Socso clinches prestigious award for its contributions
THE success that Social Security Organisation (Socso) has seen in its efforts to enhance employee development stems from its core belief that employees are an organisation’s “greatest asset”.
Socso, which was among the big winners of the night at the recent Asia HRD Awards 2017, walked away with the prestigious “Contribution to Organisation” award, in recognition of its achievements in building innovative systems, processes and practices aimed at enhancing employee development.
Apart from providing social security protection to private sector workers and self-employed taxi drivers in Malaysia as well as their dependants, Socso has also put in place comprehensive Human Resource Development (HRD) policies for its own staff.
Under the leadership of its CEO Datuk Dr Mohammed Azman Aziz Mohammed, Socso employs over 2,400 staff in 52 offices nationwide.
Dr Mohammed Azman, who received the award on behalf of the organisation, says the recognition is a meaningful testimony to the good relations between the management and staff at Socso, apart from showing that their human resource programmes have been effective and impactful.
“First of all, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Asia HR Award’s judging committee for recognising us with this prestigious award.
“This achievement will make us work harder to improve employee well-being, not only within Socso but for all Malaysian employees,” he says.
This achievement will make us work harder to improve employee well-being, not only within Socso but for all Malaysian employees.
He adds that the award demonstrates that Socso was not only competitive among Government agencies, but also within the private sector.
“Allow me to quote Thomas J. Watson, Jr, who was the chairman and chief executive officer during IBM’s most explosive period of growth: ‘I believe the real difference between success and failure in a corporation can be very often traced to the question of how well the organisation brings out the great energies and talents of its people’.”
Dr Mohammed Azman says that at Socso, the management believes in practising open communication with its staff.
“I believe that leaders should have strong interpersonal skills and communicate effectively.
“We have regular engagement sessions with the in-house union as well as conduct ‘Program Keharmonian’ with our staff to get their feedback on all the company’s programmes,” Dr Mohammed Azman says.
Asked why employee development is so important to Socso, he says having competent and knowledgeable staff is crucial, especially for a social security organisation.
Being in the business of providing services to people, employee development is essential, he says.
“In the service industry, customers are the main stakeholder and in our case, this refers to employers, employees and the society in general.
“Socso provides services to the workers and their dependants in any event of work-related injuries, invalidity or death. We can’t provide the best service to clients if our staff are not competent, knowledgeable, skilful and do not have compassion and empathy towards our clients,” he says.
It was with this in mind that the organisation formulated its Human Resource Development Plan 2016-2020 with the objective of empowering Socso’s human capital to become Subject Matter Experts in the area of Social Security, apart from instilling a culture of creativity, innovation and quality.
The organisation also places an emphasis on good interpersonal skills among its staff through the introduction of the Employee Customer Guide (ECG) for counter staff and the S4P policy (Senyum, Sapa, Salam, Santun dan Prihatin) culture.
This S4P policy, he says, was recognised by the Public Services Department at the national level Akrab Convention last year with an award under the Innovative category.
“I have also introduced performance measurement methodology in Socso, such as the Balance Scorecard.
“Staff performance is measured through four perspectives – Customer Service, Finance, Internal-Business-Process, and the Learning and Growth Perspective,” he says.
Among the activities measured through the Balance Scorecard is the performance of the Perkeso Prihatin Squad members.
The squad, which has been set up in every Socso office nationwide, is in line with the organisation’s aim to provide services that go beyond the expectations and well-being of its clients.
Last year, the squad successfully resolved the 1,758 cases it received within an average period of four days.
Transformation of its service delivery
In 2016, the organisation also kicked off a transformation of its service delivery in order to remain in sync with the current conditions and to create further value in its services.
Dr Mohammed Azman says each Socso employee, as a key driver of the service, must not only have academic qualifications but also be knowledgeable and able to solve problems by thinking outside the box.
He says the transformation programme also aimed to encourage employees to be more responsive to changes in the environment and to the demands of clients.
“Every Socso employee also acts as a facilitator in ensuring that the clients receive the services promised to them,” he says.
Apart from ensuring their staff are competent, knowledgeable and skilful, the organisation also makes it a point to ensure that the employees are in good health. Socso has made it compulsory for each of its staff members to undergo a free Health Screening programme, regardless of their age.
“For me, overall wellness of the workers, comprising physical, emotional and social wellness, is important in any organisation.
“That is why we also have a Wellness Programme in Socso to enhance employee productivity through improvements in their wellness,” he says.
Among the activities under Socso’s Wellness Programme is Active @Work Challenge 2017, which aims to encourage employers to help their employees to stay active wherever they are.
The three-month challenge, which will run from Sept 1 to Nov 31, 2017, rewards employers whose employees clock the most steps through the BookDocActiv mobile app.
Dr Mohammed Azman stresses that organisations that are reluctant to spend on employees’ wellness will end up incurring indirect costs such as work delays, or expenses related to sick pay, rehiring or lost time.
Socso aims to lead by example in this area to prove that organisations with wellness programmes in place can create a productive workforce and this can contribute to a long-term positive impact on the organisation’s bottom line.
“I strongly believe in work-life balance that emphasises family, career and community,” he adds.
Socso CEO Datuk Dr Mohammed Azman receiving the award from Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.