Botswana Unified Revenue Services (BURS) Aligns Organizational Restructuring Through the Implementation of the Competency- Based HRM

24 August 2022

The Botswana Unified Revenue Services (BURS) has identified as part of its strategic plan, key priority areas that aim to improve performance management, enhance staff engagement, improve border management, and strengthen strategic partnerships to promote voluntary compliance thereby maximizing revenue collection and trade facilitation which is the ultimate mandate. To support BURS achieve these milestones, the WCO through the financial support of the Sida-WCO Trade Facilitation and Customs Modernization (TFCM) programme, under the flagship of its Executive and Professional Competency-Based HRM Programme (EPCB-HRMP), conducted a diagnostic and capacity building mission on the competency-based HRM approach from August 15 -19, 2022 in Gaborone, Botswana.

The main objective of the mission was to identify areas of development and opportunity for people capacity building within BURS and building the capacity of the HRM Working group through an established diagnostic process- leveraging WCO People Development Diagnostic Tool (PDDT), the WCO guide to implementing Competency-Based HRM system in the Customs environment, and the competency-based HRM tools (job catalogue, competency framework, competency dictionary, and competency-based job descriptions).

During the mission WCO experts and participants reviewed the summary analysis of the PDDT completed by the HRM Working group and gathering documents and tools as well as information from the key staff of BURS.  The analysis revealed that the HR’s role, Competency-based HRM, HR planning, and training and development were identified ask key success factors for the ongoing reform and modernization programme. As a result, a plan has been elaborated on potential areas for further improvement based on the international instruments, standards, and tools, as well as regional working experiences and WCO best practices. The review of the PDDDT was followed by capacity-building sessions on the development of the Competency-Based Human Resource Management (CBHRM) tools. Participants were able to draft a Competency-based Job Catalogue, a comprehensive and modern Competency framework as well as a Competency dictionary. The team also developed a comprehensive work plan with activities and defined delivery dates to guide the completion and implementation of the CBHRM approach in BURS. Throughout the sessions, members of the working group engaged the workshop facilitators through interactive discussions and actively participated in group work. The team also exhibited high enthusiasm and commitment to developing and implementing the CBHRM tools.

During the meeting with the Commissioner General (CG) and members of the executive team to discuss the mutual expectations and way forward, the WCO experts stressed the importance of driving this reform through a project-based approach and that the outcomes will be aligned with the re-structuring activities to achieve the synergy necessary for the success of both programmes. The WCO re-confirmed the commitment to providing continuous support to help BURS finalize the competency-based tools and achieve the Human Capital Management (HCM) modernization goals. Meanwhile, Commission General (CG) expressed her appreciation to the WCO for the support. She stressed the timeliness of the support and how it will add value to the planned re-structuring programme. As a means to see the project succeed, the CG and the EXCO Team have committed to providing the necessary support to the HCMD and the working group.

For more information on this activity and the WCO People Development Programme, please, contact: