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Paju to remove 'office villains' disrupting work environment from city government

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A poster by Paju City bears warning against those who disrupt the work environment. Courtesy of Paju City

A poster by Paju City bears warning against those who disrupt the work environment. Courtesy of Paju City

By KTimes

Paju in Gyeonggi Province will eliminate so-called office villains in its office who disrupt colleagues or degrade the work environment.

While Seoul introduced this policy in 2019, Paju is the first municipality in Gyeonggi Province to implement it. Last month, Seoul dismissed an employee identified as an "office villain."

The Paju city government announced Wednesday that it identified two employees, from the main office and township offices, as having the lowest performance ratings. The city aims to protect the majority of its employees from those who disrupt organizational harmony.

In March, the city established criteria for the lowest performance rating in collaboration with the city's public servants' union.

The criteria include multiple instances of unexcused absences, tardiness, early departures, prolonged absences from the workplace and significantly inadequate job performance hindering work.

Inappropriate behavior toward colleagues, such as insults, threats or sexual harassment that negatively affect the organizational atmosphere are also included.

Based on these criteria, in April, the city received preliminary candidates for the lowest rating from department heads.

After two rounds of meetings, the preliminary candidates were selected. The city then provided opportunities for individual interviews, appeals and explanations before the Performance Evaluation Committee finalized the selection of two employees.

View of Paju City government in Gyeonggi Province / Courtesy of Paju City

View of Paju City government in Gyeonggi Province / Courtesy of Paju City

These employees were removed from their current positions and reassigned to field duties such as parking enforcement.

Employees assigned the lowest rating face several consequences, including no performance bonuses, restrictions on awards and overseas training and limitations on long-term training assignments.

They will be monitored for three months, and if they show efforts to improve, they may return to their original duties.

If no improvement is observed, they will receive another lowest rating in their performance evaluation. Receiving two consecutive lowest ratings will result in two weeks of capacity-building training and three months of intensive training.

An administrative committee will then review their case for possible "position removal" and "compulsory retirement." If they fail to secure a position within three months post-position removal, they will be automatically subject to 'compulsory retirement.'

Kim Eun-sook, head of the City Administration Support Division, said, "Although we had 'Excellent, Good, Fair, Poor' ratings, 'Poor' ratings were rarely given. We initiated this process due to the severe impact on the organizational atmosphere, colleague inconvenience and external trust in the institution."

This article from the Hankook Ilbo, a sister publication of The Korea times, is translated by a generative AI and edited by The Korea Times.



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