Introduction of Service Quality Standards (SQSs) 
In order to ensure that the public receives quality social welfare services, implement the “customer-oriented” spirit and strengthen the accountability of welfare services, the SWD and subvented organizations jointly formulated the “Funding and Service Agreement” and a set of “Service Quality Standards” To determine and evaluate service performance.
Service Quality Standards (SQSs) 

Service Quality Standards (SQSs) define the level of which, in terms of management and service provision, service units are expected to attain.  The SQSs are developed according to four principles which set out the core values of welfare services.  These four principles are:  

–       To clearly define the purpose and objectives of the service and make its mode of delivery transparent to the public;

–       To manage resources effectively with flexibility, innovation and continuous quality improvement;

–       To identify and respond to specific service users’ needs; and

–       To respect the rights of service users.  

There are 16 SQSs, each of which is elaborated by a set of Criteria and Assessment Indicators. They are generic descriptions of the basic requirements so as to enable service operators to have appropriate methods tailor-made for a certain service type or a particular service unit in meeting the SQS requirements.

Service Quality Standards (SQSs) and Criteria
SQS 1The service unit ensures that a clear description of its purpose, objectives and mode of service delivery is publicly available.
SQS 2The service unit should review and update the documented policies and procedures describing how it will approach key service delivery issues.
SQS 3The service unit maintains accurate and current records of service operations and activities.
SQS 4The roles and responsibilities of all staff, managers, the Management Committee and/or the Board or other decision-making bodies should be clearly defined.
SQS 5The service unit/agency implements effective staff recruitment, contracting, development, training, assessment, deployment and disciplinary practices.
SQS 6The service unit regularly plans, reviews and evaluates its own performance, and has an effective mechanism by which service users, staff and other interested parties can provide feedback on its performance.
SQS 7The service unit implements policies and procedures to ensure effective financial management.
SQS 8The service unit complies with all relevant legal obligations.
SQS 9The service unit takes all reasonable steps to ensure that it provides a safe physical environment for its staff and service users
SQS 10The service unit ensures that service users have clear and accurate information about how to enter and leave the service.
SQS 11The service unit has a planned approach to assessing and meeting service users’ needs (whether the service user is an individual, family, group or community).
SQS 12The service unit respects the service users’ right to make informed choices of the
service they receive as far as practicable.
SQS 13The service unit respects the service users’ rights in relation to private property.
SQS 14The service unit respects the service users’ rights for privacy and confidentiality.
SQS 15Each service user and staff member is free to raise and have addressed, without fear of retribution, any complaints he or she may have regarding the agency or the service unit.
SQS 16The service unit takes all reasonable steps to ensure that service users are free from abuse.
Relevant Information
Social Welfare Department 
Full Version Of Service Quality Standards (SQSs) and Criteria