This is the gist of findings made by College of Humanities Human Resources Manager Mrs Nonhlanhla Kunene who graduated with her Master of Commerce degree for research which investigated attraction and retention of academic research staff at UKZN.
‘In a competitive work environment it is important to understand these trends and what can be done to improve as all institutions compete for the same resources,’ said Kunene.
As a Human Resources practitioner Kunene believes that an understanding of the phenomenon of attraction and retention is crucial and improvements in this area will be of great benefit, particularly the processes and practices to get the best people for the institution.
Her recommendations include a re-look at recruitment strategies and improving the work environment for academics so they can thrive and contribute towards the strategy of the institution. ‘We need to improve the reputation of the institution. Further research in the area of managing talent in higher education institutions is also needed,’ said Kunene.
Despite having to juggle work priorities and family commitments as well as deal with administrative challenges, Kunene persisted until she graduated. ‘It is truly liberating and one of my biggest achievements to date,’ she said.
Kunene is grateful for her strong support system. ‘Without my family and friends I would not have completed my studies. Their sacrifices, support and encouragement have been the driving force.’
She now plans to pursue her PhD.