Performance management in further education : a balanced scorecard approach
This study investigates aspects of performance management to determine if such a system can be implemented in a further education college. The performance management system used was based on the concept of the Balanced Scorecard devised by Kaplan and Norton in 1992. The Balanced Scorecard is a performance management system that enables institutions to translate their vision and strategic aims into action. After 1993 colleges concentrated their planning strategies on developmental activities to the detriment of other business processes. The Balanced Scorecard perspectives identified as essential to the success in this college were customers, finance, staff, systems and developments. The performance management system was based on a team approach where the strategic aims of the college were translated into operational objectives. In addition to linking teams to the vision and strategic aims of the college, it was also an objective to link individual performance of staff and CPD to the operational objectives of the team. The methodology used was an action research study. Qualitative and quantitative analysis were carried out to determine the effects of change on operational planning. A questionnaire was used to determine the opinions of staff. A focus group determined the opinions of senior managers. Visits to other colleges and industrial organisations were sources of information which informed the practicalities of implementing performance management. The study concluded a performance management system is effective in promoting teamwork and in ensuring that the vision and strategic aims of the college are achieved. The Balanced Scorecard model developed for this study is an effective method of linking the concept of performance management to operational planning. Evidence from the staff questionnaire led to the conclusion that the performance and development review procedure was effective.