Public Service Renewal - Are those A's or F's?
February 2nd, 2011 has come and gone. Deputy heads should have submitted reports on their overall progress against the four pillars of the 2010-2011 Public Service Renewal Action Planto the Clerk of the Privy Council:
Integrated Planning – implementation – reporting on results
Recruitment– targeted – coordinated - efficient – diverse
Employee Development– talent development – performance management – learning
Renewing the Workplace– collaboration – new technologies –streamlining rules and reporting - innovation – knowledge and information management – risk management – public service ethics and values
So the question is… did everyone get straight A’s or is there still a lot of room for improvement? We’ll surely have to wait a little while for the results (that’s a lot of marking for Wayne Wouters after all) but in the mean time… whether you are a seasoned executive or a brand new manager, there are specific initiatives which you can undertake to help you to continue to meet and exceed expectations regarding the Public Service Renewal Agenda and Strategic Review Process. Here is a Leadership Framework which can guide you straight to an A+ in Public Service Renewal:
Conduct a Strategic Organizational Review
1. Clarify your contribution to Government of Canada priorities.
2. Align your Program Activity Architecture with your strategic and operational objectives.
3. Reallocate resources to the highest priority activities.
4. Identify and implement process improvements.
5. Align your governance structure for maximum effectiveness.
Focus on Performance Management and Employee Involvement
1. Implement your Leadership Development Framework and foster leadership at all levels.
2. Increase your efforts and build employee engagement – Have you met the Chief Human Resources Officer expectations?
3. Interpret and act upon your 2008 Public Service Employee Survey results.
4. Promote a continuous learning environment with high flexibility, capacity for innovation and a tolerance for change.
5. Create and maintain a positive working environment, improve your targeted employee retention rates and attracting new hires.
Talent Management or Manage your Talent
1. Integrate your business and human resources planning processes.
2. Develop and implement recruitment and retention strategies.
3. Meet your targets for workforce quality and diversity.
4. Complete your implementation of the TBS Policy on Learning.
5. Manage the retention of knowledge as your employees reach retirement.
6. Succession plan.
The framework may seem a little bit daunting at first and does include a total of 16 action items. So, if you have to prioritize and choose one to tackle first, which should it be? In my opinion there is one logical choice that stands out: Employee Engagement.
Employee engagement needs to be treated as a strategic priority
According to the Conference Board Report, employee engagement has been linked to:
- Performance – individual, group and corporate
- Recruitment, retention, turnover rates
- Customer service and loyalty
- Growth in operating and profit margins and revenue growth rates
A Gallup Management Journal (GMJ) 2006 national surveyof U.S. workers (1000 employees surveyed quarterly over a 2 year period) looked at the effect of employee engagement on team-level innovation and customer service delivery and found that there is a connection between:
- Employee engagement and an organization that encourages new ideas and thinking out-of-the-box
- Employee engagement and customer engagement
- Employee engagement and creating service innovation
- Employee engagement and workplace friendships promote innovation – Having a friend to share and bounce ideas off of increases idea generation and fine tuning.
- Employee engagement and positive responses to team member’s creative ideas
- Employee engagement and ‘contagious creativity’ – The number of new ideas is multiplied in a team setting.
Company leaders who want to drive growth through innovation should first create an environment that welcomes new ideas -- and should make engaging employees a key component of that strategy. (Gallup)
Whether you use Gallup’s ‘Engagement Ratio’ or Conference Board’s recently developed ‘Global Barometer for Measuring Employee Engagement’ to measure your level of employee engagement, you can measure your organization’s health interms of engaged versus actively disengaged employees. Gallup proposes a 9:1 ratio of engaged to actively disengaged as a benchmark for ‘best in class organizations’.
Once you have calculated a baseline measure of employee engagement the question remains, what is your target engagement ratio and how will you reach it?
Download our white paper, Measuring Employee Engagement:A Strategic Priority for Deputy Heads in the Canadian Public Service to learn more about interpreting and acting upon your 2008 Public Service Survey results.
Or, for more on the impact of management and leadership in fostering innovation, download our white paper Building Effective Management and Leadership Practices to Enhance Organizational Innovation.