Vladimir Mau: “The state can use the management practices of business, but the motivation will be different.”
Rector of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration Vladimir Mau took part in the International Nevsky Forum held in St. Petersburg on June 24-26. During the plenary discussion on the transformation of public administration in a continuously changing world, the Rector of the Presidential Academy spoke about the main challenges in this area and whether the government can adopt best practices and performance evaluation systems from business.
“The high rate of change requires structural transformation of the economy, societal processes and governance models. We live in a world where investments can move quickly from one country to another at the touch of a button, and highly skilled professionals can change locations and jobs quickly and with no problem. It is the efficiency of public administration, and not natural resources or cheap labor, that makes countries competitive and attractive for investment today. Under these conditions, the need to make decisions quickly and efficiently becomes a serious challenge for the state administration,” said Vladimir Mau.
According to the Rector of the RANEPA, we can expect that the state will use the best practices of large corporations more actively, including management technologies, experience of HR-services and efficiency evaluation systems. However, despite the similarity of management models, the motivation of government and business will differ: while for a commercial organization it is primarily an increase in profits, for the government it is about the stability of the system’s operation.
Vladimir Mau noted that today one of the most important tasks is to introduce a client-centric approach in public administration. It is important to use the right systems for measuring results and carefully select tools to assess citizen satisfaction with the quality of public services. Both sociological methods and modern digital ways of obtaining feedback may be used as such tools. KPIs (key performance indicators) used in business can be used to design evaluation systems in public administration, but they will require rethinking and reconfiguration.
Moreover, performance measurement should not be reduced to rewarding the achievement of formal indicators. According to Vladimir Mau, performance indicators be based around results, rather than targets: this will allow to exclude situations when formal indicators are implemented, but at the same time the real objectives are not achieved.