The Independent Electoral Commission is a permanent body established by the country’s constitution to promote and organize a well democracy election in a Country. This particular essay will be based on South Africa Independent Electoral Commission and how the management of the organization will perform, Will focus on the challenges that the management of Independent Electoral commission might come across to manage during this forthcoming election.
The Independent Electoral Commission was temporary established in 1993 and has five administrators appointed by the president. The president is brief to deliver a free and fair election at all the spheres of government both provincial and local.
In 17 of October 1996 the permanent Electoral Commission was established with objectives to maintain and compile the voters’ roll. The Independent Electoral Commission is responsible for counting the vote, verifying, and declaring the results of an election.
Functions of the Independent Electoral Commission:
- Maintaining and compiling a register of parties
- Promote conditions for free and fair elections.
- undertaking and promoting research into electoral matters
- The Independent Electoral Commission ensure that elections run smoothly
- To manage elections at all spheres of government
- The Independent Electoral Commission ensure elections are free and fair
- To promote voter education
- To maintain quality database of the electorate
- To be a reputable effective organization
Now let take a look at some values that Independent Electoral Commission has.
Some VALUES that the IEC possess:
- The Independent Electoral Commission is responsible for the efficient use of resources, production of true election related documents like voter’s rolls and reports.
- Publish accurate election results.
Now in terms of productivity, The Independent Electoral Commission must all provide quality services
- Cost effectively
- The Independent Electoral Commission takes decisions without fear and liking of a particular party.
- The Independent Electoral Commission must always be neutral when serving the country during election.
- The Independent Electoral Commission organizes its business within the confines of the legal.
- The Independent Electoral Commission is committed to fulfill the needs of the election to the best of its abilities.
- The Independent Electoral Commission believes that the must be a free and fair competition between political parties and transparent electoral processes.
The Independent Electoral Commission only gets active after every 5 years of the election cycle whereby the have to start organizing and prepare for another election year.
The forthcoming election will be held in 7 of May 2014 and the question to ask will be if the Independent Electoral Commission management is ready to run the election smoothly and ready to face all the challenges that come along.
All organizations need time to plan and manage the event and the election is one of the biggest events and it draws the attention of many. Management will face many challenges that the organization will come across, therefore the Independent Electoral Commission must be ready beforehand.
The following are some of the management sectors of the Independent Electoral Commission and some challenges this sectors might come across to during election period.
- The financial function
- The Human Resource function
- The Information Technology function
The Independent Electoral Commission receives financial support from parliamentary appropriations according to the Electoral Act 51. The Independent Electoral Commission Chief is the accounting officer and is responsible for keeping all the accounting and financial record. The Independent Electoral Commission Chief makes sure that both accounting and financial records are audited by the Auditor General.
The Independent Electoral Commission finance department is one of the biggest, but one of most challenging departments to manage during this period and with the country being financially challenged this makes it even more daunting task. With Independent Electoral Commission only getting active during election time, that might affect the finance department not being more prepared due to lack of well preparation time, not everything will run smoothly financially but with good planning the Independent Electoral Commission can face these issues.
Let have look on some financial points:
- Financial Planning
The Independent Electoral Commission management needs to ensure that enough funding is available at the right time to meet the entire requirement needed during the election time. The funding may be needed to invest in equipment that will be needed during election, pay employees, but with the Independent Electoral Commission being significantly active only during the election time this will lead to some issues on how to plan financially without considering how much will be needed to spend on all the assets.
On the financial planning side the Independent Electoral Commission will face some issues like on registration of new voters which cannot be planned by focusing on the previous election. New voters have to get registered so that the Independent Electoral Commission can financially plan well in advance about the number of voting stations and where they should be situated.
- Financial Control
The Financial Control for the Independent Electoral Commission as an organization is very important to help the organization to ensure that the Election preparation meet its objectives.
- Financial Decision-making
The Independent Electoral Commission can plan to a certain extent on how much funds the organization would need for the forthcoming election, the amount of fund needed cannot be well decided as there are always financing alternatives that can be consider as we approach the election day.
Human Resource functions
The Human resource management in the Independent Electoral Commission organization is primarily concerned with the way people are managed within the organization policies system.
The Human resources are responsible for some activities in the organization, activities such as recruitment, training and development etc…
The functions that Independent Electoral Commission human resources carries:
- Manpower Planning
This particular point include the future planning and finding out the numbers of employees will be needed during the Election Day and what types of skills should the employee have.
The Independent Electoral Commission Human resources management having to start getting active only during the election period this will have some challenges by recruiting the correct staff prior to the Election Day.
The Independent Electoral Commission Human resources must make sure to recruit the best people for the organization during the election. This will be of great significance as the success of the organization will be based on the quality of employees recruited.
The Independent Electoral Commission human resources still busy recruiting employee two weeks before the Election Day. This will prove how the recruitment and selection in this department, they will definitely face some few challenges to manage the employees and to do a well prepared selection of candidates needed to assist the voters on the election day.
The Independent Electoral Commission Human resource department must provide the required training to the employees of the organization, in order to improve on the materials being used during the election days and to be well prepared to assist voters regards to any queries that comes along on the day.
The Independent Electoral Commission Human resource has less time to recruit the well skilled employees. This will have influences on the Election Day when it comes to assisting the voters with any queries. Employees that are being placed two days or a week before the election without being well trained, this can cause some problems on that day of the election.
- Implementing policies in The Organization
The Independent Electoral Commission Human resource department must make sure that the organization policies are being implemented in a good manner.
The Independent Electoral Commission having to recruit some of the employees at the latest stage of the Election period, and these employees will have some difficulties on how to implement the organizations policies and some of the rules that’s needed during the election.
The Information Technology function
The IEC Information technology department has the responsibility of dealing with all the issues regarding the technological side during the election. The objective of Information Technology department in the Independent Electoral Commission is to provide all the technical support to the whole organization.
The department is responsible for all the materials running on the election that includes the setting up of voting stations in all the areas needed, installing telecommunication facilities and setting up all the hardware needed to link each and every voting station.
The Independent Electoral Commission however will face some issues during the Election Day due to lack of preparation on the Information Technology department, having to install and do all the setup needed on that day.
Some function of the Independent Electoral Commission Information Technology management during the election and some issue that the organization might face due to lack of time.
The helpdesk side of the organization will be responsible to respond to request for technical assistance in person, and via the phone or remotely. Employees have to be computer literate with the devices they are going to use, but with the recruitment still in progress few days before election, employees might struggle with some programs that Independent Electoral Commission uses because of lack of well training time on the materials.
- Desktop and LAN
To perform analysis, diagnosis, and resolution of desktop and LAN problems for end users.
The Independent Electoral Commission Information Technology management will collaborate with network and systems administrator to ensure efficient operation of desktop computing environment during the election. The Independent Electoral Commission only getting active during the election, the organization will face some issues on how the department will install, configure, test, maintain, and monitor workstations, LAN assets, related hardware and software in order to deliver required services on the Election Day.
- Information Technology Site Management
The Independent Electoral Commission Information Technology management is responsible for providing support to ensure that voters are all satisfy on the Election Day. The department is also responsible for all desktop support and maintenance related to local area hardware and LAN software. Within fewer weeks to go to the Election Day, the Independent Electoral Commission Information Technology management will have to work under pressure to make sure that all the materials run and work smoothly.
The Independent Electoral Commission Information Technology management will face some challenges on how to handle more than 100 voting station plus the employee that will need some training on the materials being used so that everything can run smoothly regards to the Technical materials, hardware and software side that’s needed before the election day.
- Systems Security Administration
The Independent Electoral Commission Information Technology management are responsible for the processes during election by providing appropriate access to and ensuring the availability, confidentiality and integrity of the organization. The Information Technology management is responsible for managing and supervising the execution and use of security measures to protect the Information Technology resources and data during the Election Day.
The Independent Electoral Commission recruitment for employees still on the process within few weeks to go to the Election Day and this can have some issues on the security side of the organization.
Employing staff two days or week before the Election Day without being well trained on how to respect the integrity of the organization as well as the election itself.
Over the past 20 years the Independent Electoral Commission has had various challenges to deal with from taking South Africa into a democracy and now in to its bright future. In the past the Independent Electoral Commission dealt with many violent incidences during election times, now we are moving towards out 5th Election and judging from the past it seems like South African citizen’s or voters are not fighting but rather working at making South Africa a better place. Many people are becoming more and more proactive at their in respective political parties.
The Independent Electoral Commission can be thanked for this, as it is today there are so many political parties running in the election. This is very interesting to see how the country develops and how the Independent Electoral Commission deals with a new kind of challenge by dealing with all the new parties and the more people interested in voting.
In conclusion, to produce a successful Election it demand more preparation based on the various department in the Independent Electoral Commission organization. The Independent Electoral Commission in order to produce a well organize Election, they will need to be more prepare in all departments in advanced, so that they can face less issues as we closer to the Election Day, on the Election Day and during the counting of the votes.
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