Procedure management and quality assurance
Ongoing management is needed in order to implement the asylum procedure uniformly. This is to ensure that decision-making practice is uniform in all of the Federal Office’s locations.
Uniform assessment of the situation within the authority
The asylum procedure is managed via various instruments such as official instructions and work guidelines. In the shape of guides, these also include internal orientation aids for asylum-seekers’ main countries of origin. The guides offer an orientation for decision makers, but also for the procedural area within the Federal Office. They ensure that a uniform assessment of the situation is reached within the authority where circumstances are comparable, such as domestic flight alternative, group persecution and family liability. The guides however do not replace an individual examination and assessment of the asylum applications. This is carried out in each individual case by the decision makers, whose tasks entail a great deal of responsibility.
- are based on the information from the "Asylum and Migration Information Centre" regarding the countries of origin,
- are always kept up to date,
- are refined on the basis of the cooperation between the "Policy on the asylum procedure, Common European Asylum System, distribution between the Länder" division, as well as the analysis divisions, and the expert forum at the "Asylum and Migration Information Centre". The refinement procedure furthermore incorporates information obtained by the Federal Office’s locations at asylum applicants’ interviews.
The guides reflect the policy of the Federal Office
Management of the asylum procedure also serves to standardise the decision-making practice of the administrative courts. For this reason, the guides also apply in the procedural field as a basis for forming the policy of the Federal Office. There is a constant exchange of information between the locations and the division which manages litigation in the higher courts, for instance on the current decision-making practice of the higher courts.
Effective management is however contingent on constant success monitoring. In addition to specialist supervision by heads of division and of groups, this is also ensured by the "Operative management of asylum procedures and integration" division. The division analyses developments and trends so that it is possible to recognise and react to a need to act for management at an early date.
The quality assurance of asylum proceedings consists of a variety of elements.
It is carried out on a holistic basis given that the entire asylum process needs to be examined from the application to the service of the notice. Quality control is exercised amongst other things in the shape of inspecting interview reports and the notices. Furthermore, "brief overviews" are to be submitted to the Federal Office’s quality promoters regarding all decisions under the law on asylum in the interest of uniform decision-making practice.
Decision-makers have a large number of aids at their fingertips in order to maintain the quality standards. These include official instructions, text manuals, work guidelines as well as the "interview and notice" quality manuals, which are continually updated.
Moreover, the following further training opportunities in quality assurance for decision makers need to be referred to:
- joint projects such as the IOM/UNHCR project entitled "Identifying and protecting victims of human trafficking"
- training and coaching for decision-makers in the asylum process together with the Federal Association for Refugees and Victims of Torture
- ongoing training for decision-makers together with the German Society for Supervision
- basic and further training plan for decision-makers (in particular the specially-commissioned case-officers for unaccompanied minors, victims of trauma and persons persecuted because of their gender)
- regular meetings of decision-makers for a specialist exchange.
There is also close cooperation in quality assurance with the UNHCR and European partner authorities.