Performance management systems in meeting services delivery targets : a case study of Maphumulo Municipality.
Mahlaba, Mnqobi Blessing.
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Delivery of services to communities appears to be the leading cause of protests around South Africa, with communities turning to protest action to vent their anger at the lack of services they experience. This heightened demand for an increase in delivery of basic services to the community has forced government to develop new systems to address the community’s concerns. Constitutionally, the responsibility for delivery of services lies with the local government. This has resulted in a great deal of pressure on this sphere of government. The introduction of performance management in the public sector but more especially in local government has sought to bring about efficient and effective systems which ensure that service delivery is improved. This study was undertaken in Maphumulo Local Municipality, a rural municipality in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa and aimed to ascertain the effectiveness of PMS (Public Management System) in the delivery of services this specific municipality. The study adopted a qualitative, case study design. Research was undertaken with participants from Maphumulo Municipality who were purposively selected because of their high degree and working knowledge of the subject matter. In-depth interviews were used as the primary means of collecting data from the participants and content analysis was performed on the interview transcriptions. The analysis confirmed the hypothesis of the study, that the Performance Management System in use in the Maphumulo Municipality is ineffective in addressing their service delivery needs. It also resulted in the emergence of a number of themes around possible causes of the inadequate functioning of PMS in the municipality which include, amongst others, high vacancy rates – especially at management level, poor communication between the community and the municipality, lack of support from provincial and national spheres of government and other human resource management challenges. If the challenges that emerged from the study are addressed, it is expected that this will improve the functioning of performance management and ultimately the delivery of services within the municipality.