Developing a unitary human resource management system within the public administration



Policy areas

Organisation name National Agency for Civil Servants

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Contact person: Paula Vitriuc

The project aimed at improving human resources management (HRM) and professionalising the public administration personnel in Romania. To do so, public institutions need to attract, develop and retain motivated and professional human resources, and enhance cooperation and communication mechanisms.

Despite its public administration reform efforts so far, Romania still faces significant human resources management challenges and weaknesses in HRM. To effectively address existing difficulties, the General Secretariat of the Government (GSG), in partnership with the National Agency for Civil Servants (NACS) and the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection (MLSP), implemented the project ‘Developing a Unitary Human Resource Management System within the Public Administration’.

The overall objective of the project is to develop an integrated strategic human resource management system, able to provide the necessary support for a modern, efficient, inclusive and innovative public administration and to strengthen its key functions. More specifically, the project aimed at:

  • developing sound and sustainable mechanisms to support the process of elaboration, implementation and evaluation of public policies in the HRM field;
  • designing a system of competency frameworks linked to an objective and inclusive system of recruitment and evaluation of individual performance in line with performance indicators and public administration pay policies;
  • expanding the Integrated Civil Service and Civil Servants Management Information System;
  • improving the implementation of legislation in the area of unitary pay for civil service staff;
  • improving the coordination and communication between public institutions responsible for HR management in the public administration.

The new vision for HRM in the public sector marks a shift from the traditional, ‘control-and-administer’ approaches to HR, towards separating operational/transactional HR functions from strategic and support functions, and to a focus on competencies and continuous development.

The three partners, each appointing a team of 10–12 people in the project, play a key role in implementing public sector reforms in general and HRM reforms in particular. GSG is the main body responsible for coordinating strategic planning for central-level institutions and performs extensive tasks related to interinstitutional coordination and policymaking in all areas, including public administration reform and HRM in the public sector. NACS is mandated to create and develop a professional, stable and impartial corpus of civil servants and to ensure implementation of the strategies and the governmental programme in the field of civil service and civil servants.

In fulfilling its mandate, NACS keeps records of general civil service positions and some specific civil service positions. It has regulatory and policymaking functions, as well as oversight (compliance monitoring and control), and methodological coordination responsibility for all HR functions regarding the civil service. MLSP is the central public authority responsible for general employment policy including the Labour Code, which regulates both private sector employment and contract-based employment in the public sector, as well as developing and monitoring public sector pay policy.

As regards the partners’ roles in the project, GSG acted as project manager. It was responsible for monitoring the fit of the deliverables with the strategic directions defined at government level, interministerial coordination and centralisation of feedback from the partner institutions, and the coordination of the content validation process. NACS and MLSP were involved in the co-design of the deliverables and in the stakeholder consultation process. Administrative and public procurement responsibilities were shared among the three project partners.

The process of recruiting junior professional civil servants in the public authorities and institutions is still ongoing. A series of other long-term measures aimed at ensuring project sustainability have been envisaged, including further consultation sessions with the key internal and external stakeholders, informative sessions and awareness events, training programmes for targeted groups (HR departments, line managers, members of selection panels, NACS staff), strengthening NACS’s administrative capacity.

So far, the following results have been achieved:

  • Evidence-based public policy in the field of human resources in public administration

Deriving from the analysis of both the existing legal and institutional framework in the field of human resources and the international HRM trends and experience, the recommended measures include the following:

    • strategic targeting of HR policies and strengthening their evidence base;
    • improved integration of HR functions and appropriate sequencing of reforms;
    • strengthening of HRM capacities in public institutions and strengthening interinstitutional coordination, with the designation of a single institution placed at the centre of government to ensure the formulation and coordination of HR policies in the administration.
  • Standardisation of job descriptions for public positions and a common competency framework model for the ‘Administration’ occupational family

An inventory and analysis of the types of functions related to the occupational family ‘Administration’ was carried out, which resulted in the following:

    • a) a model for jobs regrouping to common mission, duties and functional areas, defining profiles applicable to posts with the same characteristics;
    • b) a set of 35 generic job descriptions developed for general public functions and for selected civil service positions in cross-cutting functional areas, representative for all public institutions (e.g. strategic planning, HRM, legal affairs, internal control).
  • Model for the national recruitment competition at central government level

Three options and the respective procedures, stages and resource requirements have been developed for the organisation and conduct of the national contest:

    • a fully in-house recruitment process (assessment centre/department within NACS);
    • a combination of an outsourced assessment centre and in-house testing (advanced testing outsourced to a competent organisation, with pre-testing carried out in-house);
    • incremental changes to the current process (improved in-house testing, which will include differentiated testing methodologies allowing competency-based assessment).

The design of the IT system architecture and the development of a manual detailing the implementation of the proposals will be carried out over the coming months.

  • Facilitating access for people with disabilities to recruitment and selection procedures, both during and after the life of the project

The five purchased packages of assistive equipment and access technologies, designed to facilitate the access of people with disabilities to recruitment and selection procedures for public employment, will remain under NACS management. These will be made available to all public institutions on request.

  • Modern HRM mechanisms and tools in public administration

A study has been carried out on the need for common, standardised data for the different categories of human resources in public administration and the related interinstitutional collaboration procedures. Analysis of the capacity of HR departments to implement proposed reforms: the performance management system has been thoroughly analysed and employee financial incentive schemes have been identified.

No results found.

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