It is one year since the Dubai Government Excellence Programme (DGEP) launched the 2nd wave of “Dubai We Learn” for government entities in Dubai. This ambitious programme consists of a range of knowledge sharing and organisational learning activities designed to fast-track organisational improvement and stimulate innovation. A key part of this initiative has been the mentoring of benchmarking projects by DGEP’s partner the Centre for Organisational Excellence Research, New Zealand.
The second wave of benchmarking projects came to an end on the 4 April 2018 when 11 project teams gave a presentation and submitted a benchmarking report to share their results. To learn more about the 1st wave and its result, refer to the recently published Dubai We Learn book.
Project teams used the TRADE Best Practice Benchmarking Methodology – a rigorous step by step approach that involves searching for and implementing leading-edge practices. Each project team gave a 15-minute presentation and submitted a benchmarking report which was assessed by an expert panel. The projects were evaluated based on the TRADE Benchmarking Certification Scheme. Three of the teams achieved 7 Stars, four teams 5-6 Stars, and four teams 3-4 Stars. These were exceptional results as even to achieve 3-4 Stars and reach TRADE Benchmarking Proficiency is challenging within a one-year timeframe. The projects and grades were as follows:
The project deliverables and presentations were assessed by an expert panel consisting of
- Dr Robin Mann, Founder of TRADE, Centre for Organisational Excellence Research, New Zealand
- Garvin Chow, First Vice President/ Director Corporate Learning & Development, United Overseas Bank Limited
- Professor Dotun Adebanjo, University of Greenwich, London
The achievements of all teams has been impressive. A description of the 7-Star projects is provided below.
Dubai Police’s project has saved at least $3.8 million (Aug-2017 to Mar-2018) and is projected to save $5.4 million by August 2018 through increasing productivity in the mechanical workshop from 40% to 72% and increasing vehicle availability from 88% to 95%. The team conducted an intensive study of its current workshop practices and visited 8 organisations to learn from best practices. The improvements have largely been as a result of improved data accuracy and analysis of workshop operations which has enabled more informed management decisions such as closure of an inefficient workshop, changes to the shift pattern leading to a shorter turnaround of vehicles, and improved management of spare parts. These improvements have been achieved without investing in new equipment or machinery.
The Dubai Government Human Resource (DGHR) Department’s project was to produce a blueprint for establishing an HR Think Tank. It was identified there was a need for a Think Tank to shape the future of HR within Dubai’s government and transform DGHR into a more ‘agile’ government entity – well prepared to respond to future challenges due to changes in technology, geopolitical situations and financial realities. To produce the blueprint the project team researched the needs of the Dubai Government and evaluated 102 Think Tanks with 6 international and 3 local benchmarking visits undertaken. The final blueprint was a 73 page document describing in detail the proposed purpose, structure, services and operating model of the Think Tank. The Vision of the Think Tank has been initially set as “Pioneering HR for the world!” and implementation of the blueprint will proceed through four phases and enable the Think Tank to provide three main services; research, smart library and consulting services. The major achievement of this project was having the blueprint signed off by the DGHR’s Director General with a planned launch of the Think Tank for later this year.
The Dubai Health Authority’s (DHA) project aimed to reduce the number of people that are pre-diabetic (people at risk of becoming diabetic due to their high blood sugar levels). According to a 2017 survey, 15.2% of Dubai’s population is diabetic and 15.8% are pre-diabetic with the UAE as a whole having the 10th highest rates in the world. The DHA’s benchmarking project involved extensive desktop research reviewing the approaches of other countries in tackling diabetes and benchmarking visits to 9 organisations. Of key importance was that DHA recognised that it would not be able to have a significant impact on Diabetes on its own and therefore needed to work closely with other stakeholders that could influence or play a role in reducing diabetes. The major contribution of this project was the development of a Dubai Diabetes Prevention Framework consisting of five elements:
- promoting healthy life style,
- creative and innovative sustainable interventions,
- early screening on diabetes mellitus and risk factors,
- enforcement of non-communicable diseases policy, and
- supportive health system and partnerships.
For each element there is a strategy and a range of programs and initiatives of which a number have already been implemented and others are to follow. The project is on track to reduce the pre-diabetic population by at least 10% by 2021, an ambitious target considering the adverse trends in some of the risk factors such as obesity, unhealthy diet, smoking and lack of exercise.
To promote learning and sharing of experience the recording of the presentations from all teams will be uploaded to BPIR.com. As part of this initiative, Centre of Organisational Excellence Research (COER) will publish a series of articles about the initiative. To receive the latest news sign-up to COER’s newsletter here.
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