QualiChain project is guided by the vision to transform and revolutionise the domain of public and education as well as its interfaces with the labour market, policy making, public sector administrative procedures and the wider socio-economic developments, taking advantage of blockchain and other technologies. The ASEP pilot focused on optimising internal evaluation procedures pertinent to the selection and recruitment of public sector personnel with respect to the candidates’ qualifications.
As the main public recruitment agency in Greece, ASEP is keen to participate in research and innovation programs in order to add value to its existing recruitment processes. QualiChain project targets the creation, piloting and evaluation of a decentralised platform for storing, sharing and verifying education and employment qualifications and focuses on the assessment of the potential of blockchain technology, algorithmic techniques and computational intelligence for disrupting the domain of public education, as well as its interfaces with private education, the labour market, public sector administrative procedures and the wider socio-economic developments.
The proposed solution was piloted through four representative scenarios: (i) lifelong learning; (ii) smart curriculum design; (iii) staffing the public sector; (iv) providing recruitment and competency management services. The Greek pilot’s goals, as part of the “staffing the public sector” part of QualiChain, are the following:
- Demonstrate and assess the QualiChain concept and technological solution, by piloting the combination of disruptive technologies involved in the context of staffing the Greek public sector.
- Assess the impact, i.e. the benefits and risks of the QualiChain technological solution on the full spectrum of stakeholders, towards which is addressed, in public administration.
By participating in the QualiChain as a pilot for staffing the public sector and thus utilising Blockchain technology, ASEP may achieve validation, i.e., confirmation of authenticity, of university degrees thus freeing the public sector from the relevant bureaucratic burden. Moreover, it explores ways to bring more value to the highly qualified personnel selected by means of supporting and simplifying public sector recruitment procedures.
ASEP's clients are public entities obliged under Greek law to hire personnel under ASEP’s recruitment process. That could extent to all public entities and other entities from the private sector should the law be amended accordingly. The success of QualiChain could be the starting point for the admission of all potential stakeholders (organisations, universities etc.) as “issuers” into an integrated system and at the same time, it could motivate companies outside the public sector to use ASEP's expertise in their own selection processes.
What Makes Your Project Innovative?
- Provide specific, reliable and timely personalised candidate notification for job vacancies using QualiChain platform,
- Validate candidate qualifications effectively using blockchain based verification of qualifications and
- Improve selection process in a timely, flexible and credible manner using Multi-Criteria Decision Support System (MCDSS) in order to select the optimal candidates for a position.
What is the current status of your innovation?
The QualiChain project and ASEP pilot have been completed in 12/2021. ASEP does not aim to have a direct economic advantage from the project results, but to familiarise critical decision-makers with this new technology and the pilot’s specific benefits, as well as to launch consultation with all relevant stakeholders with the overall aim to make full use of the potential offered by it.
ASEP will continue its efforts to disseminate the value of QualiChain project and its specific results to additional academic institutions as potential certificate issuers and to key stakeholders including policy decision makers (in public and private sector) in order to explore potential integration of QualiChain in their operations mainly in relation to the certification/validation functionalities.
Collaborations & Partnerships
The consortium involved in QualiChain project inherited the technological, academic and business background required for a successful innovation process:
- Prestigious universities/ research institutions (NTUA, OU, TIB, IAIS)
- Leading ICT market-oriented companies applying technology for public services provision (ATOS)
- European best-of-breed ICT SMEs (KBZ)
- Innovation-driven EU Public Administrations (AMA, INESC-ID, ASEP, SRS)
Users, Stakeholders & Beneficiaries
- Certification seekers: all the individuals (students, lifelong learners, job seekers) that seek certification of their diplomas and can use them to apply for new courses, or job vacancies.
- Certification providers: the entities (universities, training academies, schools, and public entities) that are able to provide certification of individuals’ diplomas, competencies as well as hard and soft skills.
- Certification validators: the entities (recruiters) that seek the individuals’ certification
Results, Outcomes & Impacts
Results were evaluated based on both horizontal and pilot specific Questionnaires. In general, it was concluded that the QualiChain platform was viewed positively and/or neutrally by the users.
An indicative numeric result is the following: The average time consumed, per qualification, for the qualifications’ validation was estimated to be 12 days. Within the project, this duration was decreased to less than an hour.
In the future, ASEP further aspires to extend the capabilities of QualiChain to other qualifications, as a potential link to the digital transformation strategy of ASEP (Bible of the digital transformation 2020-2025) and the national digital strategy
Challenges and Failures
- The implementation of the platform took a lot of effort from the developers, many meetings, and a lot of discussion between partners. It is important to resolve integration issues as early as possible in a project where several development teams work in parallel in different platforms.
- Blockchain is hard to grasp so there are misconceptions and a low level of blockchain knowledge.
- QualiChain data (credentials, course information, job information) should include more meta data to be more useful for the end user.
- Local laws enforce paper-based credentials or may even prohibit digitisation of services or announcing job offers outside explicitly named channels
- In order to maximise the utilisation of the QualiChain functionalities in a production environment, it would be necessary to integrate the provided QualiChain APIs with ASEP’s information system.
Conditions for Success
- Supporting infrastructure and services.
- Close cooperation between development and business teams.
- Leadership commitment.
- Rules and legislation actions
No, it has not been replicated yet.
The success of QualiChain could be the starting point for the admission of all potential stakeholders (organisations, universities etc.) as certificate/qualification “issuers” into an integrated blockchain based system and at the same time, it could motivate companies outside the public sector to use ASEP's expertise in their own selection processes.
QualiChain facilitates the transition of qualification verification to a new era. The platform, although new, achieves the goal of secure qualification validation using the reliability of blockchain technology.
That being said, even the best ideas with the best technical implementation, need significant time to be invested both in making the UI as friendly as possible and in training the users and stakeholders.
- Identifying or Discovering Problems or Opportunities - learning where and how an innovative response is needed
- Developing Proposals - turning ideas into business cases that can be assessed and acted on
26 January 2023