The Hai Phong Department of Home Affairs has played an active role in raising the city’s Provincial Competitiveness Index (PCI) to the best-performer group of the country and improving the quality of public employee exams by successfully applying information technology.
In recent years, administrative reform, led by the Department of Home Affairs, has played a very important role in strong socioeconomic development. This is a key “bottleneck” to increase component sub-indices. Therefore, in 2019, most indicators relating to administrative reform increased or stayed high. For example, the Provincial Competitiveness Index (PCI) ranked 10 out of 63 provinces and cities, the Public Administration Reform Index (PAR Index) ranked 4 and the Satisfaction Index of Public Administrative Services (SIPAS) ranked 2. These were important highlights to create successful breakthroughs in Hai Phong City’s administrative reform.
In addition, public employee recruitment has been reformed and improved by the Department of Home Affairs and assessed to be innovative in the industry. Since 2011, the Hai Phong City People's Committee has taken various innovative actions with public employment recruitment. The content of entrance examinations is built into a list of documents and questions on specialized professional and common knowledge. With the consent of the Ministry of Home Affairs of Vietnam, since 2013, Hai Phong City became the first locality in the country to hold computerized civil servant recruitment examinations for three subjects: Professional knowledge, information technology know-how and foreign languages.
In 2016, fulfilling the decision of the Hai Phong City Party Committee on “continued reform of public employee recruitment examination to improve personnel quality in the new context”, with the consent of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, the Hai Phong City People's Committee piloted some public employee recruitment contents in the city before the Government issued a decree to this effect like piloting public employee recruitment in two rounds as per Decree 161/2018/ND-CP of the Government in 2018.
Since then, Hai Phong City has successfully hosted two public employee recruitment exams for a total of 665 contestants and employed 172 new civil servants.
Public employee recruitment, carried out in two rounds: Multiple-choice exam on computer and interview exam, is a new change in employing civil servants. These exams assess candidates objectively and substantially and recruit qualified ones for administrative agencies, with contents covering foreign language proficiency and professional skills and qualifications.
This is an important step of innovation in which candidates and employers directly exchange (questions - answers and conversations). This tests professional qualifications and computer skills on the one hand and, through interviews, assesses their general knowledge and understanding of employers who candidates intend to work for, attitude, behavior and communication skills on the other hand. Therefore, the department has helped recruit civil servants with professional qualifications, foreign language skills and practical knowledge for government agencies in the city.
With reformed recruitment contents, driven by information technology application, the quality of public employees working for public service delivery units in the city has been raised. This is an important success of the Hai Phong Department of Home Affairs and makes Hai Phong City a typical example for nationwide scale-up.
By Hoai Nam, Vietnam Bushiness Forum