The public service should be at the forefront in eliminating wastage by targeting to achieve more with lesser resources.
Civil servants should ensure that there is continuous improvement in their services which will lead to better efficiency and effectiveness, in the way they deliver public services despite scarce resources.
The newly appointed Public Service Commission (PSC) Chairperson Stephen Kirogo said the commission will soon be outlining measures on how this can be achieved.
“If we can work to improve performance and resource utilization, then we will get the money to do more and that’s why it starts with us as a commission to bring in a culture that encourages proper resource use, doing more with less and ensure we stretch the tax payers shilling to achieve much more than its doing at the moment”, he said
Kirogo, who was speaking during his official welcoming ceremony as the chairperson of the PSC at a Nairobi hotel promised that the ongoing reforms in the commission will be fast tracked to ensure their early completion.
“However, reforms must translate into better performance which will guarantee the transformation of our society into a more prosperous nation. Reforms therefore should be geared towards better performance in order to transform”, the Chairperson reiterated.
During his vetting by the National Assembly for the position, Kirogo promised to undertake and to do all that he can to deal with the matter of ethnicity in the Civil Service in a definitive style and improve productivity through performance management.
Kirogo confirmed that the PSC top priority right now is to enhance productivity of the public service through implementation of a management framework that will ensure everyone is on targets that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound.
He challenged the commission to fully demonstrate to the rest of the public service through best values and standards, based on ethics, hard work, honesty and integrity. “We must lead by example, it is only then that we can influence others to emulate us,” Kirogo said.
The chairperson noted that the Big Four Agenda is hinged on the civil service ability to successfully implement the programs.
“We will be seeking to align priorities within government as a way of ensuring those tasked with implementation do their job in full support of the Big Four Agenda and at this point I want to give the assurance that the commission will truly partner with the government in ensuring that the President’s agenda is a success,” Kirogo said.
The Chairperson thanked his immediate predecessor Amb. Peter Nkuraiyia, the commissioners and secretariat for the good work that they have put in over the last 7 months and ensuring that there was no vacuum at the commission.
Amb. Nkuraiyia, the PSC vice chairperson said that the commission has been pursuing policies and programs to ensure public service lives up to the citizens’ expectations.
“The PSC regulations are at an advanced stage towards finalization before gazettement, having gone through several stakeholder validation processes, we have released 12 policies to guide the practice, management and development of human resource in the public service both at national and county levels among other services”, he said.
Amb. Nkuraiyia however said there are challenges especially in the area of budget constraints because of limited exchequer financing and also lack of current and reliable public service management information data.
“Another major challenge that the commission is grappling with is on recruitment embargo at entry level. The Public service is facing an aging service and succession management and for us to be able to deliver and help the service then we need the embargo lifted,” he said.
Despite the challenges, Amb.Nkuraiyia noted that there are limitless opportunities for the commission to re-engineer itself and deliver on its mandate, which is to provide effective and efficient services to Kenyans.
The CEO and Secretary, Public Service Commission Dr. Alice Otwala said they have an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system that when fully operational will lessen work of the commission by a quarter.
ERP systems is a shared database that supports multiple functions used by different business units and this means that employees in different divisions can rely on the same information for their specific needs.
“Right now we are manual on what we do and it takes a long time but if in place the ERP will benefit us and will lessen our workload because most things will now be automated and make it easy for us to support the commission,” Dr. Otwala said.
President Uhuru Kenyatta in July nominated Kirogo for the position that became vacant when Prof. Margaret Kobia was appointed Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs Cabinet Secretary.
He was later vetted for the position of Public Service Commission chair by parliament. Before then, he served as the Principal Administrative Secretary in the Cabinet office.