Implementing performance management at local government level in South Africa : a case study on the impact of organisational culture

Williams, Quinton Walter (2006) Implementing performance management at local government level in South Africa : a case study on the impact of organisational culture. Masters thesis, Rhodes University.

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Abstract

Executive Summary: Local Government in South Africa has undergone much transformation since 2000. Although much of the change has been to correct imbalances, inequities and disparities within our local communities as a result of Apartheid, change has also been motivated by National Government’s realisation that, as with governments throughout the world, there is a need to modernise all spheres of Government. Part of this transformation process at a local government level in South Africa has been to ensure that municipalities become more responsive to the communities’ needs. The guiding principles for this transformation are contained in the White Paper on the Transformation of the Public Service (1995) and the Batho Pele White Paper (1997). This has informed the Municipal Systems Act: Act 32 of 2000 of which Chapter 6 determines that municipalities will have a performance management system to promote a culture of performance management amongst the political structures, political office bearers, councillors and administration. The performance management system must ensure that the municipality administers its affairs in an economical, effective, efficient and accountable manner. A literature review contained in this research, indicates that internationally, implementing performance management systems at a local government level is impact upon by a number of factors such as the organizational culture of an institution. This research, which has been grounded within a constructivist paradigm, describes the impact organizational culture has had on the implementation process of the performance management system at Buffalo City Municipality. Interviews were conducted amongst the Section 57 employees (i.e. the Directors) and those employees directly responsible for implementing performance management. The four Directors, two General Managers and the portfolio councilor were interviewed. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with the interviewees and this culminated in a total of 10 hours of interviewing. The protocols were analyzed using the guidelines suggested by Boyatzis (1998) and the findings are detailed in two chapters. The findings of the research were that the implementation of the performance management system at Buffalo City Municipality has been impacted on by the dichotomy between the political and administrative leadership, resulting in non-implementation of council resolutions, the lack of an organizational strategy, poor institutional arrangements and inadequate resource allocation, are reported. However, the most important finding was the impact that a culture of fear has had on the implementation process. This culture of fear and its impact on the implementation of performance management system is described as the most pervasive and insidious of all the findings to have negatively impacted on the implementation process. This research ends with recommendations for further research and it is argued that each organization has its own unique organizational culture. The conclusion is that no single typology, as contained in the literature, which can account for the specific impact organizational culture will have on the implementation process of a performance management system at local government level in South Africa. Consequently, implementers of performance management systems must assess the unique characteristics of each organization’s culture prior to implementation, in order to evaluate its impact that the organizational culture can have on the process.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information:MBA (Investec Business School)
Uncontrolled Keywords:performance management systems, Buffalo City (South Africa), local government in South Africa, municipal government, corporate culture in South Africa
Subjects:Y Unknown > Subjects to be assigned
Divisions:Research Institutes and Units > Rhodes Business School
Supervisors:Pearse, N.J.
ID Code:293
Deposited By: Rhodes Library Archive Administrator
Deposited On:16 Aug 2006
Last Modified:06 Jan 2012 16:17
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