Organization

Department of Science and Technology II

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Human Resource

Year Implemented

January 2019

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

The World Health Organization underscored that a healthy workforce plays a vital role in social and economic development at the global, national, and local levels. Employees are considered important assets of any organization, contributing to delivering quality services. Hence, organizations should consider employees’ health a top priority.

Considering the employees’ exposure to various health hazards such as pollution and diseases, as well as having a sedentary lifestyle and stressful environment, the Department of Science and Technology Regional Office 02 (DOST 02) decided to launch the DOST Care. This is spearheaded by its Human Resource and Health and Wellness Team to monitor and promote the overall health of the DOST 02 employees. The DOST Care was implemented in January 2019, starting with the patient profiling of employees and the provision of basic healthcare consultation and counseling by the DOST Care Team.

The monitoring of employees’ health serves as the basis for the constant provision of health care tips, necessary first aid, medication counseling, and recommendation to visit a physician if recorded vital signs are continuously abnormal. With the support of its Human Resource, DOST Care also initiates health-related seminars with themes that depend on the current problems the workforce is facing. The practice is still for improvement, but it has already provided vital health information to the DOST 02’s employees, most of whom had not known about their health risks. Now with DOST Care, all employees can keep track of their current health status and can prevent different possible diseases.

Background and Problem

The DOST 02, the lead agency that promotes and supports science, technology, and innovation, implies that it has a vast responsibility. From its flagship program, the Small Enterprises Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP), and the different regional committees it handles, the agency has a huge workload for its limited number of employees, making them vulnerable to certain diseases.

The agency staff spend most of their work hours in their respective offices drafting proposals and doing clerical work and are hardly deployed for field assignments. Aggravating the lack of physical exertion is the mental stress experienced by staff who usually resort to stress-eating, which further contributes to risk factors of non-communicable diseases like diabetes mellitus type II and hypertension. Other diseases may also arise from these practices, like stroke and cancer. The combination of (1) minimal physical movements to burn excess calories and body fat and (2) relying on fast-food as a means of immediate comfort makes it almost inevitable for DOST 02 employees to be at risk of developing non-communicable diseases.

In the last quarter of 2018, the regional director and the human resource management observed that employees were gaining weight and increasing utilization of their sick leaves. The agency is aware of the hazards of exposure to situations that may affect an employee’s health and recognizes their need for protection. Additionally, the agency heads acknowledged that health challenges may still be unknown to some staff, and they anticipate the staff may ask for help in the future. These concerns led to establishing the DOST Care Team, which would provide healthcare services to the entire agency workforce.

The overall objective of DOST Care is to monitor the basic health status of the DOST 02 personnel by offering the following tests: blood pressure, oxygen saturation, heart rate, and fasting blood glucose/ random blood glucose. These tests provide important information and impose a concern for health among their staff, encouraging them to be checked by a physician and educating them on the advantages of possibly obtaining an early diagnosis should they have a disease or condition needing attention. The project also raises employees’ awareness of their health situation and enables them to seek immediate intervention. Other than that, DOST Care also provides basic health interventions to address health issues experienced by the DOST 02 employees, enabling them to be more efficient in the organization by preventing further damage to their health.

Solution and Impact

DOST Care was one of the workplace health promotion practices of the agency targeting the prevention of non-communicable diseases brought forth by unhealthy habits and sedentary lifestyles. This practice provides the necessary information on the health of the DOST 02 employees, limited to blood pressure, oxygen saturation, heart rate, and blood glucose. The DOST Care thus serves as a health promotion program that instills in its employees a mindset to prioritize their health. With continuous improvement, they will eventually consider it an effective practice in improving health-related outcomes and preventing or decreasing health issues such as obesity, cardiovascular diseases, and diabetes.

It was also observed that most of the agency’s senior leaders had already been diagnosed with non-communicable diseases, making them unable to undertake their respective duties. DOST Care addresses this problem by constantly monitoring senior leaders’ health to improve their health status, enhance productivity, reduce sick leaves, reduce turnover and absenteeism. They also hoped that the junior employees, who will soon be the senior leaders, would become more aware of their health status and start considering a healthy lifestyle, rendering them physically ready and fit for future responsibilities in the agency.

The practice started with profiling DOST employees to determine who already had underlying diseases and who were prone to acquiring such so they could be prioritized in health monitoring. The priority health check is immediately conducted upon request of the employees or those staff who are manifesting symptoms. From that point onwards, the team has been conducting the tests once a month, analyzing the results so that those whose numbers fall outside the normal range are provided with non-pharmacological interventions.

They gathered normal values for the different tests from these reliable sources: American Lung Society for Oxygen Saturation, American Heart Society for Heart Rate; Joint National Committee -7 for Blood Pressure; and WebMD for Blood Glucose.

The team records all data gathered in its database, which is kept confidential and can only be accessed by them. Thus, they can monitor the trends in each employee’s health status. The employee may request the results from check-ups for personal purposes, and if results continue to fall outside the normal range for three (3) consecutive check-ups, they would advise the employee to see a physician.

DOST Care, with the support of the agency’s Human Resources, has initiated seminars necessary to provide additional knowledge regarding one’s health. They conducted a seminar last October 2019 that addressed two health issues the agency currently faces: Tobacco Smoke and Mental Health in the workplace.

Milestones/Next Steps

The DOST Care was recognized as one of the agency’s leadership approaches contributing to the agency’s success in achieving PQA Level II, considered the highest award given to an organization. It will also expand its tests to include Body Mass Index (BMI) monitoring, which is essential in managing and preventing non-communicable diseases.

DOST Care will also provide statistics and necessary information to HR to plan other health-related seminars that will provide additional health information to its employees. The agency initially planned a seminar focusing on non-communicable diseases, basic over-the-counter drug knowledge, and coping with workplace stress. However, these activities were postponed because of the pandemic but will resume once everything goes back to normal.

With the current situation of the country, persistent and more tedious health monitoring is needed. People with co-morbidities like hypertension, diabetes, respiratory illness, and other diseases are more prone to be infected by the coronavirus. DOST Care promotes the welfare of its staff through the early provision of the necessary information for monitoring their health, indirectly preventing the spread of COVID-19.

In coordination with its HR, DOST Care is currently crafting systems that would monitor other necessary information related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The system would include a temperature monitoring and symptoms survey, which will greatly help the DOST 02 employees prevent the spread of the virus, especially if a DOST 02 employee is found to be a COVID-19 carrier. DOST Care, through HR, also initiated its Contact Information Sheet and monitoring system for clients; it will be useful in contact tracing if one of their customers is diagnosed with COVID-19.

Agency staff is asked to maintain a healthy lifestyle and keep their immune system strong. Through DOST Care, the DOST 02 employees are constantly aware of their current health status, which helps prevent the spread of diseases and other health issues that would be detrimental to them.

Organization

Governance Commission for Government-owned-or-controlled Corporations

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Leadership, Human Resource, Operations

Year Implemented

11 May 2020

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

At the onset of the pandemic, GCG personnel experienced several difficulties concerning their regular work operations. Their issues were around adopting work-from-home arrangements and health concerns around the ongoing pandemic. In light of this, the agency implemented interventions specific to each problem they observed. Namely, their interventions were remote access to their Data Management System (DMS), a weekly health status survey, reformed policies on alternative work arrangements, an Identification Barcode System, and an Online Employee Information Management System (EIMS). These interventions have helped their personnel adapt to the new normal, and these interventions were so successful that they continued to be implemented long after.

Background and Problem

At the onset of the pandemic, GCG personnel experienced a number of difficulties in relation to their regular work operations. One of the main issues was around the adoption of work-from-home arrangements. Personnel raised many questions relating to other office policies. For example, what to do if they contracted the virus, to whom they should report, how they could file a leave, how their leave credits would be charged, and alike. And in relation to the previous point, monitoring personnel’s time-in and time-out of GCG became near-impossible given the disruption in work arrangements. Also, given the alternative work arrangements, there were some difficulties in delivering outputs as some outputs are heavily dependent on official documents or submissions from their stakeholders. These were only accessible via the agency’s Data Management System (DMS), their central repository for official documents.

There were some health concerns around the pandemic. Health Monitoring was limited and relegated to immediate supervisors rather than some formalized system. Moreover, there was concern about the agency’s dependence on the Biometrics System in timing. This was a concern since the virus can be contracted through surface contact.

Solution and Impact

To address these problems, the agency employed solutions addressing each problem.

  1. Remote Access to the DMS was enabled so that even those who are working from home could access the agency’s central repository for official documents.
  2. A weekly health status survey was developed by the Human Capital Management Division (HCMD) to have a centralized weekly monitoring system for the health and well-being of its personnel. Particularly, it is cascaded every Wednesday of the week, and the report per office is sent to the respective Directors for them to be apprised of the health and well-being of their respective personnel every week. This was further improved to include monitoring those who have already been vaccinated or are waiting for their respective schedules.
  3. Policies on alternative work arrangements were also developed for GCG personnel on what to do, who to report to, what their rights are with respect to their leave availments, and their respective work arrangements.
  4. An ID barcode system was developed to circumvent the biometrics system’s necessity of touching surfaces.
  5. An online Employee Information Management System (EIMS) was developed to enable even those working from home to time-in and time-out through the comfort of their homes using their laptops or cellphones. Daily Time Records could be generated for payroll purposes as an added benefit. Directors were also given their dashboards to monitor the physical reporting of their personnel as well as the time-in and time-out.

Overall, the aforementioned best practices gave the agency and its personnel ways to adapt to the new normal while ensuring the continuous operations of the agency despite the pandemic. And in terms of their long-term impact, the agency had the luxury of only needing to make minimal changes in light of changing pronouncements, given they already had the required programs in place.

Milestones

Remote access to the DMS is still being implemented in the agency, especially for those working from home. As a way forward, the agency is looking to have personal laptops that can access the DMS while also implementing supplementary protocols to ensure the confidentiality of official documents.
The weekly health survey was used in conceptualizing other programs in the agency. One program, in particular, was an onsite vaccination program. The survey is continuously improving to include personnel’s mental health. In the future, the revised survey may lead to other programs.
Policies on alternative work arrangements are still ever-changing, subject to the official pronouncements from the Office of the President. However, recent developments to the policies have been instrumental in allowing GCG personnel to physically report to the office as needed, with the added benefit of free motor pool services from the agency.

The online EIMS has been a critical monitoring tool for personnel’s observance of health protocols and their time-in and time-out. This monitoring has given directors the necessary information to change the schedule of physical reporting and WFH every month. The tool has also been updated to allow their Human Resources department other functions, such as changing whether selected personnel will work from home or on-site, generating ID barcodes for newly-hired personnel and allowing them access to the Online EIMS, and deactivating those who are separated from service.

Organization

Capiz Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Leadership, Strategy

Year Implemented

25 June 2018- Present

This is a GBPR Entry

Summary

The Capiz Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (CaPENRO) recognized the primary responsibility of locals in addressing environmental problems. They initiated the 1M Kahoy Project. It is a province-wide tree-growing activity in which the component city participates. It has also grown to support the livelihood of communities.

Background and Problem

In September 2017, the Capiz Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (CaPENRO) was created to focus more on effectively governing the environment in the Province of Capiz. Since its establishment, it has been committed to developing, promoting, and implementing programs toward an ecologically sustainable and resilient Capiz. And in recognizing the primary responsibility of locals in addressing environmental problems, they initiated the 1M Kahoy Project.

Specifically, the 1M Kahoy Project aimed to address the following identified gaps in Capiz directly:

  1. There was no existing agency in the province that conducted sustainability programs. Relatedly, there was also a lack of environmental programs being implemented.
  2. The degradation of forest cover in the province was substantially high. Particularly, Capiz only had nine percent (9%) remaining forest cover;
  3. There is a need to create Climate Change Mitigation at the local level.
  4. There is a lack of coordination and collaboration among the various local stakeholders of Capiz, from NGAs, LGUs, NGOs, Academe, and other sectors on environmental conservation, protection, and restoration.
The Municipality of Panitan through the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office and Office of the Municipal Agriculturist join the Kick Off Ceremony of the 1 Million Kahoy Project of the Capiz Provincial Government in Celebration of the National Arbor Day last 25 June 2022.

Solution and Impact

The 1 Million Kahoy Project was formulated as a province-wide tree-growing activity. And aside from the component city, municipalities, barangays, Local Government Units (LGUs), National Government Agencies (NGAs), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), academic institutions, the business sector, civic organizations, religious organizations, People’s Organizations (POs), and even private individuals were also encouraged to join. And every Capisnon who is 12 years old and above was also eligible to participate in the activity.

The CaPENRO’s efforts brought the following results for the 1 Million Kahoy Project:

  1. 1,146,755 trees were planted in 2018, and the activity had 167,195 participants
  2. 667, 160 trees were planted in 2019, and there were 41,874 participants
  3. 1,747,518 trees were planted in 2020, and there were 40,026 participants

Across all years, not just one sector but various sectors were represented. The 2018 implementation had 74,608 from NGAs, and the 2019 implementation had 34,689 from academic institutions. The reforestation of deforested areas in the mountains of Capiz.

Over time, the project’s scope has also grown to create livelihood opportunities for communities from coastal or upland areas. One community, particularly, was from the Integrated Social Forestry’s (ISF) beneficiaries. The ISF is also a greening project initiated by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), which has been devolved to the LGUs of Capiz.

As part of the 1 Million Kahoy Project, ISF beneficiaries were given materials to kick off their livelihood projects, and they were also partnered with business sector stakeholders in Capiz. On the other hand, business sector stakeholders were also encouraged to metaphorically adopt certain ISF beneficiaries by financially supporting their production of seedlings for reforestation. Through these arrangements, business sector stakeholders have supported the 1 Million Kahoy Project and helped the ISF beneficiaries who are also part of a greening effort in Capiz.

Milestones

The project’s success led it to be recognized as a significant contributor to the DENR’s National Greening Program. Moreover, the project’s success has also come to be critical for the Philippine Coconut Authority Agricultural Research Program for Climate Mitigation, Resiliency, and Response, the Department of Agriculture and Department of Education’s Tree Planting and Greening Program, the Department of Labor and Employment’s Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD), and the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation (CCAM) through enabling cash for work. And because it has been so successful, other LGUs and organizations have also started their initiatives similar to it.

Organization

National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Strategy, Citizens, Customers, Operations

Year Implemented

26 October 2020

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

The Online Housing Fair 2020 is the first online public housing fair conducted by a key shelter agency initiated by the Acquired Asset Division, Asset Management Department, and the Fund and Asset Management Group. This is a collaborative project with the Information Systems and Technical Support Division. Despite the varying community quarantine restrictions because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the NHMFC continued to deliver its service to the people and use information and communications technology to reach its clientele better.

Background and Problem

The corporation is conducting an annual housing fair to sell properties acquired through foreclosures. This initiative is intended to ensure the corporation’s assets are performing at an above-average collection efficiency rate. Before COVID-19, they conducted the housing fair face to face in the corporation’s head office or other venues. The community quarantine restrictions and health protocols hindered the corporation from conducting a housing fair.

Screenshot of the Online Housing Fair streamed on the NHMFC Facebook Page last 20 November 2020.

Solution and Impact

The Online Housing Fair 2020 changed the landscape of Key Shelter Agency housing fairs. At the onset of the pandemic, the housing fair team determined the migration of the event to be 100% online. With the full support of the Information Systems and Technical Support Division, they developed a fully automated housing fair program. This program covers the interactive listing of the acquired properties for sale, the registration of the participants, the submission of bids, and the automated selection of the most responsive bidder, up to the opening of the bids. The opening of bids was wrapped up twice faster than ever because bid results were generated electronically. The Online Housing Fair was interactive, contactless, seamless, and boundless nationwide. It greatly facilitated the fulfillment of NHMFC’s GCG Targets for CY 2020, specifically Strategic Measure #5–“Reduction of Non-performing Assets” and Strategic Measure #6 –“Percentage of Satisfied Individual Customers.”

The Online Housing Fair 2020 is instrumental in reducing nonperforming assets of the corporation and converting the same into performing loans that can now be eligible for asset pooling and securitization of mortgage receivables, consistent with its mandate. Moreover, the program generated a projected income of Php 12 million, contributing to income generation and reduction of nonperforming assets targets of the corporation. The Online Housing Fair 2020 also contributed to the increase in the monthly collections received by the Corporation and effectively increased the Collection Efficiency Rate (CER) performance. The generated fund under the program was channeled back to nance new housing loan receivables take-outs and help the corporation to increase the number of its mortgage receivables portfolio.

Milestones

The housing fair team was awarded a Special Recognition Award during the Program on Awards and Incentives for Service Excellence (PRAISE) CY 2020. The corporation’s housing fairs will now be conducted online at least once a year and more frequently moving forward.

During the height of the pandemic last year, one of the sectors greatly impacted was real estate. Everyone is trying to keep funds as liquid as possible. The housing market was down because people were not ready to purchase a home amid uncertainties. Additionally, implementing the BayanihanHeal as One Act mandated all financial institutions to offer a moratorium and grace period in mortgage payments. At the same time, interest rates were forced to go down to support the economy’s viability. It was a blessing for NHMFC that people enjoyed the housing fair in the comforts and safety of their homes. Despite the uncertainties, 101 properties were sold, and 13 were paid in cash.

Organization

Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Strategy, Citizens / Customers Operations

Year Implemented

March 2020 to present

This is a GBPR Entry

Summary

The NEUST Bayanihan Para sa Bayan, as the term suggests, is the product of the collaborative efforts of different stakeholders to ensure continuity of education and continuous delivery of services amidst the pandemic. The nominated best practice is the result of the collaborative efforts of the nominee, the community, and other partners and stakeholders during the pandemic. The activities cover March 2020, when the World Health Organization declared the pandemic, and Community Quarantines were implemented over the entire Philippine archipelago.

Background and Problem

The spread of the COVID-19 virus and the imposition of Community Quarantines have indeed put additional challenges to the many aspects of the daily lives of people and the operations of every institution. During these difficult times, the College of Public Administration and Disaster Management (CPDAM) took an active role in ensuring a successful response to COVID-19, providing a stream of actions at the institutional and community level.

One of the immediate challenges confronting the institution and perhaps other academic institutions is ensuring continuity of learning while promoting the safety and well-being of the students. While the pandemic has exposed the inadequacy of public education and the glaring digital divide, the College managed to continuously provide services to the students and its other clientele, including the Indigenous Peoples (IPS), whom the College supports in their pursuit of self-determination.

Face masks and face shields were distributed to the frontliners of hospitals and barangays.

Solution and Impact

The first initiative is the decision to undertake preemptive measures to help contain the spread of the contagion, at least at the College level. The students were briefed about the following actions, and their parents and guardians were involved in the planning and decision-making. Students were then involved in disseminating information on what COVID-19 is, how it is transmitted, what preventive measures must be implemented, and the recent rules and policies that must be adhered to. In this way, the students gained further familiarity with the current events while raising awareness among readers, social media users, and fellow learners.

To ensure continuity of learning during the quarantine period, where limited movement is imposed to prevent the virus transmission, the College transitioned and assisted the students in adjusting from traditional face-to-face classes to remote learning. It even considered the students’ need for a digital device, which is crucial to cope with the new learning modality. The College, through its extension arm, the Center for Indigenous Peoples Education (CIPE), and donations from donors, provided brand new tablets to deserving IP Students. The faculty even went to the Indigenous Cultural Community of Carranglan in Nueva Ecija to install Wi-Fi for the IP Students.

Aside from education, the College, through the CIPE, continued with its Fingerlings Distribution program, where the IP families were given fingerlings of tilapia, gurami, and ulang to serve as additional sources of livelihood. This was made possible through the partnership between the Center and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR)-Munoz. All these are aimed at maximizing resources and ensuring that services will be delivered amidst the pandemic. The College hopes to significantly extend the same or similar projects and services to the community even after the pandemic to benefit students and IP communities.

Milestones

The preemptive measures against virus transmission, the involvement of the parents in the decision-making regarding their children’s education, the continuity of learning, the heightened awareness regarding the modes of transmission, and the preventive measures against the spread of COVID-19 were considered milestones.

Other milestones of the projects were the following:

  • Has encouraged the students to remain vigilant and to practice safety and health measures at all times;
  • Production of 415 pieces of face masks and 460 pieces of the DIY face shields distributed to the frontliners of hospitals and barangays;
  • Promoted positive mental health through planting vegetables and provision of vegetable seedlings;
  • Production of instructional materials in the form of modules for the students;
  • Partnership with the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office and the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples-Nueva Ecija Provincial Office for the distribution and delivery of modules to students;
  • Fingerlings given to ninety (90) families from the Kalanguya ICC and 54 IP families from Gabaldon.

Organization

Office of the Vice Mayor- Himamaylan City

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Strategy Citizens / Customers Operations

Year Implemented

25 March 2020

This is a GBPR Entry

Summary

The Citizen Participation in Governance (CPaG) is a local digital democracy initiative of the City of Himamaylan. “Sipag” is the Filipino term for “Zeal”- a call to action for citizens to be passionate about holding the government responsible and contributing to the nation-building process. It is envisioned to empower ordinary citizens to petition the local government on policies and programs and serve as a monitoring tool for infrastructure project implementation.

Background and Problem

According to Datareportal, in the third quarter of 2020, 96% of internet users in the Philippines accessed Facebook, whereas 93% were actively engaged within the same period. Being one of the most used and accessible social platforms, Facebook was utilized to engage citizen participation. With social media as the most efficient platform for communication, CPaG is accessible through Facebook for the citizen’s convenience. It allows people to lobby their concerns, introduce ideas, and express frustrations towards the government. However, most of the supposed inputs never reached the officials and the offices that have the power to address such, particularly on the LGU level. The absence of accessible avenues for civic engagement and public participation dampens the willingness of citizens to take part in the local governance in the City of Himamaylan.

Screenshot of the CPAG Facebook Page and Chatbot

Solution and Impact

CPaG aims to maximize the use of technology by utilizing social media to empower and engage citizens to petition the local government and contribute to the project of nation-building as a whole. CPaG was developed to address the city’s lack of avenues for civic engagement and public participation. As an accessible platform, it is now easier for people to communicate through this channel. With the help of social media, the citizens will no longer be burdened by the tedious documentary processes since they can immediately and directly bring their concerns to a Task Force composed of competent and responsive officials to address such.

CPaG is open to all comments, suggestions, and even complaints about public infrastructure within the jurisdiction of Himamaylan City. Anyone with internet access and a Facebook account may lobby their concerns, introduce ideas, and express frustrations towards the government. All submissions sent to the CPaG Facebook page are reviewed and responded to. The Office of the Vice Mayor, mandated to be the advocacy arm of the local legislature, fulfills its functions through CPaG on the critical aspect of civic engagement and public participation. In addition, social media was chosen as the ideal platform to best capture the raw sentiments of the populace. This ensures that inputs are candid, unaltered, and fully representative of their sentiments toward the local government. Most concerns are related to easily-delivered basic utilities such as jetmatic water pumps and the installation of lighting fixtures. Complaints that require a longer timeframe and a larger funding component are listed for inspection and potential inclusion in the agenda of the City Development Council, which is mandated to identify the composition of the annual 20% Development Fund of the local government unit.

With the launch of the CPaG mobile app, the office could align expenditures on the ground and priorities. It promotes efficient coordination among LGU offices and the Task Force. It aligns the developmental goals of the LGU, the barangay, and the community. Since its launch, CPaG has received a total of 66 submitted feedback. Out of this, 49 (74.24%) have been addressed and responded to, 14 (21.21%) are ongoing projects, and the remaining 3 (4.55%) are concerning private properties that are out of the jurisdiction of the ordinance. In 2021, CPaG identified projects that will receive 10% of the 2021 Development Fund or P17.1 million.

Milestones

Aside from being prioritized by the City Government, CPaG was nationally recognized as a best practice for Freedom of Information and was awarded the Freedom of Information Champion title by the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO). The Task Force plans to expand CPaG’s functionality beyond just infrastructure to include implementing citizen’s charters, reporting of public officials and employees, and requests that fall under the Freedom of Information. CPaG continues to have an active social media engagement by receiving submissions since its launch. Citizens from different barangays sent their concerns and requests to the Facebook page. To maintain consistency and secure its regularity, all entries are thoroughly reviewed to ensure they are within the scope of the city’s jurisdiction, forwarded to the respective department, and monitored until addressed.

CPaG also uses the Facebook Messenger Bot to get relevant information about the concerns. Certain FAQs can be addressed through guided and automated questions without human intervention. Frequent reporting of project status through Facebook posts has led to the acceptance of the initiative. Since most public sentiments do not usually reach the concerned bodies, CPaG has bridged this communication gap in the city. CPaG was institutionalized through the Executive Order & Resolution by the Local Government Unit of Himamaylan City. A Monitoring Task Force was established a month after the platform’s launch. Its duties and responsibilities include the preparation of bi-monthly reports on the status of CPaG submissions and endorsement of projects to the City Development Council. The CPaG-endorsed projects are included in the 10% Annual Development Fund of the City starting FY 2021. With the support of the City Government, the Task Force intends to expand CPaG functionality beyond just infrastructure to include implementation of the citizen’s charters, reporting of erring public officials and employees, and requests that fall under freedom of information.

Organization

Central Bicol State University of Agriculture

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Strategy

Year Implemented

22 August 2020 – present

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

The Philippines called upon its higher education institutions to adhere to the Internationalization Policy Framework Transnational Higher Education Law. As such, Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA) decided to form partnerships with foreign higher education institutions, crucially establishing their International Credit Transfer Program (ICTP). Because of this program, students were able to enroll in foreign universities, and as a bonus, their faculty was also able to engage in speaking engagements and research projects with other universities despite the onset of the pandemic.

Background and Problem

With Globalization on the rise, the Philippines, through Its Commission on Higher Education (CHED), called upon the country’s higher education institutions, including the CBSUA, to adhere to the mandates stated in CHED Memo No. 55, s. 2016, the Internationalization Policy Framework. This is made all the more pertinent given the issues raised in the Transnational Higher Education Law or RA 11448 authorizing SUCs to engage in internationalization programs and activities. And crucially for CBSUA, internationalization is vital since it is one of the key areas for their SUC Leveling, their Quacquarelli Symonds Ranking, and their AACCUP Accreditation Level IV.

CBSUA-College of Development Education (CDE), in partnership with Universitas Mataram (UNRAM) conducts International Credit Transfer Program (ICTP) Orientation last 19 January 2022, via Zoom.

Solution and Impact

The CBSUA, through its Office of the Vice President for Business and External Affairs and the College of Development Education (CDE), focused on the intensification of its internationalization initiatives, giving special attention to the formation of international partnerships and linkages with universities across Asia and Europe. Through many meetings and planning, Memorandums of Agreement (MOA) and Understanding (MOU) were arranged with some of the world’s leading universities to participate and sponsor various activities for CBSUA.

A notable result of these partnerships was that, during the onset of the pandemic, more students than ever before were able to enroll in foreign universities through the International Credit Transfer Program (ICTP). And despite the pandemic, CBSUA faculty were also able to continue participating in research projects, lectures, webinars, and presentations sponsored by both local and foreign partner universities. Said faculty research projects were even set to be published in international-refereed journals. And through the lectures and presentations facilitated by these partnerships, CBSUA faculty and students also become more aware of the cultural and social practices and values of the partner universities and the respective countries.

Milestones

In December 2020, their internationalization endeavors allowed the College of Development Education (CDE) to attain the highest score in its Phase II, Level IV Accreditation by the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP). Their endeavors also led them to be among the Top 16 in the First Philippine Higher Education Internationalization Award in May 2021, organized by the CHED and the University of the Philippines Open University (UPOU).

Notably, they were the only SUC from Region V to receive such an award. And because of this distinction, CBSUA, through the College of Development Education, was invited to co-host the 54th ASEAN DAY Celebration in their region, an event where internationalization efforts of state universities and colleges are awarded. And because of the successes of CBSUA’s internationalization efforts, other state colleges and universities have also started to benchmark and employ the university’sCDE’s best practices.

Organization

Bukidnon State University

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Leadership, Citizens / Customers, Operations

Year Implemented

15 August 2008

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

Bukidnon State University, as one of the premier institutions in higher education, maintains a quality service for the satisfaction of its stakeholders. To achieve transparency in the service, open communication through the Brace D’ Link program is being practiced in the university. It is known as “Student’s Day with the Administration,” designed to strengthen the communication between the students and the administration. This program started through the initiative of University President Dr. Oscar B. Cabañelez, then the Vice-President for Administration, Planning, and Development of Bukidnon State University (formerly Bukidnon State College) in 2008 and was conducted every semester. He envisioned the link between the students and the administration. The program became an avenue of discussion, improving the quality of services, setting up state-of-the-art facilities, and establishing infrastructures.

Background and Problem

Communication strengthens the relationship among members of any society. A strong society performs its tasks and hits its goal. Transparency of operation in any organization promotes an orderly system and trust among the administrators, staff, and students.

In line with the survey results, a mechanism for open communication between the administration, academe, and students was initiated to address concerns at Bukidnon State University. Unit heads of the various frontline and student services are to present their respective tasks. An open forum will follow the presentation. University officials may also give some inputs that would clarify the answers to some concerns.

Objectives:
  1. Evaluation of the conduct of the Brace d’ Link Program
  2. Analysis of issues, problems, and concerns raised, and responses were given on these during the Brace d’ Link Programs
  3. Identify the impact on the administration and the students
  4. Present the functions and workflow of the different administrative offices
  5. Strengthen the relationship among the Administrative Unit Heads, Academic Unit Heads, and the Students in the university
The Bukidnon State University Student Government officers conducting interviews for the 2021 Brace D’ Link online program.

Solution and Impact

As a solution, the Brace D’Link program employs three major parts: the presentation of the office functions and responsibilities by the different administrative unit heads, followed by the raising of problems and concerns with specific suggestions/recommendations from the student leader or students and the conveying or relating to the students the actions/plans taken by the administration on the particular issues raised. This is participated in by the different administrative units, including the Finance Office, the Human Resource Management Office, the Chief Administrative Office, the ICT-Services Unit, the Supply Office, the Academic Units like the Office of the Student Services, the Registrar, Libraries and the College Deans from the different colleges – College of Arts and Science, College of Business, College of Nursing, College of Social Development and Technology. Meanwhile, students are represented by the Supreme Student Council (SSC) Officers, the Student Body Organization of the different colleges, and all university students.

For the presentation of office functions and responsibilities, each unit head is given three (3) minutes to explain one’s tasks. Brochures or handouts could be distributed to the participants for a better understanding of the functions, and a PowerPoint presentation may also be used. The Vice President for Academic Affairs (VPAA) acts as a moderator and presents the mechanics for a smooth forum. The participants are expected to listen attentively and are discouraged from interrupting the official delivering the talk. All questions or points for clarification should be raised during the second part of the program, which is raising the issues or concerns.

For the mechanics of how to raise issues and concerns, questions are limited to the topics presented. Other matters may be raised in the latter part of the program if time permits. The proponent shall first be properly acknowledged before being given the floor to raise questions. The proponent will only be allowed to raise a maximum of two (2) questions to give a chance to other participants to raise their questions. The proponent shall address the person to whom a question is directed. Questions that cannot be raised on the floor and cannot be answered by any speaker due to lack of time will have to be written on the sheet of paper to be given by the Supreme Student Council officers. For written questions, participants must indicate their name, college, and course on the paper with the questions, with the name of the person to whom the questions are directed. The sheets will be collected and collated by the SSC officers and will be sent to the concerned speakers. Answers to the written questions will also be gathered and printed to form part of the Brace D’ Link documents, which will be the basis for administrative actions.

For the third part of the program, which is the conveyance of the actions taken, the moderator/speakers will convey to the participants the actions taken and the administration’s plans on the issues/concerns raised. Any participant may also be allowed to provide comments and suggestions to the presenters for a maximum of two (2) minutes.

Milestones/Next Steps

It is noted that the Brace D’ Link has facilitated open communications between students and the administration from 2008 up to the present. The program has been remarkably noted as one of the best practices of Bukidnon State University. This has been confirmed during the accreditation process undertaken by the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines, Inc. (AACCUP, Inc.), and recommended it to continue. Aside from that, based on the Evaluation Report gathered after the program, students affirmed the continuous implementation of Brace D’ Link.

Organization

Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC)

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Measurement, Analysis, and Knowledge Management

Year Implemented

June 2017

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

The Learning and Development program of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC) works in parallel with the many changes that are unfolding in the hospital processes. Its mandate emanates from the Civil Service Commission’s PRIME-HRM (Program to Institutionalize Meritocracy and Excellence in Human Resource Management) to celebrate and recognize excellence in human resources. As a health institution whose vision is to be the premier referral center of the North, it keeps track of learning and development interventions of medical, nursing, allied, and nonmedical personnel. These services are vital to health delivery, and these training programs ensure that the health service is delivered beyond expectation. To prepare and analyze the impact of training on hospital personnel, the BGHMC started monitoring all these interventions in 2017.

Background and Problem

This best practice intends to systematically evaluate the hospital’s workforce skills after learning and development interventions, evaluate interventions that addressed competency gaps identified in 2017, and revisit training plans to target the hospital’s training needs. Many training courses were conducted in the hospital in the previous years. Examples were training for doctors on procedures, updates of practice guidelines, intravenous (IV) therapy for nurses, and updates in government procedures for accountants, which only targeted improving skills for those who needed it.

The BGHMC started implementing the training cycle by accomplishing the evaluation of the individual development plan for evaluating the training needs analysis for those requesting training, preparing training sessions that answer competency gaps and evaluating these thereafter, accomplishing Level 1 and Level 2 evaluations of training, and improving on training programs that they conduct. All these were following the training plan for the year (using the allocated budget from the hospital’s MOOE).

The following were the training objectives of the training cycle: ensure that all hospital personnel will at least have eight (8) hours of learning and development intervention for the year; evaluate requests for training courses based on the individual development plan and their training needs analysis; develop or outsource training and development interventions to help narrow down the employees’ training competency gaps; assess the hospital personnel’s competency and job fit.

Solution and Impact

Realizing these scenarios can be channeled to better directions, a separate training manual for the hospital was made from the clinical Quality Manual. This training manual was ISO 9001:2015 certified. The PRIME HRM program was introduced to the Human Resource Department, requiring processes and procedures for hospital training and employee growth. The ISO Certified training manual answered the call for Learning and Development.

After doing these for three (3) years, the BGHMC had to evaluate the impact of these interventions on the organization. Thus, the paper on Level 3 and Level 4 evaluation of Learning and Development was conducted in the hospital.

The internally conducted Learning and Development activities had the following organizational impact: it decreased complaints; it reduced waste (responses include: decreased water shortage occurrences, decreased demand for resources from supplier, decreased waiting time, decreased surgical complications, fewer hospital stay, fewer encounters with patients, fewer simulations); it increased production, performance and higher employee morale (responses include: Improved staffs’ quality of mental health, healthier work environment, a lower degree of burnout, well-rounded surgical residents, happy consultants/ mentors, harmony in the workplace, Increased participation, reduced absences of staff).

These reflect that more employees are better equipped and more responsible for their personal growth in their work environment. Meanwhile, the external training sessions made employees stay on their job because they became more equipped to do their work, made them perform better, and contributed to increased hospital quality ratings. There was better patient care, improved quality service, better clinical and radiologic correlation, and proper assessment and reporting.

Milestones/Next Steps

All employees’ individual development plans (IDP) in 2017 were gathered and analyzed. The gaps were ranked according to frequency and which among these needed the most attention. For 1,113 employees with different competencies and job skills, the training office addressed training of competency gaps falling under core, organizational, and leadership skills, which were common to all professions and job skills. Technical skills training for different job skills was either provided as internal training conducted by hospital subject matter experts or external (provided by other training venues and subject matter experts).

Other notable milestones were: accreditation and re-accreditation of the ISO 9001:2015 Training Manual; recognition in 2018 as the first Government hospital to reach Level II in the PRIME-HRM where Learning and Development is one of the pillars; Trailblazer Awards for Performance Governance System Golde (2018) and Silver (2018) because of the Learning and Development’s strategic contribution to training and research; received the Hall of Fame for Best Institution for Research from the Cordillera Regional Health Research and Development Consortium in January 2019.

In 2020, the BGHMC gathered feedback on how the previous interventions affected their present work in the hospital. Feedback evaluations were retrieved within six (6) months to one (1) year after Learning and Development activities were analyzed. External training that employees attended made them stay on their job because they became more equipped to do their work, made them perform better, and contributed to increased quality ratings of the hospital Examples of responses were: better patient care, improved quality service, better clinical and radiologic correlation, proper assessment and reporting.

Organization

City Government of San Fernando, La Union

Best Practice Focus Area/s

Citizens / Customers

Year Implemented

2016

This is a GBPR entry

Summary

The establishment of barangay reading centers nationwide supports the promotion of Filipinos’ moral, intellectual and cultural development, which is vital in nation-building and national development, and was institutionalized through the following legislation: (1) Section 17 of the Local Government Code of 1991 and (2) Section 2 of Republic Act No. 7743, an act providing the establishment of congressional, city and municipal libraries and barangay reading centers throughout the Philippines. Under this state policy, the City Public Library of San Fernando La Union spearheaded the annual provision of learning materials to the city’s fifty-nine (59) barangays, ensuring the adequacy and accessibility of such resources to benefit their constituents. This program was initiated in 2015 and became one of the best practices of the library, aiming to deliver quality public service through education and information dissemination.

Background and Problem

Before this project came to fruition, children rarely visited libraries because of accessibility challenges. It was difficult for the advocates to promote their projects and programs. The DepEd issued a statement on 4 December 2019 on the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) results wherein the Philippines scored lowest in reading comprehension. PISA is a worldwide study by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development that examines students’ knowledge in reading, mathematics, and science.

With the PISA results also reflecting the learners’ performance in the National Achievement Test (NAT), DepEd recognizes the urgency of addressing issues and gaps in improving the quality of basic education in the Philippines. The City Public Library of San Fernando is in full spirit in helping to address the concern by sustaining the Barangay Reading Centers. By donating and promoting books and teaching children and young adults the importance of having a good habit of reading, the Library hopes to provide them with a more accessible and enriching learning experience.

Solution and Impact

One of the Barangay Reading Center’s goals is to establish increased collaboration between the City Public Library and the barangay officials so that they might work hand-in-hand in strengthening the engagement of the community in the pursuit of quality education through the aid of learning materials present in their respective reading centers. The City Public Library is also keen on helping the government, the Department of Education (DepEd), and the National Library of the Philippines promote healthy reading habits among the city’s residents. This direction is integrated into the development plan of the local government.

From the commencement of implementation in 2015, the City Public Library of San Fernando visited the barangay reading centers in the city and provided an increasing number of reading materials donated by private institutions and partners every year through the Book Drive Program.

To make the initiative possible, first, the library coordinates with its mother organization, the National Library of the Philippines, and with donors and interested organizations to request donations to each barangay. Afterward, the staff plot a strategic plan on how they will allocate the donations, including the volume of learning materials, to be given to each of the fifty-nine (59) barangays. Distribution of the books is undertaken in coordination with the respective barangay officials. However, even when information can be accessed through the Internet, the barangay reading centers can be a place to hone one’s sensibility. Children can enjoy longer access to good-quality books. The program helped the residents realize how important books are.

Milestones/Next Steps

For realizing such a program, the City Library garnered prestigious awards that recognized the efforts and achievements of its initiatives. City Librarian Mr. Michael C. Nagas and the Library staff were named the winner of the 2020 Search for Gawad Parangal sa Natatanging Tagapaglingkod ng Pampublikong Aklatan. The Establishment of Barangay Reading Centers in the City of San Fernando La Union was the fundamental program highlighted in the recognition, as it facilitated the provision of outstanding services and facilities to its constituents.

In view of the accolades being received by the City Library, it has recognized that sustainability, development and innovation are essential in its continuing pursuit of quality public service delivery. Today, the library is thinking of more effective ways to reach the different sectors of society towards achieving the same goal–educating the community. With enough budget and sponsors, the Barangay Reading Centers can widen the scope of learning materials that are being contained in their corners, providing a wider variety of fiction and non-fiction books, storytelling books, dictionaries, magazines, and eventually research papers, theses, and feasibility studies produced by the students in their respective barangays.