An audit of the General Relations (GR), International Business Development (IBD), Consular and Administration Programs in Bangkok was carried out from June 4 to 8, 2001. The Mission was previously audited in November, 1995.
This is a very well run Mission, staffed with competent and motivated personnel. The Mission is led by an experienced Head of Mission (HOM), who is well supported by a strong team of Program Managers. Responsibility for the countries of Thailand, Laos, and especially Burma, together with Consular responsibility for Cambodia, adds a dimension of complexity. Morale is very high at the Mission, with good communications fostered by regular meetings and daily interaction at all levels.
The General Relations Program works in close concert with the other Programs of the Mission, permitting excellent exchange of information and good cooperation. The political reports produced by the Program are considered to be very analytical and of high quality. Turnover this summer will present some challenges for the Program Manager as a less experienced Political Officer will be arriving at the Mission. The Political/Public Affairs Assistant job description requires updating to reflect the reality of the duties being performed. The HOM SCY's role, as support for the Program, needs to be formalized within the position description. The Program Manager believes a strong case can be made for a Public Affairs Officer to be added to the Program.
The International Business Development (IBD) Program is very well managed by an experienced senior FS-02. His strong capacities as regards the Trade Commissioner Service's New Approach and his effectiveness as a manager have allowed this Program to succeed in spite of the economic downturn of the past three years. The Section is organized into teams to deal with specific sectors and this is working well. The tracking of inquiries can be improved through the introduction of an InfoCentre using the team concept already in place.
The Consular Program is managed very effectively. The Consular Officer is completing his first assignment abroad and is to be commended for his success. While the passport demand is moderate, Consular cases can be very complicated and protracted due to local bureaucracy, and the extent of the territory the Mission covers. A planned reconfiguration of both the Consular lobby and the offices will improve Program delivery.
The Administration Program is well managed by an experienced and competent MCO. Services to the Mission are viewed as excellent, and detailed service standards have been established. Morale within the Section is very high. The MCO has a good working relationship with his staff. The development of objectives and formal planning would benefit the management of the Program. The Property function, with its four resources, is rich, and the need for the CBS Office Manager position is questionable. The Official Residence is in need of renovation and action is required to address two staff quarters that are over-sized. Finance operations need to be stream-lined to increase efficiency. Work plans and objectives need to be set for Administration Section staff.
This report contains 36 recommendations, 33 of which the Mission is responsible for implementing and 3 to be actioned by Headquarters. Based on responses received, the Mission has implemented 16 recommendations, 16 are currently in the process of being implemented and there is one recommendation (converting the Canada-Based Office Manager position to Locally-Engaged status) which the Mission is not in agreement with. The 3 recommendations applicable to Headquarters are currently in the process of being implemented.
|Administration and Consular||3||22||25|
There is one Honorary Consul in Chiang Mai
|Operating Budget (N001)||$2,300,275|
|LES Salaries (N012)||1,047,572|
|CBS Overtime (N011)||12,000|