Agencies cite many reasons for seeking external recognition of their operations, programs and services. The following lists outline some of the most common reasons. Following this are testimonials attesting to the real value of agency accreditation and how agencies universally report that the "benefits far outweigh the costs of accreditation."
Benefits for the Public
- Assurance and validation of well-administered services in accord with approved professional practices
- Potential for external financial support and savings to the public
- External recognition of a quality governmental service
- Holds an agency accountable to the public and ensures responsiveness to meet their needs
- Improves customer and quality services
Benefits for the Agency
- Public and political recognition
- Increased efficiency and evidence of accountability
- Answers the question, "How are we doing?" through extensive self evaluation
- Identifies areas for improvement by comparing an agency against national standards of best practice
- Enhances staff teamwork and pride by engaging all staff in the process
- Creates an environment for regular review of operations, policies and procedures, and promotes continual improvement
- Forces written documentation of policies and procedures
"The accreditation process created a legacy of documented practices, policies, and procedures for the organization, our employees and our customers. This was a wonderful planned "time-out" strategic initiative to enhance continuous organizational learning, effectiveness and efficiency in public service delivery. It fortified our agency through education, collaboration, and team effort, leaving in place a dynamic re-accreditation process that enriches our service effectiveness and customers' experience as we move forward."
Trudye Morgan Johnson, Executive Director
The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission
"Agency Accreditation is our commitment to our citizens to strive for continuous improvement," said Jody Stowers, Westerville Parks and Recreation Department Director. "The Agency Accreditation process and results will help to ensure a high level of accountability throughout the department and facilitate efficient and effective delivery of parks and recreation services to our citizens."
Jody Stowers, Director
Westerville Parks and Recreation
"Our Agency strives every day to inspire a passion for parks and recreation and to provide quality programs and facilities. We advocate recreation as a dynamic component that improves health, enhances the livability of our communities, preserves precious resources, prevents crime and attracts business. We network with elected officials to shape public policy. We confront changing demographics and compete for customers and funding. We partner in the spirit of cooperation and shared vision. Being nationally accredited adds credibility to these efforts. It is an honor worn with pride by each member of our staff, board of directors, and elected officials. It reflects a level of professionalism, efficiency of operations worthy of our community's high praise. It is a tool to promote the excellence of our programs and services. It is an instrument that has altered perception and improved our image. The CAPRA logo is proof to our customers that we do what we say, and we do it well."
J. Melvin Cooper, CPRP, Director
Gainesville Parks and Recreation Agency
"At the City of Delray Beach Parks and Recreation Department we use accreditation as a benchmark for continuous improvement by routinely reviewing our agency against the CAPRA standards. Accreditation has helped us to become a better agency. Specifically, since achieving accreditation, both our risk management and marketing plans have improved tremendously because we have applied the CAPRA standards and used the accreditation process, especially the guidance from the visitors, to enhance and invest in these targeted areas for improvement."
Joseph Weldon, Director
Delray Beach Parks and Recreation Department
Delray Beach, FL
"Bellevue Parks & Community Services' achievement of CAPRA accreditation is a remarkable accomplishment. Our top priority is to deliver consistent, high quality public service to residents and customers, and accreditation is an exceptional way to measure if we are meeting or exceeding professional standards. It’s an important process that determines how we are doing compared to our peers and how we can improve."
Steve Sarkozy, City Manager
City of Bellevue, Washington