Senior Executive ServiceHelping to bridge the Human Resource Capacity Gap in Liberia
The Liberian public service has suffered a severe decline in its effectiveness and self esteem as a result of many years of neglect and decline caused by over a quarter century political instability, including 14 years of civil unrest. This led to a massive loss of qualified and skilled professionals. As presently constituted, the civil service is not in the position to manage post war recovery and reconstruction as well as deal with long standing problems that impede the effective management of public resources and the growth of the economy.
The Government of Liberia needs to develop a cadre of technical and managerial public servants who are well motivated to both meet immediate high level capacity needs and help transform the civil service into a more professional, effective and accountable institution. Towards this end, the Government has embarked on a Senior Executive Service (SES) Program that will assist in recruiting experienced and qualified professionals with the requisite technical managerial skills for strategic decision making and capacity building for improved public service delivery. The SES Program is being administered from the Civil Service Agency with a Program Implementation Committee in place comprising representatives from the donor partners and the Government.
The broad aim of the SES is to develop a cadre of top public servants properly trained, well motivated and adequately compensated. The Government recognizes the need to develop this cadre as quickly as possible. This would result in the creation of a group of public service leaders who can quickly take ownership of the reform process and continue to drive it forward. Specifically, the SES would help to:
- Attract and retain qualified professionals with requisite technical and managerial skills for strategic decision making and improve service delivery in the public service;
- Generate massive but optimally balanced “surge” executive capacity needed to kick start Government’s civil service reform efforts, and,
- Provide realistic platform for transforming the civil service into a more professional, effective and accountable organ (change agent) of the democratic government.
- All Professional Liberians within Liberia or abroad who meet the minimum qualification requirements of any SES position is eligible to compete for such position.
- Positions offered under the SES Program are advertised in waves. Each wave of job carries the qualification requirements. Prospective applicants should match their qualifications to the job being offered and submit an application to the SES secretariat based at the Civil Service Agency.
- The SES Program takes interest in female applicant and encourages submission of applications from female candidates
- Prospective Liberian national living within or outside of Liberia are also encourage to identify qualify Liberians and recommend qualified Liberian to the SES Secretariat.
The Senior Executive Service Program will offer a total of 100 positions. These positions are existing positions within the Government mainly at the level of Coordinators, Directors, or Governance Specialist. The positions being offered already exist. These existing positions are upgraded through re profiling efforts that matches the positions to the needs in Government. Specific terms of reference are drawn for re profiled positions. An advertising procedure follows to attract qualified Liberians professionals to the position.
The vetting of Assessment and Selection procedures is handled by a private professional vetting firm. The Civil Service Agency does the announcement of the position to the public and receives the application letters and resumes. These are passes on to the vetting company for Assessment and Evaluation. When the vetting firm completes its evaluation of the general application pool, a short list of candidates is developed for review by a Senior Selection Committee. That Senior Selection Committee is represented by five members comprising two representatives from the Government including the Ministry or Agency benefiting from the program, two representatives of the Donor Community mainly the World Bank and USAID, and the SES Program Management Unit. This committee reviews the short list, conducts the interview, and concludes the selection.
The Senior Executive Service program is managed by a Program Implementation Committee. The day to day activities of the SES Program are carried out by a Program Secretariat referred to as the Program Management Unit. Funds contributions from the Donor Partners are channeled through the Program Management Unit of the Senior Executive Service Program and managed based on decisions arising out of regular meetings held by the Program Implementation Committee. Oversight responsibility for the activities of the Program Management Unit is shared between the CIVIL SERVICE AGENCY representing the Government of Liberia and the United Nations Development Program representing the Development Partners.
Sources of Fund
The SES program is funded by a number of donors including UNDP, The World Bank, The Government of the United States, The Government of Greece, The Federal Government of Germany, and Humanity United.