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  #3681 (permalink)  
Old 23-04-2014, 04:32 PM
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the circular is classified as restricted, not meant for sharing here
Yes, circular is restricted. For this issue, check with your HR.

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  #3682 (permalink)  
Old 24-04-2014, 05:40 PM
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What do policy roles do on a day to day basis? I am very keen to join policy roles but how active is the policy making process and is that what occupies most of the time? Please honest feedback based on experiences only. Does the whole team spend most of the time in meetings figuring out policies and do we have to author academic papers?

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  #3683 (permalink)  
Old 25-04-2014, 10:15 PM
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Default Policy work

oh you don't make new policy everyday. It's mostly regulatory work, and making tweaks to existing policies. You response to feedback/complains from the public as well.

Policy work involves intensive research which means scrubbing your papers/submissions through your bosses. A paper can be revised umpteen times before it can see the light of day. So you do need to enjoy writing (and re-writing). A flair for writing helps tremendously because policy work is usually very fast paced an long hours. It is likely that you work on several submissions a day. The work hours are usually long too. I work till 8 - 9 pm almost every other day.

PS: the time you get off work, depends on how fast you write, how well you write, and most importantly how fast your boss(es) approve your papers/submissions; but don't let this daunt you, if you enjoy writing/researching, you will still be happily farming in the office (unless you are a scholar).

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  #3684 (permalink)  
Old 25-04-2014, 10:24 PM
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Oh yes, there will be very few meetings. You typically work off a policy over e-mail. Hence, you spend your time in your cubicle writing papers most of the time. (And you wish that you are in your cubicle and not called up to Director's desk for Q&A too frequently - CEP defeating moments! )
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  #3685 (permalink)  
Old 26-04-2014, 09:18 PM
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Default Policy Work

Can you share some examples? For example what a typical day, week, or month is like if you have a policy role in Ministry of National Development.

What would I be writing exactly? And will I be writing and re-writing a paper over days or over months. In the end, how long are policy papers? What happens after the paper is approved by your superiors and put into action? You move on to another policy, and it repeats itself? Or do you re-look at the same policy again and again. Do you look at all the existing policies under the Ministry and tweak them, or do you look out for new suggestions to initiate a policy change? Do you work mostly individually on a policy, or is it a large team that brainstorms together everyday? Or do the policies just come down from the management for you to put into writing?

Is there a set of rules on how much research you must do? Do you have many opportunities to travel overseas or meet foreign counterparts to exchange ideas, or is it mostly self learning through your own readings?
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  #3686 (permalink)  
Old 27-04-2014, 12:19 AM
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Can you share some examples? For example what a typical day, week, or month is like if you have a policy role in Ministry of National Development.

What would I be writing exactly? And will I be writing and re-writing a paper over days or over months. In the end, how long are policy papers? What happens after the paper is approved by your superiors and put into action? You move on to another policy, and it repeats itself? Or do you re-look at the same policy again and again. Do you look at all the existing policies under the Ministry and tweak them, or do you look out for new suggestions to initiate a policy change? Do you work mostly individually on a policy, or is it a large team that brainstorms together everyday? Or do the policies just come down from the management for you to put into writing?

Is there a set of rules on how much research you must do? Do you have many opportunities to travel overseas or meet foreign counterparts to exchange ideas, or is it mostly self learning through your own readings?
I am interested in this as well. TIA for those who take the time to share their experiences.
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  #3687 (permalink)  
Old 27-04-2014, 11:57 AM
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Hi guys...wondering there was any circular from psd mentioning about no salary increment when transiting between ministries/statutory boards? if u've the circular, can paste the link over? thanks!
Yes. It is lower of last drawn salary or salary of position according to receiving agency salary framework. In other words, no more pay increment when you join another public agency unless u take in fresh terms and noy port over your leave benefits accured from working exp in the public sector


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  #3688 (permalink)  
Old 27-04-2014, 12:13 PM
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The policy was supposed to encourage career development by allowing officers to port over their benefits but i think the results may be the exact opposite.Maybe in the past, there were officers who did not perform well but managed to join another public agency for higher pay. However such officers are normally put on probabtion and if they do no perform well, they may not be confirmed. However, officers usually move for pay or career progreesion, so if an officer moves for a higher job but at the same pay, it will be bad for the morale of the officer. Furthermore, good performing officers are not motivated to move because they can progress in their own agencies, but when there is a vacancy, you will have difficulties filling it because officers are motivated to make lateral moves only and yet risk a low pb because the pb will be pro rated and yet the experienced hire will be too new in new agency to impress bosses to geta good performance grade. Almost certainly, the officer who moves will be worse off in annual compensation for the first year after the move.
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  #3689 (permalink)  
Old 27-04-2014, 02:23 PM
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Default policy work - meetings

you will meet many people in policy work. But you rather not meet them. The main reason is that you will have to staff the meetings. You will need to coordinate work trips (including buying of air tickets, booking of hotel rooms, tracking receipts, putting up reimbursements requests) and write file notes for each and every of these meetings which may also happen over dinner/lunch. You may even be called upon to do translation work (e.g., translate chinese to english) and whatever other admin functions. Policy farmers are most happy in their own cubicles when they have the time to do the real work
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  #3690 (permalink)  
Old 27-04-2014, 02:32 PM
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i think some points listed above may not be true. policy-making doesn't just entail writing papers in your cubicles; long hours yes no doubt about that. there's a fair share of back-and-fro with your superiors, clearing every single layer and incorporating their inputs. depending on policy complexity, rolling out a new initiative/programme could take 3 months at its fastest, to 9-12 months, or for those with far-reaching implications (think IRs), even years and umpteen Cab memos.

The final submission will likely resemble 20-30% of what you wrote in your very first, raw prelim draft but that's to be expected. As a policy officer, you do the legwork of doing research, speaking to the right parties (private and people sectors, foreign agencies, VWOs, straight to the heartland citizens via PA, etc), and knowing your stuff well know to convey your points across.

You'll be mightily surprised that most of the times, bosses do not clearly know what they want. It's up to the staff to propose and explore feasible alternatives and on balance (hard to escape this lingo), make a recommendation.

Whether you are ruminating over and again over the same policy, or moving on to devising new or reviewing existing policies, it really depends. But if you're a high-flier/scholar, your boss will probably move you on to the next big thing and focus on other top-line policies once again.

Hope that helps.
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