Original Research

Management competencies required in the transition from a technician to a supervisor

Sibongile R. Mahlangu (Kubheka), Cookie Govender
SA Journal of Human Resource Management | Vol 13, No 1 | a644 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v13i1.644 | © 2015 Sibongile R. Mahlangu (Kubheka), Cookie Govender | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 05 May 2014 | Published: 18 May 2015

About the author(s)

Sibongile R. Mahlangu (Kubheka), Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, University of Johannesburg, South Africa
Cookie Govender, Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, University of Johannesburg, South Africa


Orientation: Technicians are frequently promoted to supervisory positions based on their technical abilities, with scant attention focused on developing management competencies. This oversight often poses significant challenges. The effective transition from technician to supervisor is important in any organisation.

Research objective: The primary objective is to identify and verify the competencies that are required for a technician and a supervisory position; the secondary objective is to identify the gap that must be filled with relevant training interventions to enable technicians to make an effective transition to a supervisory position.

Motivation for this study: The identification of the management competencies required for a technician who makes a career change to a supervisor position.

Research method: The sequential mixed method approach was used to enable the twophase data collection process: phase one was the quantitative phase and phase two was the qualitative phase. Main findings: The overall findings confirm that there are indeed management competencies that technicians require training and development on before being promoted to a supervisory position.

Implication: Organisations need to identify the key competencies for a technician and a supervisor and implement development or training interventions that are essential to successfully transition an employee from the level of a technician to the level of a supervisor.

Contribution: Organisations need to implement essential development or training interventions focused on developing management competencies and put in place support interventions such as coaching, job shadowing, mentoring and networking.


technicians, supervisors, competencies


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Crossref Citations

1. Social Workers’ Challenges in Transitioning from Frontline to Supervisory Role
Shu Zhou
Human Service Organizations: Management, Leadership & Governance  vol: 46  issue: 1  first page: 67  year: 2022  
doi: 10.1080/23303131.2021.1919266