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Evaluation of supply chain processes in the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs in Pietermaritzburg.

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Supply chain management (SCM) has become an integral part of the public sector ever since South Africa's 1994 first democratic elections. This presented the need to revisit the socio-economic and political direction of the country. The new government faced significant challenges; one of these was a need for public sector transformation. The government introduced new processes, legislation, and policies. The National Treasury introduced strategies to improve service delivery. In 2003, the South African Government introduced the SCM framework with the idea of creating a unified system that positively impacts service delivery while achieving effectiveness, fairness, equity, transparency, and ethics. The main aim was to line up the SCM framework with the best practices within the public sector. The effectiveness and efficiency of SCM are of paramount importance to the operations of the public sector. Notwithstanding many public sector attempts to improve SCM, however, strikes continue due to poor service delivery. Therefore, this led to the desire to evaluate the supply chain management process for the public sector. This study evaluates SCM processes at the Department of Economic Development, Tourism, and Traditional Affairs in Pietermaritzburg. This researcher believes that the lack of proper SCM systems could lead to poor service delivery; hence, evaluating the supply chain process can improve organizational performance and service delivery. The study adopted a mixed research method in the collection of data. This method involved two steps of gathering primary data. Qualitative data was collected through interviews conducted with SCM managers, and quantitative data was collected through questionnaire surveys. The closedended questionnaires were distributed via Survey Monkey to EDTEA SCM employees. The researcher used purposive sampling because it gives the researcher a choice. Quota sampling was used in proportionate stratified sampling to subdivide the group into two parts. The data collected by questionnaires was analyzed using Survey Monkey software with support of descriptive. The data collected by interviews was analyzed using thematic analysis in which it was systematically examined to develop similarities between the emerging ideas on supply chain processes. This was done through data transcription, sorting, categorizing, synthesizing data, and identifying the crosscutting themes that are linked to the research objectives; those themes were translated into informed discussions. The findings reveal that SCM practices are aligned with policies derived from the National Treasury. The most implemented SCM practices are demand, acquisition, assets and disposal, and logistics management. The least implemented are risk, contract, and performance management. However, there is a need to improve the applied elements such as demand acquisition, assets and disposal, and logistics management. The study reveals that although the SCM unit is using policies and legislative frameworks derived from the Treasury, the group receives queries from the Auditor General (AG); however, it is revealed that the questions originate from the project managers' errors. The study also reveals that the unit is performing above average. Based on the results, there is a need to recruit qualified and experienced staff and develop skills, knowledge, and competencies to improve planning interventions, create partnership with stakeholders, and create incentives and rewards.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg.