Competency-Based civil servant management in state administrative agencies to meet the administrative reform requirements in Vietnam

Determining training and fostering needs is a basic and significant step

to identify what civil servants need to be fostered, what competencies needed

and which are not. Subjects to identify needs include 2 groups: The agencies

employing and managing civil servants; and the civil servants themselves

Fostering content should be designed into two groups: (1) Hard contents:

comprise basic necessary knowledge and skills provided by training instituts;

(2) soft contents: the knowledge, skills compiled and designed based on the

learners’ needs for competency enhancement.

Firstly, accelerating the transformation of training and fostering

objectives from civil servant rank/category standards to working requirements

and job/position demands and competency development.

Secondly, develop and implement a flexible training and fostering

mechanism, creating conditions for the agencies and civil servants themselves

to have the opportunity to choose qualified services; at the same time, create

conditions for training establishments to proactively improve quality.

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arative method; Professional or Expert method. 6. Thesis Contributions - Results of the thesis contribute to systematize the theory of competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies. Thereby, theoretical foundation for public management field is further improved and supplemented. - The research proposes to amend and complete current laws, mechanisms and policies on competency-based civil servant management. Simultaneously, the contents of competency-based civil servant management are suggested to be applied to administrative reform process. - The thesis suggests conditions for applying competency-based civil servant management, especially how to build a model competency framework 5 for a number of jobs and positions at the Ministry of Home Affairs, as a basis to manage civil servants based on competency frameworks. 7. Thesis structure Chapter 1: Overview of research situation related to the thesis topic Chapter 2: Scientific basis for competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies Chapter 3: Actual situation of civil servant management in State administrative agencies in Vietnam Chapter 4: Orientations and solutions for competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies in Vietnam. 6 CHAPTER 1 OVERVIEW OF RESEARCH SITUATION RELATED TO THE THESIS TOPIC 1.1. Overview of research works on civil servants in State administrative agencies 1.1.1. The research works of civil servants in the overall civil service reform 1.1.2. The research works on regimes and policies for civil servants 1.1.3. The research works on jobs and position and standards of civil servant titles in State administrative agencies 1.2. Overview of research works on competency and civil servant competency 1.2.1. The research works on competency model 1.2.2. The research works on competencies and competency framework 1.3. Overview of research works on human resource management and competency-based civil servant management 1.3.1. The studies of competency-based human resource management model 1.3.2. The researches on recruitment, selection and employment of competency-based human resource management 1.3.3. The researches on remuneration of competency-based human resources. 1.4. Comments, reviews on the research works 1.4.1. The issues that have been clarified in the works Firstly, the research works on civil servants in State administrative agencies The above-mentioned scientific works have mentioned globalization, policies of the State, management issues, the role of human resources in general and the role of civil servants in particular in many points of view. Researches on title-based training and position-based training have addressed various aspects of this issue. However, specific jobs and positions are still a big issues that needs to be further researched, and methodically, systematically implemented. With regards to studying competencies and competency framework, this concept has begun to be used in a number of specific projects on capacity building of cadres and civil servants. However, up to now, there has not been any systematic research on civil servant’s competency framework and applying it to civil servants in State administrative agencies. On the other hand, the solutions given are mainly general, large-scale, oriented ones. There is no related scientific work directly mentioning competency-based civil servant management in Vietnam. As a 7 result, studying the necessary foundations and conditions to apply appropriately this way of management in our country is very important to create a basis for the civil service improvement in the context of current & future administrative reform. Secondly, researches on competencies and civil servant’s competencies In the practical conditions of Vietnam, the recruitment, selection and employment of cadres and civil servants is still insufficient, the approach to management of civil servants based on competency framework will bring about positive changes in the performance of public duties. Developing a competency framework has been posed in the process of defining jobs and positions in Vietnam. However, the definication of competency frameworks for civil servants still faces many difficulties due to the lack of systematic studies on competency framework theory and orientations to apply in Vietnam. Thirdly, researches on competency-based human resource management These include English-language research documents mentioning competency-based management contents in many respects. Accordingly, competency-based human resource management is a management approach that shows the response to the changes in efficiency and organizational culture taking place in many developed countries, initiating from the U.K. and then spreading to OECD countries and many developing countries. However, each country has different implementations. For domestic works, there has been little research on competency-based management experience in Vietnam. 1.4.2. The unclarified issues that need further research in the thesis Firstly, researching and generalizing the theoretical framework of competency-based civil servant management as a basis for assessing the current status of civil servant management in Vietnam; Secondly, analyzing and interpreting legal institutions on civil servant management of Vietnam in relation to the theoretical framework to point out the key issues to be solved to apply competency-based civil servant management, meeting administrative reform requirements; Thirdly, proposing overall solutions and methods to gradually apply competency-based civil servant management, in response to the requirements of administrative reform and international integration in Vietnam. Fourthly, developing a model competency framework for a number of jobs and positions at State administrative agencies (expected to be applied at 8 the Ministry of Home Affairs) to apply the thesis's research results into practice. 9 CHAPTER 2. SCIENTIFIC BASIS ON COMPETENCY-BASED CIVIL SERVANT MANAGEMENT IN STATE ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES 2.1. Theory of competency-based human resource management 2.1.1. Competencies and components of competencies The concept of competence/competency Individual competency is a combination of knowledge, skills and attitudes that enable a person to carry out activities associated with his or her tasks at a certain level of performance effectiveness and efficiency. Components of competencies Attitude: is Mental and Neural States of Readiness that is organized through experience, it regulates or influences flexibly an individual's reaction to all objects and the situation in which it (reaction) is related. Skill: the ability to successfully perform a specific type of activity to produce an expected result or outcome. Knowledge: the awareness of the laws of motion of the surrounding world; is an individual's understanding of a particular field. 2.1.2. Human resource management Human resource management is the planning of human resources, recruiting, selecting, employing, developing, motivating, and creating favorable conditions for human resources in organizations to achieve the set goals. 2.1.3. Competency-based human resource management Competency-based human resource management is the use of competencies as the basis for personnel management activities in organization to ensure that employees perform well their assigned jobs, thereby contributing to the success of the organization. 2.2. State administrative civil servants 2.2.1. Concept State administrative civil servants are Vietnamese citizens, who are recruited and appointed to the ranks, positions and titles in State administrative agencies. They are on the State payroll and receive salaries from the State budget. 2.2.2. Characteristics of State administrative civil servants In addition to the characteristics of civil servants in general, State administrative civil servants are also characterized by: 10 Firstly, State administrative civil servants are those who perform public duties in State administrative agencies from central to local levels. Secondly, the activities of State administrative civil servants are extremely public service-oriented. Thirdly, they are a highly professional labor force. 2.3. Competency-based civil servant management 2.3.1. Concept Competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies is the use of competencies as the basis for all management activities to ensure that they successfully implement their assigned objectives and tasks, thereby contributing to the achievement of the organization's objectives. 2.3.2. Characteristics Firstly, competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies especially focuses on civil servant competence, taking it as a standard to employ civil servants. Second, competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies is always designed with wages and benefits on the basis of the defined competency standards. Thirdly, competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies is holistic. Human resource management policy focuses on not only objectives but also the competencies that employees use to achieve their work objectives. 2.3.3. Comparing competency-based civil servant management with career-based and position-based management Under the career-based management model, the career development of public sector employees is largely based on their qualifications, examinations, and seniority, individual competencies are rarely mentioned. For the position-based management model, the recruitment in public sector focuses on how to recruit people who can best meet the requirements of each job and/or position in public organizations. The position-based management model considers job analysis as focus of human resources management process. Job analysis indicates characteristics of a particular job to create job description, job specicication and personnel standards for employees holding the job in order to serve recruitment, selection, employment, training, assessment, payment.... Meanwhile, competency-based civil servant management focuses on and considers the identifcation, creation 11 of competency model and staff competency assessment as a basis for implementing human resources management activities. This model conveys a unified view of work, which is a tool that allows human resource managers and consultants to have a common framework of knowledge, skills, attitudes, to effectively perform activities related to HR management and forecast activities as well as HR creation, recruitment, employment, development, and managemnent and assessment of employee achievement and merits. Thus, in competency-based civil servant management, job analysis is not enough to provide information for human resources management. The next step must be assessment of employee competency. At the same time, it is useful to conduct HR recruitment, training, and development aimed at competence for the organization rather than some specific people. Competency-based management emphasizes competency factor, puts this element in a dynamic state, which needs higher and throughout requirements as competency is used as the central indicator for human resources management activities. 2.3.4. Nội dung quản lý công chức theo năng lực Tuyển dụng công chức theo năng lực Các nội dung này bao gồm hoạch định, tạo nguồn, thu hút và tuyển dụng dựa trên năng lực. Trên cơ sở đó, tuyển chọn nguồn nhân lực theo năng lực (Competency-based Selection) được thực hiện đảm bảo nguyên tắc tập trung vào tuyển năng lực theo yêu cầu của công việc/vị trí chứ không phải là tập trung vào lựa chọn những con người cụ thể. 2.3.4. Competency-based civil servant management contents Competency-based civil servant recruitment This includes competency-based personnel planning, sourcing, attracting and recruiting. On that basis, competency-based selection is conducted, ensuring selecting appropriate competencies required by jobs and/or positions rather than selecting specific people. Sử dụng công chức theo năng lực Sử dụng công chức theo năng lực là cách thức bảo đảm được hiệu quả sử dụng công chức gắn với năng lực là chính yếu. Dựa trên yêu cầu về NL của mỗi vị trí công việc được xác định tại khung NL, nhà quản lý sẽ lựa chọn công chức đáp ứng yêu cầu về kiến thức, kỹ năng, thái độ được quy định tại khung NL theo các cấp độ khác nhau. Competency-based civil servant employment Competency-based civil servant employment ensures effective use of civil servants based maily on competency. Based on the competency 12 requirements of each job and/or position defined in the competency framework, managers will select civil servants who meet the requirements of knowledge, skills, attitudes and other charateristics specified in the competency framework at different levels. Competency-based Training & Development HR Training and Development is one of the positive measures to improve the organization’s adaptivity to environmental changes. Training and Development provides the organization with high quality human resources, contributing to improving the competitiveness and implementing the overall human resources strategy of the organization and the system. Competency- based training emphasizes the use of competencies to perform a given skill in order to meet the specific requirements of the job. It cares about work quality achieved by the implementer’s competence. Competency-based civil servant assessment Competency assessment is different from achievement and performance assessment. Achievement assessment is associated with the implemented/ obtained output products while competency assessment reviews the process, efforts, and potential of employees. Expressions of competence at specific levels will provide a useful tool in assessing competencies and results of human resources. The competency framework helps identify the competencies and expressions that each individual needs to meet requirements of each specific position. Competency-based Compensation & Benefits The competency-based salary, compensation & benefits system encourages civil servants to develop and strive to follow the organization’s determined competency framework to achieve high efficiency and effectiveness at work. There are different compensation systems to: reward individuals who are of higher level of competence than the standard one; increase salary based on competency development. 2.4. Necessity of civil servant management in State administrative agencies in the context of administrative reform Firstly, improving service performance and enhancing the quality of human resources of State administrative agencies has been paid a due attention by the Government. 13 Secondly, Vietnam's current State management of human resources still reveals certain limitations, making it difficult to control the performance of employees working in public sector. Third, if this model is applied scientifically and soudly, it will be a solution to promote and realize administrative reform objectives in general and develop the contingent of civil servants in particular. 2.5. Experience in competency-based civil servant management of some countries around the world 2.5.1. Experiences of developed countries - Slovakia - USA - France - Australia - South Korea 2.5.2. Experience in civil servant management in Vietnam to meet the requirements of administrative reform Firstly, the competency framework system must be built as a standard for competency-based management. Secondly, State institution of competency-based management is necessary to built to regulate service performance. Thirdly, be ready to respond to changes in both working environment and culture. Fourth, focus on the formation and promotion of public values. Fifthly, it is necessary to pilot the application of competency-based management at certain agencies to create convincing practical basis for unifying the implementation model. 2.6. Conditions for applying competency-based human resource management - Define competencies of the work positions and integrate them into a competency framework. - Form a revised legal framework and ensure that the civil servant management contents are systematical. - Willingness to change organizational culture. 14 CHAPTER 3: CURRENT SITUATION OF CIVIL SERVANT MANAGEMENT IN STATE ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES IN VIETNAM 3.1. Actual situation of legal reglations on civil servant management in State administrative agencies 3.2. Actual situation of civil servant management in State administrative agencies in Vietnam - Regarding civil servant recruitment - Regarding civil servant employment - Retraining civil servant training - Regarding civil servant assessment - Regarding salary, payment, compensation and benefits for civil servants 3.3. Assess the current situation of civil servant management in Vietnam 3.3.1. Strong points Regarding civil servant recruitment: Recruitment and selection has basically ensured the principles of openness, transparency, objectivity and lawfulness, ensuring competitiveness in the direction of "seeking the right persons to undertake work instead of arranging work for available people"; strengthen the application of information technology in recruitment examination and prioritize to select the talented, young and ethnic minority candidates. Regarding the employement and training of civil servants Firstly, civil servant training models in Vietnam have met the HR standardization Secondly, training programs and documents in recent years have been adjusted to reduce theory/academic oriented contents. Thirdly, there has been a distinction between professional competencies and managerial leadership competencies after the training model based on managerial leadership titles developed. Regarding civil servant assessment and salary/payment Firstly, public service performance results and competencies have been highly appreciated in assessment process. Secondly, the assessment results clearly categorize contribution level of civil servants. Salary is easily calculated and applicalbe. It is unified in the whole public sector. 15 3.3.2. Weak ponts Regarding civil servant recruitment First, agencies employing civil servants have no right to decide on the recruitment of new people based on working demand without allocation of payroll quotas. Second, the determination of recruitment needs is not really close to actual requirements. Third, the determination of civil servant standards is not really clear, resulting in the assessment of "input" quality is not objective and scientific. Fourth, some regulations on the form and content of the recruitment examination are not appropriate. Fifth, in organizing examinations, the exam contents, the way to give exams, the exam forms are still inappropriate and formalistic. Employing civil servants Regarding the appointment of leadership and management positions, the appointment criteria are still general, mainly based on the tiltles, not really associated to each job/position. Under current regulations, the appointment and re-appointment of public leaders must be performed by consulting many levels and units, taking a lot of time. In appointment process, the vote of confidence has shown positiveness, democratism, intellectuality and collective strength. However, sometimes the vote of confidence results do not properly reflect the confidence in competencies and the moral qualities of the voted people due to personal relationships. As such, to overcome these limitations, employing civil servants based on competencies is necessary. Regarding training and fostering civil servants Firstly, the implementation of current fostering models does not meet the objectives of improving civil servant team’s competencies to satisfy actual working requirements. Secondly, the basis for determining who should to be sent to participate in fostering courses is unclear. Thirdly, despite certain positive changes, the fostering contents are not practically designed, making the fostering methods still restrictive and traditional. Fourthly, the fostering assessment only assess learning results after the course, it is not of practical meaning other than being used as a basis for classifying fostering certificates. Regarding civil servant assessment 16 The current civil servant assessment has not yet reflected properly actual competencies of civil servants. The assessment criteria are still general, applicable to many objects and groups that have not yet been specified or tailored for each type of service activity. Assessment results are basically used for right purposes. However, the assessment results are sometimes used too simply, lack strategic vision, which affects the organization's personnel development. It is difficult for the current civil servant assessment to determine competency gaps of civil serrvants to identify training and fostering needs. It, therefore, does not help to develop competencies according to purpose of assessment activity. Regarding salary for civil servants Firstly, salary or payment method is not associated with the work that each individual undertakes, so it does not reflect work complexity, work result and competency that each person has shown in the course of work. Secondly, there is a salary mismatch in the relationship between the managerial jobs and professional jobs, resulting in the unreasonable salaries. Thirdly, the rigid salary calculation method restricts the localities with higher salary conditions to attract high quality human resources. 3.3.3. Causes of limitations Firstly, the basis of civil servant management activities in State administrative agencies is not really consistent with the requirements of administrative reform Secondly, Many administrative agencies do not define clearly strategies and objectives, so there is a lack of cohesion among civil servant management activities. Thirdly, civil servant management activities lack legal basis and consistency. Fourthly, job analysis activities in State administrative agencies have not been scientifically performed to be used as a reliable basis in the civil servant management process. 3.3.4. Issues raised for civil servant management in State administrative agencies and the need for competency-based management. - Completing the job and position determination process to create basis for developing competency frameworks. 17 - Renewing legal regulations on civil servant management in general and institutionalizing competency-based civil servant management in terms of talent attraction and appreciation, recruitment, employment, assessment, salary and compensation; and competency framework design. CHAPTER 4: VIEWPOINTS AND SOLUTIONS FOR COMPETENCY-BASED CIVIL SERVANT MANAGEMENT IN STATE ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES IN VIETNAM TO MEET THE REQUIREMENTS OF PAR 4.1. Basis for competency-based civil servant management in Vietnam - Political basis - Legal basis - Practical basis 4.2. Views on competency-based civil servant management - Institutionalize the Party's views and orientations on innovation, improving the quality of civil servants based on their competencies, meeting the requirements of administrative reform - Competency-based civil servant management should be associated with the objectives/requirements of administrative reform - Competency-based civil servant management should inherit lessons learned from countries that have applied it. - Competency-based civil servant management needs a synchronous solution system 4.3. Solutions for competency-based civil servant management in State administrative agencies to meet the requirements of administrative reform 4.3.1. Raising awareness of competency-based management in State administrative agencies 4.3.2. Institutionalizing competency-based civil servant management, improving job analysis, determining jobs and positions in State administrative agencies In the current conditions of our country, it is necessary to complete legal systems of competency

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