Original Research

Intergrating the performance management system of a university in South Africa with its strategic plan

Malefetsane A. Mofolo, Cawe S. Novukela
SA Journal of Human Resource Management | Vol 22 | a2404 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v22i0.2404 | © 2024 Malefetsane A. Mofolo, Cawe S. Novukela | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 July 2023 | Published: 31 May 2024

About the author(s)

Malefetsane A. Mofolo, Department of Public Management and Governance, Walter Sisulu University, East London, South Africa
Cawe S. Novukela, Deputy Registrar: Governance, Walter Sisulu University, East London, South Africa


Orientation: South African history, among other things, demanded reforms in higher education institutions (HEIs), and the goal of transforming HEIs was to fulfil the demands of the new order brought about by democracy in the country.

Research purpose: The purpose of the study is to investigate how a strategic plan of a University in South Africa can be supported using a performance management system (PMS).

Motivation for the study: When examining the university’s achievements, particularly the gains of the past strategic plans, the study found that there is no evidence of successes or failures, especially for Strategic Plans 2008–2017 and 2015–2019.

Research approach/design and method: To achieve the stated purpose, the study employed a document analysis approach.

Main findings: The study found that the merger of the university’s legacy institutions was never fully realised, and the University has currently reimagined itself and developed the Strategic Plan 2020–2030; however, the delay of the PMS implementation is regarded as a weakness in this study.

Practical/managerial implications: The study recommends a conceptual framework that demonstrates how at the organisational level, academic PMS should be designed and implemented after discovered that a delay in PMS implementation can impair the achievement of the Strategic Plan.

Contribution/value-add: The study contributes by recommending that core university policies should serve as a basis for and be consistently applied as a component of an all-encompassing PMS policy. Meaning, a comprehensive PMS policy will help to link appropriate policies for the shared goal, which is to encourage excellent performance.


conceptual framework; strategic plan; university; performance management system; Education White Paper 3

JEL Codes

J24: Human Capital • Skills • Occupational Choice • Labor Productivity

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure


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