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Masters Degrees (Public Administration)

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    Analysing the effects of flexible working conditions in the workplace: a case of the KwaZulu-Natal Department of co-operative governance.
    (2023) Shandu, Ruth Bhekekile.; Nzimakwe, Thokozani Ian.
    Currently, South African government departments face common problems such as punctuality, frequent leave requests, lack of engagement, absenteeism, and poor management of employee wellbeing, resulting in high absenteeism rates. These issues affect the work-life balance, which negatively impacts employee performance, thereby affecting delivery of services to the department and community at large. This study investigated how flexible work arrangements can reduce time management issues while increasing job satisfaction and performance in the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs. Flexible working schedules can increase the level of contentment and performance, which has been discovered to benefit both the employer and the employee. A qualitative research method was chosen for the study because it provided an opportunity to explore the research objectives in greater detail. The sample size and strategy used comprised organising focus group interviews as well as individual interviews, representing the population by using a sample of 10 participants from different levels, namely senior managers to lower levels in the Department. The study reviewed aspects of analysis of the impact of workplace flexibility and its effect on employee performance by looking at previous research on similar topics. This review was designed to explore workplace flexibility in order to delve deeper into the need for it and the benefits it could provide. The findings of the study revealed that offering flexibility could help and support the emotional health of the employees, as well as improving their relationship with the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs. A call for a flexible work strategy is of interest to most employees in the Department, since flexibility provides for a work-life balance that is essential to everybody. The conclusion and recommendations were that the Department should consider implementing and making provision for flexible working arrangements, which can achieve greater job fulfilment, a better balance between work and life and motivate employees, as well as reducing absenteeism and increasing the quality of service delivery at all employee levels.
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    Service delivery at the provincial sphere of government: a case study of Operation Sukuma Sakhe (oss) in Kwazulu-Natal.
    (2023) Mkhize, Zwelini Lawrence.; Reddy, Purshottama Sivanarain.
    South Africa has been plagued by challenges of ineffective service delivery linked to poor coordination, competition and contestation of powers due to overlapping constitutional mandates, lack of cooperation and poor alignment of state entities despite the provision for improved intergovernmental relations and cooperative government in Chapter 3 of the Constitution of RSA (Act 108 of 1996). This has resulted in rising public discontent, declining public confidence and protests. In response, the Operation Sukuma Sakhe (OSS) model was introduced by the Province of KwaZulu-Natal in 2009, to improve service delivery, eradicate structural poverty, inequality and its manifestations. This study investigates the role of OSS as a framework for advancing coordination and cooperation to achieve effective service delivery in KwaZulu-Natal. As the objective, the study sought to examine the challenges in service delivery, analyse the context and philosophy behind the adoption of the OSS, evaluate the role of districts in integration of services and how the war room entrenches participatory democracy and obtain lessons for district based planning and budgeting. Guided by the interpretivist paradigm, this study was designed as applied research of a qualitative nature, utilising semistructured interviews. The focus of data collection and analysis involved multiple sources of information and purposive sampling of 24 information-rich participants, representing Ethekwini, Harry Gwala, Umkhanyakude and Ugu municipalities, KwaZulu-Natal and national government and external stakeholders. The main findings of the study indicate that transformation in South Africa has been characterised by advent of new concepts in intergovernmental relations from unitary and hierarchical powers to concurrent competences which created the necessity for cooperative government. This complexity reflects the global trend in liberal democratic models in which governance is a partnership between state and civil society stakeholders. Using the governance theories by Pierre and Peters and the Systems Theory, it is argued that complex, multi-level governance systems (due to concurrent competences) require institutional policy implementation mechanisms that can deal with the political, economic and social dynamics that affect service delivery. This is critical in South Africa where the impact of government service delivery programmes is sensitive to the maintenance of governability, which is affected by issues of authority and legitimacy of the State, public confidence, the efficient use of limited ii resources, and prevention of mismanagement and corruption. The dissertation argues that OSS enabled effective service delivery through simultaneous implementation of five convergent principles: i) cooperative government, ii) intergovernmental relations, iii) good governance, iv) community participation and, v) integration of services. The convergence of these principles within OSS meant that the OSS operated as a coordinating institutional mechanism which is critical in multi-level governance and OSS further creates the necessary ‘spirit of cooperation’ akin to the German concept of Bundestrue. The study concludes that lessons obtained from the OSS in KwaZulu-Natal should be applied nationally for district-based planning and budgeting model to successfully emerge.
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    The effects of organisational change on employee motivation in Eskom, Kwa-Zulu Natal Customer Services (Integrated Demand Management)
    (2017) Mbotho, Linda Wiseman.; Mutambara, Emmanuel.
    Abstract This study evaluated the effects of organizational change on staff motivation at Eskom Kwa-Zulu Natal Customer Service (Integrated Demand Management), which is a South African state-owned company (SOC). Organisations are persistently trying to implement both planned and unplanned organizational change management strategies to remain in competition. Eskom is expected to have a well-planned organizational change management strategy due to the monopolistic advantage they have in South Africa within the generation, transmission, distribution of electricity and customer services. Organizational change management has become so challenging to maintain due to more attention that must be paid to employees (Muathe, 2016). This study reviewed the origin of change management as well as the employee motivation. This study used the questionnaires with a sample of employees from Eskom KZN Customer Service, Integrated Demand Management. A descriptive method research design was used, and it involved in depth collecting and analysis of data. A sample of 98 Eskom employees from a target population of 130 employees was used. The research data collection method was conducted using the quantitative data technique. The data was collected from multiple cases, such as published journals, Eskom published reports and other related credible online publications. Findings indicated that there is a positive relationship between organisational change and employee motivation. This has been tested using both Pearson and Spearman correlations.
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    Employee perceptions of safety culture and the effects on safety performance at A.P. Moller Terminals (APM Terminals) Cape Town.
    (2017) Ziqubu, Edith Thandeka.; Mutambara, Emmanuel.
    ABSTRACT Safety culture has become the buzzword in determining an organisation’s safety performance and as such, it has become imperative for organisations to be aware of the state of their safety culture as a tool to driving organisational performance. This study aims to investigate employee perceptions of safety culture at APM Terminals, Cape Town branch, and the effects on safety performance. The study was approached from the positivist philosophy using the quantitative methods with a five-point Likert scale questionnaire used as the data collection instrument. Data were gathered from a population of 110 employees, from which a sample of 80 participants was selected using the stratified random sampling technique. Data analysis was conducted on SPSS version 24, using descriptive and inferential statistical methods. The results of the study indicated that the safety culture maturity level at APM Terminals borders between the reactive level, calculative level and the proactive level. The participants observed visible management commitment to safety. However, at a departmental level, the participants’ perceived absence of safety. The culture of reporting incidents was perceived to be that of no blame, this is indicative of a proactive safety culture. The existence of these organisational characteristics is indicative of a calculative safety culture. However, the participants perceived that production was prioritised over safety, which is indicative of a reactive safety culture. On the factors that affect safety culture, the participants felt informed on safety issues, they perceived leadership involvement as important, however, the factor on supervisor attitudes was perceived to be negative. There was a strong emphasis placed in the reporting of incidents and near misses, there was presence of a learning culture to prevent the reoccurrence of incidents. The study recommended that supervisors should ensure continuous role modelling by utilising skills obtained from the safety leadership program, practical initiatives to promote safety at departmental level were provided and safety culture training was suggested to allow employees to understand their roles in building a positive safety culture. vi Key words: employees; safety culture; safety culture maturity level; safety performance and safety leadership.
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    A Lean approach to enhance operational efficiency at the Bulk and Break-Bulk Terminals at the Port of Durban.
    (2017) Naicker, Deviakumarie.; Chasomeris, Mihalis.
    ABSTRACT The purpose of this research was to explore the approach of the lean concept to enhance operational efficiency within the bulk and break-bulk terminals at the Port of Durban. The methodology used in this study included quantitative and qualitative analysis of secondary data obtained from the organizations Management Information System’s department and data collected from direct operational observations on the bulk and break-bulk terminals material handling process. Data collected from direct observations were used to create a Business Process Map (BPM) and activity process chart to establish cycle times per activity for the bulk manganese operation. Through the use of literature and the research methods adopted, the current overall operational performance of the bulk and break-bulk terminals at the Port of Durban was determined as well as the operational performance of the bulk manganese material handling process. Key performance measurements established whether the current performances achieved the design targets and the limitations in achieving operational performances were also established. From the findings, a lean framework was recommended to support the enhanced material handling flow of bulk and break-bulk cargo within the terminals facilities. This study makes a contribution in many ways. It analysed and establishes overall port performance and bulk manganese operational performance in line with key performance measures, business process mapping and process activity tools were used to identify wastes, non-value adding activities and establish standard cycle times per activity. The total population size was 80 observations per element of which the sample size was computed to be 64. The results from the study reveal that the overall port performance of the vessel turnaround time was underachieved by 91,6% of the target, the truck turnaround time achieved and exceeded the target by 5,7%, the ship working hour rate underachieved the target by 8,7% and the cargo dwell time underachieved the target by 54,2%. It was further determined that operational delays of 9,97 hours contributed to the poor performance. Some of the delays observed attribute to time lost in waiting for equipment (15%), waiting for rail wagons to be shunted inn (47,7%) and placed at the operation area (16,7%), wasted time in shift change over and labour taking longer breaks (11,4%), insufficient stockpile capacity (9,2%). The implementation of a lean framework was recommended to mitigate challenges and improve the operational efficiency.
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    Investigation of the effect of the low learner pass rate in mathematics on unemployment in KwaZulu-Natal Schools.
    (2018) Mpofana, Thanduxolo Wiseman.; Mutambara, Emmanuel.
    ABSTRACT Unemployment is very high in South Africa. During the last quarter of 2016, unemployment was more than 25%. At the same time, the failure rate in mathematics in the Grade 12 examinations in South Africa is also very high. The aim of the study is to establish if there is any relationship between the high unemployment rate and the low rate of learner achievement in mathematics. Hence, the topic of the research is “Investigation of the effect of low learner pass rate in mathematics on unemployment in the KwaZulu-Natal schools”. In this study, the researcher employed both quantitative and qualitative analysis to uncover the facts about the problem at hand. In this research, the samples were taken at random and consisted of participants from the Amajuba District, to represent the province. The participants consisted of circuit managers, high school principals, deputy principals, subject heads of departments, teachers of mathematics and commerce and mathematics lecturers at Amajuba Technical College. A total of 156 questionnaires were distributed and 112 were completed and returned. Based on the questionnaire responses and the literature review, unemployment is caused by the lack of skills and the scarcity of mathematics qualifications among the workforce. Accordingly, many students fail mathematics and leave school early. Such students do not possess the skills that are required by the labour market. Hence, they constitute a considerable component of the unemployment rate.It was concluded that the low learner pass rate in mathematics actually contributes to the high unemployment rate in KwaZulu-Natal and in the whole country. The researcher recommends the establishment of a special school that would teach entrepreneurship and simultaneously re-teach mathematics to the out-of-school youth who obtained low symbols in mathematics at the Grade 12 level. The researcher further recommends the founding of an in-service centre for the newly-appointed mathematics teachers and for the teachers whose learner pass rate in mathematics is low.
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    Factors influencing brand loyalty in the petroleum retail industry: a case of service stations in Montclair.
    (2017) Mngomezulu, Michah Makhosini.; Mutambara, Emmanuel.
    ABSTRACT The petroleum retail market in South African consists of several brands for petroleum fuels. These petroleum products are often referred to as the liquid fuels. The major petroleum brands are BP, Caltex, Engen, Sasol, Shell and Total. Consumers are enticed everyday with a number of petroleum product brands to satisfy their fuel requirements. The use of brands therefore assists the consumer in the decision-making process to facilitate a quick purchase-making decision without compromising the quality of the product purchased. The study was conducted to investigate factors that influence customer brand loyalty in the petroleum retail sector. A semi-structured questionnaire was used as a research tool to investigate the factors that consumers consider crucial when selecting a specific petrol service station to buy petroleum products such as petrol or diesel. Factor analysis was used in the analysis of results. A brand loyalty framework developed by Ramis et al (2014) was used in identifying factors that have an impact on brand loyalty. The study concluded that the brand of a service station has no significant effect on the loyalty of customers to a particular service station. It was however found that not one factor but a combination of factors are what consumers consider when choosing a particular petrol service station. These factors include among others, ample space for parking, fuel quality, service quality, accessibility to the service station and availability of added amenities such convenience shop, tyre pressure and car wash facilities. As the petroleum retail industry is regulated in particular the petrol price retailers can enhance their competitiveness by improving on the quality of the type of service offered other than competing on the petrol price. Further it is important to ensure that their staff especially pump attendants attend customer service training to improve service quality. Service stations can conduct customer surveys to help them know exactly what their customers want to be able to apply necessary improvements or adjustments regarding the products and /or service they offer.
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    Barriers to the adoption of cloud services by SMEs in South Africa.
    (2016) Munatsi, Day.; Maharaj, Manoj.
    Abstract This research looks at the barriers faced by Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) , in South Africa in accessing cloud computing services. This research is drawn from a survey carried out from a sample drawn from businesses mainly located in Durban. The upswing in entrepreneurship activities experienced in South Africa implies that SMEs have the potential to play an even greater role in driving the economic growth on the country. These gains can only be consolidated if the country can reduce the high failure rate in SME growth. It was asserted that 75% of new SME do not become established firms. Information and communication technology (ICT) is acknowledged as an enabler in the growth of enterprises and some studies have focussed on the role that ICT in general plays in SME growth in South Africa. Few have however delved deeper and looked at ICT adoption in the cloud computing context and the barriers encountered. In this forum, some studies show that strides made in the cloud computing revolution have theoretically levelled the playing field in terms of providing SMEs with access to affordable ICT services, in a way that gives them a competitive advantage similar or beyond that which bigger firms have. The focus of this study was on ascertaining the current uptake of cloud computing services by SMEs in South Africa, with a view of identifying barriers that hinder the full adoption of the same. 210 SMEs were chosen for this study based on their profile. Out of 210 questionnaires sent only 43 responded, representing a response rate of 20 %. The data was captured in a QuestionPro database. From the analysis using the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) framework, it was found that, Facilitating Conditions (FC) significantly influenced SME Use Behaviour for cloud computing technology while Performance Expectancy (PE), Effort Expectancy (EE) and Social Influence (SI) were statistically insignificant, on influencing Behavioural Intention (BI) to adopt cloud services. However, Behavioural Intention significantly influenced Use Behaviour (UB) for cloud services. The sample used in this study was fairly small, due to resource constraints, it is the researcher’s recommendation that a follow up study with a larger sample be conducted if resources allow. The most significant limitation was on unreliable contact listing for SMEs resulting in many SMEs not being reachable.
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    Effectiveness of teamwork in a petrochemical industry in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
    (2017) Moodley, Pathmananthan.; Hoque, Muhammad.
    Abstract Globalisation has inherently changed the dynamics of the business environment. Organisations are now driven strongly by information and technology, requiring them to be innovative, effective and efficient in order to sustain profit and growth (Jones and George, 2011). Natcos is the crude oil supply point to the Natref crude oil refinery. Due to Natcos being geographically distanced from Natref, it requires that the team be versatile to handle many disciplines. As such this requires good team work amongst the team members to execute the Natcos strategic objectives. The focus of this study is to determine how to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the Natcos team and hence Natref. A quantitative research approach was adopted with a descriptive research method. The research was conducted within a non-contrived environment using a cross-sectional time horizon. The data collecting method employed was a survey method through the administration of a questionnaire to the Natcos team consisting of 47 participants, the entire population. The study has identified the team development phase that the Natcos team is in as well as the team attributes for an effective team that are required by the Natcos team to become effective and efficient. The recommendations of the study have highlighted the areas of teamwork that the Natcos team needs to improve upon in order to become an effective co-ordinated unit that will make the business sustainable and profitable.
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    The cost of environmental impact assessment studies in KwaZulu-Natal.
    (2017) Mthembu, Sibusiso Lawrence.; Hoque, Muhammad.
    ABSTRACT Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is regarded as one of the most successful and widely adopted policy interventions in recent decades when it comes to environmental policy tools. Exploring the cost of EIA is relevant within the South African context where calls have been made to evaluate the need for EIA, based on the perceived associated costs and time delays affecting job creation and economic growth. In light of the latter there was a need to gain deeper understanding of direct and indirect cost of EIA, critical and generic factors affecting the costs associated with the EIA process, its effectiveness and decision making. This study on costs and factors influencing the EIA cost was conducted on the EIA approval authority in KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa) i.e. the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs. The study used a qualitative research method among eleven participants who were purposefully selected, within the environmental management function representing all eleven district municipalities of KwaZulu-Natal. The purposeful sampling methodology was used to do semi-structured Interviews to collect data. The results showed that the Departmental officials have limited understanding of the direct and indirect cost of EIA applications. The direct costs varied from district to district for the same development activity for either basic assessment report or full scoping environmental impact report. Secondly the EIA review process is not operating effectively because of the EIA review process not being rigorous. The Department is sitting with a backlog of EIA applications not being speedily processed. All these factors need to be attended by the Department as they affect the costs ultimately paid by the applicant to get an EIA decision, as either poor decision are made or decisions are grossly delayed.
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    Transactional and transformational leadership styles and their effect on job satisfaction for employees in uMgungundlovu District Municipality.
    (2017) Hlengwa, Zinhle.; Hoque, Muhammad.
    ABSTRACT Changes in organisational structure, vision and leadership are inevitable in any organisation. Leadership style is a special distinctive trait that differentiates one leader from another. It is also a powerful effective force to influence followers to move from one direction to the next in achieving maximum results to efficiently and effectively deliver service to the community served. This research aimed at examining the influence of transformational or transactional leadership style on employee’s job satisfaction at uMgungundlovu district municipality. This was a cross sectional quantitative study conducted among 214 participants who were selected using stratified sampling techniques. A self-administered questionnaire was used to collect data. Results showed that the majority (82%) of the participants were in favour of the transformational leadership style. There was a significant relationship found between leadership styles and job satisfaction. However the study also found that there is a significant association between race and job satisfaction. Changes in organisational structure, vision and leadership are inevitable in any organisation. Leadership style is a special distinctive trait that differentiates one leader from another. It is also a powerful effective force to influence followers to move from one direction to the next in achieving maximum results to efficiently and effectively deliver service to the community served. This research aimed at examining the influence of transformational or transactional leadership style on employee’s job satisfaction at uMgungundlovu district municipality. Quantitative research as a research methodology, questionnaires were developed as research instruments to target a total of 214 respondents (sample population) with five Likert scale questions consisting of three sections, namely A being demographical information, section B being leadership style and C being job satisfaction, these were distributed amongst the respondents and collected after two weeks. The sampling process was achieved through stratified sampling among the four departments that constitute the municipality and the various levels of positions that form the cross-section of the sample. After collection was analysed through use of descriptive and inferential statistics (Cronbach’s alpha coefficient) for testing reliability of questionnaires. The results vii showed that the dominant leadership style depicted by management of uMgungundlovu district municipality is that of transformational, where about 82% positively sided with his leadership style, in the context of awareness of the company strategy. A correlation of job satisfaction to a leadership style was also achieved with most employees proving to be job satisfied in the context of participation in decision making, where about 70% of respondents were in the affirmative in this question. In comparison transactional leadership tendencies seemed minimal, for example; in the context of employees seen as lazy, only 32% were in affirmative as was only 46% in the context of low morale.
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    The effect of using multi-skilled workforce on the flexibility of project resource scheduling and project costs: Eskom PTM central group project execution department.
    (2017) Manyi, Thulisile.; Sibanda, Rosemary.
    ABSTRACT The introduction of multi-skilling within organisations is normally conducted with the aim of improving efficiency, quality, production and cost effectiveness. The study addressed the effect of using multi-skilled workforce in the execution of project activities by studying the changes in project execution resource scheduling flexibility and project costs in response to workforce multi-skilling strategy. A quantitative research design was used, to test the concept of workforce multiskilling to predict its influence on project resource scheduling, project cost saving, project duration, effect on optimal utilization of project technicians and members if adopted at Eskom PTM Central Group department. An electronic questionnaire was distributed to collect data and statistical analysis of data was conducted. The hypothesis testing performed concluded as follows; there is evidence that the use of multi-skilled workforce provides for flexible project resource scheduling as much as 3.3 times. However, there is probably no positive relationship between multiskilled workforce and project costs. Further results indicated that using multiskilling has 3.3 times negative significant impact on project duration. On the other hand, the use of multi-skilling could have as much as 3.8 times positive significant impact on job redesign. And lastly, the use of multi-skilling could have up to 3.5 times positive significant impact on multi skills adoption rate. It is recommended that for Eskom PTM Central Group to realize full benefits of multi-skilling strategy in project execution there must be an action to fast-track cross-skilling initiatives with the aim of reducing time taken to complete a task and ultimately improve the influence of multi-skilling on project duration and costs. This research contributes to knowledge of engineering project management staffing of teams and effective management of operations. The arrangement of research objectives was a carefully thought out exercise to allow for research results to be quantified and generalized to the research site, to enhance business decision making. Key words: Multi-skilling, flexible project scheduling, project costs, project duration, job redesign, multi skills adoption.
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    The perception of customers from Giba Business Park with regards to the effect of self-service kiosks in fast food restaurants.
    (2018) Dellar, Sheloon.; Khumalo, Njabulo.
    ABSTRACT Internationally fast food retailers have begun rolling out and implementing in store self service technology systems, in the form of kiosks, to supplement their customer experience. This automation in the ordering system has proven to increase sales, increase productivity and decrease overall meal delivery times. It was found that customers internationally opted to frequent fast food outlets that offered this automated service more often than those that did not. With the success found, fast food conglomerates such as McDonalds, have already indicated the roll out of self service kiosks will follow in 2018 in their South African franchises. In South Africa, the fast food industry is a profitable entity with impressive annual increasing sales and customer numbers. The country is suffering however with low economic growth, increasing poverty and major inequalities with regards to living standards and education. Thus inclusion of self service technology into the fast food industry within South Africa, which is a developing country, as a result of the profitable execution of the systems in developed countries, led to this research study. The researcher set out to investigate whether local customers of fast food within Giba Gorge Business park in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, felt there was a need to improve speed of service within restaurants and whether customers would accept and adapt to using kiosk technology as a solution to improve said service. The findings of the study overwhelming, through all socio demographic representations, concluded that these customers view speed of service at fast food restaurants substandard and requiring improvement. Kiosks were further indicated as the preferred means to enhance customer experience and satisfaction. It was thus concluded that local customers are surprisingly tech savvy and a roll out of self service kiosks locally would be positively received and accepted.
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    Perceptions on factors leading to compliance on an Operations Improvement System at Sasol Wax Durban.
    (2016) Myeni, Nontobeko.; Proches, Cecile Naomi Gerwel.
    ABSTRACT The business landscape constantly faces economic, political and environmental challenges, however a business’ operational system plays an integral part in optimising business functionality and leveraging. Sasol Wax Durban implemented an operational improvement framework in order to standardise and streamline their operation in line with other divisions, after over a year of implementation, the framework was not yet fully functioning. The purpose of this exploratory study was to investigate the perception of factors leading to compliance with the system. The theories accessed were behavioural, system design and system management. The study adopted a qualitative research approach and purposive sampling technique. Twelve of Sasol Wax’s Production, Planning and Maintenance Supervisors participated through semi-structured, in-depth interviews, which were audio recorded. The data collected was analysed using thematic analysis. The key findings were that the employees’ lack of compliance was contributed by system’s design and system’s management challenges. The finding relating to the system design was a lack of ease of use, while the finding relating to system management was lack of training, communication and leadership. The findings further expand on the issue of training, in that it must be rolled out formally to employees below supervisory level and preferably everyone on site. The study concludes by offering recommendations, i.e. all supervisors must be retrained together with employees below supervisory level, also the framework must be revamped to accommodate the uniqueness of the satellite operation while simplifying it, and leadership must show more visibility in support and enforcing 100% compliance to the framework.
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    The evaluation of VAT implications on imported and electronic services at UKZN.
    (2016) Naidoo, Sugandran.; Kader, Abdul.
    Abstract The South African Government is trying to reduce the Value Added Tax (VAT) gap by ensuring VAT is declared on imported and electronic services which is line with international practice. Legislation has also been changed to effectively increase compliance between residents and non- residents with the South African Revenue Services and to level the playing fields for domestic suppliers. The aim of the study was to determine the main reason for using offshore suppliers’ services and to determine if there are internal and external controls to deal with the imported and electronic services in the University of KwaZulu-Natal. The area researched is specialized and the total population is small. The non- probability sampling technique was the only effective way to ensure the sample was high with respect to the population. A sample of 49 respondents was drawn from all five campuses in UKZN with a population size of 52 potential respondents, within the Durban, Pinetown and Pietermaritzburg areas. The sample is composed of 58% females and 42% males. Of the sample, 100% were non- academic staff. The majority of the sample (98%) worked with VAT on imported services. The tertiary institution of UKZN was chosen because the specialization and sensitivity of the area studied. Not many institutions would prefer to discuss their tax affairs with outsiders. Data was collected using self-administered questionnaires developed by the researcher. A salient finding of this study was that 64% of the respondents indicated that the specialization of the services was the main reason for using foreign suppliers. There was no information gathered from the research to suggest that legislation has curbed foreign purchases or increased domestic purchases. The majority of the respondents were indecisive in determining whether they understand when foreign payments that were regarded as imported services. The study also revealed that there were internal and external controls in place at UKZN. This study showed that government benefits from the increase VAT revenue received when specialization is the main reason for using offshore suppliers because residents cannot find these services in the domestic market. Due to the high employee turnover and delegation of duties, staff must be informed of the best practice. Presentations and seminars will also assist in educating staff.
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    Organizational culture and job satisfaction at Tronox KZN Sands – CPC site.
    (2016) Reddy, Dharma, Vanooopaul.; Mutambara, Emmanuel.
    ABSTRACT The aim of this study was to evaluate the organizational culture and job satisfaction at Tronox KZN Sands – Central Processing Complex (CPC) site. The main reason for embarking on this study was based on the number of organizational changes, operating conditions and tumultuous market conditions that the organization has experienced over the past five years. Coupled to this, the business unit faced mine closure and delayed start-up of its greenfields Fairbreeze mine. The study was focused on assessing the organizational culture and job satisfaction at Tronox KZN Sands – CPC site. A quantitative research study in the form of a survey was conducted using a questionnaire. A disproportionate stratified random sampling technique was used for a population of 634 employees. The sample size was 94 employees with a response rate of 64%. The findings of the research study concluded that there was a relationship between organizational culture and job satisfaction at Tronox KZN Sands – CPC site. There was a marginal majority of positive responses regarding the change management process in the organization. The respondents also indicated the areas of job satisfaction that can be improved. The main recommendations from the research study include a review of the change management process in the organization. The human resources department needs to conduct an assessment of how fairly employees are treated in the organization. The leaders of the organization need to develop a process to arrange training and formalize a ‘recognition of excellence’ policy in the organization.
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    Perceptions of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) lecturers on digital learning: a case of Umfolozi TVET.
    (2017) Mbanga, Nandipha.; Mtembu, Vuyokazi.
    ABSTRACT Key words: Perception; digital learning; TVET lecturers; mixed method, DHET This study investigated the perceptions of TVET lecturers towards digital learning at Umfolozi TVET College. The main objectives that guided the study were to determine the perceptions of Umfolozi TVET lecturers on digital learning; to investigate the link between the perceptions of the lecturers and the application of digital learning; to assess the readiness and willingness of Umfolozi TVET lecturers towards the application of digital learning; and to establish the support that the DHET is providing their lecturers for eLearning readiness. The study adopted a mixed method research methodology to investigate the phenomenon, and utilised exploratory research. The study was conducted among 125 lecturers and management at Umfolozi TVET College; both stratified and purposive sampling methods were used to select the participants for the study. A sample size of 75 respondents were selected for both quantitative and qualitative studies. Questionnaires and interviews were the main instruments for data collection, with data quality control being achieved through validity, reliability, trustworthiness and credibility. The quantitative data gathered were analysed by the Statistical Package for the Social Science (SPSS), version 24.0, while the qualitative data gathered were transcribed manually with the help of thematic analysis and transcription. Ethical approval was obtained from the Social Science Research Ethics Committee of the University of KwaZulu-Natal. The findings from both studies revealed that TVET lecturers perceive that digital learning facilitates interactions and discussions between lecturers and learners, facilitates easy learning in schools, is convenient to use, facilitates and improves teaching, and is user friendly. Furthermore, the findings showed that there is a link between the perceptions of the TVET lecturers and the application of digital learning. Moreover, the TVET lecturers are not ready and willing to apply digital learning in the College. The study recommends that the College, instructors and students are evaluated prior to the implementation of digital learning; the appointment or recruitment of qualified instructors; the adoption of technology; the provision of infrastructure, software, hardware, IT manuals and reading materials; and the training of lecturers.
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    Investigating service quality perceptions of travel agencies- a case study on Tourism KwaZulu-Natal (TKZN)
    (2016) Nkadimeng, Tony.; Naidoo, Vannie.
    Abstract The purpose of the study is to acquire key insights from Tourism KwaZulu-Natal employees’ expectations and perceptions on service quality of travel agencies in Durban. Most corporates and government, and state owned enterprises utilise services of travel agencies as they travel constantly locally and internationally and most of these organisations encounter challenges with travel agencies relating to bad service. The rapid changes in the travel industry trends lead to a highly competitive environment. Travel agencies have had to increase the quality and type of services they offer in order to meet the current demands. This necessitated the study to look into the current status of service quality within the travel agency sector. The literature review provided an empirical overview of how travel agencies have developed over time due to the fierce global competition that has grown over the past years. The researcher used the employees of Tourism KwaZulu-Natal as the population to be assessed. The population size was 55 and this also formed the bases for the sample. Questionnaires were sent to all 55 and the total population, 49 respondents were received and assessed. When it comes to testing the reliability of the data under review, the analysis showed that the data was reliable as the Cronbach’s alpha values were > 0.70 for all the sub-set of the SERVQUAL model. The respondents provided an insight by demonstrating high level of expectations from travel agencies. The respondents are in a high traveling environment with a 71% traveling for business and 28% on leisure for more than 2-7 times and require complete convenience in terms of required service. The findings from the study provided insights that will enable travel agencies to develop strategies that will improve service quality and encourage customer loyalty. The proposed recommendations look at attributes that were identified across all service quality dimensions looking at sociodemographical components. It should be noted that those dimensions demonstrated significant statistical differences between expectations and perceptions performance. Key outcomes from the study clearly demonstrated the need for travel agencies to consider SERVQUAL model in assessing their current business model. Key words: Service quality, SERVQUAL, Tourism KwaZulu-Natal, travel agencies, perceptions and expectations.
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    Career progression of women in higher education: a case study of Universities of Technology in KwaZulu-Natal.
    (2015) Zungu, Mamotse Ketura Onica.; Singh, Anesh Maniraj.
    Abstract Women account for 51% of the South African labour force but their representation at more senior management levels is insignificant (Stats SA). Women experience barriers in their career progression, such as family-related, societal and organisational barriers. The main aim of this study was to determine the career progression of women in Higher Education. Purposive judgement sampling was used to select the participants for this study. The questionnaire was administered using QuestionPro. A total of 111 responses out of 360 questionnaires resulted in a 31% response rate. Due to the low response rate obtained, the results could not be generalised to the institutions of Higher Education, specifically Universities of Technology. Salient findings from the study were that the majority of the respondents in this study were African, aged between 36-45 years of age, were married, had up to two dependents, were lecturers with a master’s degree and had more than 10 years and above of working experience. The respondents felt that they had not progressed in their careers and the main reason given for this was that they had not applied for promotion. The findings also revealed that the majority of respondents did not experience barriers in their careers, but the organisational barriers identified by 43% of the respondents were lack of internal networking opportunities, no support from line managers and ethnicity. In addition, the majority of respondents felt that there were no invisible barriers (glass-ceiling) preventing them from progressing in Higher Education. The invisible barriers experienced by 24% of the respondents were slower promotion rate, lack of career development opportunities and significant gaps in earnings. For women to progress in their careers, Higher Education Institutions (HEI) could promote being an equal opportunity employer by providing training and development, mentorship, networking, gender empowerment, flexible working arrangements and work-life balance.
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    Factors affecting job satisfaction at Private Education Institutions in KwaZulu-Natal: a study on C21 Private School
    (2017) Naidoo, Sudhindra.; Hoque, Muhammad.
    ABSTRACT Post-Apartheid, KwaZulu-Natal has experienced positive changes in the field of education. While the government has invested heavily in state run educational facilities, the rapid emergence and expansion of private education institutions should not go unnoticed. These institutions have played a critical role by assisting in the country’s transformation process and continue to have an important impact on society’s progression. Recently, the field of private education in KwaZulu-Natal has encountered a significant decrease in employee confidence and an ascent in worker turnover, both of which are suggestive of diminished worker inspiration and reduced employee fulfilment. Research on job satisfaction has become rather popular in recent years. This is mainly due to the beneficial consequences noted as a result of studies conducted within this area of focus. Based on this background, this quantitative study was conducted with the main aim to determine those factors which significantly affected job satisfaction at the C21 Private School in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal. Survey questionnaires were used as the tool for data collection. The questionnaires were self-administered and collected from the respondents upon completion. This was followed on by the process of data analysis. The sample size equalled the population size of 50 individuals. 47 of the 50 individuals eventually participated in the study survey which yielded a relatively high response rate of 94%. Some of the noticeable findings in this study include: age and race were the only two socio-demographic variables to exhibit significant association with job satisfaction (p<0.05), the negative perceptions of staff in relation to job satisfaction mainly revolved around two factors – advancement and leadership, and strong positive correlations were found to exist between environment and culture with relationship with colleagues (r=0.697, p<0.05), environment and culture with job security (r=0.650, p<0.05), relationship with colleagues and job security were found to be significantly associated with each other (r=0.660, p<0.05) and leadership with advancement (r=0.300, p=0.043). The main recommendations that this study proposes is, firstly for leadership at private education institutions like C21 Private School to develop, or regularly revisit if already in place, plans that address team building and better communication among staff members. Secondly, the staff composition should be reviewed and informed by national guidelines in terms of racial transformation. Lastly, it is recommended that the management ensures that working conditions are conducive to skills development and empowerment of staff in order to promote job satisfaction.