THE SCHOLARSHIP ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS

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CHAPTER 3 REVIEW OF THE SCHOLARSHIP ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS

INTRODUCTION

The previous chapter reviewed the scholarship on implementation studies with the aim of informing the investigation into the PMS implementation in the Namibian public service. This chapter presents a critical discussion of the existing scholarship on PMSs using a thematic or constructs approach. Mouton’s (2001) definition of the term ‘literature review’ also applies to this chapter (see § 2.1). The concluding remarks in this chapter draw together chapters 2 and 3, since both these chapters focus on reviews of existing scholarship deemed relevant to the purposes of this study. The review of existing scholarship on PMSs is expected to identify the gaps, constraints and success factors which play a role in the implementation of a PMS.

PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM IMPLEMENTATION

The Concept of Performance Management System

A PMS has been defined by Aguinis (2009:2) as a process of identifying, measuring and developing performance in an organisation by linking the performance and objectives of individuals to the organisation’s overall mission and goals. A study conducted by Mothusi in Botswana (2009) defines a PMS as a system which links organisational goals to the work plans, appraisal, capacity development, pay and incentives for individuals and teams (Wescott, 1999). The 7th CAMPS (2011:5) defines the concept in an African context as a holistic (all-embracing) and systematic process for ensuring better results from the organisation, teams and individuals by managing performance within an agreed framework of planned goals, objectives and standards. The Government of the Republic of Namibia (2006c:4) defines the PMS in the public service context as a management tool which is aimed at improved public service delivery.
On the other hand, Maphorisa (2010:3) defines a PMS as an authoritative framework for planning, managing and measuring the performance of both the organisation and the employees. This includes the policy and planning framework as well as performance monitoring, measurement, review and assessment as well as control and corrective measures. Poister (2010:251) defines a PMS as the process of setting goals for an organisation and managing the organisation effectively in order to achieve those goals and eventually bring about the desired outcomes. The organisational performance is a summation of individual performance at the different levels of an organisation. The alignment of individual performance plans or agreements to those of the organisation is critical for an effective PMS.
The analysis of the PMS definitions by the following writers, namely, Aguinis (2005, 2009, 2011), Armstrong (2006), Van der Waldt, Van Niekerk, Doyle, Knipe and Du Toit (2002), Van der Waldt (2004), California State Government (2010), Bussin (2013), Harvard Business School (2010), Homayounizadpanah and Baqerkord (2012), Toppo and Prusty (2012), Esu and Inyang (2009), Ellis and Chinedu (2011), De Waal (2007), Bemthal, Rogers and Smith (2003), Dzimbiri (2008), Ehtesham, Muhammad and Muhammad (2011), Iqbal, Aslam & Arashad (2012), Sacht (2008), Minnaar (2010), 7th CAMPS (2011) and Maphorisa (2010) finds a consensus on the PMS as a continuous process of identifying, measuring, and developing the performance of individuals and teams and aligning performance with the strategic goals of the organisation.
Based on the above, the researcher identified certain unique elements in the definitions proposed by Maphorisa (2010) and Wescott (1999) that may be useful for an effective PMS implementation in the Namibian public service. Maphorisa’s (2010) definition includes concepts such as authoritative and corrective measures
– these concepts were not included in the definitions suggested by other writers.
Wescott’s (1999) definition underscores the need for “capacity development, pay and incentive for individual and teams”.
After reviewing the definitions of a PMS that have already been discussed, the researcher supports the definition proposed by the 7th CAMPS (2011:15). Thus, a PMS may be said to be a systematic process which is aimed at improving public service delivery through effective planning, organising, leading (which includes authority, support, empowerment, visioning, influencing, inspiring, doing things right and leading by example), control through continuous monitoring and evaluation and rewarding both individuals and teams. It is, thus, a management tool which may improve service delivery if successfully implemented.

Brief History of Performance Management Systems

Lawrie, Kalff and Anderson (2005:3) argue strongly that the public sector led the way in terms of innovation in performance management methods up until the early 1970s. The aim of such innovations was to try to meet the economic demands of military campaigns by raising income through taxation. The types of innovation included, among others, process mapping and strategic planning (Lawrie et al., 2005:3). The review of the literature found that the concept of a PMS had existed before NPM which was at its height in the 1990s. In addition, it is believed that the initial steps in the adoption of PMS practice that arose between the end of the 19th century and the early 20th century emanated from different milieus, including social reforms, engineers and specialist administrators as well as large corporations (Mutahaba, 2011:15). Most of the movements were in response to and sought answers for the problems arising from industrialisation, poverty and social unrest, and inefficiency and corruption in government through the rationalisation and quantification of policy and administration.
However, Philip (2011:10) maintains that PMSs were initially designed by the private sector in Western countries and then adopted by the public sector. Nevertheless, the PMS has become a global reform movement which has also been implemented in the public sectors of developing countries.
In his study Mutahaba (2011:13–16) identifies the following seven movements that led to what is referred to as the PMS today:
The first movement, labelled the Social Survey Movement, involved social reformers who were concerned with addressing the societal disorders and problems that had accompanied industrialisation in the first world and included understanding their causes. The best known work of this movement is the study by Charles Booth on The life and labour of the people of London 1886 (Mutahaba, 2011:13). Booth believes that, in order to deal effectively with poverty there was a need to gather quantitative information on the characteristics of poverty, including statistics on the number of poor people, causes of poverty and measures to alleviate it. The movement targeted mainly the socio-economic inequalities that had arisen from the industrialisation processes and sought to sensitise governments on the benefits of quantifying information on the problems that needed to be addressed as well as the results of actions being taken to ameliorate the problems.
The second movement, christened the Scientific Management and the Science of Administration, was, like the social survey movement, focused on developing organisational solutions to the problems/challenges arising from the industrialisation processes.
The third performance improvement movement was concerned with controlling wastage in the production and delivery of goods and services in the public sector. It focused on the adoption of tools and instruments that helped organisations to track records and analyse costs.
The fourth stream in performance movement initially emerged in the United States in the 1940s and was named Performance Budgeting. It focused on improving the budgetary processes of the government in order to be able to express the objectives of government in terms of “the work to be done rather than through mere classification of expenditures items” (Hoover Commission Report in Shafritz & Hyde, 2004:162, in Mutahaba, 2011:14). The movement took some time to become popularised and, in fact, it was not until the 1960s that the US Government adopted it as a standard budgetary method through the adoption of the Planning Programming Budgeting Systems (PPBS) which then spread to Western Europe in the early 1970s. This, in turn, gave way to other approaches such as Management by Objectives (MBOs), Zero Based Budgeting (ZBB) as well as Government Performance and Result Act (GPRA) (Kelly & Rivenback, 2003, in Mutahaba, 2011:15).
The fifth performance movement, known as the Social Indicator, emerged in tandem with Performance Budgeting. The movement tried to take the allocation of PPBS further and aimed at developing objectives in the form of outcomes. Thus, government work had to be expressed in terms of improvements in the social characteristics of the country, province and city. This meant that work had to be undertaken to enhance levels of education, health conditions and reduce crime while measurement would be made against a standard in order to determine either improvement or regression.
The sixth performance movement emphasised the need to ensure quality at all stages of management, namely, inputs, process and outputs (including outcomes), and was aimed at measuring quality in all relevant aspects of organisational management. This movement was known as Total Quality Management. The model was developed in Japan in the 1950s and then implemented in Japan’s industrial establishments in the 1960s. It was imported by private sector establishments in the USA and Western Europe in the 1970s and was introduced into the public sector by the 1980s (Mutahaba, 2011:15).
The seventh and contemporary performance movement in the public sector has been labelled the performance management system (PMS) or result-based management. It spread into traditional governmental organisations as part of the measures to contain public expenditure during the unprecedented global economic crisis that engulfed the world in the 1970s and 1980s (Mutahaba, 2011:15). It has, however, been agreed that the PMS application rose together with the NPM movement which was triggered by two oil crises. The first such crisis took place in 1973 and the second one in the early 1980s in India (Mutahaba, 2011:15). Mutahaba (2011:25) concludes that PMS implementation challenges differ from one country to the other.
It is important to note that there has been a shift from a system to a process (Philip, 2011). However, the name has not changed to ‘performance management process’, as opposed to ‘performance management system’. In addition, existing scholarship has indicated that a new approach, termed ‘public value management’, has been developed to ensure that public value is delivered to the citizenry rather than to the individual (O’Flynn, 2007:360). It is also important to note that the performance management process has evolved several phases since 1960 from the Annual Confidential Reports (ACR), known as ‘Employee Service Records’, to the modern phase which is characterised by maturity and openness in the approach to addressing people’s issues (Aguinis, 2009).
This section has highlighted that performance has evolved from an annual appraisal to a continuous PMS which is characterised by the following: ongoing review of employee performance, two-way communication and the rating of employee performance by both the employee and supervisor after three months, six months and annually.

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Aims and Objectives of a Performance Management System

There are various interpretations of the aims and objectives of performance management. The following include some of the aims of a PMS as expressed by various organisations (Armstrong World Industries, Eli Lilly and Co, ICI Paints, Leicestershire Country Council, Macmillan Cancer Relief, Marks and Spencer Financial Services, Royal Berkshire and Battle Hospitals NHS Trust and West Bromwich Building Society) in a survey, ‘Trends in Performance Management’, which was conducted by IRS (2003:12–19):
Empowering and rewarding employees in order to motivate them to do their best
Focusing employees’ tasks on the right things and on doing them right
Aligning everyone’s individual goals to the goals of the organisation
Proactively managing and resourcing performance against agreed accountabilities and objectives
Linking job performance to the achievement of the organisation’s medium-term corporate strategy and service plans
Aligning personal/individual objectives with team, department/divisional and corporate plans. The presentation of objectives with clearly defined goals/targets using measures, both soft and numeric. The monitoring of performance and the taking of continuous action as required
Allowing all individuals to become clear about what they need to achieve and the expected standards and how that, in turn, contributes to the overall success of the organisation. They receive regular, fair and accurate feedback and coaching to stretch and motivate them to achieve their best
Aligning individual accountabilities to organisational targets and activities
Maximising the potential of individuals and teams in order to benefit both themselves and the organisation, focusing on the achievement of their objectives, and
Defining the organisation’s vision, mission, core values and strategic direction, in order to create value for its shareholders, customers and society.
Aguinis (2013:26) maintains that there are numerous advantages to implementing a well-designed PMS, including the following: it increases motivation and self-esteem, improves performance, clarifies job tasks and duties, provides self-insight and development opportunities and clarifies supervisor expectations. In view of the above bullets, one should also understand that performance appraisal is an element of performance management, because it focuses on the assessment of individual performance.
In short, various organisations view the aims of a PMS in different ways. Nevertheless, there is consensus that the overall aims of a PMS are to establish a high performance culture in which individuals and teams take responsibility for the continuous improvement of operational processes and for their own skills and contributions within a framework provided by effective leadership; to focus people on doing the right things by achieving goals; and to develop the capacity of people to meet and exceed expectations and to achieve their full potential to the benefit of themselves and the organisations.
Most importantly, a PMS is concerned with ensuring that the support and guidance which people need in order to develop and improve are readily available. A major finding by Homayounizadpanah and Baqerkord (2012:1767), based on a survey and interviews conducted with Chabahar Municipality employees, was that “there is a strong positive relationship between a PMS, productivity and efficiency”. It may, thus, be concluded that there is a relationship between the PMS’s aims and objectives and the public value approach to the management of government institutions. The above findings on the aims and objectives of PMS guided the data collection methods used in this study, namely, a mini survey during phase one and interviews during phase two of the data collection process.

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Attribute versus Results-Based Performance Management Approaches

An attribute PMS holds staff accountable for living the organisational values and tends to be more behaviour driven. Dzimbiri (2008:46) argues that this type of traditional public administration model laid considerable emphasis on behavioural or personality characteristics such as loyalty, dependability, punctuality and honesty as central attributes for the evaluation of individual employees. This meant that performance was never linked to departmental, divisional and organisational strategic goals and objectives.
On the other hand, a results-based PMS focuses on results and, in some cases, a combination of attributes. For example, Jack Welch made a proposal at a meeting of the General Electric (GE) Company’s five hundred executives that all GE leaders would be held accountable both for “making the numbers” and for “living the values” (Ulrich et al., 1999:12). Ulrich et al. further argue that a leader’s job requires more than character, knowledge and action and that it also demands results. Thus, the move towards a combination of attribute and result based PMSs are critical in the public service. Moreover, Ulrich et al. (1999:13) argue that this type of PMS worked for the GE Company. However, the researcher’s view is that the public service context is different from that of the private sector. It should, thus, be noted that what worked well in the private sector may not necessarily work in the public sector. The scope and institutional environment are key elements in this respect.

Performance Management System Frameworks

The researcher’s view is that a study of PMS implementation necessitates a prior understanding of the various frameworks that guide both its design and the implementation process. Accordingly, this section discusses different PMS frameworks in order to be able to analyse the system being used in the Namibian public service.

Logical Framework

The review of the literature or scholarship revealed that the ‘Logical Framework’ is the oldest PMS framework. Lawrie et al. (2005:3) point out that the Logical Framework is a PMS device used widely in the non-governmental organisation (NGO) sector and that it was also used to plan, monitor and evaluate projects originated in work carried out for the US Department of Defence in the 1960s (Odame, 2001). It is also helpful as a planning and evaluation tool in complex and unpredictable environments in which outcomes are not clearly measurable and required interventions are difficult to predict (Lawrie et al., 2005:4). Lawrie et al. (2005:3) further indicate that, initially, it was adopted by the United States Agencies for International Development (USAID) during the 1970s and was widely applied by several developmental organisations for planning and to support the newly emerging discipline of monitoring and evaluation (M&E).
Lawrie et al. (2005:4) argue that a complete “Log Frame” provides a one-page summary of the programme strategic logic: the performance expected from the programme at multiple levels and the means of assessing performance over time. They further point out that good Log Frames are completed by a combination of programme managers, M&E specialists and external stakeholders, for example, intermediary partners and government representatives. The researcher is, however, of the opinion that misunderstanding the framework may lead to wrong application and a consequent wastage of resources. The design of the Logical Framework is presented in table 3.1 below.

Table of contents
DECLARATION
DEDICATION
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
ABBREVIATIONS
ABSTRACT
Table of contents
List of tables
List of figures
List of graphs
CHAPTER 1 GENERAL INTRODUCTION
1.1 INTRODUCTION
1.2 THE BACKGROUND TO THE PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM IMPLEMENTATION IN THE NAMIBIAN PUBLIC SERVICE
1.3 PROBLEM STATEMENT
1.4 THE RESEARCH OBJECTIVES
1.5 THE SIGNIFICANCE AND POSSIBLE CONTRIBUTION OF THE STUDY TO PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION THEORY
1.6 THE DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
1.7 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
1.8 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
1.9 REFERENCE TECHNIQUE APPLIED
1.10 TERMINOLOGY
1.11 OVERVIEW OF CHAPTERS
1.12 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 2 REVIEW OF EXISTING SCHOLARSHIP ON IMPLEMENTATION STUDIES
2.1 INTRODUCTION
2.2 AN ANALYSIS OF THE SCHOLARSHIP ON IMPLEMENTATION IN POLICY STUDIES
2.3 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 3 REVIEW OF THE SCHOLARSHIP ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS
3.1 INTRODUCTION
3.2 PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM IMPLEMENTATION
3.3 EXISTING GAP IN THE PMS IMPLEMENTATION FRAMEWORKS
3.4 EFFECTIVE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
3.5 CONSTRAINTS ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
3.6 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 4 THE REGULATIVE SYSTEM FOR PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT IMPLEMENTATION IN THE NAMIBIAN PUBLIC SERVICE
4.1 INTRODUCTION
4.2 THE CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF NAMIBIA 1990 (AS AMENDED)
4.3 THE ACTS GOVERNING PUBLIC SERVICE IN NAMIBIA
4.4 CHARTERS FOR PUBLIC SERVICE DELIVERY
4.5 THE PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT POLICY (2011)
4.6 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 5 RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY
5.1 INTRODUCTION
5.2 PRAGMATIC RESEARCH PARADIGM
5.3 THE RESEARCH DESIGN
5.4 TIME HORIZONS
5.5 PURPOSIVE SAMPLING STRATEGY
5.6 RESEARCH INSTRUMENTS AND DATA COLLECTION METHODS
5.7 DATA ANALYSIS METHODS
5.8 ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS
5.9 VALIDITY AND TRUSTWORTHNESS MEASURES
5.10 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 6 PRESENTATION OF THE RESULTS
6.1 INTRODUCTION
6.2 PRESENTATION OF PHASE ONE RESULTS
6.3 PHASE TWO RESULTS
6.4 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 7 INTERPRETATIONS AND DISCUSSIONS
7.1 INTRODUCTION
7.2 CRITERIA FOR MEASURING THE PMS IMPLEMENTATION
7.3 PMS DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION ACHIEVEMENTS
7.4 THE SUCCESS FACTORS THAT CONTRIBUTED TO THE PMS IMPLEMENTATION ACHIEVEMENTS
7.5 CONSTRAINTS THAT CONTRIBUTED TO THE POOR PMS IMPLEMENTATION
7.6 THE INCLUSION OF POLITICAL EXECUTIVES IN THE PMS IMPLEMENTATION
7.7 THE REQUIREMENTS FOR AN EFFECTIVE PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
7.8 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER 8 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
8.1 INTRODUCTION
8.2 GENERAL CONCLUSIONS
8.3 RECOMMENDATIONS
8.4 SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH
REFERENCES
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