What is performance auditing? Our bureaucrats or administration is not subjected to performance auditing. They are paid their salaries on the basis of their attendance and not on time basis of how much work they have done. Their perks and increments and promotions are not supported by what quality of work they have submitted but only on their seniority or for how many years they are working. Their special relations with their superiors matters while they are considered for any increments in the salaries. What quality of work they have given is immaterial.
The concept of performance auditing is absent in our country. Our officers are not tested for their ability to do work but they are appreciated on how many years they have put in. That is the standard practice today. Because of this practice our officers are not serious in putting in their best to do better work. I give here a conversation I had with one such officer.
I ask, - What you think of concept of performance auditing?
He replies, - We do not want to work under this type of pressure. It will make us work more vigilantly, at present we work rather carelessly since our work output has no relation to our salary. Even if we do not work our salary will come to us because we have attended office regularly. Signing attendance book is important nothing else. Particularly if we are permanent our safety is more secured. Our officers are also lazy like all others and so there is a perfect match in all the employees in a government office. Even our perks are decided by the position we hold and has nothing to do with whether we work well or not. In many cases if any one of us has not worked well he is protected by his colleagues in some way and that saves him. What matters in our offices is our contacts at high levels. So long as we have good contacts they protect us and so we need not be performance conscious. No performance is no crime in our government offices because nobody performance properly! You should not do anything wrong such that you may be nabbed. That is all!
Lazy and mostly inefficient officers are covered by other similar officers and therefore, any performance auditing is not required; actually our officers are against any performance auditing.
I ask, - If performance auditing is made compulsory how will you people react to it?
He asks, - We have unions they will go on strike if such compulsion is brought about. What is performance auditing?
I explain, - When you work on a project or any other type of job your performance quality is decided by judging these things; the efficiency, quality, time factor (How quick you result), your mistakes in performing (types of mistakes). A report of this performance is called auditing the performance. To base your prospect in that job today, we do not get this report from our officers. Our present method considers only your attendance in office while deciding your performance. Only attending is not enough to get the value of your work.
He interrupted and told me that in our government they see community and cast more than performance. If you are OBC or BC or SC you have better prospects; what is quality of your work seldom matters.
He further told me that if any government officer takes interest in any dynamic idea to improve quality of work at the office other officers will resist that and tell him that in case he fails in achieving any tangible results out of that idea he will be blamed for that and he may suffer from some sort of punitive action for deviating from regular mediocre standard practice. That is why no body wants to risk and try to give any extra ordinary performance. If we do not work and files remain unattended for long time nobody is to be blamed but while trying to expedite work if we try to do something and it fails; our superiors will blame us and ask why you are trying to do something so that every body else will also have to do more work. General tendency in our government offices is to do nothing and simply kill time and look to only salary, a typical mediocre mentality is appreciated. Any person trying to be dynamic is looked with mistrust. Therefore, we prefer to remain mediocre and relax!
I said, - This is the reason why competent Indians prefer to go to USA and such other countries where their performance will be appreciated.
He replied smilingly – let them go. We do not care!
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