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Staff members honoured for improving work of United Nations

Staff members honoured for improving work of United Nations

Honouring United Nations staff as the "backbone" of the Organization, Secretary-General Kofi Annan today paid tribute to their work and dedication during a ceremony to recognize UN personnel for their efforts to improve the world body's activities.

In remarks to the 66 winners of the UN 21 Awards 2000 - given to staff members for improving the efficiency, effectiveness, quality and impact of the Organization's work - the Secretary-General said that the UN had achieved a lot over the past five years in managing human resources as a part of the overall reform of the world body.

"We will continue our efforts to ensure that staff and managers have the skills and knowledge they need to do their job," Mr. Annan said as the honourees from five teams were presented commemorative pins and certificates at UN Headquarters in New York.

Introduced in 1996 as part of the Secretary-General's management reform effort, the awards placed a greater emphasis this year on productivity as set forth in the Organization's "Long-Term Productivity Strategy."

"Efficiency must be our watchword," Mr. Annan said. "We must respond with the highest professionalism to old and new challenges, and search for cost-effective ways to carry out our critical work."

Among this year's winners is the team that launched the Integrated Management Information System (IMIS), which has been hailed as perhaps the UN's most radical and innovative reform in the field of personnel and financial processing.

Other winning teams came from the UN Guided Tour Programme, recognized for improving the interface between the UN and the visiting public, and the Archive and Records Management Service, which improved the archiving of UN materials.

The Rules Streamlining Project was acknowledged for simplifying and organizing the Human Resources rules and placing the information online, while the Automated System of the Interpretation Service project received recognition for designing and implementing a comprehensive information system for managing the assignment of interpreters to meetings.