Civil Service Reform
Civil Service Commission under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan

The Problem

Before establishment of the Civil Service Commission under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan all state bodies carried out the recruitment (selection) process themselves. There was no any unit providing the applicants with detailed information concerning all existing vacancies. Due to nonexistence of job descriptions of the vacant positions in state bodies, the applicants were facing with challenges in choosing of the relevant positions. Commission created common testing and provided the applicants with the programs in order to simplify their preparation for the exam. Before this initiative the recruitment process was not so objective and transparent and there was no chance to avoid inequality against gender and religion issues. Due to partiality in recruitment process very few applicants were applied, thus It was very difficult to recruit the qualified people to the relevant vacant positions in state bodies.
Average men had no chance to participate in competition in order to be recruited to the civil service. Many people was unenlightened in the area of the civil service and social trust was considerably low concerning the state policy in this field. Civil service controling legislative system was not appropriately devised

Solution and Key Benefits

 What is the initiative about? (the solution)
One of the goals of the Commission is to amend the merit-based recruitments of the civil servants. Thus the Commission using ICT based systems improved the recruitment system in order to enable decentralized testing of applicants in regions while using of centralized IT and regulating systems of CSC.
A standardized recruitment by using IT mechanism was formed and set up. It brings to select the candidates and fill the vacant positions on transparent basis. The mechanism is impartial and based on attainments without giving of any opportunity for positive or negative discrimination of applicants. It has turned CSC into one of the advanced users of e-governance applications.
The IT-supported recruitment mechanism helped to introduce national norms in the fields of job descriptions and selection procedures.
This mechanism also operates as a neutral filter through which a certain level of formal qualifications is secured.
Since its implementation more than 15.000 applicants passed through the new recruitment procedure. Before the new system was launched about 300 people applied but today in general 6000 candidates are interested in applying.

The confidence of the citizens concerning recruitment on the transparent basis positively changed as far as the applicants are chosen due to their activity.
Along with the objective and transparent conditions for the recruitment indicated in the website of the Commission, initiative provides for general information about open vacant positions, civil service as a whole and how to prepare for exam consisting of testing and interview.

One of the important contributions of this initiative is its orientation to the citizen-centered approach. All the citizens can obtain detailed information about vacant positions in the civil service system (including requirements for suitable job position, service functions, etc.), whole legislation regulating the civil service system can be obtained on the Commission’s website. In addition to personal applications admission service there is active hotline whereby the citizens can get the relevant information, as well as to lodge complaints.
All citizens according to their own capacity have an opportunity to apply for a competition in order to enter into the civil service.
All stages of the recruitment process (announcement of vacancy, number of registered persons, their names, surnames, the results of exam, the name of person who would be appointed to the position). (ensuring of transparency) is in open access for anybody during the competition until the vacant position would be filled.
At the same time, all applicants are informed on various stages of the competition via SMS or e-mail
Certain proposals and recommendations made a great contribution to the development of legislative system in the area of civil service.

Actors and Stakeholders

 Who proposed the solution, who implemented it and who were the stakeholders?
The Civil Service Commission under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan was established in 2005 in the result of EU TACIS project “Support to Civil Service Reform”. Today the Commission may be considered as a mechanism of amendments for the civil service reform in Azerbaijan.
One of its main goals is to contribute to proper governance by improving the basics for transparent and citizen-oriented practices in Azerbaijan's civil service. The Administration of the President facilitated this initiative as well as the Federal Government of Germany supported the initiative through the GIZ (deutsche GesellschaftfürInternationaleZusammenarbeit GmbH - German International Cooperation) project “Reform of the Civil Service” which started in September 2009.

(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.
Transparency and parity, provision of simplified participation in a competition; use of standard approach in order to fill positions; provision of various passing score and opportunity for resubmission of documents in order to attract citizens to vacancies in regions

The Commission formed and implemented all mentioned by the agency of other state bodies of Azerbaijan. Polling were made among NGOs, mass media and citizens in order to learn their thoughts and annotations concerning ongoing processes in this area.

(b) Implementation

 b.      What were the key development and implementation steps and the chronology? No more than 500 words
The trust of the citizens on the civil service recruitment was increased. Today the candidates can easily look through announcements including job descriptions for each vacant position, wedge, working address and other required information.

2006 – The work over formation of the test bank for the testing examination, preparation of standard job descriptions on civil service positions has started;
2007– Criteria for appraisal of the candidates during their interview (the second stage of the competition); formation of certain advertisement form for competitions; implementation of the first competition on civil service recruitment; adoption of video-recordings in the interviews; creation of automatized announcement generator in order to fill vacancies; the first interview was carried out and establishment of centralized database on civil service positions
2008 – New model of general and internal interview for filling administrative positions was included into the legislation; the Commission was assigned under Presidential Decree to carry out the test examinations for civil service recruitment in state bodies, appraisal and determine passing scores for administrative positions; Approval of the general requirements for filling civil service positions by the
Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan
2009 – Formation of appeal commission for investigation of complaints of persons dissatisfied with results of the competition; first announcement of vacant civil service positions in judicial bodies for competition; preparation of interview programs facilitating better self-preparation of candidates and
Placing it in the web site of the Commission; first test examination was conducted by the Commission; test examination was conducted by means of computers. Testing includes the questions concerning worldview of the candidates, knowledge in history, geography, culture of the Republic of Azerbaijan as well as the contemporary international relations; independent experts started to be involved in
interviews as interview group members in order to carry out competitions in a more objective and
transparent way

(c) Overcoming Obstacles

 c.      What were the main obstacles encountered? How were they overcome? No more than 500 words
Very law confidence of citizens into the civil service recruitment process. Some citizens even did not know about availability of such process. From other hand, state bodies were not sure that the Commission may make good selection of candidates. Legislation in civil service area was adopted but was not implemented at required level. Meetings with students, participation in trade fairs in Azerbaijan, etc. were organized to inform society. Polling was created on the website of the Commission to make people to participate in the processes.
Trainings were organized for representatives of state bodies on HRM, legislation, etc.

(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
First of all, study visits were organized for some personnel of the Commission to see experience of advanced nations. Later, trainings for HR staff those who will participate in the interviews for competition were delivered.

Computers were allocated for 3 testing rooms; specific software for testing was formed. Test generator and converter systems were formed. The Commission formed the online application for time saving of applicants and save budget. And the candidates who passed the testing stage shall submit copies of documents, as diplomas, health certificate, etc.

Sustainability and Transferability

  Is the initiative sustainable and transferable?
The procedures for civil service recruitment were adopted by a decree of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and thereby have been formed as a standard recruitment process. Tens of thousands of applicants for over 200 state bodies have already been recruited according to the new IT-supported procedures. According to the legislation this recruitment is implemented by the Civil Service Commission under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan. The process is financed by the state budget.

Lessons Learned

 What are the impact of your initiative and the lessons learned?
Trust and confidence of society into civil service
Staff of the Commission
Civil service recruitment system on the basis of transparency and objectivity
More professional staff in the civil service

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Civil Service Commission under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Anar Zeynalov
Title:   International Relations Sector  
Telephone/ Fax:   +994(12) 465-87-93/94 (109)/ 465-87-96
Institution's / Project's Website:
Address:   K. Rakhimov str. 874th block
Postal Code:   AZ1110
City:   Baku
Country:   Azerbaijan

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