Senior management service conference 2006

Age of Hope: Capacity Building for Accelerated Service Delivery

Date: 20 Sep 2006 - 21 Sep 2006

Venue: ICC Durban

Background & Purpose

The pressure to improve services and modernise our operations is escalating. South Africans want service improvements and greater value, transparency and accountability from all spheres of government. Whilst some clients report that they are satisfied with services they receive from government, others express their dissatisfaction with how government manages its operations, including cost effectiveness, openness and accountability for public spending.

Capacity building is a huge challenge facing the country, especially to enable SMS members to manage the delivery of quality services to the public. If there is inadequate capacity, functions and responsibilities in departments cannot be effectively implemented, even with the best institutional policies, structures, corporate plans and budgets. Capacity building involves the improvement of skills and knowledge amongst existing staff and building on existing competencies and know-how. The aim is to take an incremental approach within the existing framework for capacity building and to maintain progress in any way possible.

The State of the Nation Address (SONA) clearly stated that the machinery of government, especially local government, must discharge its responsibilities effectively and efficiently, thus honouring the implementation of the Batho Pele principle. In order for this to happen and accelerated implementation to take effect, capacity levels in government institutions must be raised.

We must also keep in the mind the objective to halve poverty and unemployment by 2014. The three spheres of government have been working collaboratively with private and business sectors and collectively came up with specific interventions to ensure that the Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative in SA (ASGISA), which aims to reduce poverty under the leadership of our Deputy President, succeeds in its purpose of reducing levels of unemployment.

For the SMS to pro-actively and successfully engage with the accelerated and shared growth initiative, capacity needs, ranging from basic upgrading to specialised institutional requirements, will need to be thoroughly examined and understood.


Based on the proposed theme, the conference aims to achieve the following:

  • To bring senior managers to a common understanding of what capacity is needed to implement government's programme of action; (immediately)
  • Have a common understanding of the direction Government is taking and their role in reporting for the programme of action. (immediately)
  • Continuously support and build capacity of senior managers through information and learning sessions in order to improve service delivery. (long term)
  • Accelerate leadership and management development in order to develop a culture of accurate reporting, accountability and responsibility of the senior managers. (long term)
  • Ensure that senior managers in the Public Service, as the driving force of translating Government policy into implementable programmes, have a complete understanding of the priorities of Government. (Immediate and long term)
  • Enable information sharing and best practice models through presentation of case studies. (immediate)
  • Identify best practices for good leadership and management of the Public Service and to develop a model for development of managers. (immediate and long term)

Targeted Audience

Senior Management Services members of government


Day 1

Sub theme 1: Capacity requirements for sustainable growth and development

Programme Manager: Ms I Mackay Langa: Director Chief Executive Officer, Government Communication and Information System

Gala Dinner

Day 2

Sub theme: Enablers too halve poverty and unemployment by 2014

Programme Manager: Ms N Mahanjana: Superintendent–General, Education, Eastern Cape

Last update: 31 August 2011

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