European Commission staff spent an average of 11 days in training in 2010, but the Commission has no proper system to identify skills shortages or to ensure that training responds to actual needs, the European Court of Auditors has found.
“The Commission does not have sufficient consolidated information on the existing skills of its staff or the skills which they need,” the ECA wrote in a report published today (27 July).
The ECA also found that the Commission’s administration does not sufficiently monitor whether its 33,000 staff participate in training that has been planned for them. One-third of staff did not attend the courses they were supposed to attend, the report says, with absenteeism and dropout rates especially high in language courses.
The report also found that the Commission does not assess whether staff have acquired new skills as a result of training, or whether training has been relevant to their jobs. It said that the annual appraisals conducted until last year – a new system was introduced this year – failed to reliably identify underperformance, or to properly record staff skills.
The Commission’s training budget for 2010 was €26.6 million. (This has been cut to €26.3m in the current budget.) Participation in training activities amounted to 230,000 staff days, and 310 staff administered or delivered training.
In its response to the Court’s report, the Commission said that it was working on developing information systems on staff skills and training needs, and agreed with many of the ECA’s specific recommendations.
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