Saudi Arabia puts in place new measurement tools for Hajj quality control

ADAA officials during a press conference in Riyadh. (Supplied photo)
Updated 05 August 2019

Saudi Arabia puts in place new measurement tools for Hajj quality control

  • Quality control center's scale of operations is significant, with 31 sites, covered by 80 field researchers from 22 different nationalities.

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia's National Center for Performance Measurement (ADAA) has announced the launch of measurement operations for this year’s Hajj season.

The center will target 50 services provided by 16 government agencies to pilgrims from Saudi Arabia and around the Islamic world in Makkah, Madinah, Jeddah and Taif.

“The center follows specific measurement criteria based on clear methodology designed according to the best international practices,” said Ibrahim Niaz, director general of ADAA. The measuring tools provide in-depth data that reflect the pilgrims’ level of satisfaction on services provided to them throughout their journey. 

The measurement criteria are: Processes, sites, electronic systems, employees, time frame and outputs. 

The scale of operations is significant, with 31 sites, covered by 80 field researchers of 22 different nationalities.

They will measure the satisfaction of Hajj guests on obtaining a Hajj visa, traveling to Makkah and Madinah, mobility and support services, performing the rituals, visiting the Prophet’s Mosque and departure. 

For the first time, ADAA is implementing three new satisfaction measurement tools: The Mystery Shopper, the Watani Platform and field surveys. 

ADAA will send mystery shoppers to perform the Hajj rituals while verifying agency compliance with the services of pilgrims in 31 different locations. They will also assess staff performance. 

“The center adopted three tools to measure the satisfaction of the beneficiaries and to communicate with the beneficiaries and pilgrims directly. They will answer around 7,500 questionnaires related to their experience, and their use of government services,” Niaz said.

In a press conference held at the headquarters of ADAA in Riyadh, Khalid Al-Omari, senior quality assurance manager, said: “The Watani Platform is an electronic platform in 9 different languages that reflects the voices of citizens, residents, visitors and investors. It will enable them to evaluate the performance of public services according to the best technical practices.

Hassan Genah, executive director of performance analysis, said: “The platform will measure ministries and public bodies and some companies and institutions that provide services related to the performance of the Hajj.”


Saudi Arabia's envoy to UK: We won’t allow Iran to meddle in region 

Updated 25 January 2020

Saudi Arabia's envoy to UK: We won’t allow Iran to meddle in region 

  • “You cannot give in to a country like Iran because they will see it as a sign of weakness,” Prince Khalid said
  • The ambassador encouraged people to visit his country before forming an opinion of it

LONDON: Riyadh does not seek conflict with Tehran but will not let “Iran’s meddling in the region” go unchecked, said the Saudi ambassador to Britain. 
“We do not seek conflict. We do not seek escalation. We have always been supporters of taking a firm stand against Iran. Our issue is not with the people of Iran, it is with the regime running the country,” Prince Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan told the Daily Telegraph. 
“But we do not believe in appeasement. At no point in history has appeasement proved to be a successful strategy. You cannot give in to a country like Iran because they will see it as a sign of weakness.”
France, Germany and the UK, three of the signatories to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), triggered a “dispute resolution mechanism” recently in response to Iran ramping up its nuclear program in violation of the deal.
Prince Khalid criticized the JCPOA because it does not address “all the other things that Iran” is doing in the region.
“Iran’s meddling in the region is as challenging as the nuclear program. This is why we were concerned with the nuclear deal,” he said.
The ambassador also touched on recent allegations that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved in hacking the phone of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
“It is very easy for people to throw these unsubstantiated allegations against Saudi Arabia because they know that it is very difficult for Riyadh to defend itself when it does not have proper access to the details,” Prince Khalid said.
“We need to see the evidence before we make any response, because the evidence made public so far is circumstantial at best.”
Saudis do not always represent themselves well because they are “a reticent people and our culture does not push us to talking about ourselves,” he said. “We need to do a better job on showing the world who we really are.” 
The ambassador, who was appointed last year, encouraged people to visit his country before forming an opinion of it. 
“There are a lot of misconceptions about Saudi Arabia. We want people to come and see Saudi Arabia for themselves, and not rely on what they have read somewhere or heard somewhere to form their opinion of the country,” he said.
“There is plenty to see, and you will find a warm, generous and hospitable people there waiting to greet you.”