Ban Ki-moon's speeches

Remarks at the signing ceremony for senior managers’ compacts

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, UN Headquarters, 04 February 2008

Thank you all for being here.  With this ceremony, we confirm the goals that each one of you will endeavour to reach during 2008, based on priorities set by Member States.  I am grateful to every one of you for your commitment in developing your compacts.

These compacts are a first and important step towards a full and effective accountability framework within the Secretariat.  They provide a performance-driven and results-oriented approach to tackling the many and varied mandates we are set.  They bring transparency, since they are posted on the iSeek intranet site.  And they help assure our stakeholders, who have entrusted us with public funds, that we will work with integrity, consistency, predictability and professionalism.

As I have told Member States, my overall goal is to develop an accountability framework that outlines clear roles, responsibilities and authorities for all levels and stakeholders of the Organization.  In this way, all colleagues will clearly understand their duties, and the manner in which they will be evaluated.  That is why I ask you to share your compacts with your staff, explain how you see the goals being reached, and discuss what their roles should be. 

Let me thank the Deputy Secretary-General, Chair of the Management Performance Board, as well as its members, Nicolas Michel, Shaaban Shaaban, and external expert Jean-Jacques Graisse, for reviewing the compacts and overseeing this step in our accountability framework.  The Deputy Secretary-General’s discussions with each one of you about your priorities and requirements were crucial in developing and expanding the compacts into optimally useful guidelines for our work.

It is now crucial that we regularly monitor progress towards achieving the goals, so as to ensure that any remedial action necessary is taken in time.  To this end, the Management Performance Board will conduct a review in April of the 2007 performance, and a mid-term review in September of 2008 results.

Your discussions with the Deputy Secretary-General also highlighted systemic problems in achieving some of the management targets, particularly in human resources.  We must all work together to address these problems.  This applies particularly to achieving gender balance in the Secretariat, where we all agree we have not made nearly enough progress.

On human resources in general, several important initiatives are under way.  The Deputy Secretary-General heads a task force on reform, which I hope will formulate proposals for overcoming long-standing difficulties in human resources management.  The task force led by Mr. Shaabaan on simplifying and streamlining rules and work processes should yield improvements in administration.  And in the longer term, the project to implement an Enterprise Resource Planning system will bring a sea change in how we streamline our business processes.  I encourage all of you to participate in these activities to make our work more efficient and effective.

I am confident that the compacts we have signed today will support us in our work to build a stronger United Nations for a better world.  I know I can count on you to give your all to our collective mission.