The applicability of a learning organisation philosophy for improving processes and practices in the Universities of Technology (UoTs) in KwaZulu-Natal
Mhlongo, Patrick Mbongwa
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The UoTs are operating in an environment in which they have to deal with multifarious and complex challenges. Responding effectively to such challenges has become critical for UoTs in achieving a competitive advantage and in outsmarting competitors. Traditional approaches which deal with rapid changes in the higher education landscape have become obsolete. The fact is that UoTs are faced with transformational challenges - increasing student intake, the need for improving throughput rate, the need for remaining financially sustainable while producing the top graduates required by industry. Given this background, this study investigates the application of a learning organisation philosophy for improving processes and practices in the UoTs of KwaZulu-Natal. Learning organisation philosophy has been identified as one of the best approaches for organisations in the corporate sector. It is used to achieve and sustain a competitive advantage. Learning organisation philosophy encourages the culture of continuous learning by members of the organisation, so as to achieve strategic objectives. This study provides UoTs’ perspectives of the learning organisation theory. Data was collected from employees of DUT. The sample was drawn from both administrative and academic employees. A self-administered questionnaire was used in collecting the data. The findings of this study reveal that the application of a learning organisation philosophy will help UoTs improve their processes and practices. Based on the findings, the majority of participants indicated that they would embrace and support the application of a learning organisation philosophy at DUT. It has to be noted that in the study, DUT was used as a case study.