Original Research

An alignment of personal development plans with training and development of employees at SASSA

Thabo F. Saul, Mzikayise S. Binza, Kabelo Moeti
SA Journal of Human Resource Management | Vol 21 | a2161 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v21i0.2161 | © 2023 Thabo F. Saul | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 November 2022 | Published: 07 July 2023

About the author(s)

Thabo F. Saul, Department of Public Affairs, Faculty of Humanities, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa
Mzikayise S. Binza, Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic Affairs and Research, Walter Sisulu University, East London, South Africa
Kabelo Moeti, Department of Public Affairs, Faculty of Humanities, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa


Orientation: The success or failure of organisations depends on the quality of programmes designed and implemented for improving the performance and productivity of their staff members.

Research purpose: The purpose of this study is to identify and analyse the causal factors for the lack of alignment between the performance development plans (PDPs) with the training and development plans (TDPs) of the staff of the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) in the Gauteng Province from the period 2015 to 2020.

Motivation for the study: The study was based on the assumption that training and development aimed at equipping staff with skills and knowledge to perform better should be informed by PDPs.

Research approach/design and method: To investigate this relationship, the study used a qualitative research approach to collect data through in-depth telephonic interviews and digital platforms such as Zoom and document analysis.

Main findings: The study found that within SASSA the staff PDPs are not aligned with the TDPs of the organisation; hence, there is negative performance and underspending on the budget for training and development which renders PDPs ineffective.

Practical/managerial implications: This article proposes effective strategies that can be implemented from the 2024–2025 financial year going forward to enable SASSA to be an effective learning organisation and to ensure the alignment of PDPs with both staff and organisational TDPs.

Contribution/value-add: The study concludes that digital learning, training and development programmes and epistemologies aimed at improving individual and organisational performance and productivity must be adopted, developed and implemented.


personal development plans; training and development plans; employees’ performance; organisational performance; productivity

JEL Codes

A10: General; A13: Relation of Economics to Social Values

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 8: Decent work and economic growth


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