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Government and Public Sector The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services Ed Straw.

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Presentation on theme: "Government and Public Sector The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services Ed Straw."— Presentation transcript:

1 Government and Public Sector The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services Ed Straw

2 2 Problem, What Problem?

3 3 What does the state offer this woman? Criminalisation of my partner Criminalisation of the father of my children Imprisonment of the father of my children Take my children away from me (into care) Domestic Violence

4 4 The state service provided to victims of domestic violence has changed very little in 30 years. The new Act will make some difference

5 5 Why such an absent performance by the government machine? The window on the world is partial, obscured Wrong skills and motivation Very little stimuli to improve No mechanism to translate strategy into action Endemic under- achieving public services Civil servants are impartial, impassionate and passing through Research is academic, statistical accuracy observed, unaware of tangible outcome Policy not change Producer dominated, not customer driven Office bound, not service sampling Lack of transparency Institutional consultation

6 6 Traditional Civil Service Approach A generalist is assigned to it Staff assigned to the job from the civil service Largely office bound Passing-through-orientated Issue guidance and wait for the world to change Future careers dependent on serving inside Analyse the problem academically and as a policy matter Impartial Dominated by departmental silos Basic assumption is to carry on as before Change has to be justified Rough Sleeping Approach Led by a deep specialist/practitioner Staff hand-picked for the job from a range of backgrounds (including civil service) Service sampling approach Goal-orientated and time-limited Committed, well led, motivated group Future careers depending on success of with this objective Analyse the problem from the ground and from the customer and redesign the services accordingly Passionate Joining up services Explicit about the need for change Challenging assumptions and working practices, and do things differently

7 7 Why such an absent performance by the government machine? The window on the world is partial, obscured Wrong skills and motivation Very little stimuli to improve No mechanism to translate strategy into action Endemic under- achieving public services Civil servants are impartial, impassionate and passing through Civil servants are often unskilled High personal autonomy, limited performance management, little accountability Research is academic, statistical accuracy observed, unaware of tangible outcome Policy not change Producer dominated, not customer driven Office bound, not service sampling Lack of transparency Institutional consultation

8 8 The British Civil Service 2004 So hard to find a point of responsibility and ownership and someone who will make it happen. Management by committee, decision by committee, good people up to their ears. Dead wood lying all around Source: Client-side project manager for financial systems upgrade

9 9 Why such an absent performance by the government machine? The window on the world is partial, obscured Wrong skills and motivation Very little stimuli to improve No mechanism to translate strategy into action Endemic under- achieving public services Civil servants are impartial, impassionate and passing through Civil servants are often unskilled High personal autonomy, limited performance management, little accountability Civil Service values are inward looking values Research is academic, statistical accuracy observed, unaware of tangible outcome Policy not change Producer dominated, not customer driven Office bound, not service sampling Lack of transparency Institutional consultation

10 10 Civil Service Values Incorruptibility Impartiality Integrity Independence Adaptability Enduring Values: Who chose these values? Achievement Outcomes Delivery Customer driven Public service Accountability What about these values: Who should choose these values?

11 11 Why such an absent performance by the government machine? The window on the world is partial, obscured Wrong skills and motivation Very little stimuli to improve No mechanism to translate strategy into action Endemic under- achieving public services Civil servants are impartial, impassionate and passing through Civil servants are often unskilled High personal autonomy, limited performance management, little accountability Civil Service values are inward looking values Role Confusion Knowledge shedding – no institutional memory Refuge taken in language and process – alternative diplomatic immunity? Research is academic, statistical accuracy observed, unaware of tangible outcome Policy not change Producer dominated, not customer driven Office bound, not service sampling Lack of transparency Institutional consultation

12 12 Role confusion is widespread Why do we have a civil service? To administer Government? To run the country? To serve ministers? To protect ministers? From themselves? To regulate ministers? To put political objectives into practice? To shock absorb? To prevent or limit bad ideas going into practice? To educate parliament? To prepare legislation? To develop policy? To deliver services? To reform public services? To survive? To look after its own? To mind the shop and provide continuity as ministers come and go? When a civil servant gets up in the morning, what is she responsible for? What does he go to work for? Organisations without a clear role perform below their potential.

13 13 Why such an absent performance by the government machine? The window on the world is partial, obscured Wrong skills and motivation Very little stimuli to improve No mechanism to translate strategy into action Endemic under- achieving public services Civil servants are impartial, impassionate and passing through Civil servants are often unskilled High personal autonomy, limited performance management, little accountability Civil Service values are inward looking values Role Confusion Fixed resource allocation – no social investment bankers No international rankings, no process comparisons Little performance measurement of service costs and outcomes Innovation nearly impossible Change must be justified, not retaining status quo Knowledge shedding – no institutional memory Refuge taken in language and process – alternative diplomatic immunity? Un-joined up government departments and public services It takes forever: 3 months versus 5 days Research is academic, statistical accuracy observed, unaware of tangible outcome Policy not change Producer dominated, not customer driven Office bound, not service sampling Lack of transparency Institutional consultation

14 14 Timetable for Resource Accounting and Budgeting IMPLEMENTATION PLANNING 1993 1998 2003 2008 Spec Systems People Reporting Training Law Reporting Planning - Spending Reviews Control Source: Head of Government Accounting

15 15 Why such an absent performance by the government machine? The window on the world is partial, obscured Wrong skills and motivation Very little stimuli to improve No mechanism to translate strategy into action Endemic under- achieving public services Civil servants are impartial, impassionate and passing through Civil servants are often unskilled High personal autonomy, limited performance management, little accountability Civil Service values are inward looking values Role Confusion Fixed resource allocation – no social investment bankers No international rankings, no process comparisons Little performance measurement of service costs and outcomes Innovation nearly impossible Change must be justified, not retaining status quo Knowledge shedding – no institutional memory Refuge taken in language and process – alternative diplomatic immunity? Un-joined up government departments and public services It takes forever: 3 months versus 5 days Voluntary sector kept weak and off balance Client-side IT management is absent Project procurement: no such thing as bad officers only bad soldiers Research is academic, statistical accuracy observed, unaware of tangible outcome Policy not change Producer dominated, not customer driven Office bound, not service sampling Lack of transparency Institutional consultation

16 16 So the issue is… What can he Do for her?

17 17 Finding Answers

18 18 Finding Answers Monetary Policy CommitteeOther CountriesDVD PlayerWider organisational theory 19802000 Performance Price Finland New Zealand Australia France US Singapore What Works Here

19 19 Finding Answers: Monetary Policy Committee Clear role: Optimise Interest Rates Independent of both government and civil service Specialists, appointed for expertise and reputation among peers Transparent deliberations and decisions Politicians set decision-making framework Depoliticise decision making Make it a specialism Create public accountability through transparency Its a Learning Organisation

20 20 Finding Answers: Other Countries

21 21

22 22 Finding Answers: Industry Learning 1970S US, invasion of high quality, high value Japanese automotive and consumer electronic products and industries Led to knowledge acquisition engines e.g. business schools & organisational gurus Who asked… What were the Japanese doing that made such a difference? How did they do it? What were the underlying organisational principles? Could these be replicated in different national cultures?

23 23 Finding Answers: Learning Engines A National Industry International Industry To learn is to change

24 24 Local Government: Learning Engines Free movement of Staff University Local Government Information Unit Conferences Local Government Chronicle Service Journals SOLACE CIPFA LGA PwC Deloitte E&Y KPMG Professional Institute Professional Standards IDEA Knowledge Transfer Ranking: CPA Best Practice Identification Motivator / Intervention Knowledge acquisition, cross-sector Practice and Implementation Audit Commission A Local Authority

25 25 Learning organisations are stimulated by the right leadership: Vanity Ability Termination Sustainable Excellence Unsustainably high performance Low Performance High LowHigh NIH No culture Nothing to learn Self-importance

26 26 Leadership and responsibility Armed Services: No such thing as bad soldiers only bad officer IT, Defence & All bad projects start with bad clients Other Projects: Leading the Learning

27 27 Solutions System One: The Essential Drivers of Performance System Two: Structure of Government System Three: Organising to Deliver

28 28 The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services – Proposals System One: The Essential Drivers of Performance Government Organisations Regulation Ministerial Behaviours Product and Service Standards National Scorekeeping CPA equivalent, international ranking Programme & initiative evaluation Audit Commission equivalent, best practice Service specific professional institutes, conferences and journals Powerful educational institutes Values More Learning Free movement of staff Specialist staff Leadership for learning Fully independent Office of National Statistics Stimuli to improve Independent of government & of the civil service Public confidence in control of delivery resources Clear roles for civil service Borrowing Expenditure Unemployment Crime Schools Waiting Lists Etc Ranking Learning Transparency

29 29 The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services – Proposals System Two: Structure of Government Foreign Affairs / Europe Economic management Departments National Strategy, Planning, Budgeting Problem solving Regulation of private sector Indirect delivery of public services Direct delivery of public services Prime Ministers Office Ministry of Finance Political, parliamentary & legislative management Priorities Objectives Financial modelling for citizens Project groups Time limited Structure around consumer Best practice, international Effective frameworks Efficiency Review Complex partially autonomous systems Direct ministerial appointment Independence from monolithic civil service Clarity of outcomes Freedom to manage Strong accountability New scorekeeping Knowledge & learning Governance

30 30 The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services – Proposals System Three: Organising to Deliver Department Agency / NDPB Accountability People Free Movement of Staff Specialisation & professionalisation Electorate Parliament Government Minister Management Direct Ministerial appointment Change some of the people End graduate recruitment public service recruitment End job for life Centre ground for terms & conditions Recruit flexibility for the task, not service End job churn End grown-your-own Join the corporate services gene pools Preserve political, parliamentary & legislative expertise Remove innovation obstacles and add stimuli Change not policies Special public services capacities Organising principles

31 31 The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services – Proposals Getting There Self-reform?No history of success By-pass reform?Existing Imposed reform?Choice Abolition?Sanction

32 32 The Dead Generalist Reforming the Civil Service & Public Services – Proposals But, we cant have this conversation… Politicians are in the delivery–reform Stoner dilemma Reform is scared off, self-preservation becomes the priority Politicisation creates paralysis Keep playing the corruption card and the constitution card No external market, governance, or media pressure – who owns the civil service? Create open discussion Create pressure and desire for reform Crate a sense of responsibility for reform Day 1 issue

33 33 Reforming the Civil Service This will take a political act of bravery comparable to the transfer of interest-rate setting powers to the Bank of England and the establishment of the Monetary Policy Committee

34 34 ed.a.straw@uk.pwc.com for soft copies

35 35 ©2005 PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. All rights reserved. PricewaterhouseCoopers refers to the United Kingdom firm of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (a limited liability partnership) and other member firms of PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited, each of which is a separate and independent legal entity.


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