DPSA, National School of Government, Centre for Public Service Innovation + Public Service Commission Quarter 3 performance; with Deputy Minister

Public Service and Administration, Performance Monitoring and Evaluation

28 February 2018
Chairperson: Ms R Lesoma (ANC) (Acting)
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Meeting Summary

The Public Service Commission presented on its third quarter performance.
93% of its planned targets were achieved in quarter three. A vacancy rate of 8.6% was maintained, 83% of the grievances finalised, 73% of public administration cases finalised and 100% of the National Anti-Corruption Hotline cases were referred.  The remaining 8% were not achieved due to implementation delays. The department has 6 people with disabilities.

For programme one, the Department presented the progress report to the Audit Committee in December 2017 in line with the implementation of the Annual Internal Audit Plan. On risk management, the second quarter Risk Management report was approved in November 2017.

For programme three, 93% of the targets were achieved. The Department failed to train officials because there were delays in the appointment of a service provider.

Programme four, Integrity and anti-corruption, 83% of the targets were achieved. 60% of the investigations on complaints were approved within 3 months from date of receipt of relevant documents and 65% of early resolution complaints investigated and approved within 45 days from date of receipt of relevant documentation.

The Committee asked which levels were affected by the 8.6% vacancy rate and whether these positions include strategic positions. It also enquired about what was being done about departments that do not provide information when required to, and whether any measures were in place to avoid this problem.


The National School of Governance highlighted the key performances of the Department, specifically the Rutananang ma Africa campaign which attracted 550 individuals and 130 organisations.

Programme one shows that the average debt collection days is 37 days. All payments to suppliers were made within the prescribed 30 days of receipt of a valid invoice. A disaster recovery test was conducted and the vacancy rate is 8.8%.

Three areas were not achieved in programme two. The Department had targeted to publish two articles to promote thought leadership but only one was published in the third quarter. It targeted to train 13 611 new and current public servants through face to face and online learning however, during this quarter, 12 852 new and current public servants were trained through face to face and online learning.

On financial performance, the Department utilised 97% of the budget. It also has not raised enough revenue on the training trading account.

On human resources, The National School of Governance has a total of 227 posts on the approved establishment for Programmes one and two, with 207 posts filled, and 20 vacant, representing a vacancy rate of 8.8% by end of December 2017.

The Committee asked which companies the main defaulters were when it comes to revenue collection and the effect of the lack of their payments thereof. It enquired about how often the school engages with stakeholders to improve its services. Further, it asked about the seven people with disabilities and whether they occupy training positions.


The Centre for Public Service and Innovation, during the third quarter period had 20 targets, 16 of the targets were achieved and two targets were not achieved. The amount received in Programme one was R14.2 million for the period 1 April 2017 to 31 December 2017. Spending for the same period was R12.8 million.  On compensation of employees, two posts were only filled in July 2017 and not in April 2017 as originally anticipated, resulting in a saving of R294 000. A saving of R 1.1 million was identified from audit fees, which will be directed to other areas.

The amount received in Programme two, Public Sector Innovation amounted to R11.8 million for the period 1 April 2017 to 31 December 2017.  Spending for the same period was R10.9 million. The Department reported that all payments were made within 7.72 days of receipt of an invoice. 319 payments were processed from 1 April 2017 to 31 December 2017.

The Committee was concerned about the Department’s inability to spend its budget and whether it can deliver the promises it has made. The Committee also asked what the Department is doing to secure or protect its content so that it only benefits South Africa.


The Department of Public Service and Administration, for programme two, the Consultation to inform the final draft of the White Paper for Public Administration Transformation and Modernisation was held with the United Nations Development Programme, as well as during the Department’s Strategic Planning Session in November 2017.

During the second quarter, the average number of days taken to resolve disciplinary cases by all national and provincial departments was en route to the Minister Public Service and Administration in December 2017 because amendments needed to be made to the initial submission.

For programme four, five and six 100% of the targets were achieved.

The Department spent 73.57% of its budget for compensation of employees, 41.71% of the goods and services budget was spent, 100% of the budget for payments of assets was spent, on transfers and subsidies 76.95% was spent and finally on payment of capital assets 59.88% was spent. This means that a total of 68.85% of the budget was spent on expenditure per economic classification.

The Committee asked what the National Centre of Government is for. On irregular expenditure what is being done to deal with staff who carelessly spend money. It also asked the department to elaborate on wage negotiations and what the challenge is regarding conflict resolution and disciplinary matters.

Meeting report

Public Service Commission
Dr Dovhani Mamphiswana, Director General, Public Service Commission, presented the Department’s performance during the third quarter.  92% of the planned targets were achieved for quarter three.  The key achievements for the period ending 31 December 2017 are as follows:

  • Maintaining vacancy rate of 8.6% (24 of 277 vacant posts)
  • Finalisation of 83% (370 of 445) of grievance cases
  • Finalisation of 73% (163 of 223) of public administration investigations
  • 100% (182 of 182) referral of National Anti-Corruption Hotline (NACH) cases

The remaining 8% were not achieved because there was a delay in implementation. These are:

  • PAIA Manual (Legal Services)
  • Signing of Service Level Agreements (SCM)
  • Drafting of technical brief (LRI)
  • Training of officials at Head Office on Data Warehouse (GM)
  • Completion of scrutiny of financial disclosures (PE)

Programme 1, Administration
The Department presented the progress report to the Audit Committee in December 2017 in line with the implementation of the Annual Internal Audit Plan. On risk management, the second quarter Risk Management report was approved in November 2017.

Programme 2: Leadership and Human Resource Reviews
On Human Resource Management, the vacancy rate was 8.6% that is, 24 out of 277 vacancies were filled. On people with disabilities, the Department has 6 people with disabilities, which translates to 2.37% of the total staff establishment.

Programme 3, Monitoring and Evaluation
93% of the targets were achieved.  The Department failed to train officials because there were delays in the appointment of a service provider.

Programme 3, Integrity and Anti-Corruption
83% of the targets were achieved. 60% of the investigations on complaints were approved within 3 months from date of receipt of relevant documents and 65% of early resolution complaints investigated and approved within 45 days from date of receipt of relevant documentation.

No irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure was incurred for the period 1 April to 31 Dec 2017.

Discussion
A Member asked which levels are affected by the 8.6% vacancy rate and whether these include strategic positions. She further referred to slide 42 of the presentation and asked whether it was possible to achieve 75% before the end of March.

Mr S Motau (DA) asked about the data base problem and whether the Committee would be able to finalise it by the end of March. He also asked about the incompatibility between ministers and Director Generals and what the Department is doing to resolve this problem.

Mr M Ntombela (ANC) asked what was being done about the departments that do not provide information when required to, are there any measures in place to avoid this problem?

The Chairperson said that the Department should strive to achieve its targets regardless of whether it is provided with information or not.

Dr Dovhani said it is possible to achieve 75% before the end of March because the Department is only 5% short and have decided to work overtime. On the vacancy rate, all strategic positions are filled and all other positions are suspended due to financial constraints.

On incompatibility, the whole Department needs to be reviewed and it is currently working with the presidency to come up with a solution.

National School of Governance (NSG)
Ms Phindile Mkhwanazi Chief Financial officer of the Department, presented the third quarter organisational report to the Committee.  She highlighted the key performances of the Department, specifically the Rutananang ma Africa, which campaign attracted 550 individuals and 130 organisations, and which closed on 31 August 2017. The NSG is currently undertaking technical evaluations of all those who have applied. The Department also continues in the rollout of open online learning. Open online courses aim to provide relevant knowledge and skills to improve service delivery. Learning is delivered in the workplace and allows officials to take responsibility for their learning.  Since April to December 2017, a total of 3 589 learners registered for open online courses offered by the NSG.

Pursuant to the EU Public Service Training and Capacity Building Programme agreement worth EUR 10 000 000, the programme is being rolled out and focuses on capacity and institutional strengthening of the NSG to be repositioned as the strategic hub for all public-sector learning, training and development.

Programme One
Programme one shows that the average debt collection days is 37 days. All payments to suppliers were made within the prescribed 30 days of receipt of a valid invoice. A disaster recovery test was conducted and the vacancy rate is 8.8%.

Target not achieved in programme one is the projected R93 million revenue generated by 31 December 2017. The Department managed to raise R73.2 million by the end of December.

Programme Two
Three areas were not achieved in programme two. The Department had targeted to publish two articles to promote thought leadership but only one was published in the third quarter. It targeted to train 13 611 new and current public servants through face to face and online learning (including Compulsory Induction and demand led trainings) however, during this quarter, 12 852 new and current public servants were trained through face to face and online learning.

The outcomes for the projects that were undertaken show that the Executive Coaching programme was developed and piloted, and the NSG contracted ten executive coaches who were assigned to 11 newly appointed DDGs. Coaches have reported that there is little to no response from the Early Intervention Programme (EIP) learners. The NSG will engage learners individually to intervene.  Further, in this financial year, to date the NSG trained a total of 3 859 youth graduates.

The NSG within its mandate is supporting the DPSA which leads the portfolio in this activity. Through the BB2E programme, the NSG trained 3 859 youth graduates in this financial year. Additionally, the NSG, through its recruitment process appoints interns every April to give unemployed graduates an opportunity to learn new skills and prepare them for future employment in the public service.

The Executive Coaching programme was developed and piloted, and the NSG contracted ten executive coaches who were assigned to 11 newly appointed DDGs. The NSG also trains public service managers on Mentoring, the objective for the course is to equip managers at all levels with mentoring skills and capacity to create space for professional development. 

On financial performance, the Department has utilised 97% of the budget. It also has not raised enough revenue on the training trading account.

On human resources, the NSG has a total of 227 posts on the approved establishment for Programmes 1 & 2 with 207 posts filled, and 20 vacant, representing a vacancy rate of 8.8% by end of December 2017.

 The declining fiscal position is the consequence of lower rates of economic growth and will require stability and coherence of economic policies as well as attention to the growth and development of small and medium businesses. The NSG will focus on building relations and partnering with relevant institutions to focus on developing economic courses.

Discussion
Mr Motau said he understood that some of the trained graduates are given internships, however what happens to those who do not get the internships, are they followed up on?

Ms Mkhwanazi answered that the department does not follow up on them.

Mr M Khosa (ANC) asked which companies the main defaulters are when it comes to revenue collection and the effect of the lack of their payments thereof. Further, how often does the Department engage with stakeholders to improve the school’s quality?

Ms Mkhwanazi responded that most departments use the pre-paid system. This is challenging because training is often delayed. Additionally, marketing teams engage with various departments and the research unit provides free help.

Ms Z Dlamini-Dubazana (ANC) asked why the Department is using the €10 000 to reposition strategy. What does that mean?

Ms Mkhwanazi answered that the EU is behind the running of this programme. The Department wants to upgrade its infrastructure and E-learning models.

A Member asked whether the 7 people with disabilities are also training facilitators. She also asked whether the department tracks the performance of people outside the NSG.

Ms Mkhwanazi answered that only one of the people with disabilities assists with training. She added that the department has facilities to assist the disabled.

Centre for Public Service Innovation (CPSI)
Mr Donald Liphoko, Acting Executive Director, CPSI, took the Committee through the presentation.

During the 3rd Quarter period the organisation had 20 Targets, 16 (90%) of the targets were achieved and two targets (10%) were not achieved by 31 December 2017. Mechanisms have been put in place to ensure that the targets that were not achieved will be achieved in the 4th quarter.

The amount received in Programme one, Administration, was R14.2 million for the period 1 April 2017 to 31 December 2017. Spending for the same period was R12.8 million. 

On Compensation of Employees, two posts were only filled in July 2017 and not in April 2017 as originally anticipated, resulting in a saving of R294 000. A saving of R 1.1 million was identified from audit fees, which will be directed to other areas.

Programme two, Public Sector Innovation, received an amount of R11.8 million for the period 1 April 2017 to 31 December 2017.  Spending for the same period was R10.9 million. The projected payment to be made to the innovation hub will only be processed in the fourth quarter and projected expenses for S&T were less than anticipated due to cost containments.

All Payments were made within 7.72 days of receipt of an invoice. 319 payments were processed from 1 April 2017 to 31 December 2017.

Discussion
Mr Ntombela said the CPSI is critical to the performance of the Committee’s work. He asked how many projects have been frozen or put on hold because of underfunding and which are they.

Mr Khosa asked why the Department is not able to utilise its budget, it even fails to use the little funding that it gets.

Ms Dlamini-Dubazana asked why South African content leave its borders because content can generate revenue for a country. How is the Department securing or protecting its content? Further, why is the Department not able to use its budget.

Ms Z Jongbloed (DA) raised her concern about the Department’s inability to use its budget and asked whether it has the capacity to deliver its promise on vacancies.

Mr Motau asked whether the Department gets a return when sharing information with other SADC countries.

The Chairperson asked for clarity on the allocation of funds to the CFO. Further, on shifting funds, does it not mean that the project where money was taken from is now compromised?

Mr Liphoko responded that 70% of the budget is already spent. This does not mean that the remaining 30% will not be used as it is already committed to other projects.

There are interns in the organisation who focus mainly on media and IT. The Department will work with universities to recruit interns for other areas.

Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA)
Mr Willie Vukela, Acting DG, DPSA, took the Committee through the presentation.

Programme 1
The overall performance for programme one is as follows:

  • The 2nd quarter Interim Financial Statements were submitted to National Treasury on 31 October 2017.
  • The 2nd quarter report on the implementation of the 2017/18 APP was submitted to the Executive Authority, National Treasury and DPME in October 2017
  • The 1st and 2nd quarter compliance reports to internal and external Human Resources and Labour Relations Policy Prescripts and Procedures were submitted to the Executive Committee in December 2017

The Department was unable to meet its target of continuing the consultation process.

Programme 2
Consultation to inform the final draft of the draft White Paper for Public Administration Transformation and Modernisation was held with the United Nations Development Programme in October and November 2017 as well as during the DPSA Strategic Planning Session in November 2017. The two identified departments (national Department of Social Development and the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries) were capacitated on how to implement the Productivity Measurement tool in November 2017.

Programme 3
The Department was not able to provide Support and guidance on the implementation of the revised SMS Performance Management and Development System (PMDS).

During the second quarter, the average number of days taken to resolve disciplinary cases by all national and provincial departments was en route to the Minister Public Service and Administration in December 2017 because amendments needed to be made to the initial submission.

Programmes 4, 5 & 6
100% of the targets were achieved.

The Department spent 73.57% of its budget for Compensation of Employees, 41.71% of the goods and services budget was spent, 100% of the budget for payments of assets was spent, on transfers and subsidies 76.95% was spent and finally on payment of capital assets 59.88% was spent. This means that a total of 68.85% of the budget was spent on expenditure per economic classification.

Discussion
A Member asked what the National Centre of Government is for. On irregular expenditure, what is being done to deal with staff who carelessly spend money.

Mr Motau asked the Department to elaborate on wage negotiations. He also asked what the challenge regarding conflict resolution and disciplinary matters was.

Mr Ntombela asked alternative measures the department has for accountability.

Mr Vukela answered that the National Centre is an imperative part of the Department and it is a must to have it.

Many departments and even provinces are defaulters. The Department however must take responsibility and come up with a plan to deploy trade capacity.

On wage negotiations, state negotiations are going smoothly. The 24 issues have been reduced to three namely housing allowance, the cost of living adjustment and equalization of progression. By the end of March everything should be sorted.

The Deputy Minister said she hoped that a resolution will be reached by March. She would like to see the extent of donor funding’s influences the budget because there is no indication of what is done with the money on the presentation.

Committee business
The Committee will embark on a study tour to Poland and other countries to learn about administration, civil service and others. Each political party is to nominate representatives: four for the ANC, two members from the DA and other parties to nominate one representative each.

The Committee is requested to nominate a Member to represent it at the Batho Pele awards on Friday.

The meeting was adjourned.

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