Human Resource Reforms in South Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, and the United States

Charlene M. L. Roach, Shahrin Shabnam Upoma, Meghna Sabharwal, and Hugo Renderos

Introduction

One ot the most important components of any modern organization is its human capital, and in the past tew decades, human resource management in the public service has gained momentum around the world including in South Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, and the United States. The three biggest economies in South Asia are India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan; these nations have struggled to overcome their colonial legacy through numerous reforms. These reforms were not only difficult to achieve, but also the most resisted within the public administration system. The Caribbean is often cited internationally as an exotic attraction for tourists as well as the United States. These two jurisdictions share other similarities as they are both considered part ot the Western Hemisphere. However, the Caribbean shares greater similarities with the three South Asian nations than the US given its 525 years of colonial history.

Most Latin American nations created democratic constitutions, institutions, and bureaucracies. Many constitutions, though, are not necessarily honored or interpreted as written, government institutions function at the will of the ones in power, and bureaucracies (civil servants) perform as instructed by their administrators. Government civil servants throughout Latin America operate in variation of each other. While some countries in the region are economically progressive, others are not so fortunate, afflicted by corruption, inefficiency, ineffectiveness, and waste. Facing these backlashes, most Latin American countries are unable to advance and fully develop as those compared in the developed world. This backlash also imposes needless costs on its citizenry. South Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America, specifically Central America, remains in public administration (PA) and comparative PA literature an under-represented and under-researched region (Moloney and Chu, 2016). This chapter seeks to address this lacuna by examining from a comparative lens the Human Resource (HR) reforms specifically, civil service systems in South Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, and the US.

Human Resource Reforms in South Asia

The modern administrative system prevailing in the Indian subcontinent can be traced back to the British Colonial system when the British Crown took control from the East India Company through the Indian Act ot 1858 (Mishra 2013). The reforms introduced in managing human

Charlene M. L. Roach et al.

resources during the reign of the Crown were slow but continuous (Khan 1999). They designed a highly centralized and elite administrative system known as the Indian Civil Service (ICS) (Khan 1999). The major reforms included the introduction ot the open competitive exam introduced by the Charter Act of 1853, systematic training for the public personnel and expanded participation of Indians, known as Indianization (Khan 1999; Mishra, 2013). In an effort to bolster the local governments, the British government developed different departments and distributed responsibility among them (Mishra 2013). After independence in 1947, ICS went through major restructuring actions, establishing new services known as the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Police Service (IPS) and Indian Foreign Service (IFS).

On the other hand, after independence from India in 1947, Pakistan developed the Civil Service of Pakistan (CSP), which had great resemblance to the structure and essence ot ICS. The ‘elite’ nature and dominance over key policy measures by a handful of public service officers only reminded of the bureaucratic system introduced by the British (Khan 1999). After independence from West Pakistan in 1971, the people of East Pakistan formed Bangladesh. The Bangladesh Civil Service started its journey with a motivation to elicit the monopolist nature ot the public service and servants and increase political intervention (Khan 2013). Unlike the Pakistan rule, advisers were chosen from the pool ot influential politicians rather than high positioned civil servants, also several areas of development were commissioned to elected politicians rather than civil servants (Rahman 1980).

India

In order to recommend strategic changes to the personnel system there were about 50 commissions formed to reform civil service in India. The recommendations focused on recruitment and selection, compensation, performance management, and human resource development. However, the major reform initiatives focused on recruitment and selection. Tummala (2013) argues the reform recommendations were repetitive in nature starting from making a university or equivalent degree compulsory for secretarial and ministerial positions to increasing the age limit; initiatives were taken to ensure patronage free and efficient public service. But, despite efforts to restructure the entire recruitment and selection policy by introducing a single competitive exam, only a handful of the recommendations made by the First Administrative Reforms Commission in 1969 were implemented. The selection process to civil services is extremely rigorous and competitive. While thousands appear for the civil services examination, commonly called UPSC (Union Public Service commission), only a handful are selected each year. To improve performance, several commissions emphasized the training and incentives for completing projects in a timely manner. A comprehensive model was adopted with scope for variation across different services and awards were distributed at the state and district levels (The Second Administrative Reforms Commission: Refurbishing of Personnel Administration, 2008). Table 19.1 details the key HR reforms and its recommendations along with the implementation status of each initiative.

India: Training Civil Servants

The Department ot Personnel and Training (DPoT), is the chief arm of the central government in India and serves as the nodal agency that provides training to all rungs of the Civil Services. The Lai Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) in Mussourie and Institute ot Secretariat Training and Management (ISTM), Delhi are the apex training institutions of DPoT. The institutes provide training to all higher civil services. The Department of Personnel and Training is also affiliated with the Indian Institute ot Public Administration (IIPA) to provide advanced training to administrators. The Mid Career Training Program (MCTP) provides higher

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

R eform R eco mm e nda tion

R efo rrn l tuple me lit a ti on

Report on Public Administration, 1951

Equal opportunity Workforce planning

Recruitment should be free of patronage Introductory training for the new employees

Report on Public Services, 1956

Recruitment and Selection

Compulsory university degree for higher services

Report on Indian and State Administrative

Recruitment and Selection

Recruitment to the top tiers of civil service should be conducted annually

Services and Problems of District Administration,

1962

Training

A structured training similar to IAS officers for the state civil service offers

The First Administrative Reforms Commission: Personnel

Administration, 1969

Job Classification

Higher civil service posts were divided into two categories: posts in the field or ‘functional’ and posts at headquarters or ‘non-functional

Compensation

Unified grading structure for posts with similar qualifications, difficulties, and responsibilities to implement the policy of equal pay for equal work

Restructuring the recruitment process and modifications in the performance appraisal system.

Recruitment and Selection

A single competitive examination for the Class I services, lateral entry to technical posts at senior levels, cancellation of direct recruitment to Class II services, recruitment to central government posts from the existing state government employees

Implemented

Training

National policy on civil services training, the creation of the Central Training Division in the Department of Personnel, changes in the courses taught at National Academy of Administration

Performance

Management

Incentives for timely completion of projects, cash rewards for increasing economic efficiency of the agency, establishing work model and observe stuff strength, Establishment of Lok pal and Lokayuktas (agency to control corruption) at the Centre and in the states

{Continued)

Reform Initiatives

Type of Re form

Reform Recommendation

Reform Implementation

Committee on Recruitment Policy and Selection method, 1976

Recruitment and selection

Two-stage examination system introduced

The Civil Services Examination Review Committee, 2001

Recruitment and selection

Entrance exam based on common subjects

Training

Three mid-career training programs in the 12th, 20th and 28th years of service

The Committee on Civil Service Reforms, 2004

Recruitment and selection

The age for the candidates between 21—24 years with a five years’ age concession for members of the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes and three years for the Other Backward Classes

The Second Administrative Reforms Commission: Refurbishing of Personnel Administration, 2008

Recruitment and selection

Change the age of entry

It was decided that the upper age limit should 26 years for Unreserved Candidates, 28 for OBC, 29 for SC/ST and Candidates with additional 2 years for Physically Challenged in each category

Workforce Planning

Establish National Institute of Public Administration

Central universities were requested to have ‘public administration’ as a major

Training

Training to equip the civil servants with changing socio-economic scenario and new challenges

Mandatory training for entry-level and midcareer was implemented

Performance

Management

Setting goals measurable at all levels, monitoring the performance of each unit and individual within the organization, developing the capacity to perform, rewarding good performance and managing underperformance. Enhance accountability and responsibility by achieving specified performance targets while managing within resources

Partially Implemented Two extensive reviews will be performed one at 14 years of service and another at 20 years

Source: Second administrative reforms commission, tenth report, refurbishing of personnel administration, 2008.

level training to IAS officers and was implemented as a mandatory program in 2007. Mid-career IAS officers are identified as those at the policy formulation stage with 7—9 years of experience, at the inter-sectoral policy formulation stage with 15—18 years of experience and officers working on implementation ot policies with 27—28 years ot experience. Officers with 7—9 years ot experience undergo four weeks of training on delivery of services, evaluation, and implementation of projects alongside addressing key governance issues, leadership, and negotiation skills. IAS officers with 15—18 years ot experience also undergo a four-week training program that includes one week at a foreign institute. The training focuses on developing soft skills and enhances domain knowledge in various policy areas. The senior most IAS officers with 27—28 years of experience are required to go through a three-week training program focused on strategic leadership skills.

Pakistan

While scholars like Tummala (2013) and Khan (1999) considered the reforms initiated and implemented by India well balanced, Pakistan has struggled to implement strategic reform initiatives suggested by reform commissions and committees. Almost all of the major reform bodies were in favor of eliminating the existing structure as it became obsolete and lost its utility (Khan 1980). Reform initiatives mainly included restructuring the recruitment and selection, compensation, training, and decentralization process. The recommendations ranged from abolition of the elite service to the creation of a seven-layered National Civil Service (Pay and Services Commission Report 1959—62), merit-based selection, appointment, and promotion at all levels of public administration while projecting regional representation. These initiatives aimed to ensure equal opportunity for career advancement to all employees without preferences or reservations for any particular class — generalists or specialists (; Hussain 2011;, Hussain 2012).

Pakistan also attempted to decentralize the service by disseminating power through different levels ot services (Khan 1980). The reform initiatives undertaken by the committee of Reorganization ot Pakistan Government for Development in 1955 and Administrative Reorganization of Pakistan in 1961 increased the delegation of administrative and financial powers to departmental heads who would be primarily responsible for the technicality of their proposals entitled to submit cases directly to the secretaries of their ministries (Khan 1980).

None of the recommendations were adopted by the government, in fact, the members of the Civil Service of Pakistan (CSP) strongly opposed the ideas and suggestions as they perceived them as a threat to revoke their centralized power and privilege over the public administration system (Khan 2002). Therefore, no major reform initiatives were implemented until the reign ofZulfiqar Ali Bhutto. After acquiring power in 1973, he formed the Administrative Reform Committee which included recommendations from previous reports by Egger (1953) and Gladieux (1955). Some of the major recommendations made by the committee were: adoption of a uniform pay scale that reduced CSP officers’ comparative advantage in salary structure, elimination of reservation of posts for CSP officers and the abolition of CSP academy (Kennedy 1987). Table 19.2 highlights the major HR reforms in Pakistan, recommendations proposed by each initiative and the implementation status.

Bangladesh

After gaining independence in 1971, several committees were formed to restructure the personnel administration but only a few of the recommendations were implemented. The first committee that was appointed by the Bangladesh government was the Administrative and Services Reorganization Committee (ASRC) in 1972. The committee suggested some radical reformation of the public human resource management such as single, unified grading structure with different pay

Table 19.2 Pakistan HR Reforms, Initiatives, Recommendations, and Implementation

Reform Initiatives

Type of Re form

Reform Re со mm end a tio ns

Reform Implementations

Fay and Services Commission, 1949

Compensation

Recognition and protection of existing pay scales

Implemented as it promoted the already existing pay structure, but the elites benefited from it (Khan

1980)

The Improvement of Public Administration of Pakistan, 1953 (Khan 1980)

Recruitment and Selection

Merit-based selection, appointment, and promotion at all levels of public administration. Broad-based open competitive exams for anyone under the age of 30 with minimum qualifying education. Lateral recruitment at middle and higher level

Training

Mandatory training for all new hires at the Civil Service Academy (Khan 1980)

Reorganization of Pakistan Government for Development, 1955

Compensation

Pay scale ensuring income equality between generalist and specialist officers

Workforce Planning

Establishment of administrative staff college and Institute of Public Administration. Amalgamation of different central services into one unified civil service system. Constitution of Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS)

Administrative staff college was implemented later, but only to benefit CSP officers as they hold the director positions and could go abroad for training purposes

Decentralization

Creation of Pakistan Public Service Board with new powers in recruitment, promotion, and transfers

Pay and Services Commission Report, 1959—62

Workforce Planning

Abolition of the elite service and integration of various services to create a sevenlayered National Civil Service (Khan 1980). Merit-based selection for PAS

Not implemented was opposed strongly

Administrative Reorganization of Pakistan, 1961 (Khan 1980)

Recruitment and Selection

“Constitution of the Economic Pool to fill senior positions in the Ministries of Commerce, Finance and Industries.” Introducing Section Officer post, to be filled by CSP and other provincial and superior services, promotion from below and new recruitment

Implemented

Decentralization

The delegation of increased administrative and financial powers to departmental heads

Administrative

Reform

Committee Report

Compensation

Adoption of a uniform pay scale (Kennedy 1987)

Equal Opportunity

Elimination of reservation of posts for CSP officers (Kennedy 1987)

Workforce Planning

The abolition of the CSP Academy and the introduction of lateral recruitment, designed in part to politicize the bureaucracy

The Civil Services Commission Report, 1981

Recruitment and Selection

Merit-based recruitment and selective lateral entry

The National Commission for Government Reform (NCGR)

Equal opportunity

Living wage and compensation package including retirement benefits for all civil servants. Equal opportunity for career advancement to all employees without preferences or reservations for any particular class. Elimination of Superior service cadres (Hussain 2011)

Recruitment and Selection

Merit-based selection while protecting regional representation

Promotion

Promotions and career progression will be based on past performance and assessment of potential (Hussain 2011)

Training

Mandatory training at post-induction, mid-career, and senior management levels (Hussain 2011)

scales according to different levels of qualifications, skills and responsibilities, and the abolition of quota system to ensure recruitment based on merit and qualification (Obaidullah 2017). This committee also emphasized creating a decentralized administrative system (Zafarullah 1987). The recommendations made by ASRC were strongly opposed by the Civil Service officers as they feared it will interrupt their status quo.

In its effort to integrate New Public Management reforms, Bangladesh public service has taken initiatives to decentralize the administrative structure. The initial recommendation was made by the Administrative and Services Reorganization Committee in 1972 (Zafarullah 1987) but as mentioned earlier, none of the recommendations from ASRC were implemented due to political reasons. Later, in 2000, the Public Administration Reform Committee suggested delegating powers to subordinate and field officers (Obaidullah 2017), which was partially implemented. Thus, owing to the common British colonial past, the nature ot reforms and resistance witnessed across these three nations is also similar. Table 19.3 highlights the major HR reforms in Bangladesh, recommendations proposed by each initiative and the implementation status.

Human Resource Reforms in the Caribbean

The Caribbean (i.e. English Speaking region) Civil Service (better known as public service) shares common threads with India in terms of inheriting a British colonial civil service system. It bears the hallmarks of the Imperial Age with an institutional framework (i.e. rules and regulations) governed by the British government. By the middle of the 19th century there was mounting pressure to make changes to the civil service system wrought with patronage and nepotism in recruitment and selection. In 1854, (via the Northcote Trevelyan Report) the British Parliament’s appointment of a select committee was done to implement changes to these staffing functions. By so doing, recruitment, selection and promotion activities using nepotism and political patronage could no longer be practiced. Instead, merit principles were introduced with a recommendation tor the creation of a Civil Service Commission, with independence, authority, and impartiality to hire individuals most suitable for it (Charles-Soverall and Khan 2006; Minto-Coy and Berman 2016). Additional reforms continued which reflected by the late 19th century, a civil service that represented an established and unbiased administrative system. This new orientation reinforced what characterized all administrations throughout the British West Indies (i.e. colonial civil service in the Caribbean), enshrined with major values such as efficiency, neutrality, transparency, honesty, and integrity (Minto-Coy and Berman 2016).

Currently, the civil service is not as politically neutral nor does it consistently operate with a high level of professionalism as earlier periods (e.g. immediate post-independence eras). There are allegations of politicization. For instance, issues of interference from political leaders via competitive party politics, and attempts to intervene with recruitment, selection and promotion of high office holders. For these reasons and more, the public service has lost some ot its traditional appeal of recruiting and retaining the best and brightest individuals for public service. In some territories issues of nepotism, patronage, and victimization have affected human resource management (HR) practices. Additionally, other factors impact public HR as the Caribbean is diverse-socially and institutionally. The following sections will provide an evaluation of HR reforms in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.

Barbados

HR reform initiatives in Barbados around the post-independence era focused on reforming the public service between 1969 and 1973 (Best-Winfield 2006). These types of reforms were adopted via decentralization and performance management. Implementation took the form of the creation

Table 19.3 Bangladesh HR Reforms, Initiatives, Recommendations, and Implementation

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

Reform Recommendations

Reform Implementation

Administrative and Services Structure Reorganization

Committee, 1972

Compensation

Single, unified grading structure with different pay scales according to different levels of qualifications, skills, and responsibilities

Equal Opportunity

Gradual abolition of the quota system, recruitment based on merit and qualification only

Recruitment and

Merit-based selection,

Selection

appointment, and promotion at all levels of public administration

Decentralization

Creation of decentralized administrative structure (Zafarullah 1987)

Not implemented

National Pay Commission, 1973

Compensation

  • 10 scales of pay instead of 2,200 pay scales
  • 52 scales of pay to reduce the multiplicity of pay scales

Pay and Services Commission, 1977

Equal opportunity

The abolition of the elite cadre, and the barrier between CSP and other specialist and non-specialist services (Obaidullah 2017)

Recruitment and Selection

Merit as a basis for recruitment, tests designed to recruit efficient professionals

Formation of Bangladesh Civil Service ensuring equal pay at entry level for all cadres (Obaidullah

2017)

Performance

Management

Performance-based on fulfilling targets

Public

Administration Reform Committee, 2000

Performance

Management

Introduction of performance monitoring and result oriented audit of the agencies (Obaidullah 2017)

Decentralization

Delegation of power to subordinate and field offices (Obaidullah, 2017)

Partially Implemented

of the Organization and Management Division (OMD) in 1971, and in 1973, a separate OMD was created in the Prime Minister’s Office. There was also the creation of a Ministry of the Civil Service, the OM Unit was reinstated and local training was given greater priority. Performance Management reforms occurred in 1986, with a new emphasis on HR activities such as performance improvement, competence, improving morale of public servants, and ministerial direction by developing, implementing, and monitoring strategies and programs for performance improvement (Charles-Soverall and Khan 2006).

The second wave of reforms occurred in 1995 under the umbrella of The Constitutional Review Commission Draft White Paper and White Paper on Public Sector Reform. These initiatives used decentralization and human resource management/performance management. It sought to decentralize and devolve in order to encourage greater autonomy in the management of ministries and departments led by the Ministry ot Civil Service with Office of Public Sector Reform. Implementation failed due to reasons such as scarcity of resources, lack of political commitment, and bureaucratic inertia (Sutton 2006).

The third wave of reforms occurred during the late 1990s with the ushering of New Public Management doctrines globally, right through to the 2000s. These reforms were essentially geared toward Public Sector Reform (PSR; 1997, 1998—1999) with reforms identified under decentralization, performance management, deregulation, and privatization. Recommendations under the first three were varied. Deregulation reforms aimed to develop a Public Service Act (PSA), which was passed in 2007, a move from seniority and longevity to use other criteria as merit, performance, qualification, and achievement for advancement and promotion. These changes were met with resistance leading some to early retirement (Charles-Soverall and Khan 2006; Minto-Coy and Berman 2016).

Further, HR reforms in the 2000s highlighted strategic planning, organizational reviews, customer charter, internal reform committees, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) and customer service. Yet, challenges were experienced as there was limited progress in most areas such as resource acquisition, support from senior leaders especially permanent secretaries. Finally, in the areas of decentralization and privatization in the 2000s recommendations were put forward with no successful implementation. For instance, recommendations were made to address the duplication/overlapping of responsibilities with other departments such as strategic planning, building public/private nexus to circumvent red tape, and stimulate an investment sector reform program to enhance Barbadian economy (Best- Winfield 2006; Charles-Soverall and Khan 2006). A list of key HR reforms in Barbados along with their recommendations and implementation status are highlighted in Table 19.4.

Table 19.4 Barbados HR Reforms, Initiatives, Recommendations, and Implementation

Reform Initiatives Type of Reform

Reform Recommendation

Reform Implementation

Public Service Reform,

1969-1973

Decentralization

Abolition local government administration

Establishment of Organization and Management Division 1971

Reform, 1986

Decentralization

Performance

Management

Establish department/ units

Emphasis performance improvement, competence, morale of public servants

Creation of Ministry of Civil Service

Constitutional

Review

Commission

Draft, 1995

Decentralization

Dilution authority/ functions of service commissions

Performance

Management

Human resource planning, job analysis, recruitment, selection placement of personnel, appointment, new performance appraisal

Public Sector Reform, 1997

Decentralization

Establish agencies/ offices to create ownership for public sector reform

Office of Public Sector Reform, the Steering Committee; Task Force Public Sector Reform, Internal Reform Committees

Performance

Management

Deregulation

Strategic planning Human Resource

Information System

Develop Public Service Act (PSA)

PSA passed in 2007

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

Reform Recommendation

Reform Implementation

Public Sector Reform,

1998—1999

Performance

Management

Performance review development system, job evaluation exercise, Introduction Employee Assistance Program

Successful

implementation EAP

Privatization

Enabling Environment for Private Sector Investment

Office of Public Sector Reform, 2000

Performance

Management

Humanized management/ personnel excellence approach

Training,

Workforce

Planning

Organizational reviews; procedural manual for all registries

Decentralization

Duplication/overlapping of responsibilities with other Departments

Privatization

Investment sector reform program

Office of Public Sector Reform, 2001

Privatization

Continue public/ private sector nexus under Enabling Environment for Private Sector Investment (EEPSI)

Launched in 2001

Performance

Management

Institutionalize Performance Review and Development System

Public Sector Reform Initiative, 2004

Training and Development

Initiate a new training and development policy. Ensure appropriate training is provided to all public sector employees

Source: Adapted from multiple sources (Best-Winfield, 2006; Charles-Soverall and Khan 2006; Minto-Coy and Berman, 2016; Sutton, 2006, 2008).

Jamaica

Jamaica, like Barbados experienced successive phases of civil service (also called public service) reforms during the post-independence era, many of which included HR. It was expected that these reforms would usher in critical changes that would be implemented in the personnel management system with its practices that Jamaica inherited from Britain. One scholar has categorized these reforms into six phases. This section will examine them and highlight those more applicable to HRM (Tindigarukay 2004).

The first phase of Public Service Reform (PSR) occurred during the 1970s. These types fell under the classification of HRM. A successful implementation outcome was the creation of a Ministry of Public Service. The second phase of PSR was during the 1980s. The Administrative Reform Program (ARP) was introduced as a recommendation and aimed to improve human and financial resources management within the Jamaican public sector (Tindigarukay 2004). The size of the public service has been a perennial regional issue especially as this entity serves a critical role in Jamaica’s national development. Citizens and other stakeholders have negatively stereotyped it as “top heavy, inefficient, unresponsive, and slow”. Therefore, this implementation can be linked to some NPM principles of “doing more with less”, “cut back management strategies” and “efficiency” (Osborne and Gaebler 1992) with implications for HR practices (e.g. performance management, compensation, recruitment and selection).

The third phase of PSR occurred during the early 1990s under the Administrative Reform Program (1991). It included economic/fiscal reform which aimed to strengthen the efficiency and effectiveness of the public service administration in revenue mobilization. These HR reforms bore similarities with NPM doctrines and principles. However, like earlier phases not all recommendations were successfully implemented and could be attributed to controls inherent in the traditional system, lack of ownership and commitment to the ARP by the Jamaican leadership, limited resources, projects targets were overly ambitious and a lack of preparation in coordinating with ministry officials (Tindigarukay 2004).

Moreover, the fourth phase focused on more fiscal reforms (not directly HR related) while the fifth and sixth phases honed in on public service reforms, public sector modernization program (1996), vision and strategy for public sector reform (2002—2012), and strategic public sector transformation project (2014). Customer service, HRM, decentralization, privatization and contracting out, deregulation, declassification, economic/fiscal were all reform measures used during these mid to late 1990s and going right up to the 2000s. There was a re-visitation of efforts to reduce the public service to enable government to pay compensation to fewer employees and stimulate private investments in areas critical to Jamaican national development. Public service enterprises were privatized under the Modernization plan —i.e. recommendations made earlier were implemented (Tindigarukay 2004). A list of key HR reforms in Jamaica along with their recommendations and implementation status are highlighted in Table 19.5.

Table 19.5 Jamaica HR Reforms, Initiatives, Recommendations, and Implementation

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

Reform Recommendations

Reform Implementations

First Phase Public Service Reform, 1970s

Human Resource Management

Self-reformation of public service. Modernization of management practices

Reform implemented. Creation of Ministry of Public Service

Second Phase Public Service Reform, 1984

Human Resource Management

Introduction of the Administrative Reform Program (ARP)

Structural Adjustment, 1989

Structural Adjustment Trade Liberalization

Implementation of structural adjustment policies. Quantitative restrictions, tariff reductions, tariff rates

Third Phase, Administrative Reform Program

(ARP) 1991

Economic/ Fiscal Reform

Decentralization

Declassification

Deregulation

Establishment of Financial and Program Management Improvement Project (FPMIP) Decentralize personnel issues. Restructure central personnel agencies

Improvements in compensation and pension administration Modernize existing staff orders and public service regulations

Fourth Phase Tax Administration Reform, 1994

Fiscal Reform

Broadening Tax base. Improvement of Tax administration and voluntary compliance

Fifth Phase, Citizen’s Charter, 1994

Customer Service

Customer service improvement. Establishment of Citizen’s charter

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

Reform Recommendations

Reform Implementations

Sixth Phase, Public Sector Modernization Program (PSMP), 1996

Human Resource

Management

Decentralization

Deregulation

Declassification

Privatization Contracting Out Procurement Contracting Out

Improvements in the quality of service provided by public agencies Modernization of pilot institutions

Disciplinary actions for permanent secretaries

Compensation improvements. Remuneration packages Contracting out government facilities and services Strengthening Government procurement procedures

Creation of Executive Agencies (EAs)

A Standards and Policy Division was created

Direct sale of public assets

Final Phase, Vision Strategy Public Sector Reform, Ministry Paper No.56, 2002-2012

Human Resource

Management

Customer

Service

Performance

Management

Vision and strategy for public sector reforms in Jamaica under eight thematic areas

Source: Adapted from multiple sources (Howard 2001; Sutton 2008; Tindigarukay 2004).

Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago’s (TT) HR reform initiatives were similar to Barbados and Jamaica. At a macro level, Caribbean governments were adopting and implementing NPM reforms within their civil services, in an attempt to restructure, re-engineer, and transform them to operate with greater efficiency and effectiveness while motivating employees to do more with less, build and sustain institutional capacity, retain talent, and manage scarce resources. Similar reforms were being implemented globally. The rationale was implementing NPM reforms designed for developed economies into the Caribbean as small developing economies with the expectation that similar outcomes will transfer.

In light of the above Public Service Reforms (PSR) in the mid to late 1980s focused on workforce planning and performance management. Recommendations were made to improve performance in all agencies especially those critical to the restructuring process and help to broaden economic and social development. Like Barbados and Jamaica, this reform program reduced the size of the TT public service and sensitized staff within that there was a dire need to enhance performance organization wide in order to improve efficiency (Dumas 1995; UN PAN 2012). Another wave of reforms came in the early 1990s under the Draper (former minister of government) initiative. He advocated tor the implementation of NPM reforms in the TT public service. He championed public sector reform (PSR 1991—1993) and made recommendations within HR activities and related areas tor strategic planning, decentralization, workforce planning, performance management, declassification, privatization, contracting out and training. Reform recommendations aimed at transforming the public service using strategic planning process to implement plans, vision, and mission. Under Draper’s PSR initiative the process of consultation and consensus for government was a priority. He was committed to a philosophy of care and participatory democracy tor nation building. He recommended a new culture tor public service customer care, using the phrase, “service begins with me”, in order to motivate public servants to excellence in service delivery, greater responsiveness to the needs of citizens, improved quality service, increased financial and human resources, greater efficiency in revenue collection and accountability (Dumas 1995; Sutton 2006; UN PAN 2012).

Further, Draper’s leadership initiated many reform recommendations. These included the transformation ot performance management, specifically to transform personnel divisions into HR divisions, performance management and review of the existing appraisal system, and proposed the need to intensify and consolidate programs and activities that target efficient management of HR. More changes were proposed by replacing the old system of staff reporting with a system of performance management and appraisal and like Jamaica, offering EAP. Training was streamlined to make middle- to upper-level managers in the service more oriented with HRM approaches and theories using private consultants. Ministries and departments were required to use contracting out such as restructure and advertise for the recruitment of human resources to fill new highly paid contract positions. Implementation successes varied for this period of reforms and many recommendations met with great challenges.

The next wave of HR reforms came under the New Public Administration reform initiatives (1994—1998). Similar types of reforms continued to be used but those that had greater impacts on HR included important legislative reforms, policy decisions in performance management, and the creation ot a new ministry in public administration to provide the institutional framework to implement and manage many of the recommendations (Bahall 2012; Dumas 1995; Riley and Micheline 2004; Sutton 2008). The final phase ot public service reforms occurred like Jamaica and Barbados in the 2000s. Performance Management continued to be developed in light of the establishment of HR units in each ministry. The TT public service still is governed by a dated Civil Service Act of 1960s that does not allow for an integrated human resource information system, as an IT innovation already implemented to be fully functional in many HR modules and to take precedent over traditional rules and regulations (Roach and Davis-Cooper 2016a and 2016b). There are also HR training issues with staff who are not competent with using it effectively. By 2016, PSR focused on decentralization, workforce planning and performance management. A list of key HR reforms in TT along with the recommendations and implementation status are highlighted in Table 19.6.

Table 19.6 Trinidad and Tobago HR Reforms, Initiatives, Recommendations, and Implementation

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

Reform Recommendations

Reform Implementation

Public Service

Reform,

1984—1987

Workforce

Planning

Performance

Management

Public Service Review Task Force

Administrative Reform Program, 1988

Performance

Management

Performance issues related to rationalization of services, structures, staff

Voluntary Termination of Employment Plan (VTEP) created

Draper Initiative, Public Sector

Strategic Planning

Strategic planning process

Staff retreats. Ministries’ strategic plans

Reform,

1991-1992

Decentralization

Workforce

Planning

Performance

Management

Decentralization of human resource functions Restructuring line ministers and departments

Transformation personnel division to human resource divisions, performance management, performance appraisal system

Partially implemented

Reform Initiatives

Type of Reform

Reform Recommendations

Reform Implementation

Public Sector Reform, 1993

Declassification

Performance

Management

Training

Privatization

Decentralization

Classification and compensation of jobs

Introduction performance management and appraisal system. Employee Assistance Programs Training and orientation Sale of eighteen (18) state owned enterprises

Reallocation of responsibilities to line ministries

Opposition faced by Public Service Commission

New Public

Administration,

1994—1998

Performance

Management

Decentralization

Deregulation

Workforce

Planning

Recruitment

Selection

Training

New Performance Management System

New Decentralization Act (1994) Regulatory reform. Constitution Amendment Bill (1998) Improvement and stewardship of health reform

Ministry of Public Administration established

Creation of Regional Health Authorities (RHAs)

Public Service Reform, 2002

Performance Management Human Resource Information System

Establishment of human resource units in each ministry Human Resource Information System-Integrated Human Resource Information System (IhRIS)

Successfully Implemented

Implemented but not fully functional in many HR modules, dated Civil Service Act of 1960s does not allow for this IT innovation to take precedent over traditional rules and regulations; duplication exists with less priority on using IhRIS full modules

Public Sector Reform Initiation Programme, 2004

Performance

Management

Training

Launch of Public Sector Reform Initiation Programme (PSRIP)

Public Sector

Reform,

2005-2008

Privatization

Privatization of current health care system

Public Sector Reform

Initiatives, 2016

Decentralization

Workforce

Planning

Performance

Management

Initiatives aimed at maintaining and improving public service delivery

Source: Adapted from multiple sources (Bahall 2012; Dumas 1995; Ministry of Public Administration 2016; Riley and Micheline 2004; Sutton 2008; UNPAN 2012).

Human Resource Reforms in Latin America

Latin America has experienced recent human resource reforms since the world became technologically advanced and now faces challenges with innovative technology. El Salvador, Nicaragua,

Chile, and Argentina, discussed below, introduced reforms in human resources to provide its citizens with the most efficient public services. These four Latin American countries have in common its history, language, colonialism, and underdevelopment. El Salvador and Nicaragua have experienced delayed development regarding human resources whilst Chile and Argentina are two of the most advanced nations in the region.

El Salvador

El Salvador used to be a rich country with its coffee production. During its genesis as an independent country, El Salvador depended on its coffee exports for its economy. As a consequence, landowners never bothered to develop the manpower for further human resources reforms. Adverse economic conditions, poverty, poor working conditions, high unemployment, underemployment, and a lack of access to a basic education only perpetuated the underdevelopment of the human element (BID 2006). In 1994, it was estimated that approximately 70% of the government’s expenditures were being used to pay employee salaries because of the large number of existing public employees (Moreno 2004). These employees were low-level bureaucrats without any specialized training, and earning salaries at the professional level without the required expertise. Some employees were only at the technical level (Mayora 2009). As a result of this, the national government promoted a comprehensive reform of the civil service and management of human resources supported financially by the World Bank (Banco Mundial 1996). This reform implemented a centralized human resources system, strengthened human resource administration capacities in operating units within the ministries, reduced public employment to eliminate redundant personnel, and reformed a new legal structure for the civil service (Banco Mundial 1996).

The state sought efficiency in providing public services and considered that an appropriate administration of human resources was essential. Therefore, reducing economic resources allocated to pay employee and public officials’ salaries was crucial tor the financing of investment projects (CLAD 2010). The government figured that it would be convenient in light of the guidelines contained in the Public Sector Modernization Program requiring that a small but professional and capable public sector would be the ideal (Mayora 2009). The creation of a legislative decree on voluntary retirement of public employees was promoted in 1995, and on December 18 of the same year, the Legislative Assembly approved the Temporary Law of Economic Compensation for Services Rendered in the Public Sector (Moreno 2004). In considering this law it is stated that for reasons of efficiency, efficacy, and effectiveness it was necessary to reform the public sector because this restructuring necessarily entailed the elimination of unnecessary positions, for which the employees would receive financial compensation. It was the intent, with this legal provision, to avoid the suppression of necessary personnel positions for the administration of public services. The government needed to preserve these professional and specialized personnel. Although intended to improve voluntary retirement, the guidelines tor selecting those unnecessary positions within the civil service cadre, was not necessarily achieved.

Nicaragua

The first human resources reforms took place in the framework of the transformation of Nicaragua after the 1990s elections gave the winning victory to Violeta Chamorro, allowing tor change of Daniel Ortega’s Sandinista government, of a socialist nature. During both the Cold War and Nicaragua’s Civil War from 1979 to 1990, Nicaragua was ruled under a Marxist government after Daniel Ortega overthrew Anastasio Somoza’s dictatorship. This gave way for changes direly needed in the administration of the country’s ill organized civil service. As with any organization, process of change implies considering all available human resources at hand because it constitutes the most important source to make it not only possible but effective (Jarquin 1999). With this vision, the Public Sector Reform and Modernization Program of Nicaragua included among its components the Civil Service Reform (Jarquin and Barrios 2003).

Modernization requires new, capable, effective, and efficient public institutions. This allows for a true process ot modernization and orientation in order to provide the citizens with high quality services. However, this process is not achieved only by making changes in the formal aspects of the institutions. What is also needed is to transform other aspects ot the current system such as the culture, values, and work styles that have an impact on the efficacy and effectiveness of the functioning of the administration ot the state (UCRESEP 1997). The Reform and Modernization of the Public Sector considers as one ot its components the implementation of a Civil Service System and administrative career based on merit aimed to create a professional, impartial, effective, and efficient public service (UCRESEP 2003). Steps were taken toward implementing human resources reforms in Nicaragua. The Chamorro government worked on the modernization process of the civil service. The results gave way for a new and reformed civil service designed to take into account the management of the state’s administration (Coopers 1998). The new civil service system implemented the following reforms:

  • • Classification of functions and responsibilities required of each position and employee
  • • The criteria for establishing the selection procedures in accordance with the requirements ot each position
  • • Retributive market studies
  • • Definition of a method to manage the performance ot public servants
  • • Information system making for a speedy decision-making process
  • • Basic guidelines to define the nature and scope of the employment relationship of those who are at the service of the Administration

All these elements were analyzed, designed, and put into practice to continue bringing to fruition the process of modernizing Nicaraguan public administration.

Chile

Chile is a South American state that has made headways in economic growth, job creation, and political stability after the tall of the Dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet in 1990. Chile has experienced a 50% growth in its middle-class post 1990 (World Bank 2013). As its economy continues to grow, special attention is given by the government to its human resource reforms. Chile is an illustration of the success a state can achieve it it pays attention to its workforce and its needs for reforms. The Chilean government created economic opportunities for its worktorce by creating policies that include purposeful incentives and tax benefits (Al-Zendi and Wilson 2012). In the 1990s, post-Pinochet regime, during the first democratically elected government, President Patricio Aylwin took over a country that had been ruled under poor economic conditions (Garreton 1988). Chile was relatively isolated from the international community and as a consequence suffered precarious situations. President Aylwin championed five nation building objectives, one of them was reforming human resources (Boeninger 2007). Under his presidency, he instructed the Minister of Internal Affairs to modernize public services (Olavarria 2006). In 1994, the Internal Affairs Minister created the Interministerial Committee tor the Modernization ot Public Management. This committee’s purpose was to design and propose reforms related to human resources (MINSEGPRES 2006).

The committee designed a plan known as the Strategic Modernization Plan to be implemented over a three-year period. The plan strategically defined six broad objectives: transparency, management, total quality management, citizen participation, human resources reforms, and communications (MINSEGPRES 2006). This plan was primordial in its design and implementation because the political class and parliamentarians remained excluded from having a say in it. The aim was to allow administrators and public service officials to design reforms targeting inefficiencies they knew needed change with total autonomy and free from government interference (Waissbluth 2006). Chile tor the first time in its history experienced decentralization of human resources at the local level. Having total autonomy and freedom to make decisions at the local level had the effect of keeping lawmakers neutral (Waissbluth 2006). Furthermore, the reforms were planned and designed in a way that it was meant to skip the bureaucratic hurdle of being debated in parliament. With these reforms, Chileans experienced a speedy turnaround in public services. For example, the issuance of government personal identification cards required days, but with the reforms’ implementation, identification cards were printed on site (Olavarria 2008). Citizens no longer have to request a day oft from work to obtain a government issued identification because it can be obtained in a matter of minutes. Popular public opinion manifests that political authorities and the citizenry realized that it was not enough to regain democracy, the entire public system needed an overhaul to keep up with modern times.

Argentina

Argentina, just like El Salvador and Nicaragua, has had difficulties and challenges throughout its history. Argentina had its share of being ruled under dictatorial regimes, however, in recent history Argentina has experienced the introduction of democracy. With the introduction ot democratic rule came about reforms in the public sector. At the turn ot the century, in 2001—2002, Argentina went through a political crisis, with five presidents in a period ot one year. After recovering from this political crisis, Argentina started to seriously address and establish the foundation fora sustainable and more equitable economy to maintain steady growth (Lopez 2003). Starting in 1989, the chaotic economic situation triggered unprecedented structural human resources reforms in the state of Argentina. The hyperinflationary crisis was the major factor guaranteeing introduction ot human resources reforms into the national agenda (Bozzo et al. 1999). It was during this period that popular unrest caused the media, business persons, international organizations, and the citizenry to start advocating tor the redesigning ot the state. The State Reform laws are chapter-long laws regulating national public administration.

Because the state was experiencing economic difficulties, the State Reform laws prohibited private contracting or ascending certain individuals in top level positions without merit (Lopez 2003). These laws allowed the state to amend previous practices of employment hiring violations in the public sector. With human resources reforms, the state was able to reduce its budget by implementing measures that allowed early retirements, voluntary retirements, freezing of part- time and temporary support staff, hiring freeze, institutional reorganization, and the transferring of surplus employees to the provincial and municipal levels (Zeller 2000). After the reforms were implemented, the Menem administration delegated the administration of the reforms to the Ministry of Economics with the assistance from the President’s advisors. The World Bank assisted by providing loans and technical assistance to execute the reforms.

Between 1989 and 1996, the national operating budget for human resources decreased 57% by eliminating privatization of public services, eradicating excessive bureaucracy, and decentralizing services (Zeller 2000). By reforming human resources administration, the government implemented a new national system ot professional administration. The objective was to professionalize the administration of human resources. Additionally, this new system allowed for the establishment of a career public administration (Lopez 2003). The new system permitted the evaluation ot human resources performance tor position ascension and salary increases. Ever since the democratization of Argentina under the Administration ot Carlos Menem, the country has made strides in advancing democratic principles. One of its major changes has been in the administration of public services with the implantation of human resources reforms. Efficient services are provided but now what the country needs are good economic policies to stay afloat.

Human Resource Reforms in the United States

President George Washington is credited with the inception of a civil service in the United States (US). He wanted to build a cadre of public servants based on fitness and ability. However, while not the choosing of Washington, fitness and ability meant social status and not competence. Civil service from 1789 to 1829 was predominantly limited to the aristocrats. From 1829 to 1883 the spoils system also known as the patronage system dominated, wherein supporters, triends and loyalists ot the president were appointed to federal government positions. President Andrew Jack- son was responsible to popularize the spoils system (Cayer and Sabharwal 2016). In 1864, Senator Charles Sumner proposed to introduce competitive exams, however, the Congress defeated such bills repeatedly between 1865 and 1869 (Theriault 2003). Politicians were dictating the recruitment ot civil servants in posts with irrelevant backgrounds. For example, among various appointees in the office of the Treasurer, there was a postman, a salesman, a washerwoman, and 112 other employees with no particular occupation (Hoogenboom 1959). The assassination of President James A. Garfield by a disgruntled office seeker dealt a blow to the spoils system.

Pendleton Act in 1883 was enacted to remove this ridiculous practice ot hiring loyalists, friends, and relatives to the civil service. The goal was to enhance professionalism and eliminate the political influence in public service by introducing the merit system. The implementation of entrance exams not only freed the recruitment process from the grasp of the politicians but also replaced loyalty with merit tor the new bureaucrats. Initially only 11% of the civil service was based on competitive examinations, it grew gradually and by 1,900, around 46% of the total federal recruitment was under the merit system (Hoogenboom 1959). Another major step taken under the Pendleton Act was the establishment of the Civil Service Commission (CSC) that established the classification system. The commission faced several upheavals leading up to the presidency ot Theodore Roosevelt in 1901 (Hoogenboom 1959). His election led to the building and expansion of the federal civil service system.

The next major step in the history of civil service was the Classification Act ot 1923. The significance ot this act can be described from various perspectives. Some ot the recommendations that were implemented under this act were: establishment of broad occupational divisions or services, which were later subdivided into a number of grades based on duties and responsibilities covered by the job description (Huddleston and Boyer 1996). This act was ot major significance as it not only created a pathway for equal pay for equal work but also laid the foundation tor the pay structure and position classification for years to come (Pfiffner 1998). Between the Classification Act of 1923 and the first Hoover Commission in 1949, another act was passed which prohibited government employees in the executive branch to engage in any sort of political activity- the Hatch Act of 1939. This act gave legislative force to the Civil Service Commission’s prohibition on political activity.

After World War II, under the leadership of president, Herbert Hoover the first Hoover Commission was established. The commission comprised of 24 task forces issued 277 recommendations, of which several were related to streamlining the personnel management system. The commission recommended that department heads and agencies should have the primary responsibility to hire new administrators. The Commission also suggested a preference tor hiring veterans and recommended changes to the compensation system (Summary of Reports of the Hoover Commission: Part I, 1949). To improve career services, the Commission suggested that Congress mandate professional training to the most promising employees (Summary of Reports of the Hoover Commission: Part 1, 1949). The second Hoover Commission was formed in the year 1955, and comprised of 19 task forces (Мое 1982). Unlike the first Commission, most of the recommendations proposed by the second commission were not implemented, establishing senior civil service was one ot them (Riper 1958).

The next big step to reorganize the personnel management system was the passage of the Civil Service Reform Act (CSRA) of 1978. This act divided the former Civil Service Commission into two agencies, the Office ot Personnel Management (OPM) and the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). The motive behind creating two different agencies was to ensure that the government serve the public efficiently and protect the merit system from any form ot partisanship. The main recommendations of CSRA were: delegate personnel authority including authority over competitive exams to the federal agencies, creation of a Senior Executive Service, performance-based pay for middle level managers, additional protection for whistleblowers, an easier process to fire incompetent employees, and granting employees the right to unionize and arbitrate (Knudsen et al. 1979).

In line with the initiatives undertaken by past reforms, The National Performance Review Report in 1993, From Red Tape to Results: Creating a Government That Works Better and Costs Less aimed to transform government by reducing red tape and creating a more results-oriented service in the federal management system. The primary focus of the report was on: putting customers first, reducing bureaucratic burden or cutting red tape, empowering employees and downsizing (Pfiftner 1998). The reform initiatives were mostly a reflection of business-like practices in government that continue to influence the HR practices in the US.

The current public human resource management reforms are a departure from past practices that were inundated with inefficiencies toward a strategic human resources management (SHRM) approach. SHRM aims at reinventing government and introducing market-like practices such as: employment-at-will, merit pay or performance-based pay, decentralization, deregulation, and privatization (Llorens and Battaglio 2010). These reforms aim to provide greater latitude to personnel managers in decisions related to hiring, firing, promotion, compensation, position classification, and performance. However, constant government budget cuts make it difficult or impossible to provide competitive compensation and merit pay to public employees. Radical civil service reforms, like privatization, outsourcing employment-at-will take away traditional job security afforded to public sector employees, and hence opposed by several scholars (Coggburn 2007; Condrey and Battaglio 2007; Light 1999; Yusuf and O’Connel 2014). At the state level, employment-at-will reforms are most pronounced in Georgia and Florida, despite 28 states with similar arrangements. With dwindling budgets and the move to more business-like practices, recruiting and retaining public sector employees can be the biggest challenge facing HR professionals.

Conclusion

Interestingly, most ot the HR reforms in South Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America parallel the US, yet, each country is influenced by its history, culture and traditions that shape its public human resources systems. Although reforms in these emerging economies have initiated structural changes to public services many of them still operate within a personnel management framework. Majority of the initiatives fall under the traditional core, known as PADS (planning, acquisition, development, and sanction) (Klingner and Nalbandian 2003), and to a much lesser extent to the new strategic human resources management system. In fact, human resources are commonly referred to as “personnel” in these countries. There is still a great need for integration of HRM fragmented functions and activities. Questions still remain as to the relevance and impact ot NPM reforms adopted in these countries. Majority of HR reforms in the countries highlighted in this chapter, including the US are aimed at increasing efficiency, productivity, improving morale and hiring and retention of public sector employees. However, a balance must be maintained between autonomy and flexibility guaranteed to public managers and the need for fairness, equity, and justice in all personnel decisions (Brewer and Kellough 2016).

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