The U.S. Senate Productivity and Quality Award for Virginia (SPQA), sponsored by Senator John Warner and Senator George Allen, is a world class organizational assessment process that is one of the oldest such processes in the country. The Virginia SPQA even predates the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The SPQA assessment process reviews organizations in the areas of leadership, strategic planning, customer focus, information and analysis, human resources, process management, and business results.
There are five award categories: Manufacturing, Service, Government, Education and Health Care. There are also four levels of recognition; Certificate for Significant Achievement, Plaque for Outstanding Achievement, Medallion of Excellence, and finally the Award for Continuing Excellence.
The U.S. Coast Guard Finance Center is only the second federal government organization to be recognized with the Award for Continuing Excellence.
Congratulations from Virginia Senator George Allen
On March 27, 2002 Virginia Senator George Allen and his local staff, visited the U.S. Coast Guard Finance Center located in Chesapeake, VA. The Senator’s primary purpose for visiting the Finance Center was to congratulate the entire Finance Center staff for its superior performance that resulted in the Center receiving the Award for Continuing Excellence from the U.S. Senate Productivity and Quality Award for Virginia. As one of the Honorary Chairmen of this state recognition process, Senator Allen applauded the Finance Center for achieving the highest level of recognition that is only presented to organizations that demonstrate sustained exemplary performance in quality and productivity.
After addressing the staff, Senator Allen was given a management briefing that focused on the many innovative use of technology to greater serve the Coast Guard community. Senator Allen’s parting comment was that “technology used at the Finance Center should be a model for both government and commercial activities.” He noted that he would suggest that other government organizations visit the Coast Guard Finance Center to benchmark some of its innovative practices.
The Commandant’s Quality Award (CQA) is based on the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award criteria and the President’s Quality Award criteria. The Coast Guard encourages all units to perform a CQA self-assessment and to apply in the CQA process if the self assessment indicates an appropriate level of compliance to the criteria.
The Coast Guard Finance Center was the first Coast Guard unit to be recognized with the Commandant’s Quality Award – Gold Level.