PURPOSE : Many developing countries such as South Africa have been introducing measurement of results to improve public service delivery. The practice of development of performance measures in the public service emanates from pressure exerted by citizens who are calling for more efficiency and effectiveness in delivering services. This article examines the implementation of the audit of pre-determined objectives at the Department of Basic Education (DBE).
DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH : This study is based on a qualitative case study approach. Secondary sources of data were used in order to analyse the DBE's challenges in managing performance information. Key secondary documents used include the AGSA annual audit reports as well as the DBE 2010/11–2014/15 Strategic Plan and Annual Performance Plans (APP) that provide the pre-determined objectives selected by the Department to measure performance for the five-year period.
FINDINGS : The findings indicate that there are shortcomings in the processes of managing performance information. Based on the findings, it is incumbent upon the senior management of the DBE to strive towards understanding and improving their oversight roles and responsibilities in the management of pre-determined objectives.
ORIGINALITY/VALUE : The study generates a deeper understanding of what has been happening when pre-determined objectives were developed, reported or assessed in the DBE. This will assist the Department and similar public institutions to make further improvements in order to achieve pre-determined objectives.