Customs shake-up not yet over
MANILA, Philippines - The top-to-bottom reorganization at the Bureau of Customs (BOC) is far from over as the bureau embarks on a rationalization program that may result in the transfer of more personnel to other government agencies.
Myrna Chua, newly installed deputy commissioner for the Internal Administration Group, said the agency will revisit the organization and staffing complement to determine whether its employees are fit for the job and whether there is a need to hire additional staff.
“There have been reports that the BOC is undermanned so this is something we would like to find out. The BOC currently has 3,200 warm bodies, we want to know if this is enough and if they possess the necessary qualifications to be able to perform their functions. We will be doing some sort of competency profiling based on certain parameters or what we think would be necessary skills they should have,” Chua said.
Chua said the rationalization plan intends to improve performance and the organizational structures that are highly efficient and results-oriented. She, however, clarified that any separation from the bureau would be voluntary.
“We don’t intend to outrightly dismiss people. We need to find out if they can still be developed by providing training. We can find them jobs within the BOC or we can assign them to other agencies needing their expertise,” she said.
Chua said the BOC might also ask for the help of the Civil Service Commission (CSC), which acts as the human relations department of the government.
“The reorganization of the BOC has not been finalized. We just want to be given wider latitude to reorganize the bureau,” she said.
The BOC overhaul also includes the modernization of its information technology system to shore up revenue collections and curb incidents of smuggling.
Deputy Commissioner Primo Aguas, who will head the agency’s Management Information Systems and Technology Group, said he hopes to provide automated solutions in a more efficient and transparent manner.
“Looking at the current system, we need to interface and integrate data. We need to see what’s in place so we can improve them. The Customs website is very traditional, we need to make it more modern. We will definitely put a lot more technologies to further move us from the primitive ages to the 20th century age,” he said.
For her part, Maria Edita Tan, deputy commissioner for the Revenue Collection Monitoring Group, said her goal is to make people more accountable and ensure that operations will be more transparent. – With Evelyn Macairan