A systems approach to managing relationships in a tertiary institution : a case study at Mangosuthu University of Technology.
Mchunu, Andrew Thamsanqa Sbusiso.
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The purpose of this study is to explain the dynamics of the interaction between the different stakeholders at Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) from a student development point of view. The study is conducted in order to develop an effective communication system that can assist in the management of relationships. The literature review presents an analysis of key documents. It focuses on the management of relations as well as the role that is played by communication in this regard. The systems approach provides a theoretical framework that guides the views of the researcher. Chapter Three outlines the design and procedure of the study. The research approach adopted by the researcher is qualitative and is based on a case study, which is Mangosuthu University of Technology. The following research methods are applied in the study; that is, the analysis of documentation, observations and a focus group, together with the application of questionnaires. Chapter Four presents a combination of qualitative and quantitative research data. The first part of the chapter focuses on observations that were made by the writer over a period of six months. This is followed by the analysis of the questionnaire. The last part discusses the responses that were elicited from the focus group. Chapter Five leads to the conclusive section of the whole study and it is an extension of Chapter Four in which the results of the research carried out are presented. The findings reveal that a systems approach has a significant role to play in assisting an organisation in managing relations. This approach recognises the existence of inter-relations between different parts of an organisation. The study concludes that MUT needs to take steps to create a knowledge-based institution where there is flexible learning, available anywhere, anytime and on any topic.