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FAQs

Why a Performance Management Programme?
 
A modern Public Service cannot do without an effective and ongoing programme for performance management. The Performance Management Programme (PMP) is a meaningful performance appraisal process contributing to a better public service and improved employee motivation.
 
 
What are the most important outcomes of the Performance Management Programme?
 
The Performance Management Programme is an effective management tool providing:
 
 - The employee with regular feedback on their work performance;
 
 - The Organisation with a structured record of employee performance;
 
 - A basis for improvements in employee performance.
 
 
What career opportunities are there in the Public Service?
 
Vacancies in the Public Service are filled in two ways: internally or externally. Internal vacancies  are filled via a PSD Circular open to serving public officers, while external vacancies are advertised in the Government Gazette. All PSD Circulars can be viewed on this website, while external calls can be viewed on the Department of Information​'s website by clicking here.


How is discipline applied in the public service?

Discipline in the public service is applied in terms of the Public Service Commission (Disciplinary Procedure) Regulations (Legal Notice 186/1999).


If I face a disciplinary charge what are my rights?

Apart from the right of reply at various stages of the process, public officers who are charged with a disciplinary offence have the right to, amongst other things:

(a) know the whole case against them

(b) make their own defence

(c) access all documentary evidence

(d) be assisted by a person of their choice

(e) right to know of any decision within 20 working days


Are there any conditions I can benefit from if I have a child?

Yes. Female public employees may avail themselves of paid maternity leave before birth and immediately after giving birth. All public officers are entitled to unpaid parental leave and may be allowed to work on a reduced hours timetable in order to take care of children under the age of 12. Public officers may also avail themselves of adoption leave in case they choose to adopt.


I have to take care of my child who is disabled. Is there any condition I can benefit from?

Yes. Parents who are public officers may be allowed responsibility leave or work on a reduced work timetable so as to have time to provide care to their disabled child. 


I have an elderly parent who requires my care. Is there any condition I can benefit from?

Yes. Even these officers may benefit from responsibility leave or permission to work on a reduced work timetable.

Frequently Asked Questions on the conditions regarding Special Unpaid Leave not on Grounds of Public Policy/On Grounds of Public Policy to Work with the Institutions, Bodies and Agencies of the European Union and International Organisations (For the definition of the term ‘on grounds of public policy’ please refer to the Glossary of Organisational and Management Terms by clicking here).


GENERAL PROVISIONS

1. As a Public Employee am I allowed to work with EU institutions/bodies/agencies?

As a Public Employee you are encouraged to apply for recruitment with the Institutions, Bodies and Agencies of the European Union, by virtue of MPO Circular No 150/2006, issued on 23rd October 2006.


2. Where can I view vacancies for posts / positions with EU Institutions, Bodies and Agencies?
 
Vacancies for posts/positions with EU Institutions, Bodies and Agencies can be viewed on the European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO) website.
 
 
3. As a Public Employee, if I am selected for employment with any EU Institution, Body or Agency, do I have to resign?
 
As a Public Employee you are eligible to be granted special unpaid leave on specific terms and conditions. Such special unpaid leave can be granted either on grounds of public policy or otherwise but, in both cases, remains subject to the exigencies and to the interests of the Maltese public administration.
 
 
4. Who do I have to update of my position with the EU institution/body/agency?
 
You have to inform PSD of the post you hold within the EU Institution, Body and Agency as well as any changes in your employment circumstances. You are obliged to provide at least an annual statement containing such details. If you fail to provide such information or provide inaccurate information, you will be considered as resigned from the Public Service.
 
 
5. On promotion in the Malta Public Service, can I terminate my unpaid leave?
 
Unpaid leave may be terminated at any time for the purpose of taking up a post with the Government as a result of a call for applications to which you are eligible, a post at salary scales 1, 2, 3 or 4, a post in a Ministerial Secretariat, or the EU Secretariat within the Prime Minister's Office. Otherwise unpaid leave may be terminated subject to the notice periods stipulated in Q. 12 with respect to unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy and Q. 22 with respect to unpaid leave on grounds of public policy.
 
 
UNPAID LEAVE NOT ON GROUNDS OF PUBLIC POLICY
 
6. In what circumstances will I be granted special unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy?
 
Special unpaid leave NOT on grounds of public policy is granted when you are selected for posts below AD9 with European Union Institutions, Bodies and Agencies (please refer to MPO Circular No 150/2006).


7. Under what conditions is unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy granted?

Eligibility: have been in the public service for at least twelve months.

Duration of unpaid leave: for a maximum period of three years or the length of your service, whichever is the shorter period.

Conditions for the granting of unpaid leave: Provided you respect the conditions and limitations of the granting of such special unpaid leave, you will:

[i] enjoy the right to return to your substantive grade held immediately before your engagement with the ​EU;

[ii] retain all rights and privileges applicable to your public office and those arising from the respective Classification Agreement;

[iii] social security rights acquired under the Social Security Act (Cap. 318) will be safeguarded in line with the provisions of Council Regulation (EC) No. 1408/71.


8. When do I apply for special unpaid leave NOT on ground of public policy?

Once you receive confirmation of your employment with the EU Institution, Body or Agency, you are to obtain the clearance of your Permanent Secretary before applying to the People and Standards Division (PSD) for special unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy.


9. Do I have to give notice to my department if I am granted special unpaid leave NOT on ground of public policy?

A notice period of three months shall have to be respected, provided that if you occupy a position that carries a longer notice period, whether contractual or otherwise, the longer contractual notice period prevails.


10. How many times can I apply for special unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy?

Special unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy to work with the EU Institutions, Bodies or Agencies may only be availed of once, irrespective of the duration which, in any case, can never exceed the maximum period of 3 years.


11. Can I be granted an extension of my unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy?

Requests for extension of the unpaid leave period for work with the same Institution may be considered so long as the three year capping is not exceeded.


12. What happens if I resign from or my post with the EU Institution, Body or Agency is terminated prior to the expiry of the contractual period and/or the approved period of unpaid leave?

Should you resign or your employment with the European Institution, Body or Agency is terminated prior to the expiry of the contractual period and/or the approved period of unpaid leave, you shall be required to immediately write to the PSD requesting the resumption of duties with Government and the termination of your unpaid leave.


13. What are the consequences for failing to inform PSD of my resignation or termination of employment with the EU Institution / Body / Agency?

Failure to inform PSD within 30 days of resignation or termination of employment with the EU Institution, Body or Agency will be considered as resignation from the Public Service.


14. How can I resume duties (re-integration) in Government service after the utilisation of unpaid leave?

As a Public officer availing yourself of special unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy, at least 30 days before the expiry of the unpaid leave, you are to notify PSD of the date when you intend to resume duties with Government. The 30-day period is to be extended by an additional 30 days for every year of unpaid leave utilised.


15. Should circumstances change, can I have my special unpaid leave NOT on grounds of public policy be considered as special leave on grounds of public policy?

In case of circumstantial changes, special unpaid leave not on grounds of public policy may be followed by unpaid leave on grounds of public policy, subject to the submission of a new application. In this case, the six-month notice period usually required for the granting of unpaid leave on grounds of public policy, is not required.


UNPAID LEAVE ON GROUNDS OF PUBLIC POLICY

16. In what circumstances shall I be granted special unpaid leave on grounds of public policy?

If selected for one of the posts at the levels listed at (1), (2) and (3) below and subject to having 12 months service with the Public Service, you will be granted special unpaid leave on grounds of public policy:

(1) Cabinet or similar positions of trust with Commissioners, Judges (European Court of Justice and Court of First Instance), members of the Court of Auditors, President of the Parliament, President of the European Economic and Social Committee and the President of the Committee of the Regions;

(2) if post with the EU Institution, Body or Agency is in category A16, A15, A14, A13;

(3) if post with the EU Institution, Body or Agency is in category A12, A11, A10, A9.


Duration: The following periods of unpaid leave on grounds of public policy will apply to the categories defined above as follows:

(1) A maximum period of five years which may be renewed to take up a new position of trust with a different Commissioner, Judge or President of the Institutions;

(2) A maximum period equivalent to the duration of the terms of office of the posts you hold;

​(3) A maximum period of five years provided that, if you have been in the public service for more than ten years, the maximum period may be extended to ten years, limited however to duration of the terms of office of the posts you hold.


17. What conditions are secured when unpaid leave on grounds of public policy is granted?

Provided you observe the conditions and limitations of the granting of such special unpaid leave, you will:

[i] enjoy the right to return to your substantive grade in the public service;

[ii] be eligible for progression or promotion in the same stream;

[iii] retain all rights and privileges applicable to your public office and those arising from the respective Classification Agreement;

[iv] have your service with the EU reckonable as service with the Government, also for pension purposes;

[v] if you are a pensionable officer, you will have your service with the EU deemed as service given to the Government of Malta for pension purposes under the Pensions Ordinance;

[vi] have your social security rights acquired under the Social Security Act (Cap. 318) will be safe guarded in line with the provisions of Council Regulation (EC) No. 1408/71.


18. When do I apply for special unpaid leave on grounds of public policy?

Once you receive confirmation of your employment with the EU Institution, Body or Agency, you are to obtain the clearance of your Permanent Secretary before applying to PSD for special unpaid leave on grounds of public policy.


19. Do I have to give notice to my department if I am granted special unpaid leave on ground of public policy?

A notice period of six months shall have to be respected, provided that if you occupy a post that carries a longer notice period, whether contractual or otherwise, the longer contractual notice period prevails.


20. Can I be granted an extension of my unpaid leave on grounds of public policy?

Requests for extension of the 5 years unpaid leave granted to employees holding positions of trust with Commissioners, Judges or Presidents of European Union Institutions, may be considered to take up employment with a different Commissioner, Judge or President of the Institutions.


21. What happens if I resign from or my post with the EU Institution, Body or Agency is terminated prior to the expiry of the contractual period and/or the approved period of unpaid leave?

Should you resign or your employment with the European Institution, Body or Agency is terminated prior to the expiry of the contractual period and/or the approved period of unpaid leave, you shall be required to immediately write to the PSD requesting the resumption of duties with Government and the termination of your unpaid leave.


22. When do I have to seek resumption of duties (re-integration) into the public service?

Resumption of duties with the Public Service needs to be requested in writing to PSD, at least 12 months prior to the expiry of your special unpaid leave.


23. If I am nominated for secondment as a National Expert, do the above provisions apply?

The above provisions shall not apply to National Experts since they are seconded with the Institutions, Bodies and Agencies of the European Union. Such secondment, which can be for periods of up to four years, are made by the Government in response to a formal request or call issued to Member States by an EU Institution, Body or Agency. As a general rule, the salaries of such seconded officers continue to be paid by their department in Malta with the EU entity paying living and travel allowances.


SPECIAL UNPAID LEAVE TO WORK WITH OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS

1. If, as a Public Officer, I am selected for employment with an international institution, do I have to resign?

As a Public Officer, you may be granted special unpaid leave to take up employment with international organisations, such as the World Health Organisation (WHO), the United Nations (UN), Food Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and Commonwealth.


2. How can I apply for unpaid leave to work with an international organisation?

Applications for unpaid leave to work with international organisations, together with documentary evidence, should be referred for the endorsement of the respective Permanent Secretary before being submitted to PSD for approval.


3. Under what terms and conditions is this unpaid leave granted?

Unpaid leave to work with international organisations is granted to public officers who have 12 months service with the Public Service. This unpaid leave may be granted for 12 months not on grounds of public policy.


4. May I seek an extension of the unpaid leave granted?

On the expiration of the first 12 months unpaid leave, you may request a renewal. Unpaid leave may be renewed annually, up to a maximum of 8 years, depending on the exigencies of the service.


5. What happens if I resign the post I occupy with the international organisation or the engagement is terminated?

In the case of resignation or termination of employment by the International Organisation, you should notify PSD and your employing Department/Directorate of the exact date when you intend to resume duties.


FURTHER INFORMATION

Where can I obtain more information?

You should be guided by MPO circular No 150/2006 issued on 23 October 2006 for more details. The Public Service Management Code (PSMC) also caters for Special Leave entitlement through sub-sections 4.7.3., 4.7.4. and 4.9.5. You can also seek information through the Handbook on Opportunities to work outside the Public Service by clicking here​.​​​​​​​
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