MANILA, Philippines - Budget Secretary Florencio Abad clarified yesterday that the Performance-Based Bonus (PBB) system for government employees is different from the 13th month pay, yearend cash bonus, and Productivity Enhancement Incentive (PEI).
“The PBB is actually distinct from an employee’s yearend cash bonus, 13th month pay, and PEI. The purpose of the PBB is to ensure that our public servants receive due recognition for their efforts. An outstanding employee, for example, will receive a significantly higher PBB - on top of the other bonuses given to him – than a worker who merely fulfills the bare minimum of his duties,” Abad said.
Civil servants are entitled to receive 13th month pay - equivalent to their one month salary - a yearend cash gift of P5,000 and another P5,000 as PEI.
Abad however disputed claims that all government employees are guaranteed to receive the performance-based bonuses.
“In contrast to the other bonuses, the PBB is certainly not an entitlement. Because the PBB system is a decisively merit-based scheme, Employees who under-perform or fail to meet their targets won’t actually receive anything. Why reward someone who works poorly or inefficiently?” he said.
The budget chief said the PBB system was designed to address a longstanding problem in the Philippine bureaucracy where the distribution of bonuses - and their corresponding amounts - is sometimes arbitrary or subject to biases.
“We’ve seen cases of employees receiving hefty perks with little justification. At the same time, many civil servants who turn out exceptional work don’t always get the recognition they deserve. This can be very demoralizing, especially if you’ve served the government for a long time and you do your best in every task,” he said.
“Under this administration, however, the distribution of performance-based bonuses will be commanded solely by merit and the quality of an employee’s performance. The targets are actually measurable and strictly empirical, so that office higher-ups can preserve the objectivity of their assessments,” he added.
He emphasized the reform value of the PBB system, especially in view of the administration’s commitment to provide better and more efficient public goods and services to Filipinos.
“Overall, we’re instituting the PBB scheme so that government workers will be encouraged to boost their efficiency and productivity. We’re showing them that exceptional performance in government will not go unrecognized. What this ultimately translates to are improved services to Filipinos, not to mention greater morale among public servants and visible, positive reform across the bureaucracy,” he said.