Stakeholder Leadership Groups Go Beyond HRIS

A key first step in our HRIS strengthening process is to establish a leadership group of all stakeholders in the system, which includes all producers and consumers of HR information. In many cases, these people -- who are drawn from diverse government ministries as well as outside groups such as professional associations, training institutions and private sector health organizations -- are meeting and talking on a regular basis for the first time. One unexpected benefit of the Stakeholder Leadership Group (SLG) is that the group sometimes expands beyond just coordinating HRIS activities to improving health worker management in general.

In Uganda, for instance, members of the SLG -- called the Health Worker Advisory Board (HWAB) -- drafted a set of policy and management questions to guide the development of the iHRIS Qualify software. The questions addressed the data that needed to be gathered and the desired reports that would eventually be produced.

One of HWAB's members advised that one of the strengths of the group is that “it actually exists.” Some of the members described the group as a “discussion forum.” One of the registrars advised it was “an opportunity that we embraced with all our hearts, with all our minds … and through the HWAB forum, we were able to discuss issues with the human resources and how the councils work together to ensure that the HRH system is improved.”

Another informant advised that there was an HR working group already established in the Ministry of Health that was responsible for human resource matters, but he said, “It was largely ineffectual and very little was happening in any type of mandate.” He went on to say that “real life was breathed into the process when Capacity helped with the formation of HWAB. Because HWAB brought together people from the councils and Makerere medical school.”