Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Let’s root for a better civil service

Wednesday February 9, 2011

Let’s root for a better civil service

MAMPU director-general Datuk Mohamad Zabidi Zainal’s effort to revive the service with a smile campaign (“It’s time to smile again” – The Star, Feb 7) is both timely and urgent.

This is considering the fact that the service quality of the Malaysian civil service has plummetted in recent years.
Many loathe to enter a government department because of the way they are treated by the administrative and counter staff, with the possible exception of the Immigration Department.

Counter service staff and administrative staff should first of all realise why they are placed at the forefront of the department they are working in.
Today, the counter staff act more like they are the lord rather than the servant.
How that has come about is anybody’s guess, but the fact remains that they are civil servants placed to facilitate and provide good and proper service.
I truly hope that the effort to revive the “service with a smile” campaign will succeed.

The reason the Immigration Department has become an exception to the plummeting quality is that there is committment by the higher ups to monitor, polish and train the staff.

The other departments, too, should act likewise to arrest the decline of quality in their service.

I would like to suggest that all departments have a systematic and fool-proof procedure to evaluate public satisfaction. A Key Performance Indicator (KPI) like number of happy customers per month will indicate the level of satisfaction.

I have always spontaneously responded to good service by vocalising my appreciation on the spot and following that up with a short letter of appreciation.

I have always hoped that each time I walk out of a government department, I would have a smile on my face for having been properly treated and greatly helped.
Let that happen, please, for the sake of a more civil society in Malaysia.

Batu Pahat.


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