Council Representatives should have KPI’s

When it comes to an election, voters should have a clear measure of their elected representatives’ performance over the tenure of their 3 year term. They shouldn’t have to rely solely on the campaign rhetoric of candidates. Nor should there be a reliance on the local media to hold elected representatives to account, but of course it’s still very important that they do!

As you will know, most successful organisations have some form of key performance indicators (KPI’s) that set a standard to which their employees can be measured too. Hutt City Council itself has KPI’s for its operations arm of Council – However there are no KPI’s or anything of its kind for elected or appointed Council representatives. This needs to change.

The introduction of KPI’s will make us (elected representatives) much more accountable to the people whom we represent. I also think that it will help with elected representatives’ personal development, which will ultimately (and most importantly) help towards the best possible governance and advocacy for our communities and our City.

Later this month I’ll be approaching Mayor Ray Wallace and requesting  that he get an independent advisor to report back to Council on how a set of KPI’s may look and how they could work in practice.

Since I’m a Councillor I think it’s appropriate for me to leave the detail in how KPI’s could look to an independent expert. However, I believe it is crucial that 3 elements be included:

  1. Implementation and oversight must be from an independent body to avoid conflicts and politics getting involved.
  2. If possible (by law), KPI’s should be linked to salary. If you’re doing a poor job then you should get a pay cut.
  3. Performance reviews must be publicly accessible. This will significantly help enhance elected members accountability to their community.

I have no doubt that it will be tough to come up with a clear set of KPI’s. In most organisations your role and goals are clearly defined and set out for you – Not so much for Councillors and Community Board/Committee Members. However, just because it may be difficult shouldn’t mean we drop the idea. Let an independent advisor go away and work with the community on coming up with a proposal for us.

Your thoughts and comments are always greatly appreciated.

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