Challenges Affecting Performance Appraisal Process of Quality Assurance and Standards Officers: A Case of Murang' a County, Kenya
Mureithi, Jane Wambui
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The central problem of this study is that despite the Ministry of State for Public Service revising the performance appraisal system in 2008 by introducing ways of addressing various challenges that were experienced during the implementation of PAS in 2006 there are various obstacles that hinder effectiveness and efficiency of the practice in the Directorate of Quality Assurance and Standards. The purpose of the study was to assess the challenges faced by Quality Assurance and Standards Officers as they undergo performance appraisal practice at their work stations. The objectives of the study were to: find out methods of performance appraisals used on QASOs in Murang'a County; determine the frequency of perfofmance appraisals among QASOs; find out whether the performance appraisal reports generated are being used to improve performance, rewarding performers and to sanction non-performers; and establish the main challenges facing the performance appraisals ofQASOs in Murang'a County. An in-depth review of related literature focusing on appraisal methods, performance feedback, and challenges of performance appraisal and how they relate to the performance appraisal system was done. The study adopted a descriptive survey design targeting 8 District Education Officers and 17 Quality Assurance and Standard Office~s.Census sampling was used to select all the 8 District Education Officers and 17 Quality Assurance and Standard Officers to participate in the actual study. A questionnaire designed for the Quality Assurance and Standards Officers and an interview schedule for the District Education Officers were used as the main tools for data collection. Before the actual data collection, a pilot study was conducted in two Districts in Nyeri County. Data collected was both qualitative and quantitative. Qualitative analysis considered the inferences that were made from the opinions of the respondents. This analysis was thematically presented in narrative form and where possible in tabular form. Quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive statistics including frequency counts, percentages and means. Data was analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) and Ms Excel. The results of the analysis were presented in form of frequency distribution tables, pie charts and bar graphs. The study established that the most commonly used methods of performance appraisal were direct observation and verbal discussions. It was also established that most QASOs were appraised at least once per year. The study also established that communicating feedback after performance appraisal was beneficial in education sector. This is because getting feedback enabled QASOs to acquire new experience that helped them to improve on their job performance and feel motivated. The study further revealed that some of the major challenges faced by QASOs were: limited financial rupport, limited human resource, inadequate facilities and rescheduling of programs. The study recommends that: that appraisal system should be periodically reviewed to keep it in line with emerging changes, among other recommendations.