Monash University

Management Development Evaluation Practices in Australian Business Organisation: The Human Resource Practitioners’ Perceptive

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posted on 2019-12-08, 21:56 authored by Mufunani Tungu Khosa
Management development requires an investment of time and money and like other forms of investment, should be justified on the basis of return from that investment. Rising costs have not deterred organisations from increasing their investments in this activity. However, at least in the literature, there is little conclusive evidence of the contributions of management development to corporate profitability. The purpose of the present study was to obtain an in-depth understanding of evaluation approaches employed in leading Australian business organisations to establish the contributions of management development to the attainment of corporate goals. An exploratory-descriptive research design was employed to elicit human resource practitioners' perceptions and experiences. Data collection included a questionnaire survey of 50 leading companies, in-depth semi-structured interviews of senior human resource practitioners responsible for management development in 10 of those organisations, and extensive document analysis. The study found that evaluation was based mainly on immediate reactions and feedback from participants some time after the programs, and focused almost entirely on program design and implementation and not on the effects of the management development activities on manager performance and the achievement of corporate goals. The main contributory factor to the lack of impact evaluation was found to be a lack of requisite evaluation expertise. A number of factors emerge as crucial to an effective evaluation process. First, it is essential for all stakeholders in management development to upgrade their knowledge of evaluation theory. Second, effective evaluation can occur only if there is a strong culture of evaluation. Third, there is need for greater emphasis on the integration of qualitative and quantitative evaluation procedures, and to make the program participants and their line managers key players in the evaluation process. Effectiveness in management development evaluation practices can be attained through Multi-Faceted Evaluation which facilitates ongoing generation of quantitative and qualitative evaluative data by all key stakeholders via multiple formal and informal data collection techniques for use by the stakeholders themselves, researchers and other interested parties


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Principal supervisor

Brian Spicer

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Department, School or Centre

Education (Gippsland)


Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type



Faculty of Education

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