(1)     At its 92nd session (March 2000: ACC/2000/5, para. 8) CCAQ confirmed the importance it attached to the overhaul of the pay and benefits system and the underlying job classification system as a key area in human resources management reform. CCAQ expressed its appreciation to the ICSC secretariat for presenting a number of issues for discussion (ICSC/51/R.10) which it considered to be the first stage of a broader long-term process.

The Committee recalled that in a needs analysis, the organizations had referred to the need for a competitive pay system which would ensure that: (a) organizations could attract and retain high quality staff; (b) they could achieve greater flexibility in rewarding job assignments; (c) teams of staff could be formed and dismantled quickly; (d) staff would be motivated by financial rewards which recognized their performance and merit, i.e. the system should take greater account of individual performance, skills and competencies and reduce the weight given to seniority; and (e) the best performing staff would have the prospect of growth and career development. The Committee underlined that compensation was not an end in itself but one very important element in the effective management of human resources in the organizations. Hence, what was sought was a dynamic, less monolithic system which strengthened the independence, effectiveness, mobility and the scope for career development of the international civil service. It also had to provide better support for the diverse mandates, structures, programmes and organizational cultures of all the organizations which comprised the common system. The Committee decided to request ICSC to carry forward work on this matter in a working group of the Commission. ICSC considered it important to study the need for simplifying the system of pay and benefits and that work in the area should be guided by the Framework for HRM and should contribute to making organizations more competitive. It reaffirmed its intention to proceed with caution, taking the time necessary while completing the work in a reasonable time frame. The Commission approved the proposal of its secretariat to organize, prior to its 52nd session, a retreat on themes such as broad-banding, the establishment of a SES as in the US civil service and competency based pay systems within the international civil service (ICSC/51/R.13, paras. 82-85).

(2)     At its 51st and 52nd sessions ICSC pursued its discussions related to the review of pay and benefits together with the corresponding job classification system and decided to establish mechanisms to allow for the broadest possible participation and discussion on the part of the organizations and the staff. A steering committee would be created under the overall coordination of the ICSC chairman to direct, over a two year period, all future work on the review of the pay and benefits system. Open-ended focus groups would be established in New York, Geneva and Vienna to analyse respectively three areas requiring priority treatment: (a) management capacity, (b) rewarding contribution and (c) the nature of work (A/55/30, paras. 44-47).

(3)     At its first meeting in June 2001 (ACC/2001/HLCM/7, paras. 6-7) the Human Resources (HR) Network noted that over the past year, organizations' representatives and the ACC secretariat had been heavily involved in three focus groups set up by ICSC to provide impetus to the matter. The reform of the system that underpinned common system pay and benefits was one of the most important issues that the Commission would tackle since its creation. The reform was intrinsically linked to the Framework for HRM, which had been approved by ICSC at its fifty-second session and endorsed by the General Assembly in resolution 55/223 (see section 15.4, para (26)). If the HRM reforms being undertaken by organizations were to succeed, they had to be accompanied by modernization of that system for which ICSC was the trustee. The goals of the current reform laid emphasis on the need inter alia to improve organizational performance, to provide competitive conditions which would enable organizations to attract and retain staff of the highest quality and to strengthen management capacity. The Network told ICSC that it wanted flexibility within the essential objective of maintaining a core common system, which should not water down the common system but lead to a greater cohesiveness and increased confidence in the system by staff and organizations. It wanted the nature of work to be defined in a broad context which, in addition to being fair, objective and transparent, would facilitate the focus on the development and empowerment of individuals. It sought a system which would strengthen the management of performance and reward individual contribution and depth of experience rather than length of service and lead to better over-all management of each organization.

(4)     Pending submission of a report to the General Assembly at its 57th session, ICSC requested the Assembly to note the progress to date and the ideas and approaches put forward on the review of the pay and benefits system that the Commission would further consider and develop. The Commission also decided to continue with the regular biennial review of (a) the level of the education grant, (b) the amount of the children's and secondary dependants allowance for the Professional and higher categories and (c) the common scale of staff assessment. It decided to follow a pragmatic approach in determining how and when to incorporate the methodological reviews of other relevant items into the pay and benefits review, addressing specific items as need arose (A/56/30, paras. 63-64). The Assembly took note (resolution 55/223 I C).

(5)     At its March 2002 session (CEB/2002/3, paras. 18-21 & annex II) HLCM, after an extensive briefing on the reform of the system and the current status of the reform, concluded: (a) that the features of the proposals forthcoming in the review to date would provide a much needed basis for the improvement of organizational performance and represented a fundamentally new way of managing staff; (b) that there was a political as well as a business case for modifying the pay and benefits system at the current time; (c) that the approaches being considered in the review were similar to those being undertaken by Member States in all continents and were a logical complement to the introduction of human resources management reforms and results-based budgeting; (d) that the dangers of not reforming the system now outweighed the challenges associated with the reform process and (e) that the basic tenets of the approaches taken inter alia, to: (i) allow greater competitivity in remuneration, (ii) link remuneration more directly to contribution (outputs-competence), (iii) reward both performance and competence, (iv) strengthen management capacity, (v) reform job evaluation to support organizational performance, (vi) move towards providing pay banding options that organizations could tailor to their specific requirements and (vii) modernize and streamline allowances, would help meet the concerns repeatedly expressed by Executive Heads in CEB over the lack of flexibility and responsiveness of the current pay system to meet the diverse needs of organizations, its over-complexity and its lack of transparency.

(6)     In connection with the role it should play as the review moved forward, HLCM concluded that its role would most probably change as the different stages of development and implementation were pursued. In the current stage, it would be called upon to advocate the reforms with senior management, staff representatives and Member States as well as to support those human resources managers who were directly involved in developing the proposals in the ICSC. At a later stage, in the development of the Senior Management Service, it could review modalities for and consider participation in any coordinating body created to ensure a degree of inter-agency commonality in the development of performance management tools, learning and development plans and other arrangements for the service. As the development of the proposals was pursued during 2002, HLCM urged those members of the HR Network participating in working groups and sessions of ICSC to review with ICSC the extent to which funds might be found to enable work on the third tier of the proposals to be advanced to 2003. This could help provide the General Assembly with a more complete picture of all the reforms going forward, as well as a clearer estimate of their overall costs. They should also ensure that an effective information strategy was developed and implemented for all stakeholders. The Committee also noted that there would inevitably be costs associated with the introduction of the reforms but to some extent these would be offset by improved organizational performance.

(7)     At its April 2002 meeting (CEB/2002/HLCM/8, paras. 4-5 & annex III) the HR Network underlined the importance of developing a robust strategic position to underpin its interventions in ICSC, in particular in respect of the extent of the documentation which was to be put before the Commission, almost all of which had been reviewed by the Working Group sessions. In this connection, it considered that it would be essential to seek CEB's support for the approaches taken by the Working Group and prepared a draft CEB decision (see annex III) which would be forwarded to ICSC's spring session. The Network went on to consider the reform proposals under six headings: (a) Timing and priorities for on-going work, (b) Tier I (Job design and evaluation, Senior Management Service (SMS) and Application of the Noblemaire Principle), (c) Tier II (Bonus arrangements), (d) Tier III (Advancing 2004 work to 2003), Future implications on the structure of the salary scale and related modalities and (e) Development and implementation of effective information strategies for all stakeholders (see also section 9.1, para. (67)).

(8)     The HR Network, in reporting to ICSC the concerns expressed by HLCM (see para. (5) above), while seeing the logic of advancing Tier III work from 2004 to 2003, noted that the ICSC secretariat foresaw that unless additional talented person-power was made available there would be difficulties in completing the work schedule earlier than currently anticipated by the Working Group. In view of the scale of the reform proposals and the time required for their implementation by organizations, the Network reiterated the need to maintain regular updating of the systems associated with the current pay and benefits scheme in accordance with the methodologies approved by the Commission and the General Assembly (e.g. margin management, base/floor adjustment, education grant and dependency allowances).

(9)     The Hr Network welcomed the thrust of the proposals to develop a Senior Management Service and expressed the wish to see proposals carried forward by a working group which would report to ICSC's summer session inter alia with proposals in respect of: (a) the definition of the nature of the jobs to be included in the SMS, (b) a core management competency framework, (c) the elaboration of the dual career ladder concept, (d) arrangements for the development of managerial skills (also in collaboration with the UN System Staff College) in particular in the context of enabling organizations to "grow their own leaders" and (e) the creation of a coordinating body to serve as the focus for policy development and other initiatives to strengthen the SMS.

(10)     The HR Network endorsed the proposals put forward by the ICSC Working Group in respect of the inclusion of reference to FEPCA, and to the inclusion of additional comparators, including foreign services, in the application of the Noblemaire Principle and reaffirmed the advantage of providing organizations with an additional tool which would enable them to pay bonuses as part of the redefined pay and benefits system. It underlined the importance of tailoring such strategic bonuses to organizations' needs, especially in the context of mobility and welcomed the offer by some organizations (e.g. UNDP, UNHCR, WFP) to work together as soon as possible on defining the areas where such bonus arrangements might be applicable and identifying linkages with payments under the mobility and hardship and other schemes.

(11)     The HR Network decided to inform ICSC of HLCM's concern for advancing work foreseen in Tier III from 2004 to 2003 and that work was ongoing across organizations to simplify the administration of entitlements. It took note of the checklist of issues included in document ICSC/54/R.3/Add.6, which would need to be reviewed in the context of any redesigned pay system and recalled that the organizations had concluded, at the meeting of the Working Group in Paris, that these issues could only be dealt with after the design of the new pay and benefits system had been determined. It decided to report to ICSC that consideration of the issues raised under this rubric would be premature at this stage.

(12)     The HR Network concluded that the following key steps should form part of a common information strategy to be pursued urgently by organizations across the system with: (a) CEB (Executive Heads) - on the basis of the main features of the current status of the reform (see para. (5) above, annex III), HR Directors should urgently brief Executive Heads before the April CEB session on the conclusions reached at the current HR Network session and on the importance for the Secretary-General, supported by a number of Executive Heads, to make statements before the General Assembly, at the time of presentation of ICSC's conclusions, on the importance for their organizations of the reforms envisaged; (b) Senior management - building on the presentations being made available in electronic format by the CEB secretariat, HR Directors should provide systematic and sustained briefings to senior line managers in order to seek their views and input to the reform process; (c) Organizations' staff representatives - as soon as possible after ICSC's spring sessions, HR directors should provide staff representatives with an update on progress made, respond to concerns raised and forward questions and comments of a general nature to the CEB secretariat; (d) Staff at large - on a regular basis, provide briefings to staff at large both electronically and in written form on progress made in respect of the reform of the system. These briefs should be succinct and in "lay" language (i.e. preferably prepared by non-HR specialists) and be available in all necessary languages. The ongoing commitment of the representatives of FICSA and CCISUA in support of a "common vision" of the ongoing reform process would be a crucial element in the success of any information strategy; (e) Member States - at each headquarters' duty station HR Directors and other senior managers should enter into a dialogue with representatives of the regional groups to explain the importance of the reform proposals for the organizations at that location and of maintaining momentum in the process; working inter alia with organization's liaison offices in Washington and elsewhere, they should also provide up to date briefings to capitals on progress made; the support of governing bodies for the reform efforts should also be sought, preferably through a resolution or decision of the governing body itself. In this context, the Network (CEB/2002/HLCM/8, para. 6) foresaw the need to prepare a note which would amplify the benefits to organizations – not solely in cost terms – which would accrue through the implementation of the proposed reforms, particularly in the area of organizational performance. The ILO agreed to take the lead on this task.

(13)     At its 54th session (ICSC/54/R.12, para. 68) ICSC decided that it needed additional information on the recommendations of the pay and benefits working group. Therefore, it expressed the view that the analytical work should continue, including indicators of efficiency gains expected from the proposed measures. The additional information requested by the Commission was: (a) identification of the linkages in the proposed approaches and options available in moving forward with the approaches, including concrete examples to illustrate the various options; (b) details concerning implementation and administration of a system to control costs and permit the salary-banding concept to operate within the budget of each organization; (c) some estimate of financial impact of the proposed approaches; (d) quantitative data reflecting organizations' difficulties in recruiting and retaining staff; (e) concise summaries on each approach, identifying those elements of the HRM system that would be addressed by the adoption of the approach, the problems related to the existing system and the options for change with the pro's and con's for each approach. ICSC decided that the review of the application of the Noblemaire Principle should not be part of the current pay and benefits review but would be considered at the time of the review of the comparison methodology.

(14)     At its July 2002 meeting (CEB/2002/HLCM/14, para. 2) the HR Network decided to inform the ICSC that over the past two years, organizations' representatives and the CEB secretariat had been heavily involved in focus groups, working groups and retreats set up by ICSC to provide impetus to this matter. More than three hundred experts from national civil services, academia and other international organizations, senior line managers, HR specialists, staff representatives and others, had brought to the Commission their best wisdom as to how the compensation system of the international civil service might be reformed. The reform of that system was intrinsically linked to the Framework for HRM which had been approved by ICSC at its fifty-second session and endorsed by the General Assembly in resolution 55/223. Already in 1995 the Assembly called on the Commission to take a more pro-active approach in supporting more modern approaches in the management of human resources. In its resolution 51/216 of 18 December 1996, it requested the Commission to take the lead in analyzing new approaches in the human resources management field so as to develop standards, methods and arrangements that would respond to the specific needs of the organizations of the common system.

(15)     The HR Network recognized that organizations had done much to improve their organizations' performance and they wanted to do more. But efforts were being impeded by the monolithic pay system, the outmoded classification system and inadequate means of recognizing competencies and contribution. If the HRM reforms being undertaken by organizations were to succeed, they must be accompanied by modernization of that system for which ICSC was the trustee. The goals of the current reform laid emphasis on the need inter alia to improve organizational performance, to provide competitive conditions which would enable organizations to attract and retain staff of the highest quality and to strengthen management capacity. The current complex, rigid, outdated system must therefore be replaced with a streamlined competitive system which would strengthen the independence and impartiality of the international civil service, permit greater flexibility to reward staff on the basis of merit and competence, and be responsive to the ever evolving mandates and changing nature of work, across the organizations of the common system.

(16)     The HR Network (ibid., para. 3) concluded that, although there was no proposal to update the Noblemaire Principle, organizations were competing more than ever before with a broader array of institutions with far better conditions of employment. The updating of the Principle, the foundation of the pay and benefits system, should be an integral part of the reform process. The Secretary-General and other Executive Heads had repeatedly called for the need to ensure greater competitivity and improved conditions of service. The Framework for HRM underscored the need for an integrated holistic approach. The Network therefore decided to request the Commission not to postpone the review of the application of the Noblemaire Principle.

(17)     The HR Network considered that a broad banded pay system was desirable for the Common System. As Executive Heads had said for many years, the monolithic grade system failed to respond to the needs of organizations. A broad-banded approach would be more responsive to the management of work within individual organizations. A broad-banded approach would also enable organizations to respond to the fast pace of change in the nature of work which characterized today's world. Options on banded structures should be kept open at this stage in view of the need to accommodate the diversity in the system. Organizations' structures, sizes and complexity differed significantly so this was clearly one area where one size should not be imposed on all. Furthermore, this was an area where some organizations should be able to pilot certain approaches in the first instance before they were adopted.

(18)     The HR Network considered that a system of reward for contribution was not only desirable but necessary for the effective management of the organizations. It was essential to support organizations' efforts to modernize their performance management systems and bolster organizational performance. One of the most fundamental criticisms of the current system, by management and staff alike, was that a pure rank in post approach did not provide the means for differentiating pay in terms of levels of contribution. Organizations were developing and introducing competency-based approaches and ensuring that their performance management systems were robust. Further developmental work should therefore be urgently pursued. ICSC decided (A/57/30, para. 60) that a credible and reliable performance appraisal system acceptable to all parties was an absolute necessity in moving forward with broad-banding or pay-for-performance or both and that organizations needed to provide the Commission with quantitative and qualitative data on their performance management systems and a critical analysis of their ability to differentiate levels of performance, in particular when those systems were linked to pay. A pilot study should be conducted of one broad banded model and related Pay-for-performance system (based on the confluence approach) at two volunteer organizations. In this connection ICSC secretariat should consult with the organizations on the modalities for the study and the modalities for the study should be presented to the Commission at its next session. Approval of a broad-banded system for the common system and the related pay-for-performance system was contingent on the successful results of the pilot study. The General Assembly should be informed that, while a broad banded model and related pay-for-performance systems could have value, the hypothesis needed to be proven through a rigorous test and the Assembly would be kept informed of progress. Although the Commission decided that a pilot study should be conducted of only one broad banded model, it did not determine a specific model, in response to the request of the spokesperson of the HR Network, to allow time for consultation on the question.

(19)     In view of the key role of managers in driving organizational change and the need to make management throughout the system more professional, the HR Network decided (CEB/2002/HLCM/14, para. 3) to urge the Commission to propose to the General Assembly later in the year the introduction of a SMS, including the criteria (definition of the nature of the work) for membership, the set of core management competencies which could be ‘fleshed out' by each organization so as to align them more specifically with its culture and job profiles and the proposal to create a dual career ladder which would distinguish senior line managers from senior individual contributors and would recognize the value of senior specialists by providing career progression without the assumption of managerial responsibilities. ICSC decided (A/57/30, para. 80) that (a) the introduction of the SMS had merit in building leadership and management capacity in building leadership and management capacity in support of organizational reform directed at improving overall organizational performance, (b) it should not constitute a new subsidiary organ, advisory group or category of staff, (c) it would not require a special pay and benefits package, (d) it would consist only of high-level managerial positions, (e) posts would be identified for inclusion based on criteria approved by the ICSC, (f) managers who occupied posts meeting the ICSC criteria would be in the SMS, (g) a common set of core competencies would be applied for recruitment, selection, development and performance management, (h) the Executive Heads would be responsible for selection, evaluation of other aspects of managing the members of the SMS and (i) ICSC would monitor the implementation of the modalities and report on them to the General Assembly.

(20)     The HR Network believed (CEB/2002/HLCM/14, para. 3) that a system of recruitment-retention-relocation bonuses should be developed and introduced. Targeted strategic bonuses were considered a priority by several, especially field-based, organizations, particularly when staffing positions in less desirable locations. An inter-agency working group had already taken shape and would continue to collaborate with the ICSC secretariat on the specific modalities for such bonuses so as to ensure that they were clearly targeted to areas of need and that cost containment considerations were effectively built into the proposals. ICSC reviewed the data on recruitment and retention difficulties prepared by the organizations at its request which it found informative but not evidence of significant problems. It suggested a more systematic approach should be considered for the collection of such information on a periodic basis(A/57/30, para. 81).

(21)     At its October 2002 session (CEB/2002/5, paras. 36-38) HLCM was briefed by the Convenor of the HR Network on progress in ICSC to reform the pay and benefits system and other significant ICSC proposals which would be considered by the General Assembly. The proposals for reform, which were an integral part of organizational change efforts, were headed in the right direction. It was important to keep programme and line managers and staff at large fully abreast of the changes envisaged, of the introduction of pilot projects and of other aspects of developmental work in support of the proposals. The ICSC was also recommending to that the Assembly restore the margin to its desirable midpoint and eliminate existing imbalances by granting a differentiated salary increase. It was considered particularly important for Executive Heads to make their views known to ICSC on these matters on a regular basis. HLCM, on behalf of CEB, adopted a statement for the Secretary-General to present to the General Assembly in respect of ICSC's Annual Report for 2002 welcoming the proposals put forward by ICSC to reform the pay and benefits system and fully supporting the recommendation to restore the margin to its desirable mid-point by granting a differentiated salary increase for the Professional and higher categories. Noting the presence of a number of Heads of Agencies, including the Secretary-General, at ICSC's summer session 2002, HLCM also confirmed the importance it attached to the presence of Executive Heads at the General Assembly itself to explain the importance of the ICSC's proposals. The decision of the Assembly is reported in section 2.1, para. (139).

(22)     At its December 2002 video-conference (CEB/2002/HLCM/1, paras. 3-4) the HR Network recalled that the Executive Heads had stated that the monolithic grade system failed to respond to the needs of the organizations and that the Network had repeatedly supported a broad banded approach which would be more responsive to the management of work within individual organizations. It noted that ICSC, having decided a pilot study should be conducted of one broad banded model and related pay-for-performance at two volunteer organizations, had stipulated that a credible and reliable performance appraisal system was an absolute necessity in moving forward with broad banding. The Network observed that there were a number of other key considerations in the selection of the organizations, including inter alia adequate IT and administrative capacity to operate two parallel systems (current structure and banded structure) during the pilot phase and the nature of financial controls to avoid staff members from drifting to the top of the bands. It requested the ICSC secretariat to provide (a) detailed terms of reference for the pilot study and (b) a description of how two parallel systems would be run. It requested each organization to report to the CEB secretariat which of the banding options would be most responsive to the work of their organization.

(23)     At its January 2003 meeting (CEB/2003/HLCM/4, paras. 9-11) the HR Network, noted with respect to the modalities for the pilot study of broad banding and reward for contribution that, notwithstanding the Network's concern to keep banding options open with regard to banded structures, ICSC at its 55th session had decided that a pilot study should be conducted of one broad-banded model and related pay-for-performance system in volunteer organizations. It was ICSC's view that at least one organization should pilot the "confluence" approach and a second should pilot the more traditional approach to reward for contribution. The ICSC secretariat informed the meeting that: (a) the organizations' final positions with respect to their preferred broad-banded model would have to be communicated to ICSC at the very latest at its summer session; (b) a number of organizations had said that they were not ready to participate in the pilot; (c) criteria for participation in the pilot were (i) that a credible performance appraisal system was in place, which meant that it was acceptable to the staff and resulted in a reasonable distribution of performance ratings and (ii) that payroll systems were or could be put in place to ensure that the current salary system could run in parallel with the pilot and (iii) that a reasonable number of staff (approximately 200) would be covered under the pilot; (d) the ICSC secretariat would work with participating organizations in refining modalities and in putting in place appropriate systems for the pilot; and (e) in order to avoid legal problems and to allow for the eventuality that the new system was finally not approved, all staff would receive whatever was granted under the current system, including step increments. The virtual system would then exceed payments under the current system only for those judged to be superior performers.

(24)     The HR Network emphasized that it should be up to each organization to determine its readiness to participate in the pilot and noted that before any organization would be ready to commit to participation in the pilot, more information was required on the monitoring and reporting requirements and other modalities, which might be provided bilaterally by the ICSC secretariat in view of the need for tailoring these to individual organization's existing systems. It considered that conditions governing the operation of the pilot study should simulate the real situation as closely as possible so as inter alia to be able to assess the impact on behaviour, both of staff members and managers. The Network noted that some organizations preferred a banding option (or options) which would provide for the distinction between D.1 and D.2 because of distinct conditions governing appointments at the D.2 level. These organizations therefore did not favour the model which ICSC had supported. The Network agreed that reasonable distinctions should be identified between entry level, middle level and high level for the bands and that it would inform the Commission that it was essential that the broad-banded model/s selected for the testing should be congruent with the work environment of the organizations participating in the pilot. It concluded that it would advocate in ICSC that two banded options be tested and each in more than one organization so as to make a proper assessment before selecting one model for application across the common system and decided that those options would be P1/P2, P3/P5, D1/D2, and P1, P2/P4, P5/D1, D2. Finally, the Network noted that past resolutions of the General Assembly had made no reference to cost neutrality.

(25)     At the same session (ibid., paras. 12-15) the HR Network in discussing the further development of modalities for the Senior Management Service noted that organizations supported the introduction of the SMS because they believed that it would inter alia strengthen managerial and leadership capacity, serve to build a common corporate culture, enhance inter-agency cohesion and coordination and signal a commitment to the professionalization of the management function. At its 55th session, ICSC had recognized that the introduction of a SMS had merit but decided that it would not require a separate pay and benefits package. The General Assembly in resolution A/57/285 on the UN common system requested that the Commission review its decisions regarding the SMS, "including the question of whether the SMS should be dealt with within the framework of the review of the pay and benefits system, in view of the intention of the General Assembly to consider the question at its fifty-eighth session." The ICSC secretariat indicated that in view of the opposition by some member States to the introduction of a SMS, the issue would probably only be taken up again by the Commission in 2004 and the establishment of a dual career was related to the revision of the job classification system and could be incorporated into any of the banding options.

(26)     The HR Network noted that the resolution specifically requested ICSC to report back on this matter to the General Assembly's 58th session (i.e. 2003) and since ICSC had excluded the possibility of a special pay and benefits scheme for a SMS, the matter might equally well be dealt with under the CEB machinery. Organizations could in any case continue to work on the criteria for inclusion in the SMS and on the core competencies, especially as these could serve as an underpinning to the UN Staff College's management development programme. It therefore requested the CEB secretariat to prepare a road map for moving the matter forward at the next meeting of the HR Network.

(27)     At its March 2003 meeting (CEB/2003/HLCM/12, para. 4) the HR Network, in the context of the measurement of performance/link to reward amount, considered that some assertions in the ICSC document (ICSC/56/R.3/Add.2) on organizations' performance management systems were too categorical and lacked nuance and concerns were expressed about the nomenclature because organizations were moving away from using terms such as "satisfactory" and "unsatisfactory." However, the Network agreed with the recommendation that a combination of the traditional approach to performance management with a competency component should be developed and tested in the pilot studies. The Network noted that since client feedback surveys had not yet been instituted, it was not likely that survey results would be available for the pilot study but welcomed UNDP's offer to share their experience in the conduct of client surveys. With respect to the recommendation concerning the number of reward categories to be used in the pilot studies, the Network emphasized the importance of (a) considering the strategic (performance levels) issue of the impact of the amounts of the pay rewards and (b) the need for flexibility in the number of reward categories. If necessary the number of reward categories could be delinked from the number of performance ratings in an organization's current appraisal system.

(28)     The HR Network also agreed that pay-for-performance should be pensionable, noting that organizations were already free to move forward with the payment of non-pensionable bonus schemes for individuals or teams and that ICSC had already issued guidelines for these schemes. As regards the different performance pay matrix models (i.e. movement through the band), organizations could accept, for the purpose of the pilot studies, the model whereby increases were based on both the performance rating and position in the salary grade in a manner which would slow down salary progression at the top of the range. It was noted however that organizations often recruited from different labour markets which in some instances obliged them to appoint staff very high in the current ranges and this could complicate the matter. It agreed that guidelines on the distribution of performance ratings would be helpful but emphasized that any forced distribution system would be considered as arbitrary and reiterated that past resolutions of the General Assembly had made no reference to cost neutrality and that this should therefore not be considered as a sine qua non for the introduction of performance pay.

(29)     At the same session (ibid., para. 5) the HR Network, in the context of the Broad-banding/performance pay pilot study (ICSC/56/R.3/Add.3), reiterated that it should be up to each organization to determine its readiness to participate in the pilot. It understood the necessity to operate the pilots as a "virtual" system, but emphasized that conditions governing the pilot study should simulate the real situation as closely as possible so as inter alia to be able to assess the impact on behaviour, both of staff members and managers. It recalled its decision to advocate in ICSC the imperative of testing two banded options in the pilot studies and each in more than one organization so as to make a proper assessment before selecting one model for application across the common system and reaffirmed that those band options should be P-1/P-2, P-3/P-5, D-1/D-2, and P-1, P-2/P-4, P-5/D-1, D-2. The Network agreed with the proposal to maintain only one net salary line for those staff members participating in the pilot studies but requested further information on how single versus dependency status might be treated at the end of the pilot phase and before the launch of the new system. Finally it called for the establishment of critical success factors by which the pilot studies would be evaluated.

(30)     With respect to the rewarding contribution/pilot study, the Commission (ICSC/56/R.11, paras 121-124) requested more detailed information on the current performance appraisal systems in the common system. This should include the number and percentage of staff with current ratings and the percentage distribution of ratings by category. It considered that any improvement in the performance appraisal systems of the organizations should recognise the need for a new performance evaluation culture that emphasized the accountability of managers. It also underlined the importance of setting realistic and meaningful goals at the beginning of the appraisal period against which to measure the staff member's performance. The Commission decided that at the end of the pilot study, should a broad-banded structure be implemented, only one such structure could be applied to the entire common system to preserve its integrity and cohesion and prevent competition between organizations. The Commission selected one structure for the pilot study P-1/P-2, P-3/P-5, D-1/D-2 and a revision to the present structure, retaining the present grades but eliminating the steps within grades.

(31)     At the same session ICSC decided (ibid., para. 125) that the following three models could be tested:

Model 1

     (a)     Salary structure: Band 1 P-1, P-2 Band 2 P-3, P-4, P-5 Band 3 D-1 and D-2;

     (b)     Evaluation for determining pay: Confluence of factors: performance, competency development and client feedback;

     (c)     Evaluation and pay decisions: The evaluation of performance would be done annually with pay decisions to be made every two years with fixed and variable percentage increase applying to relevant rating categories.

Model 2

     (a)     Salary structure: Band 1 P-1, P-2 Band 2 P-3, P-4, P-5 Band 3 D-1 and D-2;

     (b)     Evaluation for determining pay: Current appraisal system enhanced to the extent possible to take into account competencies and client feedback;

     (c)     Evaluation and pay decisions: To be made in accordance with the current evaluation cycle of the organizations, with a fixed and variable percentage increase applying to relevant rating categories.

Model 3

     (a)     Salary structure: Retain the current 7 grade structure with no step increments;

     (b)     Evaluation for determining pay: Current appraisal system enhanced to the extent possible to take into account competencies and client feedback;

     (c)     Evaluation and pay decisions: To be made annually in accordance with the organizations' current evaluation cycle with a fixed and variable percentage increase applying to relevant rating categories.

(32)     In the context of testing these models, ICSC (ibid., para. 126) decided that: (a) a minimum of 3 and no more than 5 rating categories should be used in assessing performance; (b) it would test both fixed and variable percentage salary increases related to the rating categories, ranging from no increase for performance requiring improvement to variable increases; (c) a staff member's position in the salary range would not be used in determining salary increases; (d) forced rating distributions, i.e., a predetermined percentage of staff in each rating category, would not be used in determining salary increases. Rather, guidelines in the form of narrative descriptions would be developed to include safeguards against cost inflation; (e) the adjustment of salary to recognize performance should represent pensionable increases to salary in a fully functional pay-for-performance system linking performance to salary adjustment. In the context of the pilot study, it decided that such adjustments should not be pensionable; (f) it would provide the organizations with general guidelines on the process that should be followed in determining overall ratings and salary increase decisions. The guidelines would address the role of committees to review overall ratings and salary increases in order to ensure equity of treatment; (g) the operational pay-for-performance system, in combination with the three models chosen for pilot testing should be designed to be cost neutral. Additional resources would need to be left in the hands of the General Assembly and other legislative bodies based on effectiveness of new system, efficiency gains, greater recognition of performance or some other basis; (h) in order to maintain cost neutrality, it was estimated that 2.5 per cent of salary on an annual basis could be applied in the context of Models 1 and 2, while 2 per cent could be applied in the case of Model 3 (see also decisions following paragraph 5); and (i) it would establish a working group consisting of the ICSC secretariat and representatives of the organizations and staff to recommend criteria that could be used to determine the degree of success of the pilot study, and to consider, in detail, the issues that needed to be addressed in order to proceed with the pilot study.

(33)     Also at its March 2003 meeting (CEB/2003/HLCM/12, para. 15) the HR Network reviewed the roadmap requested at its January 2003 session and produced by the CEB secretariat as the Senior Management Service (SMS): A Way Forward (CEB/2003/HLCM/11). The Network decided to recommend that work on the establishment of an SMS continue under auspices of CEB and agreed to establish a working group to develop the modalities for such a service, including further refinement of the criteria for inclusion and validation of core competencies for a SMS. It noted that work should build upon that already underway in a number of organizations and that the modalities for the establishment of the SMS would not impinge upon the current managerial prerogatives of executive heads. The Network supported the approach whereby an inter-agency team would implement in full the validation process. Each organization would identify its sample of jobs and job holders, provide administrative support and ensure the presence of selected job holders during workshops and/or interviews. It decided that the working group would report back to the Network's summer session with a proposal on the methodology and time-frame for carrying forward the project as well as the extent to which consultant support might be required. It agreed that UNCTAD would lead the group which would initially comprise representatives of UN, ILO, WHO, UNESCO and WFP. The Network agreed to report on their actions to HLCM so as to seek its endorsement and thereby the support of top management. The Commission noted that the organizations were moving forward with further developmental work on the SMS. The Commission was of the view that it would, at a minimum, need to be informed of the progress made by the organizations in that regard. The SMS was seen by the Commission as an inter-organizational component of the common system for which it would accordingly need to be responsible. The Commission requested the organizations to report to it at its fifty-seventh session on progress made in further developing the SMS in order for it to be able to report to the General Assembly at its fifty-eighth session (ICSC/56/R.11, para. 117).

(34)     At its June 2003 session (CEB/2003/3, para. 32) HLCM, on the basis of a briefing by the spokesperson of the HR Network, agreed with the HR Network's proposals to further the development of a Senior Management Service under the aegis of CEB, on the understanding that the link to the UN System Staff College's future Leadership and Management Programmes would be strengthened and made more explicit and took note of the latest stages of ICSC's efforts to reform the pay and benefits system.

(35)     At its July 2003 meeting (CEB/2003/HLCM/20, para. 3) the HR Network recalled that when the Deputy Secretary General addressed the General Assembly at its 57th Session on behalf of the CEB, she had emphasized ICSC's key role in supporting the process of reform underway throughout the system. The Executive Heads had repeatedly said that the current system did not contribute to improved performance or more effective management. She had expressed appreciation for the work that has been accomplished so far, especially the consultative participatory process that had evolved and strengthened and said that for success, mutual trust was essential among all partners: the Commission, the organizations' representatives and the staff representatives. She stressed the importance of the preparatory work for the pilot project on broad banding; all organizations were stakeholders in the outcome of the pilot project and therefore all interested organizations should be involved, not just those volunteering to pilot the new approaches. Adequate preparation by organizations and adequate support from the ICSC Secretariat would also be determining factors in the success of the pilot project. The Deputy Secretary-General believed that the time table presented in the documentation should be seen as only indicative. While momentum must be maintained, sufficient time must be given to preparatory work. More time must be invested in developing the criteria for success and preparing activities and time-lines. Moreover, the criteria for success must have the support of all stakeholders. She highlighted other areas for the conduct of the pilot project which demanded further reflection as follows: (a) multi-rater assessment in performance management - experience in most organizations indicated that 360° appraisal was more effective for determining developmental/training needs than for underpinning pay decisions; (b) the appropriateness of involving training units in the appraisal process, which was a managerial responsibility; and (c) a number of unresolved issues relating to strengthening IT systems.

(36)     The HR Network, noting that experience in other institutions confirmed that even the best reforms would only succeed if accompanied by a robust communication strategy, decided to urge ICSC to develop a clear communication strategy to cover all parties: staff, managers, HR specialists, as well as Member States. It was essential that everyone understood both the underlying rationale for the pilot project, the way in which it would be administered and the criteria for its success. It decided also to recommend that ICSC: (a) appoint a project manager to oversee the pilot project in a dedicated manner, (b) develop a detailed project plan, (c) request each organization participating in the pilot to appoint a team leader, and (d) establish a task force of organizations to: (i) resolve the outstanding issues mentioned above; (ii) monitor progress; and (iii) ensure that the experience provided adequate feed back to all organizations. The Network noted that the ICSC secretariat had again asserted that the General Assembly had made cost neutrality a condition for the new system. Notwithstanding the positions of certain Member States, this condition had never been included in the text of any GA resolution reflecting the consensus reached in the Fifth Committee. Organizations were cognizant of the budgetary constraints but they did not consider cost neutrality a sine qua non. Some Governing Bodies might indeed decide to dedicate additional resources to the reform process.

(37)     The Commission took note of the status of the organizations performance appraisal systems and decided (A/58/30, para. 86) to move forward with the pilot study as follows: (a) It recognized the need for a full time project manager and requested its Chairman to pursue the recruitment of such a manager, subject to the necessary resources becoming available. A task force should be established, led by the ICSC secretariat and involving all organizations and staff representatives, to pursue the further development of reform concepts. A comprehensive project plan should be developed to guide the preparation for and conduct of the pilot study. The plan should include a communication strategy addressing the needs of all interested parties; (b) It further requested its secretariat, in consultation with administration and staff representatives, to present it with proposals on the conduct of the pilot study that would: (i) Develop measures to assess the readiness of the volunteer organizations to undertake the pilot study and adjust the commencement date for the pilot accordingly; (ii) Determine how long the pilot study should continue in order to adequately evaluate all aspects of the tests and recommend a duration for the pilot study; (iii) Permit a real rather than a virtual test of pay-for-performance that at the same time would address any legal and/or administrative impediments; (iv) Appropriately take into account the dependency status of staff in constructing the pilot study salary structure; (v) Develop proposals for a salary structure that would reduce or eliminate the overlap of the salary bands caused by use of the current grade structure to create the bands and include proposals for placing staff into such a structure upon commencement of the study; (vi) Present concepts for the confluence approach that would give greater weight to results achieved in relation to established objectives while integrating demonstrated competencies and client feedback into a single assessment. Pass/fail ratings should not be used. (vii) Consider the administration of promotions in the models chosen for testing; (viii) Establish baseline data prior to the commencement of the pilot study for comparison purposes in measuring the success of the study; (ix) Further develop the criteria for the measurement of the success of the study.

(38)     At its July 2003 meeting (CEB/2003/HLCM/20, para. 15) the HR Network recalled that at its March 2003 session (See para. (33) above) it had been agreed to establish a Task Force of interested organisations to take the work forward on establishing a SMS. Interested organisations were: UN, ILO, WHO, UNESCO, WFP. UNCTAD had agreed to serve as Task Force coordinator. A key principle in the development of the SMS was that it would complement, not detract from or contradict, the work already undertaken by organisations in developing management competency frameworks or selection processes for senior posts. The Network noted that, as a first step, the organisations had been requested to submit the work they had already done on developing managerial/leadership/senior management competencies and was informed that negotiations were underway with an internationally renowned consulting company to assist the task force in analysing the data and developing commonly acceptable/applicable overarching SMS competencies. In this regard, the project was foreseen in three stages:

  • Phase 1:     Reviewing work already done by the ICSC, HR Network, and individual organizations;

  • Phase 2:     Verification/validation of the SMS concepts, terms, criteria, etc. This would predominantly be done electronically between organisations, with some analysis and consolidation by the consultant;

  • Phase 3:     Drafting a final competency model, participation criteria, proposals for how an SMS might work in practice, and how it might be supported (e.g. UN System Staff College) through management development programmes, etc. The objective was to have this final phase completed for consideration by the HR Network early in 2004, for final approval by HLCM. The Network decided to inform ICSC at its fifty-seventh session of progress in this regard. The Commission took note of the information provided and requested the organizations to inform it of progress made, as appropriate, with a report to be submitted at its fifty-eighth session (A/58/30, para. 88).

(39)     At its 7th session (March 2004: CEB/2004/3, paras. 32-33) HLCM was informed by the CEB secretariat that a new job classification standard for the professional and higher category had been promulgated on 1 January 2004 and that a pilot study to link remuneration more directly to contribution through a broad banded pay structure and reward for contribution would begin in three organizations (WFP, the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS and IFAD) on 1 July 2004. Finally, in related initiatives, ICSC, at its 58th (spring 2004) session, would begin its review of a range of allowances currently in force, such as the mobility and hardship allowance, education grant and a range of leave and separation benefits, and give consideration to the introduction of strategic bonuses. The CEB secretariat concluded that the remaining issue to be resolved was the inaction by ICSC to date on the revision of the Noblemaire principle. The Committee requested the CEB secretariat to circulate electronically a draft statement for adoption by the Committee on behalf of CEB, to be made at the 58th session of ICSC, allowing 48 hours for comment by HLCM members. It also requested that any such draft statements be circulated in advance of future HLCM sessions to allow for consultation.

(40)     At the same session (ibid, paras. 34-36 & annex IV) the Committee received the report of the HR Network on the establishment of a Senior Management Service (CEB/2004/HLCM/R.6), which had been prepared in response to the HLCM decision at its fifth session in June 2003, in which it had agreed with the HR Network's proposals to further the development of a SMS under the aegis of CEB on the understanding that the link to the UN System Staff College's Leadership and Management Programmes would be strengthened and made more explicit. A Working Group of the HR Network had met on the premises of the Staff College in Turin, Italy, in January 2004. The spokesperson of the HR Network presented the document containing the proposal of the Network on the introduction of the SMS. Such a service was intended to build managerial capacity throughout the system in order to improve organizational performance and to contribute to the creation of a common managerial culture. It would complement existing management development programmes in organizations and in no way diminish the prerogative of executive heads to create posts or appoint staff. The implementation of the SMS was an ongoing process and could be extended inter alia to include the development of an assessment approach for movement of staff into and out of the SMS, as well as models/frameworks for performance accountability contracts and other tools for organizations. The Committee: (a) agreed to recommend that the CEB approve the establishment of a Senior Management Service in the UN common system, as described in the annex to its report; (b) requested all organizations to take the necessary actions as set out in annex; (c) requested the HR Network to continue to refine the competency map and to develop a learning framework for a leadership and management development programme together with the Staff College; and (d) requested the CEB secretariat to follow up and provide support to the creation of the SMS.

(41)     At its March 2004 meeting (CEB/2004/HLCM/14, para. 7) the HR Network expressed its deep disappointment and concern that the approach being presented by the ICSC secretariat was piecemeal as it did not include any evidence of a comprehensive strategy to ensure the competitiveness of the UN pay and benefits system so as to attract and retain a high quality workforce. Executive heads had repeatedly expressed their concern over the current system's lack of competitiveness and had emphasized that the updating and expansion of the Noblemaire principle (the foundation of the pay and benefits system) must be an integral part of the reform process. Member States had said that a competetive pay and benefits system was a fundamental element in the UN system=s organizational reform strategies and this had been reflected in the Framework for HRM promulgated by ICSC. The CEB had emphasized the need for a review of the pay and benefits system, predicated on a policy review of the Noblemaire principle, as the central tenet of the UN Common System of Salaries and Allowances. Without a thorough policy review of Noblemaire as a basis, a review of allowances would be without parameters and could lead to erroneous conclusions whereby allowances and benefits were eroded on an individual basis without regard to the overall compensation package, thereby undermining the capacity of organizations to meet their objectives. Such a policy review could include reference to national foreign services and to other international and regional organizations whose work was most similar to that of the UN organizations and with whom the UN competed for staff. The work of the majority of UN staff could no longer be compared to that of a largely home based national civil service. ICSC decided to continue its consideration of the allowances and benefits within the framework of its review of the pay and benefits system and decided on a schedule covering the years 2004-2006 (A/59/30, para. 66). The General Assembly requested the Commission, in reviewing and modernizing the system of grants and allowances, to attach priority to enhancing transparency and simplicity and also requested the Commission to inform the Assembly at its 60th session on which entities it used as comparators for the determination of entitlements such as leave and allowances and to advise the Assembly on the merits and disadvantages of applying as a point of departure the practices of the civil service of the country used as comparator for salary purposes (resolution 59/268 I G).

(42)     Also at its March 2004 meeting (CEB/2004/HLCM/14, para. 13) the HR Network reviewed the steps towards implementation of the pilot study on broadbanding/reward for contribution taken by the ICSC secretariat, the Task Force meeting in New York in January, in which fifteen organizations and both FICSA and CCISUA had participated and which demonstrated the commitment of the system as a whole, and the volunteer organizations (UNAIDS, IFAD and WFP, which it thanked for their commitment and progress in preparing for a pilot start date of 1 July 2004, and welcomed the news that UNDP would eventually join the pilot study, piloting the system in the Copenhagen (Nordic) office in 2004 and in one regional bureau in 2005. It agreed to raise with ICSC the extension of aspects of the pilot study to General Service Staff and National Officers - the results achieved by teams as work units would depend upon their contribution. It concurred with the majority of recommendations of the ICSC secretariat subject to some comments, firstly and most importantly, the need for flexibility the purpose of the scheme was to motivate staff to improve overall organizational performance. There was a need not to straitjacket organizations, which had diverse requirements. In this spirit the Network saw many of the parameters being proposed as indicative rather than prescriptive and made a number of detailed comments on the recommendations. The Network considered that the issue of control groups, for the gathering of baseline data, should be left to each volunteer organization to determine but that comparisons with other organizations were only valid to the degree that they were homogeneous. It determined that, with regard to the Project Work Plan, emphasis had to be placed on retaining the planned start date for the pilot study of 1 July 2004. Volunteer organizations had worked hard to achieve this target and the progress report before the ICSC reflected this; any delay in referring the matter to a subsequent session of the ICSC would prove unnecessary and counter productive. The Network also expressed its position with respect to the project manager and evaluation expert who would be appointed.

(43)     ICSC set the parameters for the pilot study and decided that for the duration of the pilot study each broad band would have two salary ranges, one for staff with dependants and one for staff without dependants. Staff would be placed into either the single or dependency range based on their current status and at their current salary. The staff member would progress through the salary band on the basis of performance, competency development and client feedback. With regard to the project work plan and project manager ICSC decided that the work plan for each volunteer organization should be developed on the basis of a template provided. The duration of the pilot study, as shown in the work plan, would initially be limited to a three year period, subject to the Commission's decision on an extension, if any. A project manager with demonstrated expertise in successful implementation of HR reforms, such as pay for performance and broad banding, should be brought on board as soon as possible. The organizations participating in the pilot study would be limited to those identified and approved by the Commission at its 58th session, namely WFP, IFAD, UNAIDS and UNDP. UNDP would be encouraged to test model 3. With regard to the criteria for success, ICSC decided that a cost analysis, to provide an assessment of the financial controls to determine if the controls were functioning as intended, and an analysis of salaries by gender, to determine if any bias resulted from performance pay, should be produced (ICSC/58/R.12, para. 162).

(44)     At its July 2004 meeting (CEB/2004/HLCM/25, para. 4) the HR Network thanked the ICSC secretariat for its continued efforts to prepare for the commencement of the pilot study as of 1 July 2004 and noted with appreciation the progress made by the four participating organizations in pursuing the necessary developmental work required for their participation in the pilot study. It reiterated its concern about securing an adequate level of support to be provided to participating organizations. In this regard, the Network, while expressing confidence in the currently envisaged interim project manager, noted with some concern that it had not been possible as yet to put in place a dedicated full time project manager. It looked forward to its continuing partnership with the ICSC secretariat in the implementation phase of the pilot study.

(45)     ICSC decided that UNESCO's International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy, could participate in the pilot study as a volunteer organization, subject to a review of the human resources subsystems in place and an analysis of the readiness of the Institute to proceed with the study by 1 January 2005. The Commission further decided to delegate to its Chairman the decision on the readiness of the Institute and its participation in the study. The ICSC secretariat was requested to provide an update on this matter concerning the possible inclusion of the Centre in the pilot study at the Commission's sixtieth session (spring 2005). The Commission reaffirmed that staff in the Professional and higher categories would represent the basis for the pilot study, including other Professional staff subject to the same job evaluation standard, i.e, as promulgated on 1 January 2004. It also agreed that the volunteer organizations could include staff in the General Service and related categories in the study on the basis of model 3 (see para. (31) above)(ICSC/59/R.18, para. 101).

(46)     Also at its July 2004 meeting (CEB/2004/HLCM/25, para. 23) the HR Network noted with appreciation the progress made to date by the Working Group on the establishment of the SMS and by the United Nations System Staff College (UNSSC), in particular: (a) the creation of a common competency language through the organizational competency map, which allowed for the mapping of individual organizational competencies, the relationship between them and how they measured against the six SMS competencies - this was seen as a useful tool for supporting inter agency mobility; and (b) the establishment of criteria for the development of a Leadership Development Programme which would underpin the SMS - the Working Group had approved the terms of reference for an RFP, prepared by the UNSSC, to be sent out to selected institutions experienced in the design and delivery of executive development programmes in a multicultural environment. The Network emphasized the need to maintain the momentum in moving towards the full implementation of the SMS. Specifically, the Network agreed that the Working Group continue its work, with the participation of all interested organizations, on the further development of the Service. This would include the development of the SMS Leadership (Development) Programme, as well as of the other features envisaged for the Service. ICSC decided to take note of the HR Network=s progress report on the development work regarding the SMS. While acknowledging the executive heads= responsibility to take measures to enhance the managerial capacity and performance of their senior staff, the Commission was the only body responsible for recommending to the General Assembly the establishment for the common system of a separate category of staff or such an entity as an SMS (A/59/30, para. 310).

(47)     At its 8th session (October 2004: CEB/2004/6, paras. 45-49) HLCM was informed that the RFP was expected to be issued by early October 2004 and an Evaluation Committee of UNSSC and HR Network representatives would review the proposals received and select the successful bidder(s). A target group of 600 managers over a three year period was being assumed for planning purposes. It was hoped that the programme would be ready for delivery in the first half of 2005. The Committee was informed that SMS had also been considered by CPC, the Panel on the Strengthening of the International Civil Service (ICS) and ICSC and was informed of the positions taken in these bodies. HLCM emphasized the importance that Executive Heads attached to the establishment of the SMS as one means of strengthening management and leadership capacity in the system and requested that all organizations cooperate with the HR Network and the UNSSC in the development of the leadership and management development programme, which would underpin the SMS.

(48)     The General Assembly recognised that measures to improve management capacity and performance among senior staff were highly desirable, affirmed that the Commission was the only body responsible for recommending to the General Assembly the establishment of a separate category of staff for the common system and requested the Commission to continue to monitor the project regarding the improvement of the management capacity and performance among senior staff by the CEB and to advise and make recommendations to the Assembly as appropriate. The Assembly also requested the Secretary-General, in his capacity as Chairman of CEB, to redesignate the SMS to reflect its character as a set of collaborative efforts to enhance the managerial capacity and performance of senior staff by respective executive heads and to report to the Assembly at its 60th session, clarifying the scope and content of such efforts (resolution 59/268 III A).

(49)     WFP, UNDP, UNAIDS, IFAD and UNESCO had been participating in a pilot study on broad banding and performance-based pay. At its twelfth session (CEB/2006/HLCM/17, para.14), the HR Network noted that: all organisations were at different implementation stations and could benefit from inter-agency communication; different organisational structures affected the way performance-based schemes were implemented; and reaffirmed the need for a solid performance management programme.  The ICSC should also provide more assistance.  The Commission asked that future progress reports indicate how the organisations complied with the framework established in annex II of A/59/30 and further required the inclusion of anticipated achievements in the report. 

(50)     At the HR Network’s thirteenth session in New York (CEB/2007/HR/8, paras. 28-30), the ICSC decided to revert to the issue of separation payments at a later session following the receipt from its secretariat of the cost comparison of separation payments between the common system and the United States federal civil service and additional information and analysis relating to separations from common system organizations.

(51)     At the thirteenth session of the HR Network (CEB/2007/HR/8, paras. 38-44), the ICSC decided to request its secretariat:
(a)    To explore, in coordination with the HR Network, alternative approaches to the current job-by-job comparison;
(b)    To contact agencies in the United States Government to request data and statistics necessary to test those alternative approaches and to seek their commitment to provide the data on an on-going basis;
(c)    To present a progress report to the Commission at its sixty-fifth session on the issue of the United Nations /United States grade equivalency studies.

(52)     At the thirteenth session of the HR Network (CEB/2007/HR/8, para. 57), the Commission decided:
(a)    To agree to an extension for the completion of the London survey until the sixty-fifth session;
(b)     To request the secretariat to submit a proposal for the use of data from external sources in the event that conventional methods of data collection did not permit the completion of the London survey by the sixty-fifth session;
(c)    To endorse the proposal that the secretariat obtain data from external sources and compare it to data obtained by the conventional method in the London, Geneva and Vienna salary surveys; and
(d)    To request the secretariat to incorporate the results of the comparison study into deliberations on the review of the survey methodology in 2008.

(53)     At the 15h session of the HR Network in Rome (CEB/2008/HLCM/HR/17, paras. 16-17), the Commission decided:
(a)        To discontinue the broad-banding/pay-for-performance pilot as it was originally conceived;
(b)    To request its Secretariat to provide, for consideration at the 67th session, an updated performance management framework taking into account the previous work of the Commission that could serve as a guide to organizations; and
(c)    To take note of the UNDP proposal for the conditions of service of the Resident Coordinators of the United Nations system. The Commission invited UNDP to modify and further develop the proposal taking into account views expressed by its members, as well as previous decisions and recommendations of the Commission, and to present it to the Commission at its 67th session.

(54)     At the same session (CEB/2008/HLCM/HR/17, paras. 75-78), the HR Network supported Scenario Three:  to establish a pilot unit in Bangkok as of 1 January 2009 regarding the 2008-2009 projected salary survey schedule.

(55)     At its twentieth session (CEB/2010/HLCM/HR/35, paras.43-44), the HR Network welcomed the work on the total compensation methodology and strongly supported this very important review; Supported the continuation of conducting reference checks with other international organizations, given that these organizations are the main competitors for talent.

(56)     At its twenty first session (CEB/2011/HLCM/HR/9, paras.31-32), the HR Network noted the report and the results of Phase I Identification of the highest paid civil service under the Noblemaire principle – Phase I (ICSC/72/R.5) and encouraged the Commission to undertake Phase II of the total compensation review.
The Commission decided that:
(a)    The current Noblemaire study should not proceed to phase II, noting that the comparison result showed that the current comparator paid the highest level of cash compensation and that the percentage differences with other civil services seemed too large to be offset by other compensation elements, and thus the current comparator would be retained;
(b)    It would carry out another study to determine the highest-paid national civil service no later than the next Noblemaire study, scheduled for 2016.

(57)     At its twenty second session in Geneva (CEB/2011/HLCM/HR/19, paras. 43-44), the HR Network thanked the ICSC Secretariat for the document and noted the updated estimate of 114.2 net remuneration margin. It urged the Commission to alert the General Assembly to the fact that, since 1997, this margin average has been below the desired midpoint of 115. The Commission decided to report to the General Assembly that the margin between the net remuneration of officials in the Professional and higher categories of the United Nations in New York and officials in comparable positions in the United States federal civil service in Washington, D.C., for the calendar year 2011 was estimated at 114.2. It also decided to draw the attention of the Assembly to the fact that the current average margin level for the past five years (2007-2011) was estimated at 114.0, which was below the desirable midpoint of 115.
The Commission also requested its Chair to update the margin estimate on the basis of the actual post adjustment multiplier, as necessary.