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Reorganisation of Court Offices in Italy

The project of Monza Court and the sub-project of Voluntary Jurisdiction

Innovation image
An innovation provided by

Giuseppe Airò
giuseppe.airo@giustizia.it


claudio.miele@giustizia.it

Published On: 04 June 2014

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Organisation: InnovaGiustizia Project

Country: Italy

Level of government: Local government

Sector: Public order and safety

Type: Digital, Organisational Design, Public Service

Launched in: 2010

Overall development time: 24 months

In Monza, a Steering Committee was set up led by the President of the Court and the Chief Prosecutor. Work groups implemented the project performing participatory analysis and redesign of various key issues for the Judicial Offices:

  • New support systems such as a website, Social Responsibility Balance Sheet and Common Assessment Framework.
  • Reorganisation of offices such as the reunification of chancelleries.
  • Socio-technical redesign of judicial processes such as execution of bankruptcy trials, trials for drunken driving, voluntary jurisdiction, prosecutor’s processes and others; organisational support and training during digitalisation.

One of the most successful sub-projects was Voluntary Jurisdiction redesign, recently implemented in many Italian Judicial Offices. Voluntary Jurisdiction means the legal protective measures in support of vulnerable populations such as mentally or physically disabled and elderly citizens. The Court does not run a trial, but acts in the interest of these vulnerable citizens, called “beneficiaries.” Such measures are required by citizens themselves or by their relatives, in most cases without legal representation.

Why the innovation was developed

The innovation was developed to: 1) Respond to citizen problems (reduction of waiting time for citizens and lawyers). 2) Respond to the need of change within the organisation, with the elimination of routine activities and concentration upon more critical ones, as well as the reorganisation of services: activities, work processes, reorganisation of both physical (front line office) and web access to services, increase cooperation among judges and chancellors.

Objectives

Develop staff capacity, Enhance public trust, Improve access, Improve efficiency, Improve service quality, Improve social equity, Improve user satisfaction

The objectives and achieved results of the InnovaGiustizia Project of Monza were organisational and technical changes:

  • Reorganisation of services: activities, work processes, relationships between Judges and Chancellors, office layouts.
  • Reorganisation of both physical (front line office) and web access to services, thanks to a renovated court website with a dedicated section (information, forms, procedures tracking).

The objectives of the sub-project were first of all to answer to user’s needs, and then to:

  • Create a unique access point for the citizen.
  • Develop a one-stop process.
  • Enable the citizen to manage the entire service cycle.
  • Personalise relationships, contact channels and management of each case.
  • Improve the ability to listen to special questions and needs.
  • Ensure equal access to all citizens (even if not represented by professionals). 

Main beneficiaries

Civil Society, General population, Government bodies, People with disabilities

  • Citizens.
  • Chancellor’s office.
  • Judges and Clerks.
  • Institutions of the Monza e Brianza Area (Province of Monza e Brianza, Local Health Authorities, Municipalities of Monza and Desio and other Municipalities under the Jurisdiction of Monza Court).

Efficiency

Effectiveness

  • Reduction of waiting time for citizens and lawyers.
  • Elimination of routine activities and concentration upon more critical ones.
  • Reduction of 20% average time for first deposit of application.

Service quality

Accessibility:

Citizens have to visit the Chancellor’s office 30% less often:

  • E-mail address for citizens where they receive mail updates on their case status.
  • A dedicated section of the Court website named 'Services to the Citizen' (230.000 total visitors in one year) 

 

Responsiveness:
  • 7 protocols between Court and Municipalities established 7 “Territorial office of Voluntary Jurisdiction”.
  • The Court and the Lawyers Professional Association agreed on a protocol to create a list of accredited professionals on Voluntary Jurisdiction. These profesionals can provide free expert advice in the Territorial Offices.
Reliability:

User-centred design criteria lead to fully redesigned forms

Other:

The innovation lead to increased cooperation between prosecutors, judges and chancellors in the interest of speeding up the processes.

User satisfaction

Other improvements

Results not available yet

Evaluation

Indicators used to evaluate case results:

  • Number of visits to Chancellor’s office.
  • Number of Citizens who use new forms.
  • Number of Citizens who use the new website and the dedicated section 'Services to the Citizen'.
  • Number of dossiers managed by online Tracking system.
  • Number of contact requests in Territorial Proximity Offices.
  • Time for the first deposit of application.

Design

In 2009, on the basis of positive results achieved by the reorganisation in Bolzano, the Minister of Public Administration, the Minister of Justice and the Regions and the European Commission agreed on the need for an transnational-interregional project called “Dissemination of best practices in judicial offices in Italy” to be funded within the  European Social Fund. More than 23 regional bids were prepared and around 200 judicial offices participated in the project.

The “Best Practices” project shows the possibility to do pilot projects and disseminate solutions and change management methodologies throughout the entire system. It enables the members of the organisation to rely on their own capabilities and eventually operate without the help of consultants. Today, “Best Practices” is Italy’s widest organisational change management program involving a single large public administration.

Design time: 6 months

Testing

Consultancy support to realise an initial phase and project groups.

Testing time: 3 months

Implementation

Tools used:

The overall Monza Court project was implemented following the Structural Change and Innovation Management methodology (GICS, Butera, 2006), which is based on three criteria:

  • A temporary change management organisation with project groups.
  • A sequence of analysis and design:
    • Start from problem setting.
    • Establish measurable targets.
    • Conduct the analysis.
    • Define a change vision/concept.
    • Evaluate alternatives.
    • Diagnosis and detailed design.
    • Pilot projects.
  • Implementation and continuous improvement.

The Voluntary Jurisdiction project was based on two innovation groups:

  • Consultants, Judges and Clerks focused on the internal Judicial Office.
  • Local administrators and members of the community focused on the service process.

Both groups worked on problem setting (e.g. reduce public access to the Chancellor’s office) and on problem solving (e.g. designing a new website structure).

Resources used:

Steering Committee of the InnovaGiustizia Project composed of:

  • The President of the Court.
  • The Chief Prosecutor.
  • The Judge in charge of Project supervision.
  • A group of judges.
  • Technical and operational supervisors.
  • Middle managers of the Civil and Administrative Offices.
  • The President of Lawyers Professional Association.

Project Teams where almost all the staff within the organisation has been involved:

  • Judges of Civil and Penal sectors.
  • Prosecutors and Assistant Prosecutors.
  • Clerks and Administrative Resources.

Consultants:

  • Institutions of the Monza e Brianza Area within the “Table of Justice” established in November 2010.
  • A permanent network included Province of Monza e Brianza, Local Health Authorities, Municipalities of Monza and Desio and other Municipalities under the Jurisdiction of Monza Court, Chamber of Commerce of Monza and Brianza, University of Milan Bicocca.
Implementation time: 10 months

Diffusion

The solutions and the methodology developed in the Monza Court project will be shared with all Courts in Italy with the recommendation of attracting in the project the other interested institutions, as Municipalities, Health Services, voluntary organisations and others.

Diffusion time: 5 months

Partnerships

an inter-institutional Committee
Other

Implementation of an inter-institutional Committee (“Tavolo della Giustizia”) established in November 2010. A permanent network included:

  • Province of Monza e Brianza.
  • Local Health Authorities. Municipalities of Monza and Desio.
  • Other Municipalities under the Jurisdiction of Monza Court.
  • Chamber of Commerce of Monza and Brianza.
  • University of Milan Bicocca devoted to examining and taking actions on economic and social problems of the Justice System in the local area.

Lessons Learned

Three important lessons can be learned from the Monza Court project:

  • In order to design a user-centered service for the citizen, increasing quality and responding to real needs, you need to design "services" (what you want to deliver), "the delivery system" (how you want to deliver) and "relationship system" (how you want to relate to the Citizen).
  • An integrated design of all involved organisational dimensions is needed: access to the service, use of technology, internal organisation, work processes (service, support, coordination), systems of coordination and control (planning, hierarchical control, leadership, etc.), microstructures (working groups, including substitutes, offices, clerks, etc.), roles (Judges, Clerks, etc.), people management systems (remuneration, etc.), control systems (leadership, professional communities, cultures etc.).
  • As the Voluntary Jurisdiction is concerned, services to weak citizens require the involvement of multiple actors and new subjects such as Third Sector operators and building a multilevel system of governance.

Conditions for success

Two special efforts are necessary for the success of the innovation:

  • The development of a group of passionate change agents among Judges and Administrative Staff.
  • The implementation of an inter-institutional Committee devoted to examining and taking actions on economic and social problems of the Justice System in the local area.

Other information

The reorganisation of Lombardy Judicial Offices was funded by the European Social Fund through a bid launched by the Lombardy Region, involving the judicial offices of Milano, Monza, Varese, Crema, Cremona, Brescia, and Lecco. The Lombardy project was named InnovaGiustizia.