The South Korean Minister for Personnel Management, Dr. Pan-Suk Kim, and a line-up of high-level Korean government executives have engaged an 18-member Ghanaian team from central government agencies, on strategies for public sector performance enhancement and employee productivity.
Speaking on ‘Personnel Management Policies of the New Government of South Korea’, Minister Kim said the Korean government exerts considerable effort to recruit the best talent in the country into the public service, irrespective of their levels of entry. This is done through open competitive selection and placement methods. Progression and recruitment into most levels is by intensively competitive examinations and the use of modern selection tools, including aptitude tests, the results of which are the strict determinants for consideration for engagement in the Korean public service.
The Korean Public Service Remuneration System is also sensitive, to, among others, “External and Internal Equities”, a means of keenly ensuring close parities between public and private sector salaries, whiles ensuring an “equitable balance of salaries” within the public sector.
As Ghana’s Single Spine Pay Policy’s transitions into its next phase of linking public service pay to individual performance and overall productivity, the Korean Government, through the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA, Ghana Office) facilitated a 17-day working visit to Korea, for twenty government officials, led by the Fair Wages & Salaries Commission. The programme was facilitated by KOICA, in collaboration with the Korean Institute for Development Strategy, (KDS).
Ahead of the interaction with the Minister, the FWSC-led team also interacted with key Korean government officials, on a range of subjects including ‘Government Innovations for Administrative Strategy in a Rapidly Changing Environment’; ‘Improving Productivity Through Performance Budgeting’; ‘Administrative Productivity and Leadership’; ‘Economic Development Strategy and Human Resource Development in Korea’; and ‘HR Challenges & Public Service Innovation’.
The Korean cream of speakers lined up by KDS to engage the FWSC-led team included: Prof. WS Shin, (member of the Policy Advisory Committee of the Office of the President, and Policy Advisor to the Korean National Assembly); Prof. Y.K. Kim, (Board member of IBM Korea); Distinguished Prof M.J. Moon, (Vice President of the Korea Association of Public Administration and Best Teacher (Korea), 2016; Dr. Nowook Park (Founding Director for Performance Evaluation and Management at Korea Institute of Public Financing); Dr. S.H Chun, (President of the Korea Institute for Development Strategy, KDS) and former Assistant Minister on the Economic Planning Board of the then Ministry of Finance and Economy.
The Ghanaian team constituted representatives from key government institutions including, the Public Services Commission, Office of the Head of Civil Service, National Development Planning Commission, Trades Union Congress, Local Government Service, Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations, Management Development & Productivity Institute, Ministry of Finance, Ghana Health Service, Ghana Police, Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice, Ghana Education Service, Christian Health Association of Ghana and Management Services Division.
The visit also afforded the team opportunities to visit industrial facilities that have productively applied these strategies and mostly diversified from state-assisted organisations into private entities, with global competitive clout, notably, POSCO Steel, LG Electronics, and Hyundai Motors, among others.
They were also accorded a field experience of the operations of Seong-nam City, in their progressive local government administrative systems.
The visit and follow-up works, constitute the first part of a three-year engagement programme with South Korea on performance-based reward systems.
Prof K.B. Park, Vice President of KDS and Head Supervisor of the programme, lauded the deep cooperation levels by both countries and re-iterated that this comes to further deepen the relations between Ghana and South Korea.
Dr. Edward Kwapong, Chief Executive of FWSC has applauded KOICA and KDS for facilitating the timely transfer of priceless ideas and experiences, towards the enrichment of human resources of the Ghanaian public service for national development.
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