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UAE to introduce star ratings for government departments

posted on 12/02/2014: 1715 views



Like seven star hotels, UAE will now have seven star government departments with the implementation of a new set of standards and rating system to measure services.

An initiative of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the UAE Standards for Government Services Excellence Programme was announced by Rashid bin Fahad, UAE Minister of Environment and Water on Tuesday at the second annual Government Summit in Dubai.

The system will measure each department's performance on the scale of ‘two to seven' star ratings.

"As we discuss ways to improve government services at this summit it is my pleasure to announce the implementation of a new set of standards at the federal level that will measure the performance of all government departments and give them ratings. The ratings system will work like it does for a five star hotel or for electronic appliances,” said bin Fahad at press conference announcing the launch.

He added that the system will definitely help in improving the services and enhance the people's satisfaction level.

Interestingly, the standards are being adopted by Arab League to be implemented across the Mena region.

"The 42nd Arab League approved the adoption of the standards at the regional level and I'm pleased that the entire Mena region will see the benefits of the standards,” added bin Fahad.

Arab Accreditation, a standardisation arm of Arab League, will oversee implementation of guidelines at regional level. However, it won't be binding on the member countries.

"This is a great move and a good example of collaboration at the regional level. The rating system will be a nice tool in developing government services and implementing best practices, but the onus of implementation will be on the respective governments,” said Hasan Qasem, Secretary of Arab Accreditation.

At the UAE level, the standards are being implemented and the performances are being measured by the Prime Minister's office in coordination with Emirates Standardisation and Metrology Authority (ESMA).

"It is important to have common guidelines for all services. It helps in measuring all the services through the same set of standards. ESMA is working with the PM's office in implementing the standards and evaluating the performances and the ratings will be out by the end of this year,” said Mohammad Saleh Badri, Director General of ESMA, speaking to Gulf News on the side-lines of the summit.

The ratings will be an annual process, which will involve measurement of the performance, giving a timeline for the departments to adjust to the requirements of standards, in case of unsatisfactory results and the final stage will be the announcing of the grades.

The ambitious project is based on a set of criteria which includes dealings with customers, speed of service delivery, reduction of waiting time, accessibility of the services, office ambience, use of technology and location of service delivery outlet.

"The rating won't be a one-time process. There will be a dedicated staff to continuously monitor the performance and make sure the standards are maintained and if a department fails, its ratings would drop,” said Badri, explaining the rating system.

All the government departments will have access to the standards and details on how the system will work.

Box

Criteria of success

• Dealings with customers

• Speed of service delivery

• Reduction in waiting time

• Accessibility of the services

• Office ambience

• Use of technology

• Proximity of service outlets. – Gulf News – Read more: http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/general/uae-to-introduce-star-ratings-for-government-departments-1.1289766

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