Though it is also agreed that there are many competent and efficient officers who work within the public sector, it is also a truism that both the structure and functioning of the body, are in urgent need of a make-over.
Some years ago, an effort was made to undertake a comprehensive restructure of the service, but it appears as though plans fell apart. Now a new effort is being promised.
The recently appointed head of the Civil Service, Chief Secretary, Mr. Elvis Newton is now indicating that government is embarking on a Modernization Plan that will be completed in 2016.
Mr. Newton has been updating members of the public sector during employee Health Benefits presentations by the Human Resources Department.
The Head of the Civil Service told officers that the areas looked at by the committee were Human Resources Development; Organizational and Structural Modernization; Leadership Development and Succession Planning; Vision, Mission and Values of a Modern Civil Service. Regulatory Modernization; Wage Policy, Payroll Management, and Financial Management reform; as well as Alternative Modalities for Service Delivery and Information Technology enhancement were also highlighted.
Mr. Newton further said that the reviews were conducted with inputs from a wide cross section of the service ensuring that Ministry and Department specifics were taken into consideration. The reviews, he said, was done to assist the government of St Kitts and Nevis in the modernization of the public service with a view of enhancing capacity in state institutions; to improve efficiency and effectiveness in delivery of services; to strengthen public service management, to improve governance and accountability and to enhance the development of St Kitts and Nevis.
Draft documents outlining the changes have been submitted to the Cabinet for review.
Mr. Newton noted that the improved Civil Service will be one that is strengthened by accountability, responsibility, productivity and further challenged officers to embrace a culture receptive to change and best practices.
In addition to speaking of the proposed changes to the Civil Service, Mr. Newton also took time to address fundamentals such as on time arrival at work, and other contributors that enhance outstanding customer service.
He challenged Civil Servants to embrace the highest standards of service, which he pointed out will help to erase the perception that many citizens may have of Government Institutions with regards to service delivery. The Head of the Civil Service also said that the reforms will enable the Civil Service to be in a better position moving forward to serve the Nation.