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Experts hail Sheikh Mohammed’s transparent approach to governance

Web Report/Dubai
Filed on April 23, 2019 | Last updated on April 23, 2019 at 08.03 am
Experts hail Sheikh Mohammed’s transparent approach to governance

(Twitter)

Taking to Twitter, Sheikh Mohammed shared a photo of long queues at a branch of Emirates Post.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has sent another strong and clear message on governance: That he is not going to tolerate poor government services and he declared that he would remove staff and officials who are not performing well.

Taking to Twitter on Monday morning, Sheikh Mohammed shared a photo of long queues at a branch of Emirates Post. He reprimanded the government agency and publicly shared its performance report — all in the spirit of transparency and the need for stronger customer service.

The photo that was shared came from a team of ‘mystery shoppers’ or investigators that was dispatched to measure the quality of service as well as staff performance at Emirates Post. The mystery shoppers returned with a photo showing customers waiting in long queues.

In his tweet, Sheikh Mohammed disapproved of the poor service. “This is not our level. These are not our services. Whoever provides such level of services will not be in my team,” he said. Sheikh Mohammed also publicly shared Emirates Post’s evaluation report. He highlighted the indicators for their poor performance.

According to the report, which surveyed the Karama branch of Emirates Post, there are no proper indications or index linking to the centre’s efforts to deal with customer satisfaction and customers have to wait for long periods of time to receive a service.

There is also an overcrowding at the post office due to the increased amount of text messages sent to customers for Emirates ID pick up and customers have to visit multiple counters to complete a transaction.

Moreover, the Karama office, which handles 80 per cent of Emirates ID transactions, has not done a capacity-building to handle the large number of customers. Serving the people is the first in the list of 10 commandments of governance, that was issued by Sheikh Mohammed in his latest book titled Qissati (My Story).

Khaleej Times asked Emirates Post about the tweet but they promised to give comments earliest on Tuesday morning.

Experts hail Sheikh Mohammed’s transparent approach to governance

Sheikh Mohammed’s tweet was not the first time that he has surprised government officials. In 2016, he visited various government departments including the Dubai Municipality, the Dubai Lands Department, the Economic Development Department (DED) and Dubai International Airport. He was surprised to find directors and senior officials of some departments absent during his visit.

According to a customer service expert, the recent tweet was not public shaming but done in the spirit of transparency.

“Sheikh Mohammed is a great inspiration to others to learn from. This is a transparent approach to leadership. The message is clear for all those to be reminded of the standards that lead to better services across the board,” said Dana Bousaleh, marketing manager, Awards International UAE.

“Using the power of social media is also getting everyone involved in governance. His Highness wants to hear it directly from the people,” Bousaleh added.
Dr Rommel Sergio, a management professor at the Canadian University of Dubai, also praised the leadership style of Sheikh Mohammed.

He said: “It is befitting for a leader to call the attention of people under his governance. Doing this in public resonates transparency and calls for organisational development and change within the customer service sector.”

“This is also in consistency with the “Year of Tolerance” that does not only speak of safety and stability. This year’s bannering slogan and theme highly emphasises happiness, which the government has been promoting all along,” Sergio added.

Star rating system

Back in February 2014, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has directed all service centres of ministries and federal institutions to comply with the Star Rating System.

The service centres are rated between two stars and seven stars, based on their performances measured by the Prime Minister’s Office in coordination with the Emirates Standardisation and Metrology Authority. External auditors are also being involved in the rating process to ensure the neutrality of the evaluation panel.

Sheikh Mohammed ordered the number of stars indicating the rating of a government centre would be displayed on plates outside the centre so that a client knows its level of service. The indicators of performance are: Dealings with customers, speed of service delivery, reduction in waiting time, service accessibility, office ambience, use of technology and proximity of service outlets.

KT readers’ reactions from social media

Gavilo YeYe: It’s happening everywhere. In most government offices, you may see so many counters but only a few people will be present and really working. Hope this will change. God Bless

Arif Khan: Yes! This is a great initiative. Please advise them to work on their attitude as well.

Sharafudeen Shahul Hameed: Well done Your Highness... And kindly ask the staff at the airport passport control to smile at the passengers
    
Gautam Sinha: That is a good observation. I feel happy that Sheikh Mohammed is keeping a watch.

Five indicators upon which the centre was assessed:

 Services:

> No proper indications or index linking to the center's efforts to deal with customer satisfaction.

> Customers wait for long periods of time to receive a service.

> Post offices deliver Emirates ID cards in person and this service accounts for 75 per cent of the total number of customers.

Service Efficiency:

> 80 per cent of Emirates ID are reported to be delivered to Al Karama post office, most customers receiving ID cards at that office are workers who don't have a PO Box.

> Lack of services to fit the customer's needs.

Customer Service:

> Lack of coordinated customer service for customers from different stratas of society.

> Overcrowding at post office due to the increased amounts of text messages sent to customers for Emirates ID pick up at the same time.

> Customers have to visit multiple counters to complete a transaction.

Capacity building:  

> According to a 2018 study conducted on the post center, the study was based only on one service at the center not on all services.  

> The post office delivers more than 3,000 ID cards per day which results in overcrowding.

> The centre has not done an capacity building to handle the large number of customers.

Service Culture:

> There is a need for employees at the center to work on building personal conduct and customer service skills.

Sheikh Mohammed expressed his dissatisfaction with Emirates Post's performance and publicly reprimanded the organisation on social media, stressing that those responsible for the inefficiency won't be part of his team.





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