The Korean Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Sungsoo Kim, is calling for a critical evaluation of recruitment processes into the public sector to ensure that there is high productivity and value for money.
“The recruitment patterns must change from mass recruitment at a stretch and employing officers who do not have the requisite skills and knowledge to fill some positions.
“How do we holistically appraise and link performances of public officials to their wages when some of them are not recruited on merit or through a systemised and fair recruiting process in the first place?” he questioned.
The Ambassador expressed the concern in a speech read on his behalf at the opening of a five-day training programme for about 50 public officials drawn from various Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) on building effective human resource management systems in the public sector.
It marks the end of a three-year agreement between Ghana and the government of Korea under its Capacity Improvement and Advancement Tomorrow (CIAT) initiative to strengthen human resource capacity in selected countries.
Being implemented by the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) with assistance from the Korea Institute for Development Strategy (KDS), the programme is expected to challenge participants in devising strategies to efficiently measure performances of public officials to their wages.
According to Mr Kim, “Performance-based public human resource management system can only be effective when the fundamentals such as recruitment processes are systematic and the people working within the system actually believe and embrace the value of results-orientation.”
He particularly charged participants to consider in their deliberations a system that would be put in place to drive “the performance management scheme after years of the roll out of the single spine salary structure (SSSS) in the country.”
The Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Bright Wereko-Brobbey, in a speech, couldn’t agree more with the Ambassador on the review of the single spine salary pay structure for greater efficiency.
To this end, he noted that government’s public sector reform strategy aimed at prioritising effectiveness of the public sector as it rallies the private sector to promote productivity, job creation and national development.
Judging from some consistencies achieved so far in a recent performance management results collated by the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) in five piloting institutions, Mr Wereko-Brobbey hoped “this in-country programme does not come as an end to the knowledge sharing initiative but rather as a beginning of the practical stage.”
On his part, Chief Executive Officer of the FWSC, Dr Edward Kwapong, noted his outfit was poised to track performance rate of public servants in line with the four main pillars of the SSSS; migration of all public servants unto the payroll, harmonisation of allowances and salaries, regular negotiation for base pay and linking pay to productivity.
“We believe that a productive country is a prosperous country, the more productive you are, the more value you create and the more you add to economic gains, so we want to ensure that officials are able to properly rate performances of their subordinates to attract requisite remuneration.”
In an earlier welcome address, Country Director of KOICA, Ghana, Mr Yukyum Kim, was confident the end of the training will see new strategies and interventions “that will focus on accumulating experience in performance measurement and develop various systems into an integrated full-fledged performance management framework.”
BY ABIGAIL ANNOH