Tonga Civil Service Regulation
SECTION S. TRAINING
1. This Section sets out the overall framework for training and is the basis for making the training function an effective tool for developing the capability of the Civil Service. It covers the:
- purpose of training and its goals;
- overall responsibilities of those concerned with training;
- organisation and coordination of training;
- management and administration of training; and
- consideration of costs and benefits of training.
'Training' refers to both long-term and short-term training. Short-term training is nonscholarship training which is 12 months or less in duration and long-term training is formal scholarship training which is one academic year or more in duration."
2. The Purpose of Training
The purpose of training is to develop and enhance the capability of the Civil Service to perform efficiently and effectively by securing the necessary skills and expertise on a timely basis.
3. Goals of Training
The goals of training should include the following:
(a) to develop and enhance the competencies and skills of staff in the Civil Service;
(b) to improve performance of civil servants in their respective capacities; and
(c) to provide and promote excellence in quality skills development.
4. Overall Responsibilities
a) Policy Responsibility The Civil Service Staff Board should ensure that sound and quality policy advice on training is provided from time to time and is responsible for reviewing the effectiveness and impact of policy on training and the implementation of policy.
b) Supervisory Responsibilities. As the overall responsible body for the training function, the Civil Service Staff Board exercises supervisory function over training and seeks to ensure its quality. At the same time, although Ministries and Departments are primarily responsible for the training of their staff in which case departmental training officers or a member of staff may be appointed, they should ensure where appropriate that training is linked to their long-term goals and objectives and the key areas of emphasis in their operation and delivery of services.
c) Training Responsibilities. The Training and Development Unit in the Establishment Division of the Prime Minister's Office is responsible for ensuring that quality short-term and long-term training are secured for the Civil Service and that the training provided should meet the expectations of Government. Similar responsibilities for long-term scholarship training are vested in the Scholarship Committee.
Management of Training
5. Overall Coordination. The overall coordination of the training function for the Civil Service shall be the responsibility of the Civil Service Staff Board which will check the quality, responsiveness and timeliness of training.
6. Departmental Training Officers. Each Ministry and Department should appoint a departmental training officer whose training function is to exercise direction and general oversight of training of staff on behalf of the Ministry or Department. The departmental training officer will be responsible for:
(a) identifying the training needs of the Ministry or Department;
(b) formulating a training plan for the Ministry or Department outlining strategies for meeting the training requirements;
(c) ensuring that the training plan is integrated with the long-term goals and objectives of the Ministry or Department;
(d) evaluating the impact of training on the performance of staff,
(e) devising suitable systems for on-the-job training;
(f) organising and conduct training for the Ministry or Department; and
(g) assisting in the arrangement of local and overseas training.
7. Training Plans. The Training and Development is responsible for planning the overall training requirements of the Civil Service and should ensure that this is in line with relevant policies and guidelines of Government. Ministries and Departments shall be required to formulate their own long-term and short-term training plans and should ensure that these plans are based on their long-term goals and objectives.
8. The Training and Development Unit will be responsible for coordinating Ministry and Department training plans and ensure that these plans are targeting critical areas and are properly linked with the objectives and policy of Government on training.
9. Training is important at all levels of the Civil Service and Ministries and Departments are primarily responsible for identifying, planning and ensuring that their needs are satisfied. They should ensure that provisions are made for the training needs of their staff.
10. The Identification of Training Needs. All training are likely to increase the efficiency and effectiveness in performance and this must start from the correct identification of needs and from a recognition that there are short-term and long-term needs, both of which training should try to meet and that these needs may change rapidly over time.
11. It is for the Training and Development Unit to identify the training needs of the Civil Service as a whole. Ministries and Departments will define their specialised needs based on their respective long-term goals and objectives from time to time. The coordination of Civil Service training needs is the responsibility of the Training and Development Unit.
12. The Training and Development Unit will undertake a training needs identification mission in the Civil Service regularly to ensure that the training needs of the Civil Service are adequately met on a timely basis.
13. Evaluation of the Impact of Training. It is expected that training has an impact on the performance of civil servants. The Ministry or Department is responsible for evaluating the impact of training on the performance of staff. For the purpose of planning training for the Civil Service, the Training and Development Unit will ensure that the overall impact of training on the Civil Service are evaluated from time to time and provide the relevant information.
SECTION S: TRAINING
(b) SHORT TERM TRAINING
Arrangements for Short-Term Training
1. Locally Arranged Training . Where the need for training could be locally arranged the Training and Development Unit shall be responsible for organising and coordinating training using locally available resources and expertise giving due regard to its quality and that they are provided on a timely basis.
2. In-country Training. In-country training is funded by aid donors who are responsible for providing financial assistance for part of the costs involved in running the training. In such cases, the aid donor is responsible for meeting the costs of bringing over specialist trainers from overseas and the production of training materials whereas the requesting local agency will be responsible for meeting the local costs involved in bringing participants together for the training and any other costs that may be involved. The Training and Development Unit will be responsible for coordinating training and providing assistance that maybe required from time to time.
3. Overseas Training and Attachments. Overseas training and attachments are fully funded by aid donors who are responsible for A the costs involved regarding the attendance of the trainee in the training or attachments overseas. The Training and Development Unit is responsible for making the necessary arrangements as required both by Government and the aid donors: In cases where the training is partly funded or not funded at all, the requesting agency is responsible for meeting all or the rest of the costs involved. The Training and Development Unit should be consulted in such cases. The trainee, at the end of the training or attachment, shall provide the Head of Department and the Training and Development Unit with a report on the training.
4. On-the-job Training . A Ministry or Department may require some of its staff to undertake on-the-job training locally within or outside the Civil Service to gain experience or expertise in specific areas related to the trainees' work. In such cases, the Ministry or Department shall be primarily responsible for making the necessary arrangements. The Training and Development Unit is available for consultation and assistance.
5. Research and Consultancy Services. The Training and Development Unit may undertake research and consultancy services in Ministries and Departments from time to time to assist them identifying areas where appropriate training could be used to improve their operation and delivery of service.
Administration of Short-Term Training
6. Nomination. All nominations or applications for short-term training, either local, in-service or overseas, should be recommended by the Head of Department, and where appropriate, should be endorsed by the Minister. In case where the training are organised by the Training and Development Unit, nominations should be send to the Unit for further action.
The Ministry or Department should make sure that the civil servant on training has the necessary qualities and educational background to undertake the training and that the Ministry or Department will benefit as a result of the training.
7. The Training and Development Unit will ensure that all nominations and applications are endorsed, and where request for funding by aid donors is required, to send such applications to them through the normal channels. It will make the necessary arrangements to ensure the successful participation of civil servants in the training.
8. The Training and Development Unit will ensure that Ministries and Departments are kept informed of the progress of applications for short-term training and that the Heads of Department are kept informed of the performance and progress of staff in the training.
9. Record-Keeping . It is the responsibility of the Training and Development Unit to keep records of training in safe custody.
10. Payment of Salary A civil servant approved by the Minister to attend a short-term training with a duration of 12 months or less will continue to receive his/her full salary. In all other cases, the civil servant will take leave or undertake training on a without pay basis.
SECTION S: TRAINING
(c) LONG-TERM TRAINING
Undertaking. Civil servants selected for long-term scholarship training whose absence from duty will amount to one academic year or more, are required:
(a) to continue in Government service after completion of their studies, the length of service which they are required to render being one year for each year of study, up to a maximum of five years' service; and
(b) in the event of their failure to complete their studies owing to unauthorised withdrawal, dismissal or discharge from their course, or failure to fulfil their "year for a year" obligation, to repay Government any salary allowances paid by Government to them during their period of study.
Every civil servant to whom these conditions apply must, prior to his release from duty, sign undertakings to this effect. The responsibility for ensuring that is done rests with the Scholarship Officer. Undertakings by civil servants should be in a Bond Form that Cabinet may approve from time to time.
2. It must be made clear to officers required to sign Bond Form that if bonds are not honoured in full it will not be possible to offer them an appointment in the Civil Service.
3. All the time spent attending training will count towards seniority and pensions/gratuity rights, but will not count towards leave entitlements
4. Continuation of Long-Term Training. Continuation of long-term scholarship training should be subject to satisfactory progress, judged by the passing of examinations or by periodical reports from the educational institutions. Where a civil servant fails the first time to attain the qualification or pass an intermediate examination, he should be allowed one other attempt only, provided firstly that the educational institution supports this and secondly that the civil servant's Ministry or Department is satisfied that the failure is attributable to circumstances beyond his control and to any lack of application on his part.
5. On successful completion of training, civil servants cannot be guaranteed promotion or upgrading of status on their return to the Civil Service.
6. Payment of Salary. Payment of salary to scholarship holders shall be governed by policy determined by Cabinet from time to time. Applications for payment of salary while on long-term scholarship training shall be made to Cabinet for approval and should be made before civil servants leave for training. Any salary payments will only be made during the minimum period of study and further extension will require Cabinet approval. If civil servants are entitled to increments during their scholarship training, granting of such increments will be subject to satisfactory progress.
Administration of Long-Term Training
7. Nominations. All long-term scholarship training shall be recommended by the Head of Department, endorsed by the Minister, where appropriate, and forwarded to Civil Service Staff Board for submission to Cabinet for approval. All applications for long-term scholarship training by civil servants must be endorsed by the Head of Department before submission to the Scholarship Committee.
The Ministry or Department should make sure that the civil servant on scholarship training has the necessary qualities and educational background to undertake the training and that the Ministry or Department will benefit as a result of the training.
9. The Scholarship Committee will make sure that all nominations and applications are endorsed and make the necessary arrangements to ensure that the selection of candidates are done fairly and in accordance with Government policy. It will make the necessary arrangements, on a timely basis an , d in an efficient manner, to ensure the successful participation and completion of training by the successful candidates.
9. The Scholarship Committee will make sure that Ministries and Departments are kept informed of the outcome of their application for scholarship and of the performance and progress of staff in the training.
10. Before a civil servant may proceed on a long-term scholarship training he must sign Bond Forms undertaking firstly to remain in the Civil Service after the completion of the course for a minimum of one year for each year of study, and secondly to repay Government any salaries or allowances paid to him while attending the course, in the event of his failure to complete the course or fulfil the "year for a year" bond.
11. It is the responsibility of the Scholarship Committee to make that the records of its deliberations are kept in safe custody.
SECTION S: TRAINING
(d) COSTS AND BENEFITS OF TRAINING
1. Costs. Ministries and Departments should ensure that their training proposals are cost effective in terms of maximising the use of resources available for training and give due consideration to alternative forms of training that best satisfy their needs. As the proposed training involves the investment of financial resources and time, they should ensure that the release of staff for training is considered within their overall staffing, constraints and that the normal operation of the Ministry or Department does not suffer. It is their responsibility to make sure that trainees are appropriately identified to make use of the training opportunities available and make every effort to retain the staff after training.
2. Civil servants on training are obligated to display full commitment and complete training within the minimum duration. They should be aware of the objectives of training and that they are achieved to the satisfaction and expectation of their respective Ministries and Departments.
3. It is the responsibility of Ministries and Departments to ensure that funds allocated for training purposes are utilised efficiently. The Training and Development Unit should ensure that funds allocated by Government and aid donors toward training are utilised in the best possible manner to meet their respective requirements.
4. Benefits. Civil servants must ensure that they gain the full benefits of the training that they undertake. Ministries and Departments should evaluate them at the end of the training to ensure that their performance have improved as a result of training. The Training and Development Unit will regularly evaluate the impact of training across the Civil Service to ensure its effectiveness.
5. Ministries and Departments should ensure that their staff are continuously trained in their
respective capacities and make sure that they plan for their training. They should make every effort to retain their trained staff and make the necessary arrangements for career development. The Training and Development Unit is available for consultation and assistance in organising training and advice on alternative methods of training.