Opacity obstructs opportunity: MP cadre IAS officers raise voice against 360 appraisal formula

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Weeks after the Parliamentary Committee headed by Anand Sharma in the second week of August submitted its ninety-second report on “Appraisal & Empanelment of Civil Servants Under The Central Government’ the Madhya Pradesh IAS raised their voice against the empanelment process obstructing their career prospects.

MP cadre IAS officers are up in arms against the 360-degree evaluation process. The state IAS Officers Association (MPIASOA) has written a letter via chief secretary B P Singh to the Directorate of Personnel and Training (DoPT) to change the new evaluation process.

Commenting on the empanelment process of empanelment of senior officers in the Govt of India, the communication said that no IAS officer from Madhya Pradesh figured in the Centre’s list of secretaries and additional secretaries last year. It says this has impacted the representation of the state in the central bureaucracy. It also underlined that, “Some outstanding officers with high integrity and intellect were omitted from the list.”

The letter further says, “The opaque process of empanelment does not give any opportunity to the affected officer to defend himself or seek a better assessment. He doesn’t have any access to the information for not making it to the empanelment list. This is a very serious matter because not getting empanelled adversely impacts the officer’s reputation and career prospects.”

“The opaque process is neither fair nor serves the larger public interest, as the states have to carry the load of the officers declared unfit by the Central government. The uncertainty in career advancement at very senior level leads to insecurity, lack of interest in work and depression among the officers concerned.”
IAS association says the new process is also not in public interest:

•360-degree feedback or multi-source feedback is an appraisal or performance assessment tool that incorporates feedback from all who observe and are affected by the performance of a candidate;

•This tool is usually used for employees at middle and senior level IAS officers’ objections;

•RS Julania, president of MPIASOA, has said in the letter that under the 360-degree appraisal system, feedback is being directly gathered by DoPT;

•DoPT seeks feedback on multiple aspects, including integrity and general reputation of the IAS officers from their seniors, juniors, and peers through phone calls.

In view of the above, the association has asked DoPT to bring transparency to the formula and frame rules accordingly. Currently, the feedback is collected by senior and junior officers, which is not appropriate, said Rdheshyam Julania (IAS).


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