The alignment of performance indicators within the Overstrand Local Municipality : determining the role of management
Reyneke, Susanna Gertruida
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This study investigates the role of managers, especially senior managers, with respect to the alignment of individual and institutional performance indicators in the Overstrand Local Municipality. Service delivery is an important issue for South African municipalities and is directly linked to performance management. In order to achieve institutional goals and improve service delivery, the alignment of individual and institutional performance indicators is vital. The managers’ role with respect to alignment is important because they are the driving force behind the institutional performance management system (PMS) in the municipality. A qualitative research methodology is used in this study and includes a literature study and unstructured interviews. The main objective of this research is to determine the role of management in the alignment of individual and institutional performance indicators in the Overstrand Local Municipality using a municipal scorecard model. The secondary objectives include the formulation of descriptions of the theoretical models and principles of performance management, and the principles and legislative requirements for a comprehensive PMS; determining challenges that managers experience in aligning institutional and individual performance indicators using a municipal scorecard model; and proposing recommendations based on best practice examples towards a management framework that will facilitate the effective alignment of individual and institutional performance indicators. The findings of the study were that the alignment of performance indicators in the Overstrand Local Municipality is unsuccessful, especially at the lower levels. Theoretically, alignment is possible, but the practical implementation thereof remains a challenge. The negative perceptions, attitudes and behaviours that employees exhibit in relation to performance management, both institutional and individual, also came to the fore. Furthermore, employees do not understand the concept and importance of institutional performance. This clearly shows a lack of alignment in the municipality and managers have a very important role to fulfil in order to ensure alignment. Additionally, the challenge that managers experience in inculcating a performance culture in the municipality is particularly evident in the manner in which performance planning, communication, leading and monitoring are done. Various recommendations were made to the Overstrand Local Municipality regarding the alignment of performance indicators through the management functions of planning, organising, leading and control. The implementation of these recommendations will enable the municipality’s senior managers to create a positive performance culture, which should be reflected in the manner in which individual performance is managed. Moreover, the recommendations will assist the managers to align individual and institutional performance, positively influence service delivery and ensure organisational responsiveness to community needs.