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Performance management and evaluation in non-profit organisations : an embedded mixed methods approach

Performance management research in the private and public sector has received much attention in management accounting research; however, empirical studies on performance management in the non-profit sector remain scarce. This study proposes and validates a model that explains the relationships between contingency variables, performance management practices, and organisational effectiveness in the non-profit sector. The study employed a mixed methods research approach, which entailed a field study and a cross-sectional survey in the Kenyan non-profit sector. The field study was undertaken to understand the perceptions of NPO leaders on non-profit sector characteristics, organisational effectiveness, determinants, challenges, and benefits of implementation of performance management systems in the Kenyan non-profit sector. Thereafter, a cross-sectional survey (using mailed questionnaires and an online survey) was used to collect quantitative primary data. Structural equation modelling was used to analyse the quantitative data. The structural equation modelling approach was adopted to test the hypothesised relationships among the contingency factors, performance management practices and organisational effectiveness. The findings indicate that performance management in NPOs can be categorised into three groups: performance planning, performance measurement and performance context. The NPOs emphasise mission statements and core values within the formal PM system. Although a number of private sector measurement frameworks are utilised, the NPOs mostly use logical framework, with emphasis on output and financial measures and team based targets with no clear rewards. The PM systems are resource intensive and they lead to goal displacement and narrow definition and measurement of organisational effectiveness. The results further reveal that among the contingency variables, strategic orientation significantly predicted performance management practices and organisational effectiveness in non-profits. Among the performance management variables, performance planning, performance targets, and performance rewards significantly predict organisational effectiveness domains. Furthermore, performance management practices mediate the relationship between strategic orientations, technology, information technology, leadership and external environment and organisational effectiveness domains. However, organisational size was not significantly related to performance management practices or organisational effectiveness. To successfully implement and benefit from the PM system, non-profit organisations need to address the fit between contextual factors and the performance management system. By employing a pragmatic, embedded, mixed methods approach this study provides empirical evidence of performance management practices that influence organisational effectiveness beyond the rhetoric of performance management theory. At the practice level, the findings will benefit Kenya government, non-profit organisations, donor agencies and performance evaluation practitioners.
Date January 2014
CreatorsWadongo, Billy Indeche
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

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