The Federal Authority for Government Human Resources (FAHR) has launched the Succession Planning Framework and a project for development of elite talents in the Federal Government. The launch workshop was held at the Authority’s headquarters in Dubai, in the presence of HE Aisha Al Suwaidi, Executive Director of Human Resources Policies Sector, and dozens of HR officials and specialists in the ministries and federal entities.
In this regard, Aisha Al Suwaidi explained that succession planning is an organized process aimed at sustaining leadership in main targeted positions at the entities through developing the competencies of existing individuals in line with the competencies required in the future and maintaining them in order to support the federal bodiesa in performing their functions effectively and successfully.
She pointed out that the Authority has launched the Succession Planning Framework and the project for development of elite talents in the Federal Government, driven by its keenness to organize succession planning process in the ministries and federal entities, stressing that the succession planning contributes to improving the performance of institutions and enhancing their efficiency and productivity, as it helps in preparing government human resources to take up targeted positions.
HE Aisha Al Suwaidi said: “Succession planning is considered an essential process for any organization, as it ensures the continuity and effectiveness of institutional performance by identifying employees with vital roles targeted for development, and reducing the risks associated with their loss in the future. Moreover, it provides the entities with necessary competencies and skills through analyzing the current status of human resources, motivates employees and raises their job satisfaction and workplace harmony and reflects the employers’ keenness to prepare their employees and develop their capabilities.”
Succession Planning Framework: scope of coverage
Executive Director of Human Resources Policies Sector, added that the scope of coverage of Succession Planning Framework and development of elite talents in the Federal Government includes grades ranging from Undersecretary (and like) to Grade (1), as per Grades and Salaries Scale in the Federal Government. She called on ministries and federal entities to focus on the development of human resources to fill positions from Grade (4) to Special Grade, to ensure availability of necessary number of competencies to activate the succession plan in those areas.
Succession Planning Cycle
Aisha Al Suwaidi stressed the importance of evaluating the strategies and mechanisms of succession planning in the ministries and federal entities to ensure the project’s success and continuity, pointing out that the succession planning cycle goes through several stages: identifying the target jobs target human resources (elite talents), to evaluate and develop their competencies, engage them in the organization, and review succession strategies regularly.
Evaluation and development of targeted human resources
During the workshop, the Executive Director of Human Resources Policies Sector, explained the concept of "elite talent" which means the group of employees with outstanding performance, capabilities and high potentials, carefully prepared and developed to assume greater responsibilities and roles in certain areas.
She recommended using the 70:20:10 Model to develop competencies, as one of the best practices applied globally for the development of an elite talent pool.
“This model focuses on the development of competencies in general through guidance, training and description of optimal learning sources”, she said, pointing out that the model focuses on 3 different training methods: on-the-job training, 70% of the model; learning through others, 20% of the model, and targeted training, forming 10%.
Al Suwaidi reviewed a number of mechanisms used under each of the three training methods mentioned above. These included on-the-job training, which can develop employees’ competencies through participation in a working group or team, and assigning new responsibilities or projects to therm, deputation to another federal entity, job shadowing, participation in projects or tasks approved within the entity, job rotation, and volunteering in community service.
She said: “Learning through others method includes group work, career guidance, feedback, and guidance sessions on enhancing strengths, while targeted learning method includes academic study, professional development programs, continuing education programs (e.g. UAE Government Leadership Program, innovation diploma, e-learning, internal training programs, professional membership, participation in conferences and seminars, and reading books.”
Engaging elite talents in the Federal Government
Aisha Al Suwaidi stressed that the involvement of employees in the ministries and federal entities in development plans and setting clear programs for their succession, contributes to improving the productivity of these entities, as well as retaining employees with outstanding skills and abilities, facilitating the transfer of knowledge, especially the specialized ones, and creating an attractive work environment for distinguished employees.
Roles and Responsibilities
The Executive Director of Human Resources Policies Sector reviewed, during the workshop, the roles and responsibilities of various parties involved in applying the Succession Planning Framework and the development of elite talents in the Federal Government. She stressed that the competency management team in each entity is responsible for reviewing the current practices of the entity, identify target jobs and resources, analyse target jobs and available human resources, identify gaps, activate succession planning, develop plans for selecting and qualifying people for jobs through government development programs, or those undertaken by the entity to develop its employees.
According to Al Suwaidi, the human resources departments in the ministries and federal entities are responsible for supporting the elite management team in the implementation of the Succession Planning Framework, providing the results and reports of the analysis of the target jobs in the entity, and identifying all employees with outstanding performance in the entity based on the results of the performance management system for government employees. She said that any employee who obtains a performance appraisal score of 3 or more for two consecutive years, can be classified as highly performing.
She added: “The human resources departments are also responsible for preparing a succession development plan for each employee within the elite group by monitoring qualification gaps, using gap analysis tools, as well as feedback from the direct supervisors to develop the succession plan, and transform the plans to elite management team for review and accreditation.
“Line manager of employees selected as elite talents targeted for succession development plan are responsible for supporting human resources department and elite management team during implementation of succession planning framework by providing feedback and supporting the staff selected in their team as targeted resources, as well as supporting the implementation of the approved succession plan.”
She explained that the employees targeted within the career succession plan have a great role to play in: (Serious commitment to the career succession plan prepared for them, attending development programs allocated to them, and commitment to take into account all the duties assigned to them, and to submit proposals for the development of the succession plan).
As for the role of the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources in the implementation of succession planning framework and development of elite talents in the Federal Government, HE Aisha Al Suwaidi pointed out that the Authority is responsible for supporting the federal entities with regard to proper implementation of the framework following up key performance indicators related to such implementation in the ministries and federal entities, and submiting periodic reports to the Council of Ministers in this regard.