(delivered by Chairman Francisco T. Duque III on February 10, 2014 at the Civil Service Commission Central Office)

Commissioner Robert S. Martinez, Commissioner Nieves L. Osorio, Assistant Commissioners David E. Cabanag Jr. and Ariel G. Ronquillo, and Executive Director Agnes D. Padilla, directors at the Central and Regional Offices, fellow workers at the Civil Service Commission, both at the central and regional offices, a pleasant morning to you all.

INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

I am happy to deliver to you the State of the CSC Address this morning, (and this is) my fourth since I assumed office on January 14, 2010. I am hoping this will continue as a worthy tradition in the CSC. The State of the CSC Address is a fairly new endeavor that we have here at the CSC, but it has easily become regular. And just like this annual reporting, the many new things we have encountered at the CSC are slowly becoming a practice—accepted and exemplified by officials and employees alike.

Four years ago, the first thing I set out to do was to review the vision and mission of the CSC. We anchored the enhanced vision and mission on the CSC’s constitutionally mandated role. Thus, we have set out in 2010 to be the premiere human resource institution, with the vision to become the model of excellence in the service of the Filipino people. We further scrutinized our functions and programs, and started to align each and everything we do to an encompassing goal.

After initializing the Performance Governance System or PGS in the CSC, we were able to articulate our goal—to become Asia’s leading center of excellence in human resource management and organization development. Since then, we have engaged with local and international partners to do a serious self-reflection and assessment in order to develop our institution and to streamline our processes. Everyone knows it was not an easy task. We all had to hurdle some serious challenges, and it was truly a humbling experience. Self-realization is indeed a process, and it is a necessary step towards achieving excellence. Now, we are on the journey towards becoming a center of excellence for HR management and OD in the Philippines by 2015, in Southeast Asia by 2022, and in Asia by 2030.

The highlight of our 2013 at CSC was our being given yet another Silver Trailblazer Award at the PGS Revalida last October for the Proficiency Stage, where we garnered an overall rating of 8.81. This is our third time to be pronounced as a Silver Trailblazer. Congratulations to all of us! Being a Silver Trailblazer means we garnered an overall score between the range of 8.5-9.2. This score is an aggregate of other components, meaning the CSC was scored in many of its facets. Having a score this high means we also scored well in our different programs.

With every new year I welcome at the CSC, I am always excited and eager. Excited because I will be working with you again to create breakthroughs and milestones, eager because I anticipate valuable learnings and sweet success. Before we embark on 2014, however, let us take a look at how we performed in 2013. May kasabihan nga, ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan, hindi makakarating sa paroroonan. In our journey to becoming Asia’s best, we need to look at both our triumphs and failures in the past, learn from it, and from there, move on with better insight and skill.

OBJECTIVE 1: BEING RECOGNIZED AS CENTER OF EXCELLENCE

PRIME-HRM
The Civil Service Commission’s role is at its most critical, and we have to come up with ways to make sure that civil servants can attend to the increasingly complex demands of the citizenry. As one of the priority programs of the Commission, the Program to Institutionalize Meritocracy and Excellence in Human Resource Management or PRIME-HRM supports the institution’s goal to become a center of excellence in HR and OD in Asia. PRIME-HRM is CSC’s strategy to develop and empower agencies in the Philippine government. It is a program that assesses the HRM practices, systems, and capabilities of government agencies as well as entails greater engagement not just of the HR officer but also of the officials and the rank-and-file employees of the agency. It can be summarized through its three major thrusts—assess, assist, award.

In 2013, we targeted 25% of agencies to be accredited under the PRIME-HRM. We were able to push 402 agencies to Level II accreditation. That’s 25.28%.

ARTA
The cornerstone of being a center of excellence is the level of satisfaction of clients. This has been the CSC’s main concern for government service offices nationwide, primarily because the reputation of government lies on its performance. However, as the CSC polices other frontline offices through the implementation of the Anti-Red Tape Act or ARTA, particularly the Report Card Survey or RCS, it also needs to police itself.

Since 2011, we have been subjecting ourselves boldly to the RCS in order to know our own capacity and performance. So far, we have met our targets and consistently got a rating of Good. For 2013, our numerical rating was 87.3%—well within our target of garnering an 80-89% rating. At the regional level, Regions 1 and 12 have earned an Excellent rating for two years in a row, while CSC-CARAGA was rated Excellent in 2013. We have proven indeed that we are capable of rendering excellent service. But I appeal to all that the challenge is for us to bring all our Regional Offices and Central Office to a level of excellence in the way we provide frontline services.

In 2013, the CSC committed to subject 770 service offices and those 150 failed agencies from 2012 to the Report Card Survey. We were able to accomplish 99.22%, partly because there were 12 surveys that were cancelled. Otherwise it should have been a hundred percent.

We also targeted 85% of service offices passing the RCS, and I am happy to report that the passing rate is 92.89%. We also recorded a steady decrease in the number of agencies with Failed ratings—from 98 agencies in August to 53 in November. We are extending our support and assistance to these agencies through the Service Delivery Excellence Program or SDEP, and we expect that these agencies will be able to pass their next RCS (if not also be rated as Excellent). Through this intervention, we hope to enable all frontline offices and further increase their capacity to deliver excellent service.

OBJECTIVE 2: HIGH PERFORMING, COMPETENT, AND CREDIBLE CIVIL SERVANTS

SPMS
For the measure of high performing, competent, and credible civil servants, we have introduced a performance management system that is more responsive to the current goals of government—the Strategic Performance Management System or SPMS. Our target is 747 or 30% of the identified 2,490 agencies to have an approved SPMS in 2013. We have far exceeded this target with 1,105 agencies now with approved SPMS. Meanwhile, our Regional Offices have already reported agencies with functional SPMS. And this is where the challenge lies—the need to translate all of these approved SPMS into genuinely functional SPMS. And I understand in 2014 we a targeting 85% of all those approved SPMS for 2012 and 2013.)

COMEX
On exams—we also continued to administer the first step of the recruitment process—the Civil Service exams. We conducted a total of six (6) Pencil and Paper Tests or PPT for Special Examinations, including the Fire Officer Exam, Foreign Service Officer Exam, Penology Officer Exam, and Meat Inspection and Safety Exam. We also conducted three (3) regular and two (2) non-regular PPTs, plus one (1) Computer-Assisted Test or CAT. In total, we had 339,241 examinees for the different exams conducted.

Last year, we dreamt of a technology-driven civil service exam. The CSC Computerized Examination or COMEX System (has now become a) reality. It was launched last year at the Central Office. Through COMEX, we now have a computerized system that automates and integrates steps in the administration of computerized tests—from the filing of application all the way to banking of test-related data and to the release of certificate of eligibility. This will make the whole process easier for applicants. We are continuing the launch of COMEX in Regional Offices nationwide, and we are also fine-tuning it as we go along. (And for the information of everyone, the first Regional Office in Luzon that we have launched the COMEX at last Thursday where I together with the Director of ERPO launched/witnessed the launching of the COMEX and in that particular launching, I think it went very well, there were no evident hitches. So we are just waiting for the report of that particular launch last Thursday in Region 5.

CSI TRAININGS
On training and development—the Civil Service Institute or CSI continued to work towards being the government’s premier learning and development institution on HR and OD by offering a series of training courses that respond to the needs of our civil servants. Their high-impact programs deal on topics such as performance management, employee engagement, decision-making and risk analysis, coaching, career pathing, succession management, customer satisfaction, and communication. Last year, we organized together with the Philippines-Australia Human Resource and Organisational Development Facility, or simply the Facility, the first big-scale learning event for both the public and private sectors’ HR practitioners. This was the HR Symposium entitled Performance Management: Strategies and Breakthroughs held in Cebu. We will also be having the second HR and OD Summit this April in Cebu.

CHANGE MANAGEMENT PROGRAM and FOCUS ON THE 6 HR INITIATIVES
Last year as well, we implemented the Change Management Program, a strategy to engage officials and employees with the changes being undergone by the CSC. By studying our functions, we came up with enhanced versions of our major programs designed to develop HR in the Philippine government.

We will now focus on six HR initiatives: the PGS, PRIME-HRM, SPMS, the Competency-Based Recruitment and Qualification System or CBRQS, the Competency-Based Leadership and Development Program or CBLDP, and the Leadership and Coaching Program or LCP. These six HR initiatives will not only support CSC’s goal of becoming Asia’s center of excellence for HR and OD by 2030, they will also change the landscape of HR in the Philippines. These initiatives will also define our work plan for 2014 and the years ahead. This was again one of the fruits of our sturdy partnership with the AusAID or the Australian Agency for International Development through the Facility, aside from the CSC-Australia Development Scholarship 2014 intake.

We daresay we have never focused this strongly on being an HR and OD institution. It is good to have focus, to understand our mandate, and to know what government agencies really need from us. Congratulations to all the process owners who worked hard with our partners throughout the year. Let us give them a round of applause.

OBJECTIVE 3: PROVIDE EXCELLENT HR PROCESSES

ISO 9001:2008 CERTIFICATION
Early last year, we were able to meet our target of three (3) main processes achieving the ISO 9001:2008 certification—examination administration, case adjudication, and appointments processing. This is important to us because once we are certified, it means we have complied with internationally-accepted standards, and that CSC provides top-notch service. Later in the year, we also endeavored to maintain these three (3) certified processes, and to secure another certification for the CSI Training Processes. This year, we achieved that certification once again, and we now have the ISO 9001:2008 for our External Training Service Provision or ETSP.

CONTACT CENTER NG BAYAN OR CCB
The Contact Center ng Bayan or CCB project was launched on September 27, 2012 as the public’s primary venue to air concerns on service delivery and any other violations of Republic Act No. 9845 or the Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007, more commonly referred to as ARTA. Aside from voice call access to 16565, we now have additional contact modes such as SMS via 0908-8816565, and a filing of complaints portal via www.contactcenterngbayan.gov.ph. Since the implementation of the SMS facility, clients accessing the CCB have steadily increased. CCB has now recorded more than 54,000 transactions.

For the program’s initial implementation, six (6) agencies—the CSC, the National Computer Center, BIR, Philhealth, DOH, and DTI—have electronically interconnected their call centers to the CCB. Dahil ito ay isang ARTA-based and government-wide feedback mechanism, mas nalalaman natin ang pulso ng public service sa ating bansa. The top five ARTA-related complaints are: slow process, such as delays in release of claims and documents, non-observance of the No Noon Break policy, discourtesy, such as rude or unfriendly behavior, failure to attend to clients during office hours, and the presence of fixers. But mind you, we have many success stories about the CCB, how all of these complaints have been successfully addressed because of how effective our CCB has been.

Agencies with the most number of complaints include LTO, SSS, GSIS, BIR, and PRC. We have many monitoring mechanisms for ARTA, and with the likes of CCB, we can, like doctors do, continue to diagnose symptoms of non-compliance and treat the disease.

ON PUBLIC SECTOR UNIONISM
The CSC remains a staunch supporter of public sector unionism or PSU, banking on its role of protecting the interests of employees as well as promoting better working relations and conditions.

The Commission facilitated the registration of 53 employee groups, accredited 60 employee organizations, and registered 102 Collective Negotiation Agreements or CNAs in 2013.

ON APPOINTMENTS
We also targeted to act upon 97% of verified appointments within 1 hour and 45 minutes. In 2013, we were able to accomplish 98%, or 460,501 out of 470,349 appointments.

ON RECOGNIZING SERVANT HEROES
We also continued the administration of the Honor Awards Program or HAP as our incentives and rewards facility. The Commission has targeted for 2013 a total of 378 nominations, representing 0.03% of the 1.4 civil servants nationwide. The Honor Awards Program Secretariat received a total of 401 nominations based on the reports submitted by the CSCROs or 6.08% above its target of 378 nominations. Nine (9) of our sixteen (16) Regional Offices met or exceeded their target nominations. In recognition of CSCROs that exceeded their targets by 150%, the Commission approved the grant of cash reward in the amount of twenty thousand pesos (P20,000.00). This special recognition was given to CSC-ARMM, CSC-CAR, CSC-NCR, CSC RO8, CSC RO1. The Commission also decided for the first time to give cash reward to regional HAP champions.

PAMANANG LINGKOD BAYANI
Our recognition also goes beyond the usual. The Commission approved the Implementing Guidelines on the Pamanang Lingkod Bayani, which was promulgated though CSC Resolution No. 081965 on November 3, 2008. With the implementing guidelines, we have strengthened the administration of the Pondong Pamanang Lingkod Bayani, a program that reserves a tribute fund for the family of public servants who died in the line of duty, and awards scholarships to the children they have left behind. This is our way of saluting the best in the bureaucracy and honoring their legacy of public service excellence. (I would to take this opportunity to thank the NCR for the successful conduct of the three Fun Runs from which we have generated 2 or 3 million pesos, and this is what is now supporting the Pondong Pamana.

OBJECTIVE 4: ENSURE FAIRNESS AND EFFICIENCY IN PERFORMING QUASI-JUDICIAL FUNCTIONS

For case resolution, we used two measures of different standards. On the Enterprise Scorecard, we measured the percentage of administrative cases decided within 40 days from the time the case is ripe for resolution, and we targeted 70% for 2013. Out of the 8,899 cases, the Commission was able to dispose 6,798 cases, reflecting a 76.39% performance rate.

In 2013, we released the new Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth or SALN form after a series of consultations with various government offices and employee groups. The new form is simpler to avoid confusion, with corresponding guidelines on how one should fill out the form.

We continue to recognize the importance of the SALN as a tool to deter corruption in government. Thus, we deem it necessary to continue fine-tuning the form to make filling it out easier, but still having the needed “alarm” indicators to determine illegally acquired wealth of public officials and employees. We also want it simplified because we don’t want token compliance among public officials and employees.

OBJECTIVE 5: ENHANCE THE COMPETENCY OF OUR WORKFORCE

It may be recalled that we crafted the Refreshed Enterprise Scorecard in 2013 to reflect the CSC’s Breakthrough Important Goals or BIGs. A major change in the Refreshed Enterprise Scorecard is the prioritization of the mission-critical job competencies for all positions to hasten the process of delivering our strategic objective of enhancing the competency of the CSC workforce.

On August 2013, OHRMD submitted the proposed 10 mission-critical competencies and the percentage of employees which is 66.23% or 716 out of 1,081 assessed personnel, meeting these proposed mission-critical competencies using the 2012 assessment results. OHRMD has also prepared the technical competency profile and competency-based job description of 992 or 75% of 1,329 plantilla positions.

As of September this year, learning and development interventions were provided to 767 or 67% of our employees. These interventions were composed of formal training and developmental activities targeted at the different competencies: core, 40%; organization, 29%; and leadership, 31%.

OBJECTIVE 6: ENSURE EFFICIENT MANAGEMENT OF FINANCIAL RESOURCES

Our target for 2013 is to have zero unliquidated cash advance, and we were successful in meeting this. Since this is a required measure under the Results-Based Performance Management System or RBPMS, we have initially reflected this in our Scorecard.

One recommendation that came out of the most recent PGS audit is for the measure ‘zero unliquidated cash advance’ to be transferred to the Second Level Scorecards, and the measure for the Finance perspective of the Enterprise is the ‘amount of financial support from partners.’

In 2013, the target was 50 million pesos worth of financial support. I am happy to report that we were able to get 52.06 million from various partners, including (and largely) from the Facility, and the UNDP. These helped a number of partnerships which I will discuss in Objective 7.

OBJECTIVE 7: CULTIVATE PARTNERSHIPS WITH LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONS

For 2013, we continued several partnerships that brought to fruition a number of important projects. We currently have 10 partnerships versus our target of 9 for 2013.

Our partnership with AusAid through the Facility benefited our implementation of the PGS, the PRIME-HRM, the SPMS, Competency-Based Development Project, Leadership and Coaching Program, and Learning and Development. We also continued our partnership with the Institute for Solidarity in Asia or ISA for the PGS and the Office of the President for the Honor Awards Program, details of which I have already mentioned earlier.

The implementation of the Anti-Red Tape Act or ARTA thrives though our partnership with the United States Agency for International Development or USAID under the Integrity for Investments Initiative or i3 Project, the United Nations Development Program or UNDP, the Coalition Against Corruption, and 31 civil society organizations or CSOs.

Lastly, the Information Systems Strategic Plan or ISSP, which includes the COMEX and the PRC-CSC Web Verification System are carried out through partnerships with the DOST Advanced Science and Technology Institute or ASTI, the Professional Regulation Commission.

GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT

We also had gains in terms of Gender and Development in 2013. We participated in policy making, implementation, and advocacy initiatives with the Committee on Women and Gender Equality or CWGE, the Philippine Commission on Women or PCW, and other institutions on the enhancement of gender-related bills and policies, and in crafting the Women's Empowerment, Development, and Gender Equality or Women's EDGE Plan, which is a part of the Philippine Plan for Gender-Responsive Development or PPGRD. We also strengthened the Commission’s position in preventing gender-based violence in and out of the workplace.

Apart from advocacy activities such as round-table discussions and media campaigns, the Commission undertook the Commission-wide implementation of the Violence Against Women and Children or VAWC Referral System to strengthen the GAD mechanisms and support system for employee victim-survivors of gender-based violence. This move ensures their recovery and reintegration. This program also serves to strengthen partnerships within different government entities that are keen to support anti-VAWC efforts, especially in the workplace.

Mainstreaming gender is part of the enhancement of CSC’s programs; that is why we added a gender dimension to the Career Service Examination through orientation of Special Examiners and development of test questions as part of the test bank, as well as to the PRIME-HRM where we have integrated gender-based indicators.

CONCLUSION

Let us all give ourselves a round of applause for these accomplishments. I know it has not been easy, but I also know that each of you is very much capable of going the extra mile and thinking outside the box.

Alam niyo naman sa CSC, talagang napakaraming kailangan gawin sa maikling panahon, kailangan maging resourceful ka, kailangan alam mong dumiskarte. Pero alam kong kayang-kaya naman natin mag-sakripisyo para sa ikauunlad natin pare-pareho. Ang taga-CSC magagaling, kaya hindi malayo na matutupad din natin ang ating mga targets at goals. It is only by pushing ourselves to the limit that we break our limitations and reach our full potential.

Sana, kung sa gitna ng taon ay medyo maligaw o malihis tayo, inaasahan kong magiging gabay natin ang ating mga targets. Ito ang ating titignan sapagkat dito susukatin ang ating kakayahan at pagganap ng ating mga tungkulin. Higit sa lahat, susukatin ang CSC sa level of satisfaction ng ating mga kababayan, at sa pag-unlad ng kalidad ng kanilang buhay. This is a great challenge, but a worthy challenge nonetheless. Let us, therefore, all work together towards this end. 

Magandang umaga sa bawat isa, at mabuhay ang Komisyon ng Serbisyo Sibil!