Performance appraisal prototype for academic staff : a case of Strathmore University
In order for academic staff appraisal to be successful there is need for a thorough methodology and appraisal system to be put in place. The Deans and the university’s top management are often interested in knowing what each lecturer is doing with regard to learning and teaching, research, consultancy, publications, community activities, administrative activities, conference and seminar presentations. The problem is that this information is often not available in any system at the click of a button! The Deans therefore have to ask for this information from the lecturers by way of email or call for a meeting in order to get this information. This is time consuming and cumbersome. This research studied this problem and in the end developed a prototype of a computerized system that could be very useful in academic staff performance appraisal in universities. The lecturers set targets for the Key Performance Indicators at the beginning of the evaluation period and fills the actual performance at the end of the period. The Dean can log in to the system, view the lecturers in his/her faculty and appraise them. The HR Director and the DVC can view and appraise all the lecturers in the university. This means that at any given time the Dean knows the work that is being done in the faculty. The HR and DVC know the work that is being done in the whole university. They therefore are equipped with information. They know who to reward more, who to promote to the next level and who should improve. The Dean and Senior Management of the University thus know in good time whether or not the faculty is working towards achieving their strategic goals. The research methods used are interviews and document reviews. Lecturers, Deans, HR Director, DVC and The Head of Strategy were interviewed. Based on findings of the research, a computerized performance appraisal system for academic staff was developed using the waterfall model. The research recommends that private universities should adopt the computerized academic staff performance appraisal system. They should also develop elaborate academic staff appraisal procedure, implement a proper reward system, develop support mechanisms to help the lecturers achieve the performance targets set and train the lecturers and administrative staff involved in the whole process.