Towards a results-based performance management: practices and challenges in the Ethiopian public sector
The purpose of this research is to propose a strategy of managing performance in the public sector. The primary data have been collected through questionnaires administered to managers and professionals; and interviews administered to heads of planning and ICT departments. Secondary data were collectedthrough reviewing documents (plans, reports,
proclamations and regulation). Findings of this study indicate that performance management system is disconnected at the top that weakened accountability of managers in the public sector. Besides, agencies responsible for performance management have not developed systems to monitor and evaluate performances of public organisations and their managers. As a matter of fact, public organisations have made a lot of progress in introducing LAN, developing web pages and using the internet for information sharing. However, they have not developed database systems and computerized MIS that are important for the management of performance. The other problem of managing performance in the public sector is the different agencies that are directly or indirectly involved in managing the performance of a particular public organisation. These are: first, the organisation itself, which is striving to implement BSC; second, the Planning and Budgeting unit of MoFED, which has not gone beyond the traditional activities of compiling plans and performance reports of public organisations, but attempting to implement Performance Based Budgeting, and finally, the Ministry of Civil Service, which is responsible for preparing guidelines for evaluation of employee performance. To emphasise the importance of performance management in the public sector, the Ethiopian government can learn from the experiences of some African countries, which have organised performance management units under the offices of Prime Ministers.
Keywords: Results-Based Performance Management, balanced scorecard, process control, accountability, reward systems, organizational capacity, MIS.