Botswana Post no more top heavy - CEO

SHARE   |   Tuesday, 05 July 2016   |   By Kabelo Adamson
Ramatlhakwane Ramatlhakwane

Botswana Post CEO Cornelius Ramatlhakwane, who was appointed to the position in October last year, on Tuesday presented to the media what he dubbed the “new organisation”. Appearing alongside the board chairman Polokoetsile Motau, Ramatlhakwane – who held the position of Head of Business Development within Botswana Post – said they have designed a new organisation within a space of nine months. Ramatlhakwane said the thorny issue that they identified was that the organisational structure was top heavy with 44 percent of total annual payroll being consumed by only 18 percent of staff based at head office. “We had more than 107 temporary staff at the branches, and support was centralised at head office,” he said during his first press conference at Poso House.

As a response to the challenge, he said they had to redesign the business model into four major functions with more members of staff pushed to the customer service to improve service delivery as well as improve revenue to labour cost ratio. “This speaks to operational effectiveness and efficiency, and the new model is called the “Value Centre Organisation” which is derived from the lean principles of high performance.” The four functions that he says have been introduced are Operations and Technology which will support functions of mail operations and technology; Commercial, a function that combines retail network, business development and marketing and communications; Finance and Administration which oversees the financial operations and coordinate financial, accounting and tax strategies.

The fourth function that forms part of Botswana Post’s new model is Human Capital and Skills Development which is meant to oversee resource management, industrial relations policies, practices and operations and provide performance and organisational strategies among others. According to Ramatlhakwane, initially Botswana Post had four regional managers, each managing about 30 post offices but has now increased the number to 12 Value Centre Managers as they are now called. “With this new regional structure the managers are able to connect with their staff, and involve them in daily decision making as well as model the behaviour they want to see and in return get the desired results.”

In the new remodeled organisation, Ramatlhakwane said they have created a leaner organisation from a structural and workflow standpoint, with targeted spans of control averaging five to seven direct reports to a line manager. Contrary to reports, Ramatlhakwane says Botswana Post has created 107 new positions, thus increasing our approved complement from 743 to 850, adding that during the remodeling exercise only six people left the organisation on voluntary basis. For his part, Botswana Post board chairperson, Motau said they have since decided to retain the “Icon of Excellence” strategy which was adopted in 2011 and was to run until March this year.