More objective evaluation of government staff


  • Nation
  • Friday, 25 Jun 2004

BY JANE RITIKOS

KUALA LUMPUR: The Government wants to assess the performance of civil servants more objectively using key performance indicators (KPIs) and develop a high performance culture among them. 

It wants to use KPIs to establish a clear link between performance measurement and reward. 

Under this move, seniority will not precede other criteria for promotions. 

The Malaysian Administrative Modernisation and Management Planning Unit (Mampu) has been directed to conduct a study on the adoption of KPIs in the public sector, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said here yesterday. 

He said the aim was to create a high-performance culture in the civil service, making it more focussed and outcome-oriented. 

“The performance indicators will also reduce subjectivity and enable civil servants to be assessed and rated objectively based on actual performance, tangible contributions and material outcomes. 

“With the KPIs, you can distinguish between the performers and non-performers,” he said after launching the Ninth Civil Service Conference and delivering a keynote address on Strengthening Public Service Delivery: Forging Ahead Together. 

However, he said that while there would be opportunities for promotion linked to performance “one must be careful how it is implemented because we don’t want another problem by dismissing length of service as an unimportant criteria,” he said. 

Asked if the KPIs would replace the Penilaian Tahap Kecekapan (competency test) to assess civil servants for promotion, he said: “Let them work it out first.” 

Najib said the public sector must introduce a system to motivate and retain talents but noted that seniority or length of service still preceded other criteria in deciding on one's promotion.  

He said that in the public sector non-performers were seldom penalised while the performers were asked to take over their tasks, which made them disillusioned and unproductive. 

He added that without clear performance targets linked to the objectives of an organisation, it would be difficult to hold anyone accountable for their action or inaction. 

On what it takes to build a high-performance culture, Najib outlined five requirements: 

  • focus on the customers; 

  • focus on quality;  

  • personal and professional accountability; 

  • commitment to continuous improvement; and 

  • teamwork. 


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