Planning and Preparing Registration and Identity Management Systems
© UNHCR/Hector Perez
3.8 Prepare infrastructure

Key messages

    • Determining the requirements for registration sites, tools, equipment and materials requires collaborative thinking and it must be done early.
    • The Registration and Identity Management Officer works in close consultation with supply and programme colleagues, logistics and site planners and ICT staff.
  • It is important to consult documents that have been developed for the registration activity to help determine exact requirements for the registration activity – the process flow map and SOPs are particularly useful tools for visualizing material and equipment needs. A strong SOP indicates at each step in the process flow the material resources required to successfully carry out the related activity. Other key documents and information sources in this regard include:

    • The scaled registration layout: an accurate map will help determine:
      • the required size for the registration site(s),
      • the amount of furniture (desks, chairs) required for all steps in the registration process as well as the waiting areas,
      • IT requirements (computers, printers, electricity, connectivity),
      • The stationary and other equipment required at each step to carry out the related activity.
    • The number of sites and locations: an assessment of all the sites to be used will inform whether and to what extent investment is required by UNHCR to construct or re-purpose a structure for registration. Looking at the scale and timeline of a registration activity in terms of sites and locations will also inform both an estimation of the volume of each item required as well as its likely deterioration through wear-and-tear over time.
    • Staffing levels: when staffing levels are decided, this will directly inform the number of laptops needed as well as stationary and other tools to be assigned to each staff member, as well as the number of printers and other shared equipment required.
    • Nature of accommodation and transportation arrangements for staff: are staff staying in hotels? In tents with mattresses? What infrastructure, if any, is required to house registration staff? How many vehicles are required to transport staff and equipment to the registration site?

    The below is list of items commonly required for large registration activities. It includes staffing costs as well.

  • The Administrative Budget and Obligation Document (ABOD) relates to administration costs, UNHCR staff (including TA) salaries and all daily subsistence allowances (DSA). All remaining registration costs are paid from the Operations budget, which is allocated per operation for partner and direct implementation of activities.

    Registration activities are budgeted and financed within the normal UNHCR annual programming cycle. Any amounts to be covered by UNHCR should be part of the Country Operations Plan (COP); costs not budgeted for at this stage must be covered through reallocation of budgets at the country of regional level and/ or through support from HQ. The Registration Identity Management Officer should liaise closely with Programme, Administration and Supply Units in order to understand the sources of funding available for registration and the lead times for recruitment and delivery of registration materials, and more generally to benefit from the necessary administrative support for the management of funds and the organizing of purchases.

  • International procurement - HQ Registration Stockpile

    DIRS (The Digital Identity and Registration Section) maintains a stockpile of standard registration materials and equipment intended to support registration activities in the field. Operations may procure items required for registration activities from the HQ stockpile, which will ensure timely delivery and consistent quality of registration equipment. Operations shall reimburse DIRS for items ordered from the stockpile and cover the transport costs as well. Note that all items, except Ration Cards, Security Paper and the UNHCR custom hologram laminate for ID cards, can also be procured directly by operations by raising a Requisition through HQSMS Budapest.

    Operations are advised to place their orders for planned registration/verification exercises 2-3 months ahead of time, and to replenish their local stocks as applicable and needed.

  • Ordering procedures

    Field operations covered by a (Senior) Regional Registration and Identity Management Officer should obtain clearance for their registration methodologies and orders for materials from the respective (Senior) Regional Registration and Identity Management Officer prior to placing the order.

    Requests for shipment from the HQ registration stockpile should be submitted by email, using the appropriate material order form, with the respective (Senior) Regional Registration Officer and the Desk in copy. The costs for items ordered from the HQ stockpile will be recovered from the operation through a Journal Voucher, initiated by HQ.

    The Order Form must specify:

    • registration item and quantities (unit cost and full MSRP Item ID);
    • quantities must correspond to full boxes of material. (i.e. for fixing tokens (1,500/box) quantities as follows 3,000, 4,500, etc.);
    • for tokens and hole punchers, the color or shape must be specified;
    • relevant authorized budget codes for cost recovery for the material and for transport costs;
    • special shipping requirements or documentation requirements (for customs clearance);
    • full shipping address and contact person (name, title and contact phone number of the responsible Administrative or Logistics Officer in the receiving office who should be contacted on arrival of the shipment at the airport);
    • names and email address of all persons who should be copied on the dispatch notification when the shipment leaves HQ.
  • Release of registration IT equipment from the stockpile

    HQ can provide IT equipment from the stockpile exclusively for use in registration/ verification activities. Such requests must be cleared by a (Senior) Regional Registration and Identity Management Officer. Note that the quantity of laptops per order needs to be limited to 15 pieces per order. Operations that require larger quantities (e.g. for verification exercises) must inform DIRS at least 2 months in advance, so that DIRS can initiate its replenishment procurement accordingly.

  • Release of standard items from the stockpile

    Standard items can normally be released from the HQ warehouse for dispatch within 5-8 working days from receipt of the Order Form. If certain items are not available immediately, the requesting office will be informed accordingly.

  • Release of specific materials and equipment

    ID card printing equipment can be dispatched to operations only when the initial introduction of ID card issuance has been cleared with the (Senior) Regional Registration and Identity Management Officer and the (Senior) Legal Adviser of the respective Bureau. ID card issuance must be supported by an agreement with the host country (MoU or other). A copy of the MoU and of the agreed ID card layout should be sent to DIRS. 

    Operations can order BIMS equipment from the HQ registration stockpile. The same reimbursement procedures as for other registration items will apply. Biometric hardware can also be ordered directly through HQSMS Budapest (i.e. placing a Requisition). Requisitions placed for small quantities of biometric hardware will entail a higher unit cost than ordering from the HQ stockpile.

    Customization of registration materials is possible upon request, when standard items are not suitable for the agreed registration methodology. Advice on specifications must be sought from the (Senior) Regional Registration and Identity Management Officer. Reasons for customization may include the need to use a language other than English or French on documents or cards, to differentiate between documents issued in different settings within an operation, or to distinguish new cards from old cards. Customization may also allow the capture of particular information which cannot be captured in the standard form. HQ can assist with the definition of customized specifications and identification of potential suppliers. Procurement of customized items will normally have to go through a tendering process, which will require additional lead time, before Procurement Service Budapest can place an order to a vendor. On average, offices should expect a minimum timeframe of 2-3 months for customized orders.

  • Shipment and transport costs

    Goods are normally shipped by airfreight. Small quantities of up to 15 kg can be dispatched via diplomatic pouch. Dispatch by Express Courier services are very costly and should only be requested in exceptional circumstances.

    The HQ General Services Section (GSS) will arrange the shipment shortly after the request has been received, and will send an email notification with packing list details and Airway Bill to the receiving office to facilitate customs clearance procedures on arrival of the shipment at its destination. If the receiving office has special requirements regarding the dispatch or documents for customs clearance, these must be indicated on the Order Form submitted to HQ.

    All transport costs will be charged to the budget of the requesting office. The invoice will normally be processed by HQ/GSS, against the budget codes provided by the operation on the Order Form. In cases where the transport invoice exceeds USD 4,000, HQ will issue a Requisition with the budget codes provided for issuance of a Purchase Order by HQSMS Budapest and settlement of the invoice by the Finance Section. Unless informed otherwise, no action is required on the part of the field operation.

  • Reimbursement for material and equipment

    HQ will initiate the respective reimbursement due by the operation, by submitting a transfer of funds request to the Finance Section in Budapest, debiting the budget indicated on the Order Form.

  • Local procurement

    Registration materials and equipment that are not stockpiled by HQ and which are locally available should be locally procured. e.g. stationary, fuel, rent. See UNHCR Administrative Instructions in place for the required procedures to follow as well as the thresholds for the procurement of goods and services locally.

  • Use of renewable energy

    Alternative energy supplies should be fully explored when planning for registration. For example, a portable solar power station (to be sized according to the location and season depending on the hours and intensity of sunlight) offers a quiet, lightweight and steady power supply instead of noisy and less reliable fuel-powered generators, and reduce running costs as well as the overall environmental impact of the power supply in areas where main power is not available. As an example, in a sunny location 3200 W of panels and a battery-powered inverter of 5000 W can power a large registration center with several ID card printers, laser printers, led lights for photos, scanners and more than 40 laptops.

  • Registration SOPs should include procedures for stock maintenance and inventory records. Alternatively, separate SOPs for stockpile maintenance should be developed depending on the scale or complexity of the registration operation.

    The Registration Manager must designate person(s) responsible for receipt, storage, release and monitoring of registration material stocks. Their responsibilities include the following:

    • Follow up on timely delivery (email HQ to check on status of order, ensure Admin/Supply staff are following up on custom clearance once delivered to the country, and ensure safe and complete arrival of equipment);

    • Receiving registration materials: the responsible staff need to check the quality and quantity of materials received;

    • Confirming receipt of items to managers and informing HQ on the safe and complete arrival of materials;

    • Secure storage area and monitor access: storage area must be free of water or fire hazards, securely locked and access strictly limited to authorized staff. UNHCR stamps and inkpads should be locked separately, for example, in the office of a senior staff member. During a registration exercise that must be set up and taken down each day, responsibility must be assigned for securely storing all materials into a lockable metal trunk at the end of each day. Individual staff need to be informed that they are personally responsible for items that are assigned to them (label materials with name tags);

    • Release materials: use balance sheets, inventories and storage logs to control the flow of registration materials. Release items only against the signature of an authorized staff member;

    • Monitoring use: the use of released materials should be closely monitored. Items issued and used must be tracked on control sheets, recording pre-printed serial numbers and the total numbers. Account for damaged or cancelled tokens, wristbands, forms, cards and other materials in detail. Return unused items to storage;

    • Replenishment planning: ensure supplies do not run out; re-ordering on time to maintain stock.