The learning organisation and productivity : a case study of the Athlone detective service

Brand, J. J. (Johannes Jurgens) (2002-03)

Thesis (MPA)--Stellenbosch University, 2002.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The transformation of the South African Police Service (SAPS) did not simply brought about a change in name; it meant a different new style of policing. A completely new concept of how a police service should function within a democratic society, had to be developed and learnt. One of the significant changes was the transformation of the old South African Police Force into the SAPS. Included in this process was the amalgamation of the eleven police agencies into one organisation. The transformation process had a major impact on productivity in the different components of the SAPS, as evidence suggests that change is difficult and that resistance may be expected whenever change involves a significant impact on the traditional behaviour, power, authority, culture and structure within an organisation. The objective of training is to achieve a change in the behaviour of those employees who are undergoing training. The SAPS therefore had to start using training programmes to ensure that all employees accept the change process easier. The researcher attended the Station Management Programme (SMP) at Stellenbosch University in 1999. The first module presented at the SMP comprised the concept of a learning organisation. After successfully completing the SMP, this management mechanism was implemented at Athlone Detective Service. This detective service is one of the components at the Athlone po lice station, which in turn forms part of 1096 po lice stations in South Africa. The high volume of cases on hand was one of the main reasons why it was decided to experiment there with the five disciplines of the learning organisation, as proposed by Peter Senge, at the beginning of July 1999. In Chapter one the research problem is identified, namely whether a learning organisation can be used to improve productivity at detective services. The objectives of this study are firstly to prove how the five disciplines of a learning organisation were implemented at Athlone detective service in order to increase productivity. Secondly, this study will give guidance to the other detective services in the SAPS on how to improve their own productivity. Related literature is reviewed in Chapter two, and these references are made applicable on the SAPS, and more specifically on the Athlone detective service in Chapter three. The gathering, analysis and interpretation of data are discussed in Chapter four. The data for this research has been gathered by means of computerised data, which has been collected from the Criminal Administration System (CAS) of the SAPS, and by means ofa questionnaire, which was distributed among the personnel at Athlone detective service. The collected data is analysed statistically and interpreted in this chapter to establish whether the disciplines of a learning organisation had an impact on productivity. The main focus points of each chapter are firstly summarised, while recommendations are made on the effective management thereof in Chapter five. A conclusion is also given in this last chapter.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die transformasie van die Suid-Afrikaanse Polisiediens (SAPD) het nie slegs 'n verandering in naam beteken nie, maar 'n totale verskillende manier van polisiering. 'n Algehele nuwe konsep van hoe 'n polisiediens binne 'n demokratiese samelewing behoort te funksioneer, moes ontwikkel en aangeleer word. Een van die vernaamste veranderings was die omskakeling van die Suid-Afrikaanse Polisiemag na die SAPD. Ingesluit in hierdie proses was die samesmelting van die elf verskillende polisieagentskappe in een organisasie. Hierdie proses het 'n negatiewe invloed op produktiwiteit in die verskillende afdelings van die SAPD gehad, aangesien daar al bewys is dat verandering moeilik is en dat weerstand verwag kan word wanneer hierdie verandering met tradisies, mag, gesag, kultuur en struktuur binne 'n organisasie te make het. Die doel van opleiding is om 'n verandering in die gedrag van werknemers te bereik; gevolglik het die SAPD met opleidingsprogramme begin om te verseker dat alle werknemers die veranderingsproses makliker aanvaar. Gedurende 1999 het die navorser die Stasiebestuursprogram (SBP) aan die Universiteit van Stellenbosch deurloop. Die eerste module wat gedurende die SBP aangebied is, was die konsep van lerende organisasie. Na die suksesvolle voltooiing van die SBP, is hierdie bestuursinstrument te Athlone speurdiens in gebruik geneem. Hierdie speurdiens is een van die afdelings van die Athlone polisiestasie, wat op sy beurt deel uitmaak van 'n totaal van 1096 ander polisiestasies in Suid-Afrika. Die vernaamste rede waarom besluit was om die vyf dissiplines van die lerende organisasie, soos deur Peter Senge voorgestel op die proef te stel was die groot aantal sake wat ondersoekbeamtes voorhande gehad het gedurende 1999. In hoofstuk een word die navorsingsprobleem geformuleer as: kan die lerende organisasie gebruik word om produktiwiteit in die speurdiens te verbeter? Die doel van hierdie navorsingsprojek is eerstens om te bewys hoe die lerende organisasie gebruik is om produktiwiteit te Athlone speurdiens te verbeter. Ten tweede is die doel van die navorsing om ander speurdienste, binne die SAPD, van riglyne te voorsien oor hoe om hulle eie produktiwiteit te verbeter. Hoofstuk twee bestaan uit 'n oorsig oor die toepaslike literatuur, terwyl die literatuur in hoofstuk drie op die SAPD van toepassing gemaak word. Die insameling, ontleding en vertolking van data word in hoofstuk vier bespreek. Vir die doeleindes van hierdie navorsing is van gerekenariseerde data gebruik gemaak wat vanaf die Misdaad-Administrasiestelsel (MAS) van die SAPD verkry is en uit vraelyste wat onder die Athlone speurdiens versprei is. Die data wat ingesamel is, word in hierdie hoofstuk statisties ontleed en vertolk, ten einde vas te stel of die dissiplines van die lerende organisasie weI 'n invloed op produktiwiteit gehad het. In hoofstuk vyf word die vernaamste bevindings eerstens opgesom en daarna word aanbevelings oor die doeltreffende bestuur daarvan gemaak. Laastens word 'n gevolgtrekking gegee.

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