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  • Subject area(s): Engineering
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  • Published on: 7th September 2019
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1. BACKGROUND AND LEGISLATIVE FRAMEWORK

In the context of progressive development in Local Government, municipalities are tasked with the crucial responsibility of fulfilling the constitutional mandates delegated to them. As a department administering the staff component of the City of Cape Town, which can constitute as being the vehicle to service delivery, is in itself also responsible for compliance to a listed number of constitutional mandates. It is paramount that its human resources capacity is developed to a level where it can perform its responsibilities in an economical, effective, efficient and accountable way.

The Human Resources Department aims to promote in its Strategic Plan the principles of Batho Pele and legislative mandates as listed:

• The Labour Relations Act (Act 66 of 1995)

• Basic Conditions of Employment Act (Act 75 of 1997)

• Skills Development Act (Act 97 of 1998)

• Employment Equity Act (Act 55 of 1998)

• Skills Development Levies Act (Act 9 of 1999),

The above statutes place specific obligations on municipalities by means of the Local Government Municipal Systems Act (Act 32 of 2000) concerning the position of its administration and specifically its human resources. The Human Resources related obligations placed on all municipalities are in terms of Section 51 of the Municipal Systems Act are to organise its administration to:

• Be reactive to the needs of the local community

• Facilitate a culture of community service and accountability amongst staff

• Organise structures and administrations in a flexible way to respond to changing priorities and environments.

• Provide an equitable, fair, open and non-discriminatory working environment.

• Promote and practice the principles of \"People First\", Equity, Impartiality, Objectivity and Uniformity.

• Commit to professional conduct; promote skilled human resource management practices and development the knowledge of succession planning to the benefit of the municipality.

According to Bennett (1995:217), “A Strategic plan is an outline of the methods and resources required to achieve organisational goals within a specific target market. Describes the direction [an organisation] will pursue within its chosen environment and guides the allocation of resources and effort.”

2. MISSION

The Human Resources Department regards its mission as dedicating itself to serve and support the City of Cape Town in achieving its strategic objectives, by means of professional advice and support to ensure public service excellence and good governance.

3. VISION

Human Resource Department accepts to empower its employees towards improving their personal potential and deliver on a mandate that exceeds the organisations requirements. To become that first choice employer, with a more flexible and capable workforce to champion together that endeavours towards economic sustainability.

4. VALUES

That the employees are ultimately the municipality’s most valuable resource, as every service or product is ultimately created or delivered through human intervention which gives effect to a given service that’s delivered.

5. STRATEGY ANALYSIS FRAMEWORK

The Human Resource Department strategic plans sets to put in place human resource management and development processes, including performance management, personal development plans and workplace skills planning,  all of which guides staff training, development and the management of health and safety. This will create a so called fit for purpose environment within the City of Cape Town, in order to ensure that City becomes a more customer focused entity.

6. INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL ANALYSIS

Internal analysis can be defined as a review of an organization\'s strengths and weaknesses that focuses on those factors within its domain. A detailed internal analysis will typically give a business a good sense of its basic competencies and the desirable improvements that it can make to help meet the requirements of potential customers within its intended market (Business Dictionary, 2017). Coulter (2005: 66) defines an external analysis as “the process of scanning and evaluating an organisation’s various external environmental sectors to determine positive and negative trends that could impact organizational performance”.

7. SWOT ANALYSIS

SWOT analysis (alternatively SWOT matrix) is an acronym for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and is a structured planning method that evaluates those four elements of an organization, project or business venture. (Wikipedia, 2011)

A SWOT analysis method has been utilised in order to have an understanding of internal and external factors which have, or may have an impact on the human resource department mandate.

Strengths:

• Political stability

• Generally dedicated personnel

• Good administrative management record

• Good economic infrastructure

• Good Audit history

• Good governance Weaknesses

• Skilled shortages

• To many consultants

• Administrative Departments operating in silos

• Recruitment and selection process to slow

• Lack of succession planning interventions

• Lack of staff training

Opportunities

• Filling of critical post

• Change Management Processes

• Develop new culture of work

• Understand municipal policies and procedures

• Implement training and development initiatives.

• Become a model municipality working together Threats

• Non-compliance with certain laws and regulations.

• Culture diversity

• Regime change

• Staff wellness and morale

• Retention of staff experience staff leaving the service

• Current economic environment

8. STRATEGY GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

A goal can be described as a brief, clear statement of an outcome to be reached within a specific timeframe. It is a broad, general, tangible, and descriptive statement. It does not say how to do something, but rather indicates what the results will look like. It is measurable in terms of quality and quantity; an objective is specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and time-bound. It is a series of objectives that must be attained to accomplish specific goals. Objectives define the actions that must be taken to reach the goal (Shaping work, 2016).

The ultimate end result of the situation analysis has validated a set of action steps that need to be taken in order for the Human Resource Department to move forward in respect of its processes and practices. To take systems and process from “where they are” to “where they should be, listed below are key performance area challengers and the objectives that needs to be achieved within the strategic planned period of 2017 – 2020. Focusing on achieving these objectives would equip the City of Cape Town with the necessary resources to achieve its targets as outlined in the Integrated Development Plan.

7.1 KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 1: RECRUITMENT AND SELECTION

The City of Cape Town aims to create a workforce that is competent, competitive and service delivery orientated. This is based on the vision, mission and overarching objective of the City. In order to achieve this, the Human Resource Department has to embark on a strategic plan to ensure that the City of Cape Town’s desired outcomes are delivered. Once consulted with trade unions and Local Labour Forum Councillors, all Directorates will be advised of the new recruitment and selection strategy, it will be submitted to Council for approval as a matter of priority, as the policy should be enforced by 1 September 2017.

7.2 Recruitment

The key objective here will be to recruit individuals who display intrinsic service delivery capabilities as well as the understanding of the principles of Batho Pele. The Human Resource Department will still continue to endeavor to promote equitable representation of staff, promote for a corrupt free workforce and a workforce that is competent and dedicated to the community it serves.

7.3 Internal Analysis on the Recruitment Process

 

The overall vacancy list depicted in the below graph could have a negative impact on the overall targets outlined in the Integrated Development Plan of the City of Cape Town A wide range survey conducted in 2016 suggests that departments are not filling vacancies in the required time period of three months. The online automated system for submitting job applications are not being effective as staff is not familiar navigating within the system. There were also significant responses that certain employees do not have access to the intranet, the medium platform were the City of Cape Town’s vacancies are advertised. The inconsistent job specification requirements on similar post in adverts are raising suspicion that departments are targeting certain individuals. No confirmation reply is sent to candidates that their respective application is receiving attention and that if know response is receive thereafter it will be considered that there application was not successful.  

Graph: Overall vacant post to be filled for period 2017 – 2020

The Human Resource Department also recognises that the City of Cape Town lacks a number of skilled and competent staff in certain critical areas and is currently employing consultants that demands high remuneration packages. It identifies the need to implement a new strategic plan based on the provisions made in Section 195(1) of the Constitution.

• A high standard of professional ethics must be promoted and maintained,

• Public Administration must be development-orientated,

• Public administration must be accountable,

• Good human-resource management and career-development practices, to maximise human potential, must be cultivated, and

• Public administration must be broadly representative of the South African people

7.3 Recruitment Processing Objectives

The implementation of formulated objectives listed below will be effective as from   1st September 2017.

• Advertisements of vacant positions to be advertised within one week of post becoming vacant.

• Recruitment of potential employees will be both on-line and via traditional recruitment mediums such as newspaper advertisement and internal staff circulars.

• Recruitment is also about finding the right person for the right job, which means in addition to internal advertisement, the City will also utilise headhunting as a potential recruitment strategy. This will be done in specific cases and with approval to avoid nepotism, corruption and discrimination. Headhunting will only be done for management positions and after those positions have been advertised and nobody had met the minimum requirements.

• Another recruitment strategy that the City will undertake is to advertise at designated areas where the potential employee might already be working at another institution to ensure that those potential employees are aware of the vacancy.  

Below are the underlying principles that will be included into every vacant post advertisement. These principles will be used by the City of Cape Town when undergoing a recruitment process.

• An advertisement should not favour, prejudice or discriminate.

• An advertisement should be fully in line with the job content and the post and person specifications.

• Advertisement should give a clear indication of requirements that must be met.

• The widest possible number of applicants must be attracted in the most cost effective manner.

• Advertising should promote staff mobility, utilisation and career development opportunities.

• The language and style of advertisements must be clear and simple in order to enhance employment equity.

7.4 Selection Process

All selection processes will be subjected to mandated legislation, White paper on Human Resource Management, Public Service Commission regulations as well as Employment Equity Act. The Human Resource Department will continue to undertake and apply the principles of Affirmative Action when considering final selections for vacant posts. All Notice of Appointments must be signed off by the Affirmative Action Officer as proof of ratification. Psychometric and operational assessments will continue to be compulsory to assist with shortlisting.  

7.5 Internal Analysis on the Selection Process

Staff appointments were generally filled without comprehensive assessments being done on skill requirements and job content knowledge. Department Heads are filling positions with non-competent staff merely to achieve affirmative action targets with in turns has negative implications on service delivery. It is suggestive that line managers are not assisting with assessment testing for shortlisting. The minimum requirement for passing an assessment test is currently 50%. There are also claims alluding to nepotism and political influence on certain staff appointments.

7.6 Selection Processing Objectives

• Selection process should start within one week of job applications due date.

• Human resource training will be given to management in all departments within the City of Cape Town to ensure that they are competent and knowledgeable about the selection procedure.

• All psychometric analysis tests, of an applicant will be conducted by line managers of the department where the vacancy is situated; this will ensure that the selection of the individual is based on the criteria for the job, as line managers are more knowledgeable on the skills and requirements needed.  

• During the selection process, mangers must look out for those who display inherent knowledge of service delivery in any form, specifically for entry level positions.

• Providing line managers with the tools to conduct thorough reference checks on al testimonials and qualifications submitted by candidates.

It must be noted for the Human Resource Department to achieve its strategic objectives, it is just as crucial for the City of Cape Town to retain its competent staff. The retention of staff is equally important to ensure the overall objective of the strategic plan is achieved. The private sector of late is attracting a number of municipal employees, causing a situation where the city needs to compete for competent staff with these companies. Experienced staff from designated groups and staff in areas of scarce or critical skills seem to be often targeted. The City of Cape Town has to also refocus there efforts of retaining current staff.

7.7 Staff Retention Objectives

• Workshop will be created with staff and trade union representatives to highlight issues that might motivate employees to leave the organization, this will provide needed input to management who in turn can generate incentives to stay.

• Ensure that staff feels valued by creating an incentive programme. This entails that whenever an employee achieve something over and above their key performance areas, an incentive will be given in monetary form. This incentive will be done on a grading system; a percentage of the employee salary will be paid depending on the level of achievement.

8. KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 2: TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT OF STAFF

The Human Resource Department of the City of Cape Town is focused on improving and enriching the lives of our employees by providing opportunities to increase knowledge, acquire and develop the necessary skills needed within the City of Cape Town to provide efficient and effective services of world class standards as set out in the Integrated Development Plan and legislative framework. Our aim is to develop qualified and educated public officials within our organisation with a focus on critical scarce skills, through designing career paths best suited for each individual.

8.1 Internal Analysis on Training and Development

After the 2015/2016 financial year a needs analysis was conducted in order to identify what skills the organisation needs compared to what it currently has and determine ways of closing the gaps without bridging employment equity and other legislation. After careful and critical assessments in the and skills audit it was found that the bursaries that were approved was department specific, meaning that if you were employed in Recreation and Parks and applied for a bursary to study Electrical engineering or Pharmacy you were unsuccessful and declined by that Directorate as it was not in line with its function. This raised concern as the fields of studies are part of the City of Cape Town scarce skills vacancy list.

Our 2017 / 2020 strategic development plan for Education, Training and Development is to empower our current work force by promoting an environment that strives for excellence in advancing and enhancing the lives of individuals through the following

Graph: Strategy acquiring critical skills through bursaries 2017 - 2020

8.2 Training and Development Objectives

The City of Cape Town will ensure that it maximizes the use of available funding and programmes for training and skills development. Over the next three years the

Human Resource Department will roll out various training interventions based on the new the audit skills report conducted over the period of 2015/2016. It was determine that the cost associated with the implementation of Training and Development for the Workplace Skills Plan in period 2015/2016 totalled in excess of R 2 million whilst the budgeted amount for R 500 000.00. The Human Resource Department aims at procuring additional training facilities to meet its demand and will request for additional funding totalling R3.5 million with the approval this this plan by Council

Listed below are the interventions that the Human Resource Department wants to implement which will continue to contribute to the City of Cape Town’s overall objectives.

• Ensure that all new employees are equipped with the skills and knowledge to meet their responsibilities and challenges

• To providing first preference bursaries for educational streams that are on our scarce skills vacancy list and allowing any staff that qualifies to apply

• Continue to provide training workshops (SETA accredited) to increase knowledge and improve current skills of all employees this will allow them to advance in their careers and improve their service;

• Line Managers to design or structure a personal development plans and career paths for staff which incorporates job shadowing or mentoring for each individual, this will promote an increase in performance and service delivery as well as securing staff retention.

9. KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 3: HEALTH & SAFETY TRAINING

Based on the importance and functional responsibility of the Occupational and Health and Safety Act No 85 of 1993, the act is to provide for the health and safety of persons at work and for the health and safety of persons in connection with the use of plant and machinery, the protection of persons other than persons at work against hazards to health and safety arising out of or in connection with the activities of persons at work, to establish an advisory council for occupational health and safety.

Furthermore, based on policy objectives and definition above, it’s relevant to ensure that the Human Resource Department implement strategies based on what the act states, in terms of health and safety in the work place. These are pivotal considerations that need to be met to ensure that the health and safety of all employees in the workplace are being looked after, in terms of work place health and safety plans it should be aligned with policy objectives.

9.1 Internal Analysis on Health and Safety

The City of Cape Town has an effective health and safety policy that sets clear guidelines and directions for all Directorates to prescribe to in respect of health, safety and security. This is a fundamental development as it contributes towards the welfare of all employees. A wide range survey was conducted suggests that only 70% of departments complies with the requirements outlined in the Health and Safety Policy. Departments are not sending the representatives to the Health and Safety Committee meetings where there are advised of current implementation initiatives. As evident in the graph listed below,  some staff is not familiar with procedures when persons get injured on duty, some departments has no health and safety representatives to advise on their workplace conditions which could be at this point a fire hazard.

Graph: Outlined targets to be achieved within strategy plan for 2017 - 2020

9.2 Health and Safety Objectives

The Human Resource Department will set out strategies for all departments and development Health and Safety Programs over the period 2017-2020 to deliver the capabilities and improvements required. The Health and Safety Committee will lead by example on innovative solutions. Key programmes strategies will be initiated and be delivered on which will have fundamental impact on the success of ensuring we achieve our targeted goals.

• Effective communication programmes and the promotion of know-how will allow employees and their representatives to make a responsible and informed contribution to the institutional; health and safety effort.

• Effective staff involvement and participation

• Active and visible champions to be promoted in all departments

• Risk assessments methods to be used to decide on institutional priorities and to set objectives for eliminating hazards and reducing risk.

• Performance standards will be established and applied to measure achievements on Health and Safety in the workplace at aiming to reduce the impact on injury and illness.

By the guidance and implementation of these objectives the Human Resource Department will ensure compliance by all departments by 2020 and in doing so we will be aligned with the core institutional objectives which are ultimately to protect and ensure our employees work in a safe and secure working environment.

10 KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 4: LABOUR RELATIONS

The management of municipal labour relations between the employer and the employees is addressed for the purpose of guaranteeing for a corrupt free organisation and promoting the code of conduct within the City of Cape Town’s jurisdiction which is governed by labour legislative mandates. This Human Resource component deals with all disciplinary matters and also assists with the drafting of policies relating to issues around code of conduct.

10.1 Internal Analysis on Labour Relations

During the period of 2015/2016, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of dismissals of City employees, mostly for transgressions of a financial nature. Employees have been dismissed for theft, fraud, corruption and the soliciting and accepting of bribes and other favours. The disciplinary proceedings have disclosed that in many of these cases, debt has been a motivating factor. Employees who are in financial difficulty and cannot pay their bills are more easily tempted into acts that lead to dismissal. This situation is not unique to City employees. Many people find that in a stagnant economy their expenses are rising faster than their income, and their savings are depleted.

There were also feedbacks from line managers that that time delays between alleged transgression and actual disciplinary hearings are too lengthy and counterproductive to discipline in the workplace. Some of the contributing factors reported to the Human Resources Section were that officials  appointed as presiding officers and prosecutors had heavy operational workloads of whilst proper preparation for cases. The analysis was also suggestive that there are not sufficient initiators/prosecutors and chairpersons/presiding officers to be appointed in these portfolios when required. That the same officials are repeatedly being appointed to act in these positions.  

This is suggestive that line mangers are not knowledgeable on disciplinary procedures which results in reluctance of senior officials to officiate in disciplinary proceedings. The need to address absenteeism is also evident in the analysis conducted during the period of 2016/2016.

10.2 Labour Relation Objectives

• Formulate and consult with unions and other stakeholders to implement an Absenteeism Management Strategy

• Assess the Labour Relations staff complement for additional labour officials

• Staff who have been trained as Chairpersons and Initiators need to be exposed to advance labour courses

• The pool of Chairpersons and Initiators be increased by means of training additional staff to serve in these capacities,

• Chairpersons and Initiators should workshop case studies of cases of similar nature to serve as teaching guides, which in turn can promote uniformity in approaches to similar cases.

• Disciplinary Hearings to prescribe to a limited time period from being advised about the misconduct to completion of the hearing

• Departments to submit outcome of findings of all disciplinary hearing on a monthly basis for continuous monitoring and evaluation.

11. STRATEGIC IMPLEMENTATION PLAN

According to (Wikipedia, 2011), a strategic implementation plan is used to describe the activities within an workplace or organization to manage the execution of a strategic plan. Furthermore, a strategic implementation plan provides organizational structures, key personnel actions, and control systems designed to control and measure performance with respect to desired goals aligned with institutional strategic objectives

Key Performance Area Programs of Intervention Actions Measures of Success

1.Recruitment and Selection

2.Training and Development

3. Health and Safety

4. Labour Relations

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