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Organizational Assessment and Improvement in the Public Sector

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Calls for performance measures and metrics sound good, but public sector organizations often lack the tools required to assess the organization as a whole and create true change.In order to implement an integrated cycle of assessment, planning, and improvement, government agencies at all levels need a usable framework for organizational assessment that speaks to their unique needs. Organizational Assessment and Improvement in the Public Sector provides that framework, an understanding of assessment itself, and a methodology for assessment focused on the public sector.

The book introduces the concept of organizational assessment, its importance, and its significance in public sector organizations. It addresses the organizational theory that underlies assessment, including change management, organizational and individual learning, and organizational development. Building on this, the author focuses on the processes and demonstrates how the communication that results from an assessment process can create a widely accepted case for change. She presents a model grounded in the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Program criteria but adapted for the culture of government organizations. She also addresses the criteria that form the basis for assessment and implementation and provides examples and best practices.

Facing decreasing budgets and an increasing demand for services, government agencies must increase their capabilities, maximize their available fiscal and human resources, and increase their effectiveness and efficiency. They often operate in an atmosphere that prizes effectiveness but measures it in silos assigned to individual programs and a structure that encourages people to do more with less while systematically discouraging efficiency. Stressing the significant and important differences between a business and a government, this book supplies the knowledge and tools necessary to create a culture of assessment in government organizations at all levels.

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