatible across the entire stack of technology with their ability to harness the potential G2E portals offers.
Although it is not mandatory for the intranet applications, the portal mostly complies with the guidelines mentioned in 'Guidelines for Indian Government Websites'. The attempts are in progress to follow the e-governance standards, even if they are not finalised. At the same time, the portal is compatible to display the contents/outputs of some of the external packages, for example, display of salary particulars of the employees generated by the NIC's CompDDO.
The system has the ability to leverage Google gadgets also such as Maps and Translate for geo-referenced display of metadata of observatories and hindi language support, respectively. The Unicode for hindi language and the external application of video media player, etc. are already applied.
New Models of Service Delivery :
Since the department has 13 pay-drawing offices in the country, the service book and the records of the personnel are distributed. These can come to the centralised location electronically only. The data records developed centrally has 13 access authorities for feeding the data and its maintenance. The METNET Coordinators are nominated at all the regional and sub-offices. Their responsibilities is to further coordinate with their respective admins and staff member to spread the importance and utilities of the e-governance sub-projects launched on the system. They also provide support and training as required, as an office responsibility.
Under the service called METNET, the initiatives are highly appreciated by the beneficiaries and in addition to the specific applications, the following resources and facilitates are available at the centralised locations:
standardised bilingual forms for all almost all sorts of service,
links to all the websites of IMD sub-offices,
complete telephone, address and e-mail directory of entire IMD as One and links to the directories of Ministry of Earth Sciences, DOPT,
Ministry of Finance, etc,
links to GOI Websites, most relevant,
pre-downloaded CCS Rules, Manuals of Office procedures, Order related to 6th CPC, etc., for ready-reference.
Efficiency Enhancement :
The significant changes are noticed in a way the admin units are issuing the notifications and office orders. They used to reach the employees posted at the remote observatories after a significant delay or may not reach even if the regional and hierarchical authorities decide in-between. The efficiency of HQ as enhanced by the direct contact with the employee, doesn't matter where the official is posted.
The copy of e-service book at the centralised and single location enabled the process of re-engineering in the admin units. Now the information on employees is not asked from the respective regional center, as it is available readily on the system. The printing and delivery of pay-slips every month is not being issued as it is available on the portal, if required, although the paper printing is discouraged. The individual employees are willingly keeping their contact details updated for the benefit of the employees. The daily appointment and occupations of the Director General of Meteorology which was known to only a few people is now easily accessible to all the employees at all locations from Srinagar to Port Blair and one can now plan the events and meetings at ease. Every unit used to keep the record of each and every file coming and going out of the office in separate register. This record is centralised, data entry significantly reduced and the transparency can be seen in the movements recorded in the File Tracking System.
Similarly every sub-project implemented on METNET has brought a significant change in the work process and improvement in the efficiency in service delivery of the office.
User Convenience :
The notifications, circulars, office orders of trainings, transfers, promotion, etc., IMD publications, GOI rules and guidelines, and much more are now at the click of the mouse to the employees of the IMD. These documents are posted by the respective divisions and they are free from their hard-copy issuance.
Every employee can view and monitor the service book entries. They are having the tools to follow the developments going on and important decisions going on in the department. The main constrains was the distance from the decision making authorities, which has no place in this portal.
With the advantages of better integration management, flexibility, software license management, no vendor lock-in, etc., the open-source technology with server-side scripting on PHP and some java scripts have been combined for the development of the applications on this Intra-IMD Portal. The in-house development is best suited for the intranet sites. The tailor-made applications with the dedicated team and the routine maintenance of the METNET portal provide the excellent management and sustainability with respect to the technology, security and service.
Cost Effectiveness :
The complete development and implementation is in-house with the existing manpower and as such practically no expenditure involved.
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