10th article of the law defines basic principles of quality management of public administration entities. The most important way of quality management of public administration is monitoring entities of public administration and their activities. Article also defines that strategic planning is important in quality management.
Position Paper on E-Government, approved by the Government
This document aims at improving the delivery of public services to public and municipal authorities and institutions, to individuals of the Republic of Lithuania, and businesses.
The goal of this document is to improve transparency of the decision making process of the executive bodies of the Republic of Lithuania, to efficiently deliver high quality public services and provide information to the public, businesses and institutions, and for this purpose to use possibilities offered by information technology.
Methodology of Strategic Planning, approved by the Government
Strategic planning is part of quality management. This methodology defines the system of strategic planning, ways of preparing strategic plan and principled model of strategic planning model.
Programme for the Reduction of Administrative Burdens
(approved by the Government) which defines the main principles and measures aimed at simplifying procedures for the enterprises and raising the quality of administrative services. This strategy was prepared by the Ministry of Economy.
At the moment Ministry of the Interior is preparing the action plan for the Reduction of Administrative Burdens. It will define measures to improve laws in order to simplify the procedures of public services.
THE NETHERLANDS / STRATEGY
Under mentioned are the strategies, initiatives and policies that the government of the Netherlands has to offer in the field of quality management.
IT Outlook 2007: e-government in The Netherlands Recent e-government policy
The Dutch Cabinet wishes to take advantage of the opportunities offered by Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to improve the standard of service to the business community and the general public. The use of ICT for such public administration purposes is often referred to as ‘the Electronic Government’ or simply ‘e-Government’.
The new Dutch government’s aspiration is to have a government that serves, that focuses on the interest of citizens. Its policy programme and the executive agreements based on it between central government and (a) the provincial authorities and (b) the municipal authorities will accordingly contain specific agreements on reducing the administrative burden on the public and businesses. The e-Government basic facilities contribute to this goal.
Typical of the new government’s coalition agreement (June 2007) is the large number of initiatives to further improve government services and reduce administrative burdens. To achieve these goals, government agencies will have to share more information and should not ask for data the government already has. Shared use of data has only been made possible by the rapid development of ICT. In order to avoid each sector developing its own basic facilities, the various ministries, provinces, municipalities and water boards are working together on the development and use of basic facilities for electronic government. Development of these facilities already begun under the previous government.
Further, the government’s e-government policy includes:
Companies and citizens should be required to submit certain information to the government only once.
There is to be an electronic system which enables all companies and citizens to be uniquely identified for official purposes.
In its communication, both internal and external, the government is to use open standards thus decreasing reliance on any one supplier or platform.
By the year 2007, sixty-five per cent of all public services (at national, regional and local authority level) should be provided via the Internet.
Development of e-government building blocks
The central government is responsible for delivering the basic building blocks of electronic government. On these building blocks, the public sector can build efficient and user friendly services.
Basic facilities include key registers in which data of citizens, businesses, geodata, vehicle records etc. are securely and uniformly stored, providing secure and reliable data which can be made available though the use of unique numbers and secure ID management. To achieve reliable data interchange and services, architecture reference models, a transaction portal and a service bus have been provided.
Front office building blocks are the government portal overheid.nl. The Netherlands develops a multi channel approach in which the government can be reached via internet, telephone and at the local government’s desk, at which a majority of all questions can be answered as a result of an underlying information system. To underline the whole of government approach in The Netherlands, a personalized internet page for every citizen with specific public services and information from all levels of government is being developed. For businesses, a business service point provides digital services from government agencies to businesses. In order to ask for information such as address, name or personal number only once, eForm standards are developed, enabling individuals and businesses to re-use their old data and the organizations in the public supply chain to pre-enter information already known to them.
Use of e-government building blocks by public organizations
Based on the system of building blocks, public institutions such as local authorities, provinces, water boards and central government agencies provide electronic services. These services can be found through the portal overheid.nl. A selection of these services is presented at http://www.e-overheid.nl/sites/english/onlineservices/.
The I-teams programme unit assists municipalities, provinces and water boards to implement the required e-Government components. Based on surveys, an implementation plan is drawn up. Approximately two-third of the municipalities has applied for this programme. In 2007, all the provinces and water boards will have had initial visits by specialized I-teams.
Since November 2007, the law on the unique citizen’s number has enabled government institutions, the health sector, tax, social security etc. to uniquely identify citizens through a single number, allowing efficient and secure data interchange for better services.
User take-up of e-government
The rising number of government organizations connected to the e-Government components and the use they are making of them, increases the availability of electronic services to the public and businesses and reduces the administrative burden. The availability of electronic services to the public and businesses rose to 61% by the end of 2006, placing the Netherlands in the large medium category of European countries. Availability of 65% is expected in 2007. The Dutch use these services more than the average European: 51% of Dutch citizens do business with the government electronically. The number of people availing themselves of electronic services has risen sharply in recent years. The process of connecting government agencies to the basic facilities is now in full swing: these include DigiD, e-Forms, public announcements, Catalogue Collaboration and the Business Service Point.
The use of private DigiD rose sharply in 2006 and the first quarter of 2007. By mid-March 2007 190 government agencies (180 of them municipalities) were connected to private DigiD and seven to business DigiD. At present 74 organizations (including 63 municipalities and four provinces) are in the process of connecting to private DigiD. By mid-March 2007 some 5 million members of the public had a private DigiD with their name and password. Over 2 million of them additionally have SMS authentication. The main reason for the growth is that from this year income tax returns can only be submitted electronically using a DigiD.
The quality of service delivery being an important political target, citizen and business satisfaction with the government’s service delivery will be measured. The citizens platform developed a citizen’s charter of ten characteristics of good service delivery, which will be used by the government for determining the quality of public services. A uniform measuring tool is being developed.
Useful information on the government’s policy and progress reports can be found here:
Electronic government in The Netherlands: http://www.e-overheid.nl/sites/english
Progress reports (updated very six months): http://www.e-overheid.nl/sites/english/organisation/
E-government projects time table: http://www.e-overheid.nl/data/files/internationaal/overzicht-okt2005-eng%20.pdf
Programme for reduction of administrative burdens
Service to our citizens/customers is a central point of the policies of our cabinet, to improve this service the cabinet is aiming for a reduction of the administrative burdens for:
Professionals (civil servants)
Between levels of government
Regulations that cause a high administrative burden will be dropped or simplified and measures will be taken to prevent new administrative burdens. the Adviescollege Toetsing Administratieve Lasten (=Advisory board Review Administrative Burdens) is established to review all existing and future regulations.
The central government works with municipalities and other parties to achieve their goal, which is a minimum of 25% reduction of administrative burdens (in the eyes of citizens, businesses, etc.).
Life Events Survey
To gain insight into the customer satisfaction with the government as a whole, the Ministry of the Interior has held an extensive survey that covers the most important Life Event citizens undergo (living arrangements, work & income, education, healthcare, etc). The results will be discussed in the Council of Ministers an parliament in May of 2008. The main goal of the survey is to establish insight in the composition of citizen satisfaction. Which element of public service has a substantial influence on the overall satisfaction and which doesn’t (elements from the general Citizens Charter: transparency, personalised information, overview of rights and duties, comprehensive procedures). And regarding the citizen satisfaction with public supply chains: how do the different government institutions and agencies contribute tot general customer satisfaction. This survey is part of the government’s efforts to achieve at least a 7 as a report mark for the quality of public service.
Programme Quality Public Service (formally known as Good Governance)
The goal of this programme is to increase the satisfaction of citizens/customers and organisations with how the government operates as (sometimes the only) provider of public services. To put citizens/customers first and gain and keep their trust.
To make sure public sector organisations and its employees know what Good Governance means, so they can act accordingly , the Ministry of the Interior developed a Code Good Governance. This is a list of principles or agreements between de different public sectors (putting it on the agenda). It focuses on creating clarity on what citizens and organisations can and may expect of public sector organisations and their civil servants. The Checklist addresses the following issues:
Quality of service: quality of the product or service the government provides, but also the interaction between citizens en civil servants (respect, keeping appointments, how to handle complaints, measuring citizen/customer satisfaction, etc.).
Transparency and integrity: openness about performances can stimulate improvement and integrity in an organisation. Citizens should be able to get information about procedures, policy formulation, the income of top managers, etc. Also an organisation should develop an integrity policy and a code of conduct for it’s civil servants.
Public administration, inspection and accountability: setting quality standards on how a public organisation should operate within the limitations of the statutory laws and regulations. (for example: less vertical inspection (more internal), a yearly account of the performance, inspection, the application of the Good Governance principles).
Beside the Code we also achieve our goal by setting up a promotional program, this program addresses issues concerning culture, attitude and the actual actions of public sector organisations and civil servants take. This program offers organisations simple tools to implement the principles of Good Governance. Furthermore this promotional program offers knowledge and information, through best practices and learning platforms, so organisations can really improve themselves. And finally the program offers help in establishing/implementing these improvements (for example in a citizen charter).
Tools are available or “under construction” for the following areas:
Orientation on citizens and organisations: being open to the wishes of citizens and organisations, put them first, make clear what they can expect. Also measure their satisfactions with the public services on a regular basis (tools: citizen charters, citizen/customer research, mystery guests, best practices).
Learning ability of individual employees and organisations as a whole: being open for and being curious about signals and criticism from society. Also being prepared to use these signals to learn, to apply and to improve (tools: benchmarking, online research (citizen/customer/employee satisfaction), learning platforms, expertise and knowledge about best practices).
Leadership: good leadership is essential for a high-quality public sector (tools: developing a course on Good Governance, developing management tools (for example an interactive portal where managers can get answers/information on specific dilemma's and where they can communicate with other managers who face(d) the same dilemma’s)).
Maximum transparency and integrity: civil servants should be aware of the fact that their actions represent the government as a whole. This means they should act with integrity and have to justify their actions properly. In 2006 our Ministry established the Bureau for the Promotion of Integrity in the Public Sector, it offers tools such as:
The Integrity cube: multimedia dilemma training instrument, it’s goal to open up discussion about integrity and promote awareness of integrity issues
An ethical performance scan.
In the Promotional Program a lot of attention will be given to the spreading of knowledge through:
Organising meetings, conferences, workshops, lectures and training
Organising meetings between different public sector organisations and key figures
Programme Modernization of the Government
The goal is to improve the quality of the civil service: quality in preparation, implementing and enforcement of policy. All departments of de Dutch Government are participating in this programme.
Objective of this programme is to create a government that:
reacts promptly and adequately to new social challenges
produces less (complex) regulations and administrative burdens
sets out policies that are feasible and abolish policies which effects have worn off
produces results and takes a firm line when necessary
performs tasks en services professionally without regard to persons
works efficiently and competently and doesn’t waste money
is a good employer for ambitious, competent, honest, loyal civil servant.
POLAND The strategy for public administration has been developed in National Reform Program 2005-2008 for implementation of Lisbon Strategy, Regulation Reform Program and Anticorruption Strategy – II stage 2005-2009 and mainly in National Strategic Reference Framework 2007-2013 (National Cohesion Strategy) developed in reference to the structural funds.
Detailed Description of Priorities in Operational Programme-Human Capital (SzOP PO KL) is the first strategic document that emphasises (next to others areas) quality management area as a significant one and that indicates key actors in this field. SzOP PO KL Priority V “Good Governance” was prepared by the Ministry of Regional Development in cooperation with the PM Chancellery, Ministry of Interior and Administration, Ministry of Labour and Social Policy and was adopted on 18 September 2007. These institutions carry out QM projects in the field of modernization of management systems in governmental and local administration (such as diagnosis of present situation, strategy development, implementation of selected QM tools, training and consultancy activities) and rising human resources capability.
The goals of activities for improvement of public administration quality are described in above mentioned strategic documents. The main goals are about creating friendly environment for business development, better regulation quality, service improvement in courts.
In 1997 the Office of Civil Service was established with the task to develop modern civil sefvice corps in governmental administration. In 1999 a Friendly Administration program was started up with a range of initiatives dedicated to service delivery (i.e. annually quality awards) and HRM development (i.e. strategic management, training programs, seminars, career paths). After abolition of the Office of Civil Service in 2006, its tasks were transferred to the Chancellery of the Prime Minister.
Since 1990s European pre-accession funds were used to co-finance pro-quality initiatives. This approach has been carried on with structural funds since 2004. In 2002-2004 Ministry of Interior and Public Administration (MSWiA) realized a pilot project dedicated to implementation of a QM tool (Institutional Development Program, IDP) in 33 administration units. It resulted in creation of a number of manuals, instructions, indicators for management and developing of public institutions.
During the first 12 months of the IDP, a team of international and Polish professionals, led by the Canadian Urban Institute, worked together with a Task Force in each of the Pilot Units to develop institutional development (ID) plans in 33 local and regional government units. This was done in order to build the capacity of the units’ administration and management. During the following 15 months (phase two) of the project, the ID plans were implemented.
Key outputs for phase one were:
A report on both Polish and International best practices in the project’s nine management areas with the purpose of formulating a vision of desired state of management in each area;
A framework for evaluating the level of organizational development or relative advancement of government administration in nine management areas was developed through a series of indicators for each management area;
An organizational analysis of each of the pilot units was undertaken utilizing the above framework (methodology); and
The development and approval by the pilot unit authorities of a plan of institutional improvements (or Institutional Development Plan).
Key outputs for phase two were:
Priority areas were identified by pilot units;
Institutional Development Plans were implemented in Pilot Units;
The methodology was refined, finalized and documented in the form of a manual, ready for dissemination; and
An effective and low-cost methodology of organizational analysis and improvement for self-government in Poland was produced.
In the Polish Tax Administration the first integrated approach has been launched in May 2007. The twinning project “Improving the quality of operation of Tax Administration units” co-financed from Transition Facility budget has been developed in cooperation with French tax administration.
The results of the project will be developed and implemented in all institutions of Polish tax administration of a uniform quality management system based on ISO, CAF, EFQM and similar standards.
The system created during the project will cover unification of processes in offices, self-assessment system, and exchange of good practices. During the project employees of tax administration will be also trained in the HRM, motivational system and leadership. Ministry of Finance (Department of Tax Administration) is responsible for quality policy in tax administration.
As a result of project all 16 Tax Chambers and all Tax Offices in Poland (about 400 units) will have a unit/person in charge of implementing and monitoring quality management system.
PORTUGAL Quality Management in Portuguese Public Administration Since the 80's Modernisation of Public Administration has become a vital factor for the social and economic development of Portugal. Accordingly, a citizen-oriented administration has taken Quality as a political priority for Public Services.
The concern about quality in public services and the strategy for quality management integrated the public agenda and government programmes since 1993.
Secretariat for Administrative Modernisation (SAM) was the first responsible for initiatives on quality matters.
Citizen/Administration Forum (for listing, studying and putting forward solutions for simplification and improving quality in the services provided by public administration to citizens. Nowadays there is a Complaint Book in every central administration service. Citizens may register complaints concerning services provided and suggest measures for improvement.
Quality Charters for Public Services (see more in Quality / Citizen's Charters)
Quality Contest for Public Services (the 2002 Contest used CAF model for contestants evaluation).
Citizen Shops, providing citizens with 33 different public and private services according to the one-stop-shop-philosophy.
Administrative modernisation protocols (established co-operation agreements between SMA and central public administration services to promote quality and management issues in public services).
The Quality System for Public Services, that aims to establish the certification of public organisations and quality awards for public services. The Secretariat for Administrative Modernisation was responsible for the management this system, but it doesn’t have specific law regulation since then.
Translation and publication of the “CAF Model –version 2000” and beginning of the divulgation initiatives.
Publications and training for public employees.
SMA was finish is activities in 2001 and it was created the Institute for Innovation in State Administration (IIAE) that inherited the same competences.
The eligibility criteria for administrative modernisation protocols have been reformulated. In 2002 the priority areas are: on-line public services; simplification of relationship between public administration and citizens with special needs; development of information systems for management in public services. These protocols are primarily aimed at co-operation of a technical nature without prejudice to the services applying for financial support.
Initiatives of promoting innovation and quality programmes namely through partnerships with the public services, provide training in concrete domains such as the CAF model, and diffuse Portuguese best practices in public administration, both at national and European levels;
Development of Management support tools: public services have to present Annual Activities Reports and Activities Plans as well as Social Balance; general secretaries of ministries must elaborate annual reports on their administrative modernisation measures
With IIAE extinction, the Directorate General for Administration and Public Employment (DGAPE) assume the competences on the matters of :
- public employment and human resources management.
- models for organisational development in public services.
- development of knowledge and information society in the perspective of public services quality.
Main initiatives on quality issues:
stimulate quality management in public services, by using CAF model.
manage the performance assessment system of public services .
stimulate the application of modern management support tools.
ROMANIA In 2001, the Government adopted a strategy for accelerating public administration reform. While some steps have been completed, the full objectives, which were too ambitious, have not been attained at that time. Romania has adopted complex legislation promoting reform of the civil service, decentralization of fiscal resources and public services, and fighting corruption, and creating new institutions to prepare and apply the reforms.
In 2003, further reforms of public administration remained as the most important objectives of Romania. In agreement with the European Commission, the Romanian Government identified three areas in the field of Public Administration reform where significant progress must be made:
civil service reform
decentralization and deconcetration of public services and
policy formulation process.
Those main issues represented the priorities of the updated Strategy of the Government concerning the acceleration of the public administration reform in Romania during the period 2004 – 2006. It was the result of a long process of technical and political work.
The three priorities combined a significant investment in a sustainable public administration training and development initiative with the creation of new structures for decentralisation and deconcentration and the development of a new policy making process. The priorities were developed in order to meet the overall objectives in several ways: addressing capacity building for improved policy making, implementing the decentralization reform, reforming the structures and conditions for human resource management in the civil service and they develop the local institutional capacity (at national and regional levels) to sustain the training and development of present and future Romanian civil servants at middle and senior management levels.
In order to increase the accountability of public administration in general, another pillar was introduced in 2006 “administrative simplification” in order to reduce the administrative costs for both citizens and businesses.
As member of EU, Romania developed National Reform Program 2007 – 2010 for achieving Lisbon strategy objectives.
Concerning the civil service, we consider that 2004 was the year when certain coherent measures were undertaken by the Romanian central public institutions in order to insure and to strengthen the quality management.
There were issued certain strategic documents in this regard, mentioning several measures to be taken as follows:
Introducing the quality standards for monitoring and assessing a public service and the civil servants’ professional activity ;
Setting up a fix number of civil servants according to the quality standards established for each public service;
Establishing a strategic planning system for each public authority according to the public services offered;
Establishing certain motivational schemes in order to increase the quality of public services and to stimulate the innovation;
Elaborating and implementing the Citizens’ Chart in order to introduce and assess quality standards for public services;
Implementing an assessment guide for institutional self assessment according to CAF .
SLOVENIA The National Quality Programme, 1993
The National Quality Programme of the Republic of Slovenia was prepared in 1993 as basic document and guideline for achieving final goal – excellent quality.
The vision of the National Quality Programme of the Republic of Slovenia is that Slovenia becomes recognised as a state of quality and welfare state.
The National Quality Programme of the Republic of Slovenia has been set as a long-term strategic programme for assuring higher quality of Slovenian products, services and processes and increased market competitiveness. The whole programme is divided into three major phases:
1993-2000: European and International Comparison;
2001-2010: Competitive Quality;
2011-2020: Excellent Quality.
Further Development Strategy on the Slovenian Public Sector 2003-2005
Regarding Quality management within administration and orientation of public administration towards users following goals were defined:
promotion and strengthening of quality management,
comparability with European public administrations and private sector,
orientation towards users, building of partnerships with citizens, private sector, non-government organizations and other segments of the social system,
increasing the standards of service quality and users’ level of satisfaction,
expanding and remunerating good practices; developing these practices into adequate standards.
Reform Programme for Achieving the Lisbon Strategy Goals (2005)
The Reform Programme for Achieving the Lisbon Strategy Goals is based on the Slovenia's Development Strategy (from June 2005) and was adopted in October 2005.
(See the Reform Programme: http://www.umar.gov.si/aprojekt/alizb-strategija/alizb-strategija.pdf)
E-Government Strategy of the Republic of Slovenia for the period 2006 to 2010 (2006)
The strategy includes several targeted eGovernment activities based on four main objectives:
high-quality and efficient operations,
open and transparent functioning of public administration,
an efficient system of public employees and efficient management of human resources,
user orientation of public administration.
Programme of Measures for Reduction of Administrative Burdens
The government has adopted the Programme of Measures for Reduction of Administrative Burdens, which contains over thirty concrete measures aimed at simplifying procedures and raising the quality of administrative services.
SPAIN / STRATEGY General framework for quality improvement in Central Government Administration (2005) The “Quality Plan for Central Government Administration” was later revised and extended by Royal Decree 951/2005, creating the General framework for quality improvement in Central Government Administration. This review was made according to the following inspiring principles:
The promotion of Quality management as an integral strategy, targeted to all the levels of national administration, on the basis on the fragmented administration structure
The importance of understanding Quality as a nuclear aspect in public management
The need for the systematic approach for the whole Quality Management programs, in order to create synergies from their implementation
The new framework combines six programmes in a coordinated and synergic way to drive the continuous improvement of public services in central government administration by involving the key stakeholders: policymakers and senior bodies, managers, and civil society. The six programmes are:
Expectation analysis and costumer satisfaction measurement: To ascertain costumers’ opinions and improve quality of services, central government administration bodies conduct studies to analyse expectations and measure customer satisfaction with their services using qualitative and quantitative research techniques.
The data produced by these studies and drawn from other sources are put to use by the Observatory for the Quality of Public Services to analyse quality of public services and provide the citizens with broad-ranging information about it.
Citizen charters: A citizen charter is understood as a document in which a Central Government Administration body informs citizens and costumers about the services it is designed to provide, about its quality commitments and about costumers’ rights.
Certification of a citizen charter involves a process of evaluation whereby the Spanish Agency for the Evaluation of Public Policies and Quality of Services issues a certificate stating that the charter meets the requirements of the certification protocol.
The certification process goes beyond the charter contents to address its underlying methodology and development work, compliance with quality commitments, the indicators designated in the charter, and the criteria laid down for regular review.
Complaints and suggestions: Central Government Administration bodies must have mechanisms in place to receive and process consumers’ complaints about services. They must undertake initiatives to improve quality of services in response to citizens' complaints and suggestions and publicly report all actions and measures taken.
The Ministry for Public Administration's Directorate General of Organisation and Service Inspection is the body in charge of overseeing the complaints and suggestions programme.
Organisational quality assessment: There are several different kinds of feedback mechanism, depending on the size of an organisation or the point of view of assessment, including financial control, management supervision and quality/excellence assessment. Quality/excellence assessment is based on a comprehensive diagnosis of the organisation’s processes and results across all stakeholder groups.
Central Government Administration bodies will submit their activities and results to assessment in accordance with the quality management models set forth in the decision of 6 February 2006 of the Secretariat General for Public Administration, introducing guidelines for the implementation of the programmes under the General framework for quality improvement laid down in Royal Decree 951/2005 of 29 July 2005, so as to obtain information on the quality level offered to the public. Assessment takes place on two levels: self-assessment and external assessment.
For its performance, there are several recognised management models:
The EFQM Excellence Model
The Common Assessment Framework, CAF
The EVAM (Evaluación, Aprendizaje y Mejora) model (assessment, learning and improvement) designed by the Spanish Ministry for Public Administration, and developed by the Spanish Agency for the Evaluation of Public Policies and Quality of Services.
Central Government Administration bodies and their attached autonomous bodies and social security management entities and common services can assess their quality on the basis of whichever of the above three models they think best fits their situation and needs
Recognition (organisation certification and awards): This programme uses recognition of organisations' achievement to enhance quality and innovation in public management. It is divided into two sub-programmes or actions:
Recognition of Excellence: the Spanish Agency for the Evaluation of Public Policies and Quality of Services certificates the level of excellence proved by the public organisations.
Quality and innovation awards for public management announced and granted by the Ministry of Public Administration, being the Spanish Agency for the Evaluation of Public Policies and Quality of Services responsible for the whole process of management of these awards.
Observatory for the Quality of Public Services, whose objectives are the regular analysis of quality of public services and the creation of a space for public information and citizen involvement.
The Observatory for the Quality of Public Services reports regularly on the quality level provided by public services. The Observatory publishes and releases an annual report on quality of public services. The report sets out the results of the other five programmes under the General framework for quality improvement in Central Government Administration, and of programmes in support of the knowledge society and improved competitiveness. It also releases the results of surveys of public perception of how well public services work, and provides an in-depth case study of a highly demanded or socially crucial service.
For more information:
BULGARIA The Strategy for Modernisation of the State Administration – from accession to integration 2003 – 2006 has been endorsed with a CoM decision in 2002 in response to public expectations for good governance, better public services, reliability, transparency and openness in the work of the administration. In 2003, the CoM approved an updated Strategy and Action Plan for its implementation for the period 2003 – 2006. The Strategy proved to be an useful instrument for succession and provided a clear link between the plans and programmes for reform in the state administration in the process of accession to the EU.
Concept and Basic Model for Improving Administrative Services through One-Stop Shop
The Concept and the Basic Model for Improving Administrative Services through One-Stop Shop have been adopted with a CoM Decisions of 2002. The main objectives of the Concept are the facilitation and improvement of administrative services for citizens and business through the implementation of one-stop shop, integration of information, services and processes and development of e-government. In this respect, the basic directions of the Concept are related to the:
Main terms and distinctions;
Current situation of administrative service delivery;
Vision for achieving good administrative service delivery;
Strategic principles for improving administrative services;
Introduction of one-stop shop for improving administrative services;
Linking of the one-stop shop with other government measures aiming at improving administrative service (coordination of actions towards deregulation, internal;
redirection of correspondence, e-government).
The Bulgarian government has established the following strategic principles for public service delivery in Bulgaria:
1. Treat all users fairly, honestly and courteously;
2. Communicate openly and provide full information;
3. Consult widely and promote continuous improvement;
4. Incorporate feedback and learn from complaints;
5. Encourage access to services, via different channels;
6. Work with others to provide an improved, joined-up service;
7. Set and publicise service standards and publish results against those standards;
8. Measure and publish measurements of customer satisfaction.
A more detailed Generic model of customer service in the form of a “toolkit” was made available to administrative structures. The Generic model is the basis for specific management decisions within separate administrative structures and can be further developed and perfected. It defines the main steps to be undertaken by the administrations in order to reorganize their processes, the possible risks and measures to avoid them. The basic characteristics of “one-stop shop” principle are:
Focus on customer needs;
Option for selecting among various access channels;
One point of access to information and services;
Streamlining the work processes in the front and back offices;
Efficient, effective and quality service.
By the end of 2007 the “one-stop shop” principle has been widely applied in the Bulgarian administrations. In 2006 the Ministry of State Administration and Administrative Reform implemented several projects aiming at supporting the less developed local administrations to organize their work according to the principle – provision of consultancy, software, hardware and other technical equipment.
Table 1: Administrations implementing the “one-stop shop” principle”
Client charters In 2002 Guide for developing a Client Charter and service standards was elaborated and approved by the Minister of State Administration. Since 2007 all administrations have the obligation to approve and publish on-line s Client Charter. The main objective of the Charter is to improve the access to administrative service and to help boost its quality. This is achieved by encouraging customer and staff involvement when discussing the services, the way they are delivered, the required quality and performance standards. The Charter is not a legal document and does not create legal rights, but it helps customers understand and protect their rights better, as well as demand better service, for instance, through submitting proposals or complaints. The Client Charter supports also the work of administrative staff through defining more clearly the services they provide. Nevertheless, the main target audience of the Charter are still the customers.
The main elements of the Client Charter are:
minimum general and specific quality standards of the administration;
customers inquiry forms;
customers rights and obligations;
set up a methodology for customers references, proposals and warnings.
Table 2: Administrations with Client Charters Ordinance on the General Rules for the Organisation of the Administrative Service delivery
In September 2006, the Council of Ministers adopted an Ordinance on the General Rules for the Organisation of the Administrative Service Delivery. It was drafted by a working group under the Minister of State Administration and Administrative Reform, involving the Ombudsman, representatives of the administration at the central and regional level, representatives of the National Association of the Municipalities in the Republic of Bulgaria, the non-governmental sector, and the business.
The Ordinance regulates the work organisation of the administrative service delivery units in relation with the “one-stop shop” principle. It provides that all administrations shall organise their activities in such a way, as to provide administrative services to clients at one place. The ways of providing information on the services are described in detail. The administrations shall ex officio provide all the documents they issue for the delivery of administrative services within their remit, as well as documents of other administrative structures, if such a possibility exists.
The Ordinance regulates the provision of access to the administrative service delivery units, at a convenient for the clients time, including beyond the administration’s usual working hours. In 2008 amendments to the Ordinance were elaborated in order to ensure non-stop working time of the front-offices within the working day (different day-breaks for the front-office staff) as well as extended working time in the cases there are customers in the front-offices waiting to be served. The amendments also stipulates that all administrations should provide conditions and easy access for people with disabilities and train the front-office staff in special communication skills.
The Ordinance also sets the minimum information that the administrations are obliged to provide, both in Bulgarian and in an official EU language, in compliance with the transliteration rules. Except the general information about the administration, information about the services, the rules and procedures for their delivery, the documents samples, the fees due, etc., as well as all drafts of legal acts prepared by the concrete administration.
The Ordinance provides some general standards for all administrations – administration employees shall answer questions by post or e-mail within 7 days after their reception, and should an on-spot check or an opinion by another administrative body be necessary, within 14 days. The waiting time for the provision of information or processing of documents, in relation to the administrative service delivery, shall not exceed 20 minutes. Seats and suitable conditions for elderly people, pregnant women, and disabled shall be provided in the premises for delivery of administrative services.
Particular attention is paid to the feedback mechanisms and the satisfaction of the clients. The administrations are obliged to provide information on the feedback channels they use. There is a description of the means for establishing feedback and for measuring the clients’ satisfaction with the administrative service delivery – questionnaires, boxes for opinions and recommendations, established and announced procedure for processing suggestions and disclosures, interactive tools on the Internet, including discussions, sociological surveys, etc. In parallel with these activities, broader consultation with the users, the NGOs, and the business is envisaged, in respect of the administrative service delivery at different stages of the functioning of the administration.
Under the Ordinance, every administrative structure shall adopt a Client Charter, and shall publish it on its web page or make it public in any other suitable way. The Charter shall include the general and individual quality standards for the administrative service delivery, the ways of seeking the customers’ opinion on improving and assessing the application of the standards, the rights of customers, and the organisation of the processing of disclosures, recommendations and complaints in relation to the administrative service delivery.
List of unified namesof administrative services
The List of unified names of administrative services has been developed with the participation of all administrations. It aims at facilitating the communication between individual administrations, and will be used in different e-registers, on the basis of which the e-government will function. The Ordinance on the General Rules for the Organisation of the Administrative Service Delivery stipulates that all administrations shall use the names of the services as provided by the List.
Methodology for measuring Customer Satisfaction
At the beginning of 2007 the Minister of State Administration and Administrative Reform approved a Methodology for measuring Customer Satisfaction. It describes the main principles and the ways of collecting and analyzing information related to the customers’ opinion on the quality of work of the administrations and the services provided by them. The Methodology aims at helping the administrations to create a permanent and sustainable relation with their customers and to provide comparable results on the quality of the administrative services.
System for Self-Assessment of the Administrative Service Delivery
The System for Self-Assessment was created in 2003 on the basis of the excellence model of the European Foundation for Quality Management. It is an internet-based system, accessible for all administration at central, regional and local level. It is managed by the Ministry of State Administration and Administrative Reform, and all administrations perform self-assessment according to the system and publish the results twice a year. The Ministry analyzes the results and formulates the areas of interaction in relation with the development trends. The System generates the level of development of each administration based on the sub-criteria of the EFQM model and their weight. The average number of administrations performing self-assessment and providing the results through the System is 500 during the last 3 years.
Strategic Framework for Quality Management in the Public Administrations
At the beginning of 2007 a Strategic Framework for Quality Management in the Public Administrations was developed with the participation of central, regional and municipal administrations. Its main goal was to describe the main priorities and actions by 2013 aiming at increasing the quality in the public sector. Most of the measures are within the responsibility of the Ministry of State Administration and Administrative Reform – popularization of Quality tools and Systems for Quality Management, distribution of good practices, development of quality rating and web site for Quality Management, establishment of quality experts’ pool within the administration, etc. In 2008 most of the measures described in the Strategic Framework are under implementation.
At the end of 2006 there are 89 administrations applying the ISO international standards, at the end of 2007 their number is 105. By the end of 2008 we are planning to support another 100 administrations to introduce ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and ISO 27001 (mainly ISO 9001:2000)
GERMANY: There are some basic thoughts in the paper of the new “Model of Steering” of a local cooperation (KGSt Die Kommunale Gemeinschaftsstelle für Verwaltungsmanagement (KGSt)- Municiple Association for Administration Management)) in 1993. This concept was completed with two Reports from 1995 and 1998 to QM on the local level.
Since 1995 we can find it in the vocational training of institutions of Federal State and States, on the basis : Challenge in the Processes of Modernization in the 16 States.At Federal level: position-Paper for the 2.Meeting of the Council of experts „Slender State“ on 27th October 1995. “The Modernization of public Administration in Germany is an open process. it contains also the integration of new knowledge and a broad Quality management.
1995: Participation of the Federal Office of Administration on a new working group named „ Quality Management in the public administration” of the AWW (?), publishing of some booklets in the following years with first recommendations for implementation of QM, description of first practise cases. Especially there the instruments mission statement, Quality-circle, Customer-and Employee-Questionnaire, Product-Building, optimization of processes, Controlling, KLR (Costs and activity Accounting) have been located in the QM.
In the year 2000 the Federal Office of Administration has launched an exchange of information, since 2005 it is succeeded by the Federal Institution of Export Control. About 120 Members are now part of this Circle. Once a year a meeting takes place. The members use different QM (Quality Management)-approaches like ISO, EFQM and CAF or the sector special approach like In 2001 a working-group of the Federal Office of Administration writes a brochure for implementation of the revised version of ISO 9001 for authorities.. The municipality of Offenbach and the Federal Monopol Administration for Brandy belong to the first Administrations in Germany, that are certificated. The Federal Office for Statistics has been using since the end of the 90ies the EFQM Modell as the base for Quality Management und has meanwhile been reached a high standard In 2001 the German CAF Centre has been founded at the German University for Administration in Speyer.
In 2006 the Government Program „ Future-oriented Administration through Innovation was finalized.
In 2006 the CAF –Centre has moved to the Federal Office of Administration in Cologne. Presently it has nearly 400 registered members of the network and round about 100 CAF- operater administrations. Up to date there is no census about using other QM-strategies or -systems.
IRELAND: The QCS Initiative is part of the wider Public Service Modernisation Programme. The Modernisation Programme has its roots in the Strategic Management Initiative (SMI), which was launched in 1994. This set the agenda for change in the Irish Civil Service. The objectives are to ensure that, on an ongoing basis, the public service would:
make a greater contribution to national development;
be a provider of excellent services to the public; and
make effective use of resources.
The report, Delivering Better Government (DBG), was published in May 1996, and gave clear direction to the programme for change and modernisation. DBG expanded on the framework set out in SMI and outlined an extensive modernisation process for the Irish public service, built around six key organisational themes. These included:
Greater openness and accountability
A mission of quality customer service; and
The efficient and fair operation of simplified regulations.
Within government departments, these developments were to be underpinned by organisational improvements in human resource management, financial management, and enhanced information systems management.
The Guiding Principles of Quality Customer Service were published in 1997 and again, following expansion from 9 to 12 principles, in 2000.
One of the requirements of the Quality Customer Service Initiative was that Government Departments and Offices should prepare and publish a Customer Action Plan (CAP) setting out in detail the methods through which the Department/Office will provide the highest level of service in their dealings with the public. Customer Action Plans can be tailored to suit the specific requirements of each individual Department or Office and as such they may differ in the emphasis placed on different elements of the plan. Generally, a CAP should outline the mechanisms used for consulting with customers, describe the responsibilities within the organisation for delivering on commitments and detail the performance indicators to be used in evaluating the effectiveness of the plan. They also have an important role in describing how the Customer Charter commitments will be delivered and evaluated.
The Taoiseach (Prime Minister) launched the Customer Charter initiative in December 2002. Under the initiative, all Departments and Offices are required to publish Charters based around a four-step cycle of Consultation, Commitment, Evaluation and Reporting.
consultation with customers and front line staff in preparation of the Charter
commitment to clearly defined standards of service
evaluation of performance against standards
reporting publicly on the outcome of the evaluation process in their Annual Report
A Customer Charter is a short statement describing the level of service a customer can expect from a Government Department or Office. It should be concise and easy to read. It should be easily accessed and displayed prominently in all public offices.
To facilitate the introduction of Customer Charters by Departments/Offices in early 2004, a comprehensive manual, ‘Customer Charters - Guidelines for Preparation’, was published by the Public Service Modernisation Division of the Department of the Taoiseach in September 2003. The guidelines are intended to provide a single point of reference for information on all aspects of preparation of Customer Charters. In consultation with the Centre for Management and Organisation Development ( part of the Department of Finance ), a series of bespoke training modules was developed for those civil servants engaged in developing Customer Charters to match each stage in the development of the Charter process.
The Customer Charter initiative grew out of the recommendations of two crucial pieces of research completed in 2002. The first was the PA Consulting ‘Evaluation of the Strategic Management Initiative’ which, while finding that the civil service offered an increasingly higher quality service to its customers, also found that arrangements in place in many Departments and Offices to monitor and evaluate levels of customer satisfaction were inadequate. The second was a specific review of Departments’ and Offices’ Customer Action Plans, completed by Dr. Patrick Butler of the School of Business Studies, Trinity College Dublin. In his ‘Evaluation of Customer Action Plans’ Dr. Butler recommended a more rigorous approach to customer consultation and standards setting and more clearly described service level commitments, suggesting it would be easier for Departments and Offices to evaluate their performance and articulate these to customers and other key stakeholders.
A comprehensive evaluation of the Customer Charter process was commissioned in November 2006. Fitzpatrick Associates Economic Consultants were engaged to review the Charters and the process involved in their production. The findings and recommendations arising from this evaluation have now been published in the report, Evaluation of Customer Charters in the Irish Civil Service. Implementation of the recommendations of this report is being overseen by the QCS Research Group. One core step in this process is the production of revised and consolidated Guidelines for the preparation of Customer Charters and Customer Action Plans, which are due to be published shortly.
Slovak Republic The starting year of intensive changes regarding the quality management in the public administration in Slovakia was 2003. This year is linked to the initiative of the Civil Service Office (abolished in 2006) – implementation of the CAF Model in the Slovak PA. In 2003 Civil Service Office prepared the project Implementation of the CAF Model in Slovak public administration organisations in a close cooperation with the Slovak Office of Standards, Metrology and Testing and Slovak Society for Quality. The project was launched the following year and was carried on till 2006.
This year it has been continuing in a bit modified way (organisations are supported in implementation of the quality models and can choose from the EFQM Excellence Model and CAF Model). Organisations were approached with a proposal to join a project. The project and its components were developed during 4 years of implementation.
The significant moment happened in 2003. Slovak central governmental bodies as one of a few European countries have been obliged to implement the CAF Model in their organisations till 2008 (The resolution of the Slovak Government n. 900 on September 24, 2003 imposes ministers and chairmen of central administration bodies to implement the Common Assessment Framework in the public administration). The Slovak Office of Standards, Metrology and Testing (SOSMT) is the coordinator of the state quality policy in the Slovak Republic. The main strategic quality policy document is the National Quality Programme of the Slovak Republic for years of 2004-2008 with specific objectives and activities. Main objectives that the above mentioned CAF project follows are:
to motivate PA organisation to start continuous improvement activities,
to introduce different measurements,
to increase efficiency of PA organisations.
Spain Spain is a politically decentralised state, whose Constitution (1978) acknowledges and ensures the autonomy right of its regions and municipalities. Therefore, there are 3 levels of public administration, as 3 completely different scopes: State administration, called Central Government Administration, regional administrations, called Autonomous Communities and the local administrations (municipalities, province councils, etc.). In accordance with the constitutional and legal distributions of functions, each level of administration manages and renders to the citizens their corresponding public services.
The 17 regions and the local administrations (about 8.000) are fully autonomous to develop their public service policies and to provide themselves with the suitable management and organizational models. This results in different political and administrative approaches, management capacities and organizational maturity level. In this sense, it is no possible to inform in this study about a homogeneous national quality policy in all the Spanish administrations. Nevertheless, within the framework of the constitutional principles of collaboration and co-operation, some shared mechanisms are been used “de facto” by most national administrations. So, the collaboration and contacts between the Central Government, Regional and Local Administrations are close and permanent, through inter-administrative bodies and quality partnership bodies, so that the quality policies in all the public organisations committed with quality are in agreement as a whole. For instance, the Spanish Municipalities and Provinces Federation, covering three in four parts of local administrations boosts and develop un QM program for its affiliated bodies.
The information that follows includes the main features of the QM in Central Government Administration. Anyway, it is common in a great extent to most of the approaches applied in the rest of administrative levels.
In the State Administration, the Spanish government has undertaken a commitment to improve and modernise Administration so as to meet citizens' needs. In line with that commitment, a range of measures have been introduced to raise the quality of public services.
Initially the unit acting as the driving force for the boost and development of the general quality policy was the Ministry of Public Administration. Its first quality police dates back to the 80s when a modernisation administrative process inspired in OCDE recommendations (Administration as service, the public as client, 1987) was undertaken.
In 1989 the Ministry of Public Administration drew a document titled Reflexiones para la modernización de la Administración del Estado, Reflections on the Central Government modernisation, that incorporated in a general strategy the different actions in use and proposed the need for going deeper in the information and assessment systems allowing to know the degree in which the quality levels met the citizen’s expectations
The Ley de Régimen Jurídico de las Administraciones Públicas y del Procedimiento Administrativo Común, Legal Regime for Public Administrations and Common Administrative procedure Act (1992), was the basic rule for all the public administrations, strengthened the citizen role in their relationship with them, recognizing a set of rights, simplifying the procedures and establishing the use of the Information Technologies.
The Ley de Organización y Funcionamiento de la Administración General del Estado Organisation and Operation Act for the General Administration of the State (1997) enshrined principles such as: functional decentralisation, efficiency, effectiveness, accountability for performance. In this field, specific mention should be made of two additional principles: that of citizen’s service, addressed to ensure the effectiveness of the rights they are entitled to exercise when coming into contact with public administrations and that of continuous improvement in public services, whose implementation requires defining those services, their scope and their quality standards.
From this starting point several measures for the promotion of Quality of Services were adopted:
The presentation, in 1998, of a training programme on the assessment process devoted to managers and administrators in the public service.
Royal Decree 1259/1999 of 16 July 1999, regulating citizen charters and quality awards in central government administration (now repealed), laid down the content and strategies for central government bodies to implement the principle of service to citizens and ensure the continuous improvement of their procedures, services and benefits.
The initiative for implementing a Quality Plan in the Administration (addressed by the Minister of Public Administration before the Congress Committee for Public Administration Regime, on 17 February 1999).
This “Quality Plan for Central Government Administration” was later revised and extended by Real Decreto 951/2005, por el que se establece el marco general para la mejora de la calidad en la Administración General del Estado, (Royal Decree 951/2005, establishing the “General framework for quality improvement in Central Government Administration”. The new framework combines six programmes in a coordinated and synergic way to drive the continuous improvement of public services in central government administration by involving the key stakeholders: policymakers and senior bodies, managers, and civil society. The six programmes are:
Expectation analysis and costumer satisfaction measurement
Complaints and suggestions
Organisational quality assessment
Recognition (organisation certification and awards)
Observatory for the Quality of Public Services
In its decision of 6 February 2006, the secretariat general for public administration approved the guidelines for implementing the programmes under the general framework for quality improvement set forth in Royal Decree 951/2005 of 29 July 2005. Since them, a range of practical guides containing guidelines have been produced to set out the relevant methodological and management criteria and address normative issues for the implementation of the quality programmes.
By an authority granted under the Ley 28/2006, de 18 de julio, de Agencias Estatales para la mejora de los servicios públicos, the “Central Government Agencies Act (2006), Royal Decree 1418/2006 of 1 December 2006, enacting the charter of the Agencia Estatal de Evaluación de las Políticas Públicas y la Calidad de los Servicios Spanish Agency for the Evaluation of Public Policies and Quality of Services, amended Royal Decree 951/2005 so as to define which of the duties and powers formerly resting with the secretariat general for public administration were to be reassigned to the Agency. The Agency takes on some of the duties of “management and service provision” to central government bodies (advice, methodological standardisation, assessments, certifications) and to the public (through the conduit of the Observatorio de la Calidad de los Servicios Públicos, the Observatory for the Quality of Public Services) whilst the responsibility on political boost for quality management remains in the secretariat general for public administration.
In this context the Spanish Agency for the Evaluation of Public Policies and Quality of Services aims to enhance the institutional quality of public administrations, in order to:
Provide public managers with information to improve decision-making on the provision of public services;
Promote learning and organisational improvement in public government institutions and thus raise their performance; and
Enhance public sector citizen orientation so as to develop a higher standard of service.
For more information see: www.aeval.es
Spanish EU Presidency: Survey regarding Quality in the Public Administrations of the European Union Member States, May 2002, IPSG – Innovative Public Services Group.
Engl, Christian: Quality Management Tools in CEE Candidate Countries; Current Practice, Needs and Expectations. 2003, EIPA – European Institute of Public Administration.
Comparative Review: Quality Management in Public Administrations of the European Union Member States, 2005, led by Slovenia, published at: http://www.eupan.eu/3/26/.
List of national publications as provided by the EU Member States:
CAF 2002 brochure, www.npj.cz;
CAF 2006 brochure, www.npj.cz;
Application of Balanced Scorecard in PA sector, www.npj.cz;
Managerial Standards in PA, www.npj.cz;
Directive for Application of ISO 9001:2000 in Self-government Authorities, www.npj.cz;
Management of State Administration Processes (Case Study of Vsetin City), www.mvcr.cz/kvalita;
Satisfaction Measurement in PA Organisations, www.mvcr.cz/kvalita;
Benchmarking in PA, www.mvcr.cz/kvalita;
Improving Customer Orientation through Service Charters, www.mvcr.cz/kvalita.
Manual to KVIK, 2006: http://www.sckk.dk/db/filarkiv/2651/Kvik_2006.pdf
Manual to self-assessment, 2007: http://www.sckk.dk/db/filarkiv/2651/Kvik_2006.pdf
Publication about the Excellence model, 2003: http://www.sckk.dk/db/filarkiv/821/SCKK_EXCELLENCE.pdf
Publication containing reflections on Quality Management 10 years after the Quality price was introduced, 2007:
Publication about SCKK and the tools that are available for quality improvements, 2007: http://www.sckk.dk/db/filarkiv/2869/SCKK_praesentationsfolder_web.pdf
Amélioration de l'accueil des usagers dans les administrations (improving users' reception in PA) / Bruno Candiard et al, 2003, http://www.ladocumentationfrancaise.fr/rapports-publics/034000705/index.shtml
La qualité des services publics (Public services quality) / Yves Cannac, 2004 http://www.ladocumentationfrancaise.fr/rapports-publics/044000357/index.shtml
Marianne Charter guidebooks
Livrets des trophées de la qualité (Quality trophies books)
France Qualité Publique guidebooks http://www.qualite-publique.org/
Some serial publications on PA management, though not dedicated to quality management, will also address this issue:
- Perspective Gestions publiques (Institut de la gestion publique et du développement économique)