TITLE

From the Chairman John Lucey

PUB. DATE
October 2004
SOURCE
Management Services;Oct2004, Vol. 48 Issue 10, p32
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This article focuses on the annual conference of the South African Institute of Management Services in Rustenburg, South Africa in October 2004. South Africa has just completed ten years of freedom and the country has undergone massive social and political change. The conference comprised of a variety of world class, hands-on presentations, together with workshops and case studies. The program included: work place-related stress; risk management; the role of the productivity specialist; effective organization structures; improving productivity at the expense of jobs; a workshop dealing with mapping processes; and a workshop on the application of lean tools and techniques. Pirter Haasbroek, group economist for Barloworld Ltd., tracked the economic performance of South Africa prior to freedom and in the ten years of freedom and attempted to forecast what may happen in the next ten years. The current situation is not really conducive to the application of and acceptance of lean as the unemployment rate is 42 percent. The country is experiencing very low levels of economic growth; consequently staff who are retrenched by the application of lean are not easily redeployed which in turn increases an already very high level of unemployment. International companies in South Africa are starting to make profits again after a period of sustained loss. This is being achieved by capital investment in automation, mechanization, and computerization. Haasbroek concluded that the most desirable outcome is to increase the output of the enterprise without retrenching workers. On the macro-economic level this ideal translates into sustaining a high rate of economic growth with full employment. The economic system, however, struggles to solve this problem and South Africa desperately needs to reform the system. He felt that pressure must be put on the government who seem to be pursuing a political agenda at a high cost to the economy.
ACCESSION #
14696674

 

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