The first four divisions in Public Service Department were Establishment Division, Service Division, Training Hall for Government Officers, and General Administration Division.
This division consisted of two branches, namely Establishment and Supervision Branch and Schemes of Service Branch. In general, this Division managed and controlled the terms and regulations of Government officers’ service and handled establishment matters for Federal and State Departments, including federal positions in Sabah and Sarawak. The main activities carried out at that time were establishing new schemes of service, monitoring the advertisements on vacancies in public service posts, reviewing the applications to relax the scheme requirements especially those related to Malay Language Examination, preparing review papers on post establishment and conducting inspectorate visits for personnel estimations at Ministries, Federal and State Departments.
This division consisted of four branches which performed the following functions:
- Promotion and Disciplinary Branch, which was responsible for establishing the Promotion Board and Disciplinary Board at the Ministries and Federal Departments. This branch was also responsible for reviewing and keeping the Annual Confidential Reports on approximately 3,800 officers from 50 schemes of service.
- The Pension Branch consisted of the Pension Unit and Widow and Orphan Unit. The Pension Unit was responsible for handling all matters related to disbursement of pension, gratuities, accident allowance and workmen’s compensation; policies on the Employees Provident Fund scheme; as well as issues and problems related to pension and other allowances for the Armed Forces. The Widow and Orphan Unit was responsible for implementing the Widow and Orphan Pension Scheme for the states in West Malaysia as well as the formulation of policies in relation to the Widow and Orphan Pension Scheme for East Malaysia.
- The Common-Users Service Branch was responsible for managing the recruitment, placement, transfer, and training of Common-Users Service officers comprising the Administrative Services, Work Officer Services, and Clerical Services.
- The Other Services Branch served as the coordinator of policies, issues, and problems for those services that were not included under Common-Users Service, specifically those related to in-service examinations. This branch also updated and maintained the service details of each Government officer totalling about 300,000 people at that time. This branch was merged with the Government Records Centre to improve the efficiency of the process of gathering and updating the data of public service officers.
On 9 June 1970, the Pension Branch was taken out of the Service Division and merged with the Pension Branch, National Audit Department. The merged entity was upgraded to the status of a division to reflect its broader scope and functions. This new division was known as the Pension Division with 49 posts.
The Service Division was reorganised from time to time that witnessed it taking on an additional function, i.e., career development of public service employees. Thus, the division was renamed Service and Career Development Division. In 1996, the name of this division was changed to Service Division in line with its primary objective of ensuring that public service has exceptional members through the formulation and implementation of strategic service and career policies. This objective is the key towards realising efficient, robust and effective human resources development.
To streamline the administration system, in September 1959, the Government rented a building on the beach front about eight miles from Port Dickson town as a training ground for its administrative officers. In the early days of its establishment, this institution was known as Training Hall for Government Officers and was placed under the administration of Federal Establishment Office. The Training Hall used the concept of a residential training centre and was equipped with 16 fully furnished bedrooms, each with its own bathroom and toilet. The first principal was B.W.B. Chapman, while Abdul Majid Bin Mohd Yusoff was the first local officer appointed as the Principal of the Training Hall in 1962.
This division consisted of two components, namely Training and Work Direction Division and Training Hall for Government Officers. In general, the Training and Work Direction Division implemented the training plan for Federal Government officers by offering scholarships and courses in the country and abroad including special training for all Administration Officers in Local and Foreign Services. In addition, this Division formulated the training and career advancement policy, and monitored its implementation via the Training Hall for Government Officers and Federal Departments. In line with the established plan, the Training Hall for Government Officers in Port Dickson organised short-term courses for public service officers. The Training Hall continued to grow and operated under a new name, National Institute of Public Administration (INTAN) effective from June 1972 and moved to a new premise for its operations in Jalan Elmu, Petaling Jaya. Apart from INTAN, other entities that were retained under the Training and Career Advancement Division at that time were the Chinese Language School and Asian Development Administration Centre.
In addition to the key functions performed by those three divisions, employee administration, inter-division coordination, and finances of the Department were handled by the General Administration Division.
In 1976, the Government Officers’ Records Centre, which was originally part of the Service Division, was taken out and placed under the management of General Administration Division to facilitate its operations.
Subsequently, the Government Officers’ Records Centre was reorganised in line with the emphasis on information and communication technologies (ICT) development at that time, and it was renamed Information Technology Division.
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