The 31st of March 2019 marked the end of the MVA Fund’s Strategic Plan for 2014-2019. The Founder spoke with the Fund’s CEO, Rosalia Martins-Hausiku on their new five-year strategic outlook, as well as the continued fight to decrease road crash statistics.
TF: You began the first of the next five years as MVA Fund’s reappointed CEO, what is your focus for 2019?
RM: Firstly, I would like to indicate that our Strategic Plan for 2014-2019 ended on the 31st of March 2019, and the new strategy for 2019-2023 has commenced on the 1st of April 2019. The areas of focus for 2019 are as follows:
(i) Financial Performance:
- With the aim to manage finances and grow net assets to N$105 million.
(ii) Enhance Customer Experience:
- By attaining 85% customer satisfaction through the provision of quality customer service, and – 80% stakeholder satisfaction through appropriately managed customer relationships.
(iii) Internal Effective Process:
- With the aim to achieve 80% Board satisfaction.
- 78% system performance and 70% Unit scores (on aggregate) through efficient and effective policies, practices and system.
- 75% audit compliance.
(iv) Enhance Employee Experience:
- With the aim to institutionalize 100% of the Performance Management System, and
- Attain 80% staff satisfaction.
(v) Risk Management:
- With the aim to reach 75% maturity level through integrated Enterprise-wide
TF: What were the major influences in setting your strategies and focus for 2019?
RM: The strategy primarily is influenced by our continuous drive to deliver on our enabling mandate in a manner that is sustainable and customer centric at the same time.
But also, an evaluation of the past 5 years has revealed some gaps in the services that we are rendering to our clients, particularly completing the continuum in terms of the rehabilitation services that we are offering. In addition, given the risks inherent in the environment we are operating in, we thought that we monitor risk at the highest level of the organisation to ensure that Enterprise-wide Risk Management and awareness is embedded in the corporate fabric.
Lastly, our need to stay abreast global changes, we continue to reinvent ourselves to ensure that our people, processes and systems are responsive to the dynamic needs of our clientele.
TF: This was the final year of MVA Fund’s Strategic Plan 2014-2019. What programmes have you established or reinforced during this time would you say stand out?
RM: The MVA Fund has for the past five years (2014-2019) made significant strides in achieving its strategic objectives as approved by the Board in 2013, under the theme ‘Nzira Zompe’ (a new route).
Below are the Key Performance Areas and some of the highlights on the remarkable results achieved:
• Establishment of the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (Physiotherapy & Occupational Therapy) at the University of Namibia.
• Establishment of Spinalis Unit in the Ministry of Health and Social Services.
• Customer satisfaction level increased from 79% in 2014 to 95% in 2018.
• Modified 99 houses for seriously injured persons.
- 952 persons were returned to community.
- 499 persons were returned to work.
- 200 persons were returned to school.
Human Resource Development
• Deloitte Best Company to Work for Award.
- 2014 – 2nd place small to medium category.
- 2015 – 2nd place small to medium category.
- 2016 – 1st place small to medium category.
• Employee engagement level.
- 2014 – 83%.
- 2015 – 83%.
- 2016 – 83%.
- 2017 – 73% but above the industry standard of 70%.
Effective Internal Processes
• Achieved 85% on audit findings in 2017/18.
• Developed three-year risk management plan
2016 and implemented 76% thereof.
• Achieved averaged institutional performance score of 80%.
• Funding level at 144% in 2018 from 84% in 2014.
• Investments increased to N$1.3 billion from N$347m in 2014.
• Investment income increased to N$70m from N$19m in 2014.
• Property portofolio increased to N$160m from N$76m in 2014.
TF: The current economic slump has led to government’s cost cutting measures for the last three or so years. How has the MVA Fund adjusted in this period and how has that affected cash flow and operations?
RM: The current economic slump is being felt across all sectors and MVA Fund is no exception. Despite the Fund not receiving direct financial allocations from treasury, the reduced economic activities have resulted in decreased fuel consumption and by extension, reduced fuel levy revenue for the Fund. The Fund has always exercised cost management measures and these continued to be implemented during the economic downturn currently facing the country.
Given the reduced cash flow from fuel levy revenue, the MVA Fund had to ensure that we render our services using our available resources efficiently so as not to have our operations negatively impacted and we are coping in this regard. The biggest expense the Fund has is claims related, hence there is not much innovation that can take place in that area. We however have influence in accident and injury prevention to ensure that our exposure is reduced.
To this end we have intensified our activities along the B1 and B2 routes, which are our deadliest routes. We have also intensified our workplace road safety interventions targeting a lot of the corporate companies.
TF: The number of crashes, fatalities and injuries has gone down between 2017 and 2018. What would you attribute this to and in what ways has the MVA Fund played a key part?
RM: The comparative statistical analysis of 2017/2018 shows a reduction in figures in crashes by 8%, injuries by 16%, and fatalities by 28 respectively. The Fund in collaboration with stakeholders rolled out various road safety campaigns including:
• Click for life campaign – advocates for the usage of seatbelts every time a driver and passengers embark upon a journey, be it a short or long trip. This campaign was launched in March 2017. Furthermore, the campaign also focused on child restraints that protect minors from being thrown out of a vehicle in the event of a crash. Research shows that seatbelt usage minimises chances of fatalities, while reducing injuries that could be sustained during a crash up to 60%.
• Stand sober campaign – focused on random breath testing of drivers in order to ensure sober drivers. The target was to screen about 200 drivers per day per law enforcer. Upon introduction of this campaign a reduction of intoxicated drivers has been observed.
• Tyre safety interventions – were conducted at bus terminals and roadblocks throughout the country, and many vehicles have been suspended off the road due to tyre noncompliance – 2cm depth of the grooves of the tyre.
• Deployment of law enforcement on the B1 and B2 routes – focused on the inspection of the roadworthiness of vehicles and checking of drivers without valid driver’s licences. This has served as a deterring measure and may have greatly attributed to the reduction of crashes on our roads.
The MVA Fund has aggressively conducted engagements especially during peak times – Independence Day, Easter Holidays, Heroes Day, as well as during the Festive Season. The aim was to sensitise drivers on the dangers of not adhering to road traffic rules. This is normally done through various channels of communication – radio, social media and distribution of flyers at road blocks.
TF: Tell us about stakeholder collaboration and your relationship with the public as far as road safety awareness goes.
RM: The Fund has built strong collaborative relations with its stakeholders in order to carry out its campaigns successfully with the purpose of saving lives on Namibian roads. We believe that road safety calls for a concerted effort and no single institution will win if operating in silo. The public out there believes in the strong brand of the Fund and it is our duty to ensure that we engage in accident and injury prevention measures.
TF: And looking ahead, what are some new strategies and/or programmes are you excited about bringing into play in the near future?
RM: There are several notable projects and programmes that the Fund will be undertaking. These are among others:
i) Research to determine causes of crashes
- I believe this research will make a positive difference in understanding the
scientific causes of road crashes in Namibia and ultimately aid in reducing road carnage in our country. To-date, no scientific research has been done to determine the actual causes of crashes in the country. The call by our political leaders that the Fund had a chance to engage which led to the MVA Fund commissioning a road safety research in the five highest crash regions namely: Khomas, Erongo, Otjozondjupa, Oshana and Kavango.
The MVA Fund will play a pivotal role to develop understanding and consensus amongst stakeholders regarding the causes of crashes, injuries and fatalities while at the same time building data intelligence capability to inform future interventions.
(ii) Implementation of new IT system
- The Fund aims to achieve the following from implementing a new IT system:
• Improved customer services.
• Enhance relations with service providers through system efficiencies.
• Improve management reporting through quality internal processes.
• Improve institution operational efficiency.
(iii) Establish a Satellite Office in Katutura
- Through establishing an envisaged Satellite Office in Katutura, the Fund aims to take its services and benefits closer to the people.
- The Fund’s envisaged satellite office is also geared towards enhancing improved and efficient customer service.
(iv) Establish a Rehabilitation Facility
- The purpose of the rehabilitation facility is for the Fund to assist persons affected by motor vehicle crashes with information on how they can look after themselves on their journey to independence.
- Amongst others this includes information on how to avoid bed sores, the usage of wheelchairs and support groups.
(v) Legislative Reform
- This is to review the benefits we offer to our clients which remained stagnant since 2008. In this way, we want to improve our benefits offered to persons affected by motor vehicle crashes.
TF: In what ways have your team’s efforts complimented your success during your time as CEO at the MVA Fund?
RM: As a dynamic and service driven institution, I have a passionate and hardworking team that is committed to deliver on our mandate with precision. They understand the vision and understand the type of clientele we serve and their passion drives them. We also have a robust performance management system coupled with an employee development programme that ensures that the Fund maintains its culture as a learning organisation. This has always been the approach at the Fund and has become a recipe of success where my team and I have remained consistent in making the Fund not only one of the best companies to work for, but also a public enterprise that efficiently and effectively focuses on the needs of its customers. Our customer and stakeholder satisfaction levels as measured through surveys are outstanding.
TF: There are still misunderstandings about certain exclusions and limitations on benefits awarded to persons affected by car accidents. What would you say are the major misconceptions?
RM: Yes, there is definitely a lack of knowledge especially on limitations where the Fund provides limited benefits only if the person affected by the crash is wholly responsible for it. Such persons only qualify for medical benefits, but still expect the Fund to award them the injury grant. Most drivers are usually affected by this and the majority of such clients are dissatisfied with the medical benefit that is applicable to them. The MVA Fund through its Public Education team continues to educate the public on limitations and exclusions as set out in its MVA Fund Act 10 of 2007.