Social Card – Social Welfare Information System


Photo: UNDP in Montenegro/ Mediabox, Milos Vujovic
Photo: UNDP in Montenegro/ Mediabox, Milos Vujovic

Social Card – Social Welfare Information System (SWIS) project is a backbone of the social welfare reform process as it enforces the social welfare reform by development of a more efficient, effective and just system of social protection and quality service for the poor and vulnerable.

This is a capacity building project that supports: legal, institutional/organisational and management changes (reorganisation of departments in social welfare centres, network/coverage, human resources re-composition (work placement, trainings for skills upgrading and expert trainings, ECDL, software). These all are preconditions for introduction of technological change: equipping centers with hardware and introduction of a sophisticated information system (SWIS) in social welfare centres that actually ensures implementation of these reforms and effectiveness and quality of work in daily operation of social welfare centres.

Information system covers the entire business processes in the centres: case management, social transfers/application for benefits, processing, approval, monitoring and audit (approx. 70 million euro annually only for benefits), calculations, payments, new record-keeping system, improved supervision and management, reporting and -last but not least- the system produces real time data for evidence based policymaking. Further, through interoperability module social welfare centre becomes ‘one-stop shop’ where all documents for social benefits eligibility determination are made available and the system generates so called e-social cards (property, social, work status) of individual/family social profiles. The system will have interoperability with 8 national institutions: The Pension Fund, Employment Office, Real Estate Agency, Revenue Office, Ministry of Interior (central registry of population and motor vehicles registry), Ministry of Education and the Veterinary Agency.

The system provides better insight into who are the beneficiaries, it filters out ineligible ones (reducing exclusion and inclusion errors), reduces the number of recipients of multiple benefits and it saves on administrative costs. These savings could provide fiscal room for extending the welfare coverage to a greater number of the truly needy. The beneficiaries and applicants for benefits will no longer experience time consuming difficulties and be exposed to expenses associated with collection of all the required documentation. On the other hand, social workers will be significantly relieved from the administrative burden and they will be able to dedicate more time to the ones in need for ‘soft’ measures.

The system also generates data about people found ineligible (and the reasons for ineligibility), as well as the patterns in incomes, social situation, geographical location and other socio-demographic characteristics of the applicants’ pool and beneficiaries caseload. These real time and evidence based data could provide highly valuable information for policy formulation, for monitoring implementation, and for assessing the social impact.

What is the project about?

The project aims to reform the social welfare system, and more specifically to:

-          Implement legal, institutional/organisational (network, coverage, management, human resources reorganisation and staff upgrading) reform; and technological change through development and introduction of a sophisticated information system that ensures implementation of these reforms.

-          Improve quality social service for the beneficiaries; reduce workload and administrative costs and reduce time needed for an application proceeding. This will be achieved through transformation of the key social services provider - social welfare centres as social welfare centres become „one stop shops“, where the decision on eligibility for social benefits will be automatically generated. All the other business processes in the centre would be automatized.

-          Help ensure better planning of resources, financial audit in social sector and better planning for targeting of social welfare. The system will ensure more precise identification of the target groups, definition of adequate and measurable activities, better monitoring of the funds spent (both on the level of overall spending and individual expenditures), as well as monitoring and evaluation of the effects that targeted welfare programmes have on the socially vulnerable population.

-          Increase the credibility of the social welfare system. Currently the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare invests significant efforts in establishing whether the poorest families receive social support. Development of SWIS would improve targeting and reduce inclusion and exclusion errors.

What have we accomplished so far?

Component 1.: Design and conceptualization of the system

1.1. Analysis and development institutional and organizational changes in Social Welfare Centers 

1.2. Defining the legal framework for SWIS and for restructuring of the work processes and of the institutional setting. Revision of the Soc. Protection law + development of 6 comprehensive by-laws

1.3. Analysis and specification of functional and non-functional requirements of the SWIS

1.4.  ISSS – Analysis and technical design and specification of ISSS system

Component 2.:  Interoperability Framework and inter-institutional connectivity 

2.1. Analyze and define elements of Interoperability Framework

2.2. Analysis of participants and connected institutions, and supporting information systems

2.3. Development of legal, organizational, semantic and technical segments of Interoperability Framework

2.4. Defining and agreeing of inter-institutional agreements/contracts with 8 institutions on data exchange

 2.5. Analysis and specification of functional requirements for the development of specific systems /modules for interaction

2.6. Technical specification of subsystem for data exchange

Component 3.: Development and implementation of SWIS applications and interconnection  modules

3.1. Tender documentation for the core-SWIS. Procurement (334.250 euro)

3.2. Development and implementation of SWIS applications and interconnection models - two phases timely completed.

3.3. Preparation of technical documentation for systemic platform and hardware in the MLSW and SWC

3.4. Preparation of technical and tender documentation for SCS installations

Component 4.: Capacity building

4.1. Legislative framework - revision of Law on Child and Social Protection, revision of personal data protection, production of five substantial by-laws necessary for institutional/organisational reform of social welfare centres (job placement, coverage/network of services, social benefits, labour activation, etc.).

4.2. Formulation of the unified decisions (26) on social benefits.

4.3. Capacities analysis; training needs analysis and development of curriculum.

4.4. Review of the organization and capacity of the Directorate for IT and Analysis of MLSW. Purchase of vehicle for the Directorate

4.5. Social Card – ISSS Conference

4.10. Establishment and support operation of the Task-force (key users/agents of change) team from SWC and MLSW. Workshops. Presentations and project promotion in social welfare centers. 

Who finances it?

Donor name

Amount contributed

Government of Montenegro

€ 1,151,981


€    127,998


€ 1,279,979

Delivery in previous fiscal years

December 2012

USD 25,600

Project Overview
Project Start Date:
May 2012
Estimated End Date:
November 2014
Geographic Coverage:
Nationwide, Montenegro
Focus Area:
Social Inclusion
Project Officer:
Ms. Aleksandra Višnjić
Tel. +382 20 447 444
Government of Montenegro, Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare
Related Documents
Project document