The effectiveness of human resources code :staff development and training at a Namibian polytechnic
Naris, Sylvia Ndeshee
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Policies adopted by tertiary educational institutions play a key role in determining the future of an institution. When they are applied and monitored effectively, most of these policies bear positive results for the institution. However, where there is no clear monitoring system, it is a foregone conclusion that policies will not bring about desired results. Therefore, assessing the PoN policy and practices are imperative. The HR Code is a policy document of the PoN. The main objective of the study was to establish effectiveness of the HR Code: SDT. The research study established motivating factors for drafting the HR Code: SDT, and analysed its weaknesses in order to trace whether staff development is linked to strategic goals of the PoN. The researcher has also made an earnest attempt to find out reasons why staff members resign after attending development programmes, which would assist the institution to retain their staff, as it prepares itself to become a university of technology that requires more and better qualified staff. The enquiry adopted a case study approach because it dealt with a specific institution in Namibia. A triangulation method was utilised to solicit information from academics, administrative and support staff, by conducting semi-structured interviews with top management, HoD’s, sectional heads and ex-staff members. A closed-ended questionnaire was distributed to staff members. Institutional documents were also reviewed to corroborate empirical data that was collected. Research revealed that the aim of drafting the HR Code: SDT was to improve qualification levels of Namibian staff members and to improve work performances of staff members. However, research proved conclusively that there were no measurable objectives that were established to evaluate and monitor that the objective was achieved; there were also no staff development plans linked to strategic goals of the institution; staff members’ work performance was not assessed after training; and there were no retention strategies in place. It is evident from the research findings that the desired results of the HR Code: SDT will not be achieved and, therefore, recommendations are proposed that the PoN effectively communicates objectives of the HR Code to staff members; develop a comprehensive and complimentary staff development policy; a staff development plan; an innovative retention strategy; and appoint a staff development officer to monitor and ensure that desired goals are achieved as means to save the institution from an unnecessary waste of financial, material and human resources.