Collaborator platform was chosen for distance learning of employees at “transparent offices” within a large project coordinated by United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The correct name of so-called “transparent office” is Administration Service Center (ASC). They have been actively establishing all across Ukraine for three years. Such centers act on a “one contact” principle. Fox example, previously it was necessary to wait in line against many doors to register a business, but now everything could be done in one place and at one blow.
USAID gives an strong support in ASC activity management. Its employees coordinated establishing of the centers in Odesa and Mariupol, and currently they are dealing with establishing of a new one in Kharkiv, which is planned for 2017. USAID efforts focused at expert support, staff recruitment and training along with providing the new centers with up-to-date equipment – all furniture and technics are financed from USAID budget.
Collaborator was chosen as an employee training platform at Administration Service Center. The personnel have already be trained based on the web-portal at the opening of two new offices in Odesa and Mariupol.
Olena Dotsenko, HR coordinator for new ASC openings project at USAID, told us about staff hiring and training.
Olena, who and how recruits staff for Administration Service Centers?
— Staff recruitment process proceeds in a strong collaborative relationship with town authorities. There is a set of requirements determined both by legislation of Ukraine and new operational principle concept for establishing ASC. Particularly, future administrators have to pass an exam on key Ukrainian legal acts knowledge that is compulsory condition, as well as possess personal qualities like well-wishing, sociability, client-centeredness, and of course commitment to work on the standards.
How many people filed a job application to work in the centers?
— About two thousand CVs were received at establishing of Administration Service Center in Odesa and 160 in Mariupol. In both cases, it was necessary to fill about 40 vacancies.
How have you been choosing future employees among such a large number of applicants?
— We use integrated approach of assessment. The first phase is getting to know the job seeker, during which we pay attention to whether the applicant matches job profile that was developed exclusively for ASC employees.
Then, applicants are invited to pass a general skills test, which appraises verbal, mathematical and analytical skills. Test results are highly predictive for determining learning capability, which is one of the major for an administrator job since he or she would daily work in conditions of constantly changing legislation.
In addition, we consider applicant’s success rate during passing training courses in Collaborator system. Usage of this tool allows applicants to dig into the future work and understand its specifics, while we may exclude those who is not willing to learn. I shall be honest with you, the largest number of job seekers is tossing out exactly at this phase due to their job expectations mismatch. Hiring decision is rendered by city council examination board in accordance with written examination on key Ukrainian legal acts knowledge, in addition results demonstrated during recruitment phase are also taken into account.
Applicants have one month for training in Collaborator before passing the exam at city council.
How many courses are in your learning program already?
— We adapt our program for every newly established ASC. Collaborator system allows to create learning programs from those courses, which are need for certain center. For instance, in Mariupol we faced a problem of developing learning programs regarding real estate registration as well as legal entities and private entrepreneur registration, because such services have not been offered in the centers before. Comparing to the Mariupol center, learning program of the Odesa’s one additionally contained courses on migration services and land registration. ASC in Kharkov will be providing more than 400 services and currently we preparing a learning course on each of them.
Why did you choose specifically Collaborator among all existing e-learning platforms?
— There are several points that were counted in favor of this platform. Firstly, Collaborator allows us to solve assigned tasks in effective and mobile way. Secondly, the system is agile. Thirdly, ability to control learning process and swiftly receive its result was the governing factor. In addition, we liked the idea of complex testing. When the center administrator passes final complex test he or she can see not only the overall result, but also the list of themes for revision to get better mark. Also I may admire Collaborator’s development and support team, i.e. their attention to details, fast response, and sincere commitment in collective success.
What is the structure of your learning courses? What do they consist of?
— While working with the system, we developed our own standard for learning course structure. More specifically, it is a legislative review, which contains a catalogue of law and regulatory documents. Administrators need to become acquainted with the catalogue and get into the details of provided service specificity. Laws and regulations in Collaborator are submitted in form of active hyperlinks to the site of Ukrainian Parliament, thus up-to-dateness and accessibility of legislation are ensured.
Introductory part of the course introduces administrators to basic concepts. Then goes algorithm for documents acceptance, their list and main requirements to filling, examples and templates of considered documents, the procedures for rendering services, costs and service delivery timing, and at the end algorithm for readout of results and archiving formation order. Besides courses on services, the system contains a range of basic course, specifically the entry course that must be studied by all applicants for the administration position. This course is about ASC operational concept, administrator’s principal duties, etc. In addition, Collaborator helps in job seekers identification and scope of authority checking.
You may test Collaborator in work by reviewing basic entry course, which was developed for interns of “transparent offices”. The system will ask you to sign up – it takes less than a minute.
Do you use video?
— Currently courses consist mainly of text information. However, we are going to make heavy use of video for developing courses on operational standards, effective communication, and behavior in conflict or intricate situation. At establishing of Odesa and Mariupol centers, we were bringing outsource coaches to provide previously mentioned skills training for the employees. The idea of combining online and offline service education has arisen recently. We will take online everything that could be presented by text or video, while offline education will be built upon practical work of the coach with every employee.
Odesa ASC stopped accepting documents in early November 2016. Official reason is modification of Ukrainian legal acts in sphere of real estate. Olena Dotsenko commented on this situation:
— It is a pity, that political interests of particular persons in our country are much more prioritized than public interests. Odesa could lose not only the comfortable place for providing services, but a Center were a citizen is treated with respect despite of social status.