Immigartion and Passport Department

The Problem

The general public must feel their needs are heard, understood, and acted upon; various mechanisms have been put in place to maximize quality of service, making it available to the customer’s convenience and satisfaction. All of this must be achieved at the minimum cost to the government.
The amount of waiting time to obtain a passport was fourteen working days (Three weeks).The issurance of passports was centralize in a working environment that was not customer friedly.Each applicant had to travel from where ever they reside to that central location. Records were not computerized making it very difficult and time comsuming to access. Passports were hand written thus making them prone to incidences of fraud and identity theft.

Solution and Key Benefits

 What is the initiative about? (the solution)
The new system serves as an effective tool,thus improving our level of efficiency. The amount of waiting time has shifted from fourteen working days to three days. Grenada is thus placed on record as the country offering the quickest service in this respect within the Caribbean.In order to make our services more accessible we have established three outreach offices in Grenville, Gouyave and sister island of Carriacou.Processes are in place to ensure that departmental facilities and equipment are adequate for the provision of effective and efficient services.A Computerize Passport programme and border control system were introduced,enabling Grenada to be the frist country in the Eastern caribbean to produce Machine Readable Passports.
Invariably the operation produces a far higher volume of passport booklets in times relative to what happened previously, thus reducing waiting time for persons accessing the service. The amount of waiting time has shifted from fourteen working days to three days. Grenada is thus placed on record as the country offering the quickest service in this respect within the Caribbean.

Actors and Stakeholders

 Who proposed the solution, who implemented it and who were the stakeholders?
The department suggestion box which is a tool used to obtain information regarding our customer’s needs and expectations were critical indicators for improvement, our monthly staff meetings gives an opportunity to review and revise our process when necessary, as we go along.
Each officer is subjected to daily briefing to ensure accountability and effectiveness in the execution of duties. Informal customer interviews have been held with stakeholders (Tourism industry, Government ministries and departments, NGO's and others) especially in the Diaspora. These interviews have proven to be a useful tool for discovering the customer’s awareness of the services we provide, their expectations, level of satisfaction and suggestions of how we can meet their expectations.
Consultations were held with various stakeholders (Tourism industry Government Ministries and departments, NGO And others)with the specific objective to familiarize them with the new initiative and of course to solicit their buy-in as part of a general community policing programme, the wider community is sensitized. This approach favours the private sector and health services in a particular sense in that they are the greater beneficiaries of the enhanced express service, their feed back serves as useful indicators for whatever retooling that may be necessary.
Some of the information garnered from evidence gathered is bench marked against international best practices, for example International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards, and our local circumstances before being prioritized on our ‘to do” list. Such data is collected from our customers in a number of areas.
Unlike what obtained previously the Law now provides for Passport Officers to be delegated as in accordance (Sec 8 of the Passport Act 226 of the 1990 Revised Laws), to date a Chief Passport Officer and fourteen passports officers are now the recipients of appointment credentials.

(a) Strategies

 Describe how and when the initiative was implemented by answering these questions
 a.      What were the strategies used to implement the initiative? In no more than 500 words, provide a summary of the main objectives and strategies of the initiative, how they were established and by whom.
Another significant change is evidenced in the amendment in the validity period of a passport which has been reduced from ten years to five years. This was introduced as a control measure for passport fraud, thus making it more difficult if not impossible for potential miscreants. The streamlining of our operations enables us to utilize our human resource far more effectively throughout our various locations. The initiative has given effect to a more responsive express service that works excellently in the case of real emergencies. In a real time a passport can be provided in a matter of as little as ten minutes.

(b) Implementation

 b.      What were the key development and implementation steps and the chronology? No more than 500 words
1. The relocation of the headquarters to a more spacious, customer friendly and accessable location, enabling a more conducive working environment.
2.The introducation of computerization enabling easy and quicker access to information.
3. The Introducation of Sub offices making the services more accessable to customers.
4.Training of staffing to be at the level required to provide services.

(c) Overcoming Obstacles

 c.      What were the main obstacles encountered? How were they overcome? No more than 500 words
The resistance to change (internal and external) which was overcome by training of staff (including the use of border control equipment) and public awarness programmes.
Limited human resource that was overcome with the appointment of additional permanent staff and an apprentice programme which provide continuous learning environment by offering many training opportunities for persons under the Youth Empowerment Programme of the Ministry of Youth empowerment and Sports,which provides education as well as on-the-job training.

(d) Use of Resources

 d.      What resources were used for the initiative and what were its key benefits? In no more than 500 words, specify what were the financial, technical and human resources’ costs associated with this initiative. Describe how resources were mobilized
(d)The resources used were Human, Material and financial.The most significant material resource was the Machine Readable Passport system at a cost of 1.5 Million US dollars.

Sustainability and Transferability

  Is the initiative sustainable and transferable?
Efforts are being made to have the services available to customers on a cost rcoverery basis.
Other government departments and statutory bodies (Licence Department, Electoral office and Grenada National Lottery Authority) have solicited the passport office's advice regarding the computerization of their opperations.
Grenada hosted regional workshops to share it expriences with member CARICOM states on the introducation of machine readable passports.

Lessons Learned

 What are the impact of your initiative and the lessons learned?
The success of the Immigration and Passport office have been used by the Department of Public Administration (DPA) as a shinning example of the reform inititatives within the Grenada Public Service.
One of the lesson learn is that Public sector organization must be responsive to the needs of their customers for the dilivery of better services

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Immigartion and Passport Department
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Godfrey Fleming
Title:   Supt of police  
Telephone/ Fax:   1 473 440 4456 Fax 1 473 440-4165
Institution's / Project's Website:
Address:   Botanical Gardens
Postal Code:  
City:   St. Georges
Country:   Grenada

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