ACR is changing to APAR
Mahfuz Emran: The system of long-term evaluation of employees in government service is changing. From now, no ACR (Annual Confidential Report). There’s a new performance-based online assessment system, APAR (Annual Performance Appraisal Report-Annual Performance Assessment Report) going to run for the evaluation of government employees.
For this, the Ministry of Public Administration has prepared the draft of ‘Annual Performance Assessment Report Discipline, 2022’. At the same time the work of making software is also going on.
Officials said that in the current system, the evaluation of subordinates depends on the whims of the superiors. In that way the issue of efficiency does not come into consideration. Therefore, in case of promotion on the basis of ACR, the officers are often not properly evaluated. The government also cannot select the right person for the right position. Basically, these problems will be solved in APAR system.
According to the draft guidelines, it will be a software-based assessment system for officials. Performance will be the main basis of evaluation. Artificial intelligence in the system will help in reporting. Officers will give work plan at the beginning of the year. At the end of the year, evaluate your own work.
There will be five grades based on the number in the assessment. There will be incentives for ‘A-plus’ and ‘A’ grade officers who have shown higher performance.
The new arrangement will be coordinated with the Annual Performance Agreement (APA). In this system, the Secretary and his superiors will be evaluated through APA.
If you want to know about the Ministry of Public Administration Career Planning and Training (CPT) Additional Secretary Shahid Ullah told, “Now the officers are evaluated in an analog manner. I fill out the ACR paper form, not the technology. But what we want to do is be web-based.”
He said, ‘Now in the ACR system, officers are given marks based on certain personal and professional tendencies or characteristics. Their performance is basically not reflected in it. The evaluation of action is not like that in the present system. Now my superiors are basically evaluating me from my point of view.’
‘In APAR, we have divided the assessment of an officer into two parts. 40 marks for individual characteristics and 60 marks for performance or work. This is the first time the performance of the officials is being brought to the fore.’
The new assessment system will be linked to the APA (Annual Work Editor’s Agreement), he said, adding, “A number will come from there and be added here (APAR).” A profile of an officer will be created based on this, it will be based on how he performed in his working life. You can evaluate him by looking at this profile. It will work for his promotion. It will be seen where he has done well, where he has not done well.
‘Now the APR will apply to those for whom the ACR applies. Now, from the ninth grade of the salary structure, the officers above it has to pay ACR. We are making it an alternative to ACR.’
The additional secretary to the government said, “Until now, the controlling officials used to evaluate the subordinates. That officer will be evaluated in the new system. He will have a work plan at the beginning of the year that I will do these things this year. He will get it approved by the controlling officer. In the middle of the year, if there is any work, this plan can be reviewed to add any new work.”
At the end of the year, however, officials will evaluate their own officers, he said, adding that ‘there is a self-assessment system. In addition, if you get a good score in the performance, it can be used to protect the number of personal features, it is in the new system.
“Whoever will do the plan, we said, has to have at least 12 jobs,” he said. These basic functions are mentioned. The number range for each job will be 2 to 6, but in general the number will be 4. The highest number 7 can also be given for special and important work.”
The Additional Secretary said that there would be a big qualitative change in the administration in this system. If you get a good opinion, the draft can be amended by adding it. It will then go to the Secretary Committee on Administrative Development. We hope to send it to the Committee of Secretaries by next February. Once the discipline is established, the software will be developed.
“We want to build a platform for human resource management with a number of modules,” he said. APAR is one of the many modules. There will be modules for all the wings, maybe a total of 7/8.
The Additional Secretary further said, “A proposal of more than Tk 10 crore has been sent to the Finance Ministry for the APAR modulator. More people will be hired if they get money. Currently three programmers are working. The office has been fixed. I am taking the help of ICT Department, ibus, computer council.”
Which is in the draft discipline
The draft of ‘Annual Performance Assessment Report Discipline, 2022’ states that according to the ‘Public Service Act 2018’, result oriented performance audit or evaluation system for the purpose of objective evaluation of government employees and for them to have more modern, technology based, personal and organizational activities and skills. The purpose of the annual performance appraisal report is to introduce a performance appraisal system.
An APAR employee will be assessed within 100 marks. Of these, 60 marks are given for evaluation of his performance and 40 marks are given for evaluation of personal and professional characteristics. 20 for personal and 20 for professional. Maximum number 4 for each feature.
The APAR will be used to evaluate the performance of government employees from Grade-9 to Grade-2 in the pay structure under the Public Service Act. They will be evaluated on the basis of the number obtained in the annual performance agreement.
APAR will be managed through an online software system. The system will be integrated with other government online systems as needed. The evaluating and counter-signing staff involved in performance appraisal will have a personal account in this system. There will be official accounts of the concerned ministry, division and central office for administrative activities related to APAR.
The system will be under the control and management of the Ministry of Public Administration. However, APAR will manage the employees of the respective workplaces of the Ministry, Division and Central Office.
Each employee will log in to his / her personal account and select the unit in charge from the list of administrative units of the Ministry / Division or Central Office and create an APAR form for that unit. If someone does not create the form, it will be considered as misconduct.
The artificial intelligence embedded in the system will provide the necessary assistance in preparing the report by analyzing the various data recorded in the APAR form and in completing and managing the APR. In addition, the calculation of the number obtained for the function will be done automatically in different calculation systems.
The evaluated employee will submit a list of his / her potential work and a work plan containing the possible targets, proofs and maximum number of each job to the evaluator for approval within 15 days of starting or joining the financial year. The evaluator will approve the proposed work plan of the employee under evaluation. He will be able to include any new work in this work plan and cancel any work.
In the proposed plan, the total number of jobs should be at least 12 and the total number of jobs should be at least 60. The maximum number of jobs included in the work plan will be 100.
In general, the maximum number of any work included in the work plan will be 4. However, considering the importance, impact, quantity, etc. of any work, maximum number 2 to 6 can be proposed. If more or less than the maximum number 4 of a job is proposed, its rationale should be mentioned.
The six functions of the President, Prime Minister, Ministers, State Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Cabinet Secretaries, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Chairmen of Parliamentary Standing Committees, Senior Secretaries, Secretaries and Heads and Divisional Commissioners of Central Offices and their Assistant Private Secretaries will be evaluated. These include-Confidentiality management, regulator’s visit / inspection and travel management, management of personal staff, communication and coordination, regulator’s schedule management and compliance with regulatory instructions.
The discipline provides detailed information on performance appraisal, training appraisal, evaluation and recognition of innovative initiatives and service facilitation.
If the appraised employee performs commendable performance in at least 45 percent of the work, he should be given at least 36 marks out of 40 for personal and professional characteristics. At least 40 per cent of the work should be given a commendable performance and at least 36 out of 40 marks should be given for personal and professional characteristics and 35 marks should be given for 35 marks.
The appraised employee will give the number obtained in his / her APAR form by recording the comments against each job, attested, applicable. However, if there is an assessment instruction for a different employee in the discipline, it will be applicable. The employee must record the date of each job in the APAR form.
The assessor may agree or disagree with the self-assessment of the employee under assessment. If he disagrees, the matter should be discussed with the employee under assessment.
The number given by the evaluator will be determined by adding the number given by the evaluator for the performance and personal and professional characteristics of an employee. Based on this number, the grade obtained in the APAR of the assessment employee will be determined initially.
A grade of ‘A-plus’ for marks of 96 to 100, ‘A’ for marks of 65 to 95, ‘B’ for marks of 65 to 64, ‘C’ for marks of 6 to 75 and Improvement Recovery (IR) for grades of 65 or less.
Employees who get ‘A Plus’ or ‘A’ grade will get incentive for performing higher performance. The ministers, ministers of state, deputy ministers, senior secretaries and secretaries of the ministries or departments controlling the A-plus and A-grade employees will receive jointly signed testimonials. Pictures of employees with ‘A-plus’ and ‘A’ will be published on the website of the controlling ministry or department.
Remedies will apply to employees who have obtained IR, C and B grades. To develop an employee to perform well in the future for the purpose of providing remedies. Details of the remedy are given in the draft guidelines.
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