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Mark Final Project 2016

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Mark Final Project 2016

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  1. 1. THE INFLUENCE OF FOCUSED STRATEGY ON SERVICE DELIVERY: A CASE STUDY OF POSTAL CORPORATION OF KENYA MARK OLIVAH INYANGALA 13S03EMBA012 AN APPLIED RESEARCH PROJECT SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AWARD OF MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION DEGREE IN THE BUSINESS SCHOOL OF AFRICA NAZARENE UNIVERSITY SEPTEMBER 2016
  2. 2. iii DECLARATION STUDENT’S DECLARATION I declare that this applied research project is my original work and that it has not been presented in any other University for academic credit Signature: -------------------------------------------------------- Date: ------------------------------ Name of student: Mark Olivah SUPERVISOR’S DECLARATION I confirm that the work reported in this applied research project was carried out by the candidate under my supervision Signature: --------------------------------------------------- Date: --------------------------------- Name of supervisor: Dr. Ndung’u Kabare AFRICA NAZARENE UNIVERSITY, NAIROBI, KENYA
  3. 3. iv DEDICATION I dedicate this research project to my darling wife, Mrs. Anne Wanjiru Olivah who has been my source of inspiration and my son and daughter Jahzeal Olivah and Mataniah Olivah. They have formed a strong pillar of support, determination and encouragement from the onset and all through to the completion of this project. This research wouldn’t be this successful without their love, care, support and sacrifice.
  4. 4. v TABLE OF CONTENTS DECLARATION ............................................................................................................. iii DEDICATION.................................................................................................................iv TABLE OF CONTENTS..................................................................................................v ABSTRACT................................................................................................................... viii ACKNOWLEDGEMENT................................................................................................ix LIST OF TABLES............................................................................................................x LIST OF FIGURES.........................................................................................................xi LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS.......................................................................................... xii DEFINITION OF TERMS............................................................................................. xiii CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION ANDBACKGROUND TO THE STUDY...............1 1.1 Introduction.............................................................................................................1 1.2 Background to the Study ..........................................................................................1 1.2.1 Postal Corporation of Kenya..............................................................................3 1.3 Statement of the Problem .........................................................................................5 1.4 Research Objectives.................................................................................................7 1.4.1 The General Objective ......................................................................................7 1.4.2 Specific Objectives ...........................................................................................7 1.5 Research Questions..................................................................................................7 1.6 Research Hypothesis ................................................................................................8 1.7 Significance of the Study..........................................................................................8 1.8 Scope of the study....................................................................................................9 1.9 Limitations of the Study ...........................................................................................9 1.10 Delimitations of the Study ......................................................................................10 1.11 Conceptual Framework ..........................................................................................10 CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW .................................................................13 2.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................13 2.2 Theoretical Review ................................................................................................13 2.2.1 Contingency Theory and the Mechanization of Mail Processing ........................13 2.2.2 The Resource Based View Theory...................................................................16 2.2.3 Profit-Maximizing and Competition-Based Theory...........................................17 2.3 Empirical Literature Review...................................................................................18
  5. 5. vi 2.4 Summary of the reviewed Literature .......................................................................38 2.5 Knowledge Gaps....................................................................................................39 CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY...........................41 3.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................41 3.2 Research Design ....................................................................................................41 3.3 Research site and rationale .....................................................................................42 3.4 Target Population ..................................................................................................42 3.5 Sampling Procedure...............................................................................................43 3.6 Sample size ...........................................................................................................43 3.7 Data Collection Procedures.....................................................................................44 3.8 Research Instrument...............................................................................................44 3.8.1 Piloting of Research Instrument.......................................................................45 3.8.2 Validity of Findings ........................................................................................45 3.8.3 Reliability of Research Instrument...................................................................45 3.8.4 Data Analysis and Presentation........................................................................46 3.9 Ethical considerations ............................................................................................46 CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS AND PRESENTATION OF FINDINGS...........47 4.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................47 4.2 Response Rate.......................................................................................................47 4.2.1 Level of Management ............................................................................................47 4.3 Demographic Considerations ..................................................................................48 4.4 Data Analysis and Presentation...............................................................................49 4.4.1 The Influence of Organizational Learning on service Delivery..................................49 4.4.1.1 Positive Feedback Structures...........................................................................49 4.4.1.2 Reduced lag Time...........................................................................................52 4.4.1.3 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................55 4.4.1.4 Customer Focus..............................................................................................56 4.4.1.5 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................59 4.4.2 The Influence of Corporate Strategies .....................................................................60 4.4.2.1 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................62 4.4.3 The Influence of Technological Focus.....................................................................63 4.4.3.1 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................65
  6. 6. vii CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY OF FINDINGS, DISCUSSION, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS.................................................................................................66 5.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................66 5.2 Summary of Major Study Findings..........................................................................66 5.3 Discussion of the Study Findings ............................................................................67 5.3.1 The Influence of Organizational Learning on Service Delivery at PCK ..............67 5.1.1 The Influence of Customer Focus on Service Delivery at PCK ..........................68 5.1.2 The Influence of Corporate Strategy on Service Delivery at PCK.......................68 5.1.3 The Influence of Technological Focus on Service Delivery at PCK....................69 5.4 Conclusion ............................................................................................................69 5.5 Recommendations..................................................................................................71 5.6 Areas for Further Studies........................................................................................72 REFERENCES.................................................................................................................73 APPENDICES..................................................................................................................80 APPENDIX I: INTRODUCTION LETTER .......................................................................80 APPENDIX II: RESEARCH QUESTIONNAIRE...............................................................81 APPENDIX IV: NACOSTI RESEARCH AUTHORISATION............................................89 APPENDIX V: NACOSTI RESEARCH PERMIT..............................................................90
  7. 7. viii ABSTRACT Kenya has experienced one of the most tremendous growths in the mailing industry in the last ten years in its history with the number of registered players in the same market industry hitting the one hundred and fifty mark by June 2013. The same growth was also visible in the use of mobile phone with the industry recording the subscription levels of 16,000,000 while the internet penetration levels hitting an estimated 33.3 %. These factors have made the postal mailing industry quite competitive. For courier and mail services the critical strategy is to meet the postal strategic initiative in the 21st Century, by initiating the Postal Corporation of Kenya growth and its competitiveness within the communication industry. Thus, the main purpose of this research was to investigate the influence of strategic focus at Postal Corporation of Kenya. The specific objectives of the study included: establishing the influence of organizational learning; determining the influence of customer focus; establishing influence of organizational core values on service delivery as well as determine the influence of technology on the service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. The study was anchored upon profit maximizing and Competition based theory, theory of economic development and contingency theory. This study sought to establish how the focused strategies have influenced the service delivery at the Postal Corporation in the light of increased competition and the constant change in the technology that has affected how most of the services if not all are operating. The study sampled 53 respondents from population of 132 staff members. Primary data was collected through administration of an interview guide. The data collected was mainly quantitative in nature hence content analysis was the best method of analysis as it was not limiting the respondents on answers and had the potential of generating more detailed information. Descriptive statistics such as means, cumulative frequencies and Chi-square cross tabulation were used in analyzing the data. Chi-square cross tabulation was computed to establish the level of significance between the study variables. The study found out that there are mechanisms in place for collecting stakeholders’ feedback that forms the basis for strategic reviews thus improving service delivery and introducing new and customized services and product as per the changing times, tastes and preferences. The data was presented in form of tables, pie charts, graphs and narrative report. The study recommends that the respective management board that ensures that the PCK adapts to the changing technology constantly upgrades the servers to enable it handle the increasing customer base efficiently. The study also recommends that the strategic plan should be made accessible to the relevant stake holders for assessment and contributions. This study is very significant to Postal Corporation of Kenya by giving it an in depth understanding on how it can restructure its Strategic plan and remain a force to recon with in the mailing industry despite the constant pressure from the competitors. The study is also significant to future scholars who will use it as a reference point in their studies.
  8. 8. ix ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I wish to take this opportunity to thank the Almighty God for giving me the chance, grace, health, strength, care, protection and the ability to undertake this research. I wish to express my heartfelt gratitude to the late Dr. Jecinta Mwaura and my current supervisor Dr. Ndung’u Kabare for their guidance, corrections and suggestions throughout the project, without which I would not have been able to complete this project successfully. I extend my gratefulness to all my friends and relatives for their moral support and encouragement that has helped me to complete this project. I wish to recognize the Africa Nazarene University MBA department for it tireless support towards my project writing and for organizing various research talks that has enable me grow my research writing skills. I extend my heart most appreciation to the entire African Nazarene fraternity for giving me a platform to grow in various fields, career wise and also equipped me with skills to operate in the market place.
  9. 9. x LIST OF TABLES Table 2:1 Four Organizational Learning Processes.…………….…………..…..…….…23 Table 3.2 Target Population………………………………………..……………..…...…42 Table 3.3 Sample Selection….………………………………………………………..….43 Table 4.1 Classification of Respondents in Level of Management…………………..….47 Table 4.2 Gender Distribution………………………………….…..……………………48 Table 4.3 Year of service for Respondent…………………….…..………..……………48 Table 4.4 There are Loyal and Repeat Customers…..……….…………………...…….52 Table 4.5 New Customers Come as a Result of Referral …………….…………….…...53 Table 4.6 Relationship between Organizational Learning and Quality Service Delivery.55 Table 4.7 Correlation between Feedback Structures and Increase Number of Repeat Customers………………………………………………………………………………..56 Table 4.8 Relationship between Employee Development and Timeliness….…….…….59 Table 4.9 Relationship between Employee Development and Product Mix…..…..…….59 Table 4.10 Relationship between Employee Development and Timely services to a Customer…………………………………………………………………………………59 Table 4.11 Frequencies of Adherence to Core Values, Clear Strategies and Open Information Policy…………………………………………………………………….…61 Table 4.12 Relationship between Corporate Strategies Products Diversification….…...62 Table 4.13 Relationship between Corporate Strategy and Strategic Reviews……….......63 Table 4.14 Correlation Employee’s Development and the Bew Customers Come as a Result of Referral……………………………………………………..…………….……63 Table 4.15 Influence of ICT Management Boards and Increased Online Services..…….65
  10. 10. xi LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1.1 Conceptual Framework……….……………..……………………….………11 Figure 4.1 Mechanism in Place for Feedback……….……………..……………………49 Figure 4.2 Systems to Track Parcels and Notify Customers….…………………………50 Figure 4.3 Basis for Strategic Reviews and other Action Plan.…………………………51 Figure 4.4 Customers Have Range of Products to Select From….….………..….……...53 Figure 4.5 There is Proper Mechanism for Internal Control…….……………....………54 Figure 4.6 Product Development……….………………………………………………..57 Figure 4.7 Strategies of Customer Focus…….……………………………………….….58 Figure 4.8 Knowledge on PCK Visions and Mission………………...…………….……61 Figure 4.9 Frequencies of Services Done Online at PCK………….…………………….64
  11. 11. xii LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS APMGs: Assistant Postmasters General CAK: Communication Authority of Kenya CEO: Chief Executive Officer DHL: Dalsey, Hillblom & Lynn E2E: End to End IT: Information Technology KPTC: Kenya Posts and Telecommunication Corporation Kshs: Kenya Shillings MPLSM: Multiple Position Letter Sorting Machine NACOSTI: National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation OCR: Optical Character Reader PCK: Postal Corporation of Kenya PMG: Postmaster General POD: Post Office Department UPS: Universal Parcel Service
  12. 12. xiii DEFINITION OF TERMS Core values - The Core values are the fundamental rules by which the Commission wants to conduct “business” (Marvasti, (2000). Mission is the purpose for which the Commission or department exists based on the circular on organization of government, statutes of parliament and mandate (Milewa, 2010). Pilot study is a trial version run done to prepare for the complete research study. Piloting study is also known as the feasibility study. It can also be a specific pretesting of research instruments, entailing some questionnaires or the interview schedules (Kariuki, 2008). Service delivery is a continuous, cyclic process for developing and delivering user focused services (Andrews, 1999). Strategic change is the process of an organization to align with the dynamics of its external and internal environment over time (Van de Ven & Poole, 1995). Strategic focus is a process that entails marketing strategy by which a company concentrates more of its resources on entering new market or trying to expand in a narrow market segment (Mintzberg, 1999). Strategic planning is the process of determining the long term and short term goals of an organization and the identifying the best courses of actions to be adopted and allocating the necessary resources to carry out these goals effectively (Brown, 2016).
  13. 13. xiv Vision -The Communication Authority of Kenya strategic plan 2008-2013 defined Vision as a vibrant and compelling image of the desired future state of the organization (Kimani, 2009).
  14. 14. 1 CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY 1.1 Introduction This chapter contains the background of the study which is exploring the shift from management to strategic management, relationship between strategy and structure and a brief description of Postal Corporation of Kenya. It looks at the problem statement, research questions, research objectives, significance of the study, limitations and delimitations of the study and scope of the study. 1.2 Background to the Study Strategic management is a very wide field that has kept on evolving overtime. Ansoff (2013) argued that strategic management involves coordinating various management functions to one direction or goal. He also stressed that inter communication should be structured in a way that allows both top to bottom and bottom to top information flow for feedback and corrections. This involves identifying and matching the strength and weakness to opportunities and threats to allow an organization perform optimally (Barney, 2001). Strategic management as a discipline offers diverse routes that allow for organizational restructuring and reorganization (Mahoney & Pandian, 1992). Thompson, Strickland and Gamble (2007) tried to differentiate strategy from immediate actions with resources at hand to fire fight an immediate challenge which is most often rehearsed. He also looked at strategy as a long term plan of action that is put in place to achieve a particular objective. Strategy is viewed as a deliberate move to search for an effective plan of action that places an organization to be at a competitive advantage compared to the other competitors in the industry. The search is an iterative process in any organization that begins with recognizing of where you are or your current state and
  15. 15. 2 the resources at hand that can be easily mobilized. The key differences between an organization and its key rivalry are the basis of its strategic advantage. When a corporation has penetrated well in to its market and is well established then this gives it some sought of advantage in the industry, no matter how small this is. The key concern now becomes identifying strategies to enlarge the scope of this advantages which definitely happen at the expense of other firm’s (Clayton, 1997). Biggart (2015) looked at strategy and its relationship to structure arguing that structure follows strategy and the strategy has to fit in the internal dynamics of the organization. He added that strategic management is the long term goals of a firm and the adoption of the strategic courses of action as well as the strategic allocation of the available organizational resources necessary for carrying out these very goals effectively. Schumpeter (1996) shed more light on the relationship between strategy and the existing environment by putting more emphasis on how companies come up with very great focused strategies but do very little on evaluating how these strategies impact on their overall service delivery. Globally Postal Corporation plays a very significant role in the economy. It is a saving vehicle for the poor in that it addresses the problem of inadequate savings for retirement with myRA, a savings system deducted from paychecks that earns a modest rate of return without risk of loss. It formed the better way of delivering federal benefits that could be loaded into Postal ATM Cards at no additional cost, saving the government and beneficiary’s money. All in all Postal services helps in reducing inequality and boosting the economy through the inclusion for low-income Americans to access banking facility which is a critical component of our modern society (Schumpeter, 1996).
  16. 16. 3 1.2.1 Postal Corporation of Kenya Most organizations in the world today invest so much in improving their service delivery to their customers. Most companies attribute their key success to the improvement of how they are delivering their service and bad leadership as the major contributor to low quality service delivery in the African continent (Huduma Kenya, 2013). The Postal Corporation of Kenya is a government Parastatal created by Postal Corporation Act 1998, after the split of KPTC into three separate entities. Kenya Posts and Telecommunications Corporation split into three entities on 1st July 1999 namely Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK), Telkom Kenya and Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK). Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK) was mandated to offer mail and other financial services, while Telkom Kenya was tasked with offering Telecommunication or phone call services, and Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK) was given powers to be the regulatory body. This saw the liberalization of the industry with more players being registered to come on board and offer Postal and communication services. Currently there are over ninety six different companies offering mail services and to be precise courier and parcel that have been registered by the Communications Commissions of Kenya, the official regulatory body in Kenya (PCK, 2009). With the liberalization of the industry, PCK suddenly found itself in the intensive deep waters of competition in the industry it had been monopolizing. PCK’s operation was centered on the conveyance of handwritten mails throughout the country. However, as new technology was adopted, gradually, the use of old communication services such as letters and public telephone booths became outdated. The inception of the internet made communication fast regardless of physical location. According to a report by Kimani
  17. 17. 4 (2009) very few people sent letters and the introduction of mobile phones made the telephone booths unappealing and undesirable .As a result, PCK inevitably had to go through the turnaround process least its own existence as a business operator ceased (PCK, 2013). In 2003, the parastatal engineered major restructuring process that were geared towards the transform the entire company, they scanned their business environment both internally and externally and put in place the implementation strategies through human resource planning that would give them an upper hand in responding effectively to the market dynamics. These key focused strategic initiatives were captured in PCK strategic (PCK, 2013). In line with the corporation’s community service duty and the universal service obligation towards the provision of cost effective, attractive, accessible , and consumer reliable postal services to all the citizens local residents, PCK has devised a number of focused Strategies to enable it achieve a cost advantage over its competitors. This includes reconfiguring their value chain by shifting to e-business technologies, simplifying product design and offering no frills service. They also shifted their focus from more capital intensive, un-streamlined and rigid technological processes, and adopted use low cost raw materials as well as component parts. In addition to these, they also relocated most of their facilities closer to their key suppliers. They also went ahead to re-engineer some of their key business and work process so as to remove the unnecessary activities and cut out low value added customer processes through setting up of Huduma centers country wide (PCK, 2013). PCP still has a significant effect on the economy. Every organization needs a physical postal address which becomes part of its business address location. In most of the rural part of this country has very poor internet
  18. 18. 5 connection is and thus PCK plays a great role in such areas in boosting their economic activities and link them to the rest of the world through setting up Huduma centers. 1.3 Statement of the Problem Since the formation of this government owned Postal Corporation of Kenya, the customers who happen to be Kenyan citizens have yearned to obtain quality services from this critical organization that was once a monopoly. A rapid change in the industry has been of great concern for both the academic and practitioners who are keen on strategic management literature (Eisenhardt, 2002). The concept of strategic focus on service delivery potentially impacts every aspect of how the corporation in question conducts business. The noticeable characteristic of most fast paced industries includes rapid product changes, product diversification, changes in process technologies, keen observation and identification of competitor’s possible strategic actions to be taken. This makes it so difficult to come up with most efficient, sustainable and effective competitive advantage (Fines, 1998; Williams, 1994). For any organization to survive in these fast paced industries, the company needs to be quick in adopting some flexibility in its strategic actions (Eisenhardt, 1999). The business of Postal Corporation of Kenya has faced with very stiff pressure from both the internal and external environment in the last five years. This has necessitated reassessing of the overall strategic business direction that PCK had previously embarked on. In that regard, the PCK Board and management has decided to implement a structured and focused turn around approach within its five-year corporate strategic plan. The turnaround approach will allow PCK to address the key challenges which include: the inability to meet its key financial targets as well as make good returns from its products, the increasing expenses
  19. 19. 6 on wage bills resulting from staff who are being underutilized due to duplicated roles, the underperforming of its key revenue generating units and the dynamics of an ever changing market situation. In most Postal corporation stations, customer service delivery has been identified as a key obstacle towards the realization of organization’s strategic goal. The process of customer service delivery has been characterized by delay in response to customer complaints, and offering of outdated or obsolete products. The Communication Commission of Kenya warned PCK that if it doesn’t strategically focus on modernizing most of its services through the eyes of its customers it may be overtaken by its competitors. According to the statistics by Tonui, (2013) PCK has lost a good chunk of their market share in the courier sector to their key competitors who have come out very strong and now control the over Ksh 3.3 billion (43 million uses Dollars) courier industry of which not long ago they were the underdogs while PCK was the monopoly in that business. Several studies such as; Strategies adopted by postal corporation of Kenya to gain competitive advantage in the mail sub sector in Kenya by Kimani (2009), Competitive strategies adopted by the postal corporation of Kenya by (Milewa, 2010), and attraction and retention of employees at postal corporation of Kenya by (Tonui, 2013) have all been carried out in the field of strategic focus at the PCK but to the best knowledge of the researcher, no research has been conducted on the influence of strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. This clearly shows a gap which this study seeks to fill by finding out the influence of Strategic focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya.
  20. 20. 7 1.4 Research Objectives This study consists of both general and specific objectives. The researcher looked on the following general objective which has been broken further into specific objectives and General objectives. 1.4.1 The General Objective This study endeavored to find out the influence of Strategic focus on the service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya. The researcher has identified four key specific objectives that he will be focusing on. 1.4.2 Specific Objectives i. To establish the influence of organizational learning on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. ii. To determine the influence of customer focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. iii. To establish the influences of corporate strategies on service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya. iv. To assess the influence of technological focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. 1.5 Research Questions i. What role does organizational learning play on service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya? ii. How does customer focus influence service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya?
  21. 21. 8 iii. What is the relationship between organizational standards and service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya? iv. To what extent does Technological focus influence service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya? 1.6 Research Hypothesis The study tested the following hypothesis H01: There is a positive significant relationship between organizational learning and service delivery at PCK. H02: There is a positive significant relationship between customer focus on service delivery at PCK. H03: There is a positive significant relationship between corporate strategies and service delivery at PCK H04: There is a positive significant relationship between technological focus and service delivery at PCK 1.7 Significance of the Study This study is important in many ways. The study documents the strategies adopted at the PCK and how they are influencing and impacting the service delivery. Customer service delivery is a strategic issue that plays a major role towards determination of the state corporation’s performance. The level of the achieved customer satisfaction is a strategic measure of the efficiency and effectiveness of organizations customer delivery process. The study adds value to strategic policy making debate in the public sector. The Postal Corporation will be benefiting greatly from this review. The researcher has shown how corporations strategically focus in implementing their service delivery strategies and come up with progressive reforms and the impacts of this service oriented strategies to
  22. 22. 9 overall organizational performance considering all the players in the industry involved in this process. The researcher has identified the areas that need to adopt organizational learning, how they can restructure their mandate and actualize their core values better. The researcher also identified the stake holders involved in this process and the role played by each stakeholder in the strategy formulation process. The process of monitoring and evaluating was necessary in identifying when change is needed and if there is a match or a gap between actual results and expected outcomes. This study will also be of good use to other key licensed players in the courier operation industry. The researcher has also shown how strategic management can be used as a tool to build a successful business that is very competitive in the industry. This study will be used as reference points for other studies in the area of strategic management by other researchers and scholars. 1.8 Scope of the study The study looked at the influences of focused strategies on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya in order to gain a competitive edge. The research focused on the corporate level of management; Business level and operational level of management where the key decisions strategy are made. The research was held at the headquarters office in Nairobi. 1.9 Limitations of the Study The organizations confidentiality policy in most organization PCK included was binding most of the respondents to answer some questions in a particular way for fear of victimization. To overcome this, the researcher assured the confidentiality of the
  23. 23. 10 information that was provided as well as presented the introductory letter obtained from the university and the research permit. The other limitations included limited time and the technical aspect of the study which did not permit in-depth, thorough analysis and understanding of all the variables involved in the study. Times constraints lead to unavailability of interviewees due to their busy schedules and strict working hours. The researcher drafted a work plan that factored in all the available flexi-times to meet with the respondents. The other strategies were leaving the questionnaires behind and collecting them at a designated time. There are over sixty one head post offices, four hundred and eighteen departmental offices and three hundred ninety two sub post offices, implying that the study population is extremely big. The researcher overcame this through sampling the headquarters which would give a representation of the whole population. 1.10 Delimitations of the Study All the senior managers are located at the head office in Nairobi thus being the crucial decision makers. All the other satellite PCK branches directly depend on the decisions made at the head office in Nairobi. This informed the researcher to restrict the research to head office in Nairobi where the key decision makers are situated and due to this the researcher administered the questionnaire to the Headquarters office in Nairobi. 1.11 Conceptual Framework A conceptual frame work can be defined as a set of principles or broad ideas pulled from the fields of investigation or research that can be used in structuring the subsequent presentation (Orodho, 2003). It is structured with theories and concepts which are pulled
  24. 24. 11 together as a guide or roadmap for the study clearly showing the existing relationship of research variables (Orodho, 2003). Independent variables Dependent Variable Figure 1.1: Conceptual Framework Source: Researcher (2016) The study sought to establish how past information in relation to organizational learning has been used to improve customer services delivery and their satisfaction as well as improvement of time deliveries and customer initiated product diversifications. The researcher sought to understand how product development and differentiation is done at Customer focus  Product development  Employee development on customer relation  Quality assurance Service Delivery  Increased number of repeat customers  Increase of new products (product mix) in the market  Increased online services  Reduced time taken per customers  Product differentiation  Timeliness  Quality  Corporate Strategies  Vision  Mission  Core values  Strategic plan Technological Focus  Marketing  Payments  Purchases Organizational learning  Feedback structures  Reduced lag times  Efficiency and increased productivity
  25. 25. 12 the PCK, how are the employee developments in relation to customer relation done as well as mechanisms put in place for quality assurance and management The research also sought to establish how the PCK’s vision, missions, core values and strategic plan is influencing the overall goal and service delivery to its customers. The research sought to understand how the technological changes have influenced the service delivery at PCK and how they have adopted the new technology by the number of services offered online.
  26. 26. 13 CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW 2.1 Introduction This chapter contains the literature review of the stated research topic. It covers the contingency theory and the mechanization of mail processing, the resource based view and profit maximization and competition based theories. It goes further to look at several empirical studies. In general, it illustrates the theoretical framework reviews, empirical reviews, summary of literature reviewed and the research gap. 2.2 Theoretical Review The early theorists on the concept of strategic focus argued that service delivery strategies are advents of strategic reorientations of the firms as the sole approach to the recovery of the declining firms (Hammer & Champy, 1993). On the sideline, empirical studies have indicated the association of successful turnarounds with cutback actions that ensure improved firm performance by increasing efficiency within the corporations. Ideally, there is a vivid gap in the information when collated with respect to the two points of view (Hammer & Champy, 1993). The study therefore seeks to employ Contingency theory; Resource based view theory and the Profit Maximizing and Competition based Theory. 2.2.1 Contingency Theory and the Mechanization of Mail Processing This theory is of the idea that for any given organization there is no one best approaches of management. This now calls for Organizations to develop their own customized managerial strategies depending on their own situation at hand. There is a great need to implement the various strategies in phases at the PCK and ensure that each implementation phase is done in good time monitored and evaluated after some time
  27. 27. 14 following the full PCK sector reforms. These can be done well by setting up emergent strategies and both short and long term planned strategies (Kimani, 2009). The PCK however is a state owned Corporation of Kenya that is hard hit by the waves of change in the industry, and with specific reference to the strategic focus in corporate service delivery (Kariuki, 2008). PCK is a parastatal that utilizes its limited resources to offer crucial services to the citizens and accrue profits that are reinvested in the firm or given out as dividends to the Government of Kenya the sole shareholder. PCK serves the local and international market as it competes with other players in the market to offer core postal services such as mail, financial, agency and courier services. PCK products and services constitute majorly on the corporation business which includes company letters, philatelic materials parcel, cargo, courier, postal financial services, deposit and payment agency services. It however retains a monopoly in postal rental boxes and mails weighing less than three hundred fifty grams in an attempt to help it offer universal Postal services and still be commercially viable. Other players are required by law to charge five times the cost PCK charges to qualify for this class of mail. According to Kimani, (2009) CAK was mandated to enforce the law but has been unable due to lack of capacity. The process of collecting and delivering of parcels or Mails in particular is very complex with a lot of labor. Labor in particular attributes to eighty three percent of the entire Postal corporation revenue. PCK has distinguished its task based on its clientele. PCK key tasks includes the direct contact with their extremely distinguished diverse customers, the staff in charge at this stage parks the products for transit and the processing system where all the outputs are hand delivered to customers businesses, homes and satellite postal boxes across the country. Thompson et el., (2007) saw this as
  28. 28. 15 a gap to get a mediating and harmonizing technology that standardizes the operations that are used to deal with diverse clients. Initially before the 1970 Post Office Department (POD) had an internal structure that guided and coordinated the operations that featured the Postmaster General (PMG) at the corporate level and six Assistant Postmasters General (APMGs) at the business and operational level management who provided leadership at separate bureaus. Contingency theory stressed on the rational of most the political driven actions. It also did not clearly distinguish the difference between private and public organizations. This theory is of believe that any "publicness" in an organization is considered as a function of the extended political influence on the same organizational behavior. For any individual to analyze the environmental influences on public organizations, then it is appropriate him to have a politically focused explanation (Boreham, 2004). A normal day today integrated postal operator performs the following core functions; inwards and out sortation, collection, local transportation, long hauls transportation, transportation to both the locale and international post office and finally the delivery of the mails. De’Dondar et al., (2004) in his research noticed that there is very little evidence that the functions of transportation, collection, and sortation have any significance in the economies of scale. With this limited line of product then an organization such as PCK needs a Management team that thinks outside the box to come up with other modernized product that keeps it running and that’s why the contingent theory applies well where they have several approaches to adopt with back up plans.
  29. 29. 16 2.2.2 The Resource BasedView Theory A study conducted by Kimani (2009) indicated that the theory of resource allocation is very relevant and it needs to be incorporating in the central characteristics of the innovation process. The ability and capacity of an economy to develop is thus very closely related to the process involved in the corporate resource allocation. The foundational resources for investments of any organization are derived from its undistributed profits, retained earnings and capital consumption allowances provided. These boost the organizations productive capabilities by enabling it to foster innovation and economic development. The approach on how major corporations allocate their vast resources is nothing but a matter of strategic choice. For every strategic choice that the corporate decision makers makes has ripple effects on the overall performance of the entire industry and the economy at large (Cazals et al., 2004). Innovative resource allocation is very strategic and therefore gives all the stakeholders control of resources if they are to engage them to other developmental process in line with their key evaluation constraints and the possibilities of alternative strategies (Schumpeter, 1996). They also require controls to keep the resources in line until the learning process has generated improved quality and lowered the cost of production that enables the investment strategies to reap more (Lazonick & O'Sullivan, 1996). Financial economics treats resources allocation based on fisher theories of investment as explained in his book theories of interest (1930). Interest theory resembles price theory which talks of the marginal propensity of consumption. The theory talks more about people’s marginal preference of present over future goods, which is also referred as time preference or human impatience (Fisher, 1990).
  30. 30. 17 Fisher's recognized that creation and distribution of value are related in a major way, resource allocation processes that generate innovation are developmental, organizational and strategic. At any point in time the system should be able to generate three conditions namely; financial commitment, organizational integration and insider control. It should support commitment of resources to promising investments and allows for the integration of human and physical resources to the organizational process (Fisher, 1990) 2.2.3 Profit-Maximizing and Competition-Based Theory This is based on the conventional assumption that business thrive to make profits and maintain competitive advantage over their rivals in the market place (Porter, 1990). Strategy which is described by (Thompson et al., 1999) as the movement and approaches that leaders employ to help the organization attract and please its stakeholders and achieve the mission and objective of the organization efficiently, is a top priority for the public sector managers for two very big reasons: the urge to proactively shape how the department will run and the need to create positive and lasting public perceptions and growth patterns. Great strategy formulation and execution is equal to great public management (Thomson et al., 2007). Many scholars have indicated in their findings that strategies follow structure (Pearce & Robinson, 2000). For any public sector organization to be effective structure must fit strategy. The firm should be able to adapt to changes in the dynamic competitive environment (Porter, 1990). Competition accelerated technological advances and changing customer expectations are various factors that shape the turbulent environment. Though structures provide an overall framework for strategy implementation, they should
  31. 31. 18 allow for the dynamic environmental changes and developments (Balogun &Johnson, 2004). 2.3 Empirical Literature Review Empirical researches involving strategic choice assume that political actors anticipate the decisions of other actors when making their own choices. Thus, actors' decisions are interdependent. The strategic choice model also suggests election effects for both the internal and external (Fearon, 1993). Empirical studies have indicated the association of successful turnarounds with cutback actions that ensure improved firm performance by increasing efficiency within the corporations. Ideally, there is a vivid gap in the information when it is collated with respect to the two points of view (Hammer & Champy, 1993). A research by Steiner (1997) distinguished between internal and external forces and their role in shaping strategic positioning in service delivery. Later on (Porter, 1990) also made his impute by distinguishing between corporate strategy and competitive strategy. Further complicating the problem is the fact that many strategic activities such as strategic planning (Ward, 1990), strategic management (Hax & Majluf, 2006) and strategy formulation (Andrews, 1999), are used interchangeably. Strategy can also be viewed as three related processes namely opportunistic decision making, strategic thinking and the strategic planning (Ward, Griffiths & Whitmore, 1990). According to (Scholes, 1999) strategy can also be viewed as the guiding line and scope of an organization for a long term, which aides it to achieve some added advantages through its maximum utilization of its minimal resources within the constant changing internal and external environment to meet the needs of the market and its stakeholders.
  32. 32. 19 Porter (1990) on the other hand simplified strategic focus further by stating that it is a situation where a corporate company choses to engage on the strategic analyses and planning before launching of new products or new business units. Strategic focus cannot be mentioned without considering strategic change. Van de Ven & Poole (995) on the other hand viewed strategic change as the difference in quality, the form, price and its overall state over a period of time in the firm's alignment with its both internal and external environment. Change is inevitable thus for any business to survive and remain relevant in the market industry they need to position themselves in a way to accommodate the changes that exist in their business environments. The business alignment with its external environment take place when its critical business patterns of the present, the budgeted limited resource being deployed and adaption in the environmental constant changes that indicates how the organization will achieve its goals (Johnson, 2004). Any slight change in this alignment forces drastic changes in the entire content of an organization’s focused strategy since all this is defined by the available resource, synergy stipulated scope and competitive advantages. Holmberg (1998) concludes that changes in the organizations external environment is brought about so that it can push the management to initiate change and implement it in the context of strategy. The overall goal of Strategic focus on service delivery strategies is to turnaround an underperforming firm to its former glory normal in terms of solvency, liquidity, ,acceptable levels of profitability, cash flow and retain its market share. Strategic focus on service delivery is a common concept in change management for purposes of financial realignment of corporations, given that the market conditions are constantly changing. This calls for implementation of a series of planned actions for the purpose of avoiding
  33. 33. 20 stagnation, failure and financial solvency. This therefore requires a strong leadership and it may include a restructuring of the corporate hierarchy, eliminating redundancies, a thorough investigation of problem root causes, and the development of a long-term strategy to revitalize and motivate the corporate culture of the organization (Hammer & Champy, 1993). A research by the Kimani (2009) supported the argument that it is very important for the management team to recognize these warning signals at their early stages and take appropriate action to counteract the decline and quickly put the business back on the road to profitability. A critical and careful thinking approach to resolving the problem that is methodically implemented throughout all levels of the organization is necessary. Pandit (1995) conducted a research to establish a theoretical framework of strategic focus. This study clearly indicated the applicability of GT in the frame working of the concept of influences of strategic focus on service delivery. In this case, the auxiliary objectives will be first to establish the kind of decline experienced by PCK then itemize the strategies used by the management and the effects that came with them (Kimani, 2009). 2.3.1 Organizational learning A successful recovery on service delivery involves increasing the confidences of the work force by building their capacity through training, improving their moral, equipping them with necessary resources, and valuing them as the organizational key assets (Marvasti, 2000).
  34. 34. 21 Prior to 1999 the communications sector which the postal services is part of was a monopoly of Kenya Posts and Telecommunications Corporation and handled both operational and regulatory functions. However after repeal of KPTC act in 1998, the two functions were separated where by the PCK was tasked to provide key postal services, the Telkom Kenya was to offer telecommunication services while Communication Commission of Kenya was to offer regulatory services. Since then the postal service sub sector in Kenya has witnessed tremendous growth and as at June 2009 there were 150 registered operators. The Categories of licensed postal and courier operators are: forty three International, three regional, five international inbound, twenty seven intra-cities, and one public postal licensee (PCK). A study carried out by PCK (2007) to identify competitors in the mail identified the following competitors as posing the biggest threat: DHL, FedEx, Universal Parcel Service (UPS), and TNT in the international market and G4Securicor Courier, Bus and freight companies, real and on time deliveries in the local market. The key to these competitors success was found to be reliable, secure and fast services that PCK was not offering. There was also the substitution of mail services by the faster and cheaper technology based short message services (SMS), electronic mail (email) and mobile telephone. According to a report by Kariuki (2015), mobile subscriber numbers had risen to over sixteen million by June 2009 and internet usage penetration levels of thirty three percent. The same report estimate the postal courier market share to be three percent in a market estimated to be worth Kenya shillings seven billion. Another report on Milewa (2010) indicated that PCKs service delivery precisely in mail deliveries were very erratic and slow. The PCK are currently trying to boost revenue by
  35. 35. 22 building up direct mail marketing, franchising out postal offices that are making loses and undertaking restructuring of its financial remittance as well as reengineering and restructuring its courier component. They are also planning to introduce new products such postal based savings scheme, hybrid mail system and in addition reinventing postal courier services. However, this has come under criticism with some analysts clearly pointing out that this strategic shift may not have an overall impact in the industry since competitors have already introduced products that have locked up the most profitable market niches. Most of the strategic focus studies contacted have been criticized for their overly analytical orientation, corporate management bias, lack of attention to the course of action taken and the learning element that lead to the creation of strategies (Mintzberg et al., 1999). Strategic focus is majorly founded on the organizational learning. Organizational learning is the processes of developing capabilities that have competitive advantage that are highly treasured by its customers. Crossan et al. (1999) argued that organizational learning has most of the time led to realization of new sources of capabilities that promote innovativeness, creativity and development new strategies. According to Eisenhardt (2002) he emphasizes that strategic focus cannot be effective without good sustainable organization learning process put in place. Argyris & Schon (1996) described organization learning as a process that entails pulling lesson from past experiences, understanding what needs to be done, putting in place corrective and monitoring and evaluation mechanisms’ that are value committed, having a good prescriptive and implementing the strategies to the latter. Crossan et al. (1999) found out that Organizational learning goes through four vital processes as per the table below for it
  36. 36. 23 to be effective and impactful to the overall goal of the organization. He also insisted that organization needs to have constructive critics from both the internal and the external environment for it to identify and pull out some of these lessons learned. Table 2.1: Four Organizational Learning Processes Level Process Outcomes Individual Intuiting Experiences Images Metaphor Group Interpreting Language Group Cognitive map Shared Communication Integrating Clear understandings Symbiotic relationship Routines Organization Institutionalizing Interactive system Policies, procedures and rules Diagnostic systems Source: Crossan, Lane and White, (1999) Crossan et al. (1999) described four organizational learning processes in the following manner. He described intuiting as the early detection or recognition of the possibilities inherent in a personal wealthy of experience. This process on its own has an effect on the individual's behavior alone but it only affects others if the person in question is their role model and they are trying to act like that individual. Interpreting is the process of trying to explant he insight and idea of one’s self and in comparison to others. Integrating on the other hand is a process that entails development of Symbiotic relationship amongst individuals and coordinating their course of actions through mutual adjustment. This encourages dialogue and joint action which is very crucial to the development of
  37. 37. 24 Symbiotic relationship which leads to institutionalizing. Institutionalizing in involves defining of tasks, specifying of course of actions and putting in place the organizational mechanisms that guides the certain actions. It also entails embedment of the learning process that takes place by individuals and groups. According to Crossan et al. (1999) the tension existing between adopting new learning and using previous lesson learned by other to help in examining these three levels of learning and the relationship between the levels, it also identifies processes that link the levels, links these processes to strategic focus and goes on to recognizes that organizational learning involves an interaction between cognition and action. These now brings a great revelation that organizational learning plays a key role in strategic focus. It now brings in some of the key learning PCK has pulled in to help in it remain relevant in this vibrant and competitive industry. In recent years, the concept of organizational learning has attracted a lot of attention from researchers in many disciplines, including specialists in the fields of adult learning, vocational education and training and school improvement. Most researchers have defined organizational learning as the extent that it is undertaken by members of an organization to achieve organizational goals, taking place in teams or other small groups, is distributed widely throughout the organization and embeds its outcomes. Eisenhardt (2002) observed the current theories of organizational learning and noted that they were very weak in spelling out the specific processes or actions that make the learning process. Organizational learning emphasizes on the effectiveness of the dialogue through which organization’s learn depends on a shared developmental history in which certain practices
  38. 38. 25 have been adopted as the accepted way of behaving in that community. A practice may be defined as a recurrent pattern of activity embodying explicit rules, precepts and instructions (Schatzki, 1996). Holmberg (2000) found out that the company will always learns as an organization because engaging in these practices enables co-workers to co- ordinate different subjectivities with different perspectives and experiences in relation to what then becomes, for the participants, the common object of their activity. Fenwick (2001) on the other hand differed with Organizational learning by arguing that it reduces individual autonomy, the sense of paradox disappears if we take into account of the theoretical recanting that has occurred in recent years in relation to the concept of the self-driven initiative. Gergen (1991) seconded this by challenging the traditional notion that being is self-sustaining ignoring the need for others. These has however been challenged the recent times. Holmberg (2000) noted that taking a political perspective increases the understanding of organizational learning. He notes that power relations are vital for organizational learning as they involve the whole organizational hierarchy. Boreham et al., (2004) argues that organizational learning looks at the relationships of employees amongst each other. Policy documents unchanged or unaltered created a barrier to well functional self- directing teams as envisioned by the management. 2.3.2 Customer Focus The researcher looked at theoretical literature on innovative pricing and its application to the postal industry. Similar studies include; Armstrong, (2001) and Armstrong et al. (1996) that focused on the consequences of bypass and universal service on innovative
  39. 39. 26 pricing. The structure of demands that it posits is much simpler than the one developed in this paper, with homogenous goods and inelastic demands. Armstrong et al., (1996) tried to develop a framework which had a little weakness in that it could not include the universal service obligations but gave allowances for the bypassing and production of multiple heterogeneous products. Panzar (2004) also developing a low cost model that offered an end to end (E2E) product. To become the best service provider, resolved to put aside resources that would enable it have low cost services with appealing features and excellent quality. They borrowed the concept from Porter (1990) that Strategic focus is basically identifying your customers’ niche needs and meeting them as well as developing the capacity to offer something different from rival competitors. According to Kimani (2009) PCK have turned to cooperative strategies that involve ways of responding to strong competitive pressures between organizations by identifying their capabilities and core competencies and combining it with their limited resources to achieve their goals. Cooperative strategies may be short term or long term and may include partial or contractual ownership. These strategies help the organization in accessing new markets, entering new businesses, introduction of new products, overcoming trade barriers, avoiding predatory competition, gaining access to complementary resources, sharing risk, research and development expenses, and risk capital (Hitt, 1995). Cooperative strategies includes strategic alliances, partnerships, mergers, acquisitions, integrations, outsourcing and offensive as well as defensive strategic moves to secure competitive advantage and protect a firm’s position. Strategic counteractions target the competitor’s strength or weakness and they can either be at one point or at various fronts
  40. 40. 27 at the same time (Porter, 1990). The essence of an offensive strike is to tumble the market leader or competitor in the industry while the defensive strategies are aimed at maintaining the market leader position by putting up barriers and shunning off competitors from trying to attack (Thompson & Strickland, 1999). Defining who is a customer in a government environment or Institution is made more complicated by power being fragmented and shared among government ministries, departments and by the existence of multiple interest groups. Trying to simultaneously satisfy multiple the goals of public programs is very difficult if not impossible, a good example being when customers have to be treated differently if government is trying to protect individual rights versus trying to provide efficient service. Barzelay (2011) realized that inefficient units can be transformed into very responsive customer friendly and a well-functioning provider of valuable services. He also believed that the same work unit within centralized staff operations is responsible for performing two conflicting functions: delivering services and complying with regulations. Osborne and Gaebler (1992) were convinced that government can be effectively customer driven because democratic governments exist, in their view, to serve their citizen customers. Customer-driven government, they say, offers many advantages over bureaucratic government. Some of these advantages include accountability to customers, greater in novation, more service choices, and less waste. Barzelay (2011) like Osborne and Gaebler, suggested that government's customers are usually citizens. According to Barzelay (2011), government organizations should be customer driven and service oriented. The Citizens who add up as customers of the government parastatal to be the always anticipate to be treated with respect. They expect the same treatment they get
  41. 41. 28 from a supermarket replicated to all the social security offices (Dilulio, Garvey & Kettl, 1993). This left Hitt (1995) wondering whether citizens should be treated as customers or as owners. He saw no reason why citizens cannot be treated as both customers and owners conclude that there is genuine value in the customer service approach. According to Balogun et al. (2013), the top priority of high level managers is to managers is development of strategies and ensuring they have the right middle and operational level management who can implement the new strategy. Their confidence resides in the kind of team they have that can successful execute the strategies. They ensure that during recruitment they can spot these characteristics given characteristics; the abilities, special skills, talents, academic background, job experience, personality traits and the temperament. 2.3.3 Technological Focus Parsons (1993) realized that many organizations have been unable to assimilate the benefits of information technology. He termed this difficulty as a strategic focus gap that results from different thought of theories that have evolved over time in different parts of the organization. In the essence, Information Technology team in most companies when they are formulating focused technology strategy, they speak of improving processing speed, storage capacity, and response times. For the technological strategies to be efficient then the strategic team needs to think in terms of competitors, industry trends, and the like. Aligning the Information Technology strategy with business strategy requires that each level become sensitive to the different needs orientations of the other and that information technology managers work directly with the strategic business
  42. 42. 29 planners in order to help them gain an awareness of technology and its potential benefits. Parson still insist that if the top management are armed with better understanding of IT, then strategic planning team are then in a better position to reformulate their initial strategies and identify opportunities to better address the various competitive forces that they confront in the market. Although there are so many differences between the public and private sectors that results from how both align their applications and technological strategies. In all kinds of organizations, applications strategies tend to be developed in separate operating bureaus, oriented toward constituent, customers and client’s demands. Closing the gap between these applications strategies and traditional activity based, supply oriented, and tool focused technology strategies are a ubiquitous problem across all sectors (Ellis et al., 2009). The overall goal of strategic focus in service delivery basically bringing back a poorly performing and strained company to normalcy in terms of customer base, solvency, building the customers confidence and loyalty, liquidity, levels of cash flow and profitability (Robinson, 2010). To achieve its objectives of strategic focus the entity requires identifying and tackling the causes of the distress, and coming up with appropriate measures resolve their financial crisis. They need to regain and maintain their stakeholder’s confidence and support so that overcome the internal bureaucratic red tapes and unfavorable industry dynamics (Hammer & Champy, 1995). Several studies have been done on the concept of strategic focus in Kenyan firms. These include; Strategic response by Postal Corporation of Kenya to competition in the
  43. 43. 30 telecommunication sector in Kenya (Omolo, 2011), and Strategies adopted by PCK to gain competitive advantage in the mail sub sector (Kimani, 2009). Despite the said importance of strategic focus in turnaround strategy on service delivery past studies have not adequately addressed the roles of the strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. The strategic focus can therefore be defined as the financial recovery of a company that had been performing poorly for a considerate period of time (Kariuki, 2008). It can also be referred to as a set of implementation course of actions that can be used to save an organization from business failure and return it to operational normality (Hammer & Champy, 1995). It is also closely related to turnaround strategies that try to rescue companies though areas like cost reduction and financial restructuring which are all aimed at the revitalization of a falling company or corporation financially (Marvasti, 2000). A research by PCK (2007) indicated that PCK operates a vast network of about sixty one head post offices (61), four hundred and eighteen departmental offices (408) and three hundred ninety two (392) sub post offices. It has three hundred and eighty eight thousand two hundred and eighty one (388281) private letter boxes, one thousand and fourteen (1014) private letter bags one thousand hundred and thirty four (1134) private letter posting bags one thousand three hundred and fifty six (1356) public counter positions, three hundred and twelve 312 stamp vending machines and five thousand (5,000) stamp vendor that have been Licensed across the country. According to PCK (2007), Mail contributes 75% to the total PCK revenue. PCK is facing competition from both international and domestic mail service providers, mobile
  44. 44. 31 telephony, electronic mail and commerce and this has led to declining mail revenues at average rate of six percent per year (PCK, 2007). Currently postal courier mail market share is three percent in a market estimated to be worth seven billion Kenya shillings. (www.cck.go.ke). Thus PCK seems to have lost competitiveness in the mail sector. The study thus seeks to determining and understand the strategies that PCK has adopted in its quest to regain and maintain its lost glory in the mail sub sector in Kenya. A study by Milewa (2010) found out that the competitive strategies adopted by PCK in response to increased market competition include;- product development, product differentiations, being more technological savvy, contacting market research to understand the market dynamics and for regular feedback. A low cost strategy that majors on differentiations is more attractive when the market is large enough to allow for profitability and has room for growth where other players have not identified the niche market. Thompson and Strickland (1999) indicated that it is expensive and difficulty for companies dealing with multiple market segments to meet the specialized needs of the each market segment. PCK also focuses on employing market penetration strategy involves going head-on, in an existing market with the currently existing products. This can be achieved by attracting new customers from other players in the market, retaining the existing customers through product and service customizations (Armstrong & Kotler, 2002). Product development strategy involves developing new products for existing market. Through need identification strategies a firm is able to identify new opportunities for product developing and modification in line with customer taste and preferences (McCarthy & Perreault, 1993).
  45. 45. 32 Michael Porter's on the other hand talks about the need for consistency in strategic positions which allows growth and development of a company culture that builds the identity of an organization and its stake holders allowing for recruitment and retention of a work force that is in agreement with its missions (Situma, 2006). A research Kimani (2009) supports the argument that it is very important for the management team to recognize these warning signs at their early stages and take respective action to counteract the downfall and quickly put the business back on the road to profitability. It is the most critical and careful thinking approach of resolving the emerging problems in all the levels of the organization. Kurt Lewin’s theory of change is based on (Unfreeze-Change-Freeze) that provides a strategic approach to change. The initial stage of change involves identifying the need for change and seeing the importance of breaking the exiting status quo. The second stage involves implementation of the changes or the introduction of the new status quo while the third and final stage is the acceptance and refreezing of the new changes as the normal status quo (Graham, 2002). 2.3.4 Corporate strategies Value is a common subject of discussion in corporate quarters. Most annual reports devote several pages to enumerate their values. Tenacity integrity, transparency, customer focus, honesty frequently appears in discussions and write-ups. Most of these values are societal obligations. If corporations or individuals were to neglect them or act contrary to these tenets, then they would be subject to legal action or in many cases lose
  46. 46. 33 out on business. With such value statements we cannot offer a choice to an individual or a corporate entity (Dayal, 2013). Organizational value system is very critical in providing in depth understanding, stability and consistency of systems, which are vital for management purposes. For well performing organization values supplement performance. The importance of organizational values is steadily gaining recognition as these are norms of corporate or individual behavior expected by society and apply to every individual and organization (Rowe et al., 1999). Organizational values exists either in strong or weakly shared form. Evaluations should be contacted in an attempt to assess the extent of consensus of an organizational value, and examine the organizational structures and process to try and explain the reinforcement of value systems or lack of it (Moothy, 1998). Padaki et al. (2000) found out that all management practice is founded on organizational values. However this finding was weak since most Values operates in silence and without direct articulation thus regarded as soft and not given much attention. Values are also likely to be regarded as the soft matter, and not given serious attention. However, the intimate connections to 'hard' management practice cannot be denied. The most critical thing for given organizations performance is to understand the existing value system, appreciating its implications, restructuring and designing both existing and new values systems. PCK vision statement is all about becoming the leading global providers of postal and related services while its Mission statement focuses on delivering superior communication and financial solutions to its customers and create recognizable value to
  47. 47. 34 stakeholders. Their value statements comprise of a set of beliefs and standards of behavior that drive PCK’s agenda and contribute to their corporate culture and identity. Their value includes; integrity, Professionalism, honesty, teamwork, fairness, accountability, stewardship and transparency in all their operations (Kimani, 2009). This core values on their own promote organizational learning and innovativeness. Lazonick et al. (1996) argues that committing the limited organizational resources to innovation means foregoing some other competing opportunities for the same resources while the learning process is taking place. The organizational Learning helps in shifting the perception of a problem and identification alternative solution as well providing appropriate room for further learning. The withdrawal of some of the learners or physical resources from the learning process before it is complete may endanger the success of the entire undertaking. Teece (1996) emphasis that the scale of innovative investment thus depends not only on the size of the investment in productive resources and in the abilities and incentives of learners, but also on the duration of the investment necessary to sustain that process over the period during which learning occurs (Fisher, 1990). PCK Board of directors was appointed by the minister for Information and communication to oversee the activities of the organization. Top management is comprised of a Postmaster general (PMG) who is the chief executive officer, eight General Managers responsible for Human Resource Development, finance and Strategy, Information and Communication Technology, Mail, Courier, Financial and Agency services, Corporation Secretary, Logistics and Facilities, Research and one head of department in charge of Marketing. The corporation has a total staff compliment of four thousand two hundred and twelve (4,212).
  48. 48. 35 PCK has continued to strengthen its capacity and diversified it products and services so as to satisfy its customers’ needs. The corporation has been working with individuals, medium sized businesses, private business, government agencies and nongovernmental organizations, to enhance quality service delivery. PCK is headed by a Board of Directors appointed by his excellence the president. The Chairman of the same the board is charged with the responsibility of providing guidance. The CEO who is initial was called the ‘Postmaster General’ heads the corporation and reports to the Board. The corporation is driven by the following: Mail service, financial services, courier services, Finance and strategy, Human Resource Management and Development, Information Communication and Technology, Logistics and Facilities Management Research and Development, Marketing and Customer service, Audit and Investigation, Legal Services, Procurement. Change Management, and Corporate Communication. Rowe et al. (1994) brought out the vision as is an organizational desired future providing a clear picture of where the entire organization is headed to. He went ahead to elaborate that achieving this desired state calls for use of the current strategy as well as development new strategies that would foster radical organizational changes. The high level managers need to develop a vision that translates to where they see their organization in future for them to gain the support of their stake holders. They also looked at strategic vision as a very desirable and realistic future state of an organization. He emphasized on the simplicity, clarity vision that can easily be understood by the stakeholders of the organization. Formulation of the vision varies from one organization to another. Rowe et al. (1994) clearly indicates that some organizational limit this process
  49. 49. 36 to the high level management termed as the entrepreneurial approach while other involves all the stakeholders. Robinson (2010) viewed mission as a set scope of actions taken by an organization towards realizing the set vision. Pearce and Robinson (2010) describe the mission of an organization as the unique purpose that sets it apart from other organizations of its type and identifies the scope of its operations. Since a mission helps a firm in wading toward the future it aspires, it must be able to influence behavior throughout the organization in order to be of much impact on the firm’s action. Parsons (1993) argued that the overall impact of technology to the citizen’s on accessing government online services in relation to their attitudes towards government at large is somehow debatable. The transformationalists on their end are predicting positive impacts of new technology while the instrumentalists have noted a number of constraining influence both social and economic on the dynamics of technology itself (Margolis & et al., 2014). Information technology has interfered with the control features of the previous traditional bureaucracies in PCK keeping in mind that most of the services it used to offer were rendered obsolete by technology. Fountain (1999) realized that costs of operation can drastically go down if the technology is adopted within the federal agencies, public and private sector. Delivering of key government services and information in an online or digitalized platform is referred to as E-government. This kind of platform is more efficient and reliable compared to the traditional structures which were slow and inefficient. The internet delivery systems are non-hierarchical and readily available. This has led to
  50. 50. 37 creation of interactive platform that allows the users to send and receive information at the same time. The two-way interaction brought about by technology has greatly attributed to improve the government service at large. It has brought all the governments services at door steps of the citizens thus in the long ended up building public confidence in government (Markoff, 2000). The Internet has brought numerous changes and brought about uncountable benefits in the entire economy thus positively affecting all the system that were initially (Kamarck, 1998). Chadwick (2011) on the other hand found out that most of the government web sites across the world were non interactive and non-deliberative thus ended up concluding that e-government platform may not actually change perception of people towards their government. In Africa and specifically in Kenya, even though the government is trying so hard to invest in technology, most of its ministries websites are very dormant. The website is supposed to provide a platform for feedbacks and customer cares where customers in this case happen to be citizens. But you notice that most websites are as old as ten years ago and no update has been made ever since. The primary goal for organizations to increase competitiveness is to improve the human performance in most cases if not all (Marshall et al., 2000). Organizations most often invest millions and billions of money every year in technology and its implementation, and anticipate getting increased productivity and performance from their investments (Marshall et al., 2000). In 1990s, Bill Gates the Microsoft chairman predicted that soon business would allow people to do a full day's work in four or five hours, freeing them to spend more time on leisure pursuits or with friends and family because of the technology development. A survey was conducted in1990s and found out that the average work per week was nearly
  51. 51. 38 an hour longer than in the early 1980s. These a survey found that more than sixty eight percent of respondents felt that there is more overwhelmed worker at work today (Cohen, 2005).The managers on the other hand expect more tasks to be completed at the same amount of time by employees because of the increased technology that they have invested (Brown & Leigh, 1996). In light the technological benefits there were still a section of untapped services in the industry that was very significant to the economy of Kenya. In realization to this fact, Postal Corporation of Kenya has set up more strategies that have led them to offer more services to its clientele other than just sending and receiving letters. This has brought about the formation of numerous and reliable Huduma Centers offering most of government services online or on E-citizen platform. This has greatly been achieved through the them interlinking with so many other government organs such as Kenya revenue Authority and many other services thus increasing its growth and customer base which is significant to the economy as well (Kariuki, 2008). 2.4 Summary of the reviewed Literature Most of the findings from previous studies have indicated the need for PCK to strategically focus on service delivery for its own profitability and survival. Browne (1999) has identified four crucial organizational processes that affect the intuitive individual’s behavior in a place of work such as PCK. This process involves recognition of personal streams of experience, developing shard understanding, amongst individuals, and ensuring that action takes place. Schatzki (1996) indicated that the Organizational learning relies most on effectiveness communication that is derived from a shared past experience in which certain practices have been embraced as the accepted way of
  52. 52. 39 behaving. According to Barzelay (2011) the government should be customer driven and service oriented since the Citizens expect the same treatment they get from a supermarket replicated to all the public offices. Organizational value system or standards provides consistency, in-depth and stability to management practices and they go hand in hand with performance. The importance of organizational values especially in management has steadily gained popularity and the most important point is that these are norms of corporate or individual behavior expected by society and apply to every individual and organization (Rowe et al., 1994). The Internet has brought numerous changes and brought about uncountable benefits in the entire economy (Kamarck et al., 1998). 2.5 Knowledge Gaps The literature reviewed indicated that different researchers have undertaken several studies to explain the major factors affecting service delivery at the PCK. However there is no specific literature and major studies known to the researcher that has been done on the influence of strategic focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. This therefore indicates that the explored theoretical and empirical literature is of little significance towards addressing the role of strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. Lack of theoretical and empirical literature on focus strategies for service delivery at the PCK have developed major knowledge gaps on innovative focus, customer focus and Operational excellence focus. The other clear gap from the studies is that none of the studies sought to investigate the afterward effects or influences of strategic focus on service delivery experienced by PCK.
  53. 53. 40 This is a gap that this study heavily acknowledges and forms the basis of motivation for conducting the research. This study will draw its focus into these gaps by gathering data that will be relevant to come up with effective recommendations on the role strategic focus plays in service delivery and thus assist in filling the missing gaps with solutions to service delivery problems.
  54. 54. 41 CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY 3.1 Introduction This chapter describes the research methodology used to accomplish the research objectives. The research design that was used for this study was clearly brought out. The study outlined the target population, sample procedures, data analysis and presentation, sample size, research instruments, the piloting of research instrument that was used in the research, validity of the findings, reliability of research instruments, research site and rationale, data collection procedures and finally the ethical considerations. 3.2 ResearchDesign The research was carried out with intention of assessing the influence of strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. The research was quantitative in nature. This study was carried out using the descriptive survey method which was an appropriate research method for this type of study. Descriptive survey placed more emphasis on a limited number of activity and their interrelations. A case study on the other hand focuses on a detailed contextual analysis of a limited number of conditions and their relationships. These were used to assist in achieving at the research objective and answering the research questions. By focusing on this single corporation, this design led to the concentration and more refined findings that were identifiable to the context at hand. The research environment was carried out in Nairobi County which was hosting the headquarter office for PCK. It is deemed reasonable to use one hundred and thirty two as target population due to the population of the case study area. This being number of employees approximated to be at the PCK at that particular time.
  55. 55. 42 3.3 Researchsite and rationale The research was conducted at the PCK headquarters in Nairobi since it hosts most of the top, middle and lower level management team and thus all the decision are done at this point. The parent population was divided into three categories on the basis of divisions. Stratified random sampling was used in the study where individuals were grouped as top level managers, middle level managers and the lower level managers. 3.4 Target Population This is basically a sample of items, individuals or objects from which crucial information was gathered from so as to assist in data analysis (Corbin, 1990). The study targeted the corporate level management, Business level management and operation levels management at the headquarters offices in Nairobi. A sample was picked to reduce time and cost of the research. Table 3.2 Target Population Designation Percent Corporate Level 15 Business Level 35 Operational Level 82 Total 132 Source: PCK Human Resource 2016 The target population consisted of members of the top, middle and lower management team or the staff who deal on a daily basis with ensuring that day to day growth of that particular unit goal.
  56. 56. 43 3.5 Sampling Procedure A population of one hundred and thirty two people was chosen to solicit information. Mugenda and Mugenda (2003) clearly indicated that any sample size that is 30% of the population targeted or more is good enough to make conclusion on the basis of the study under investigation. A Stratified random sampling was used in the study. The parent population was divided into categories on the basis of divisions. A sample of 40% was randomly picked from each stratum of the respondents. Due to the heterogeneous nature of the population, the stratified random sampling method was the most suitable for this research. 3.6 Sample size Being an important feature of any empirical study, the main goal of the sample size was to make inferences about a population from a sample. This study sought to get its sample size from the three levels of Management (Mugenda, 2008). Table 3.3 Sample Selection Category Sample size of study population) Sample Corporate level 40% 6 Business level 40% 14 Operational level 40% 33 Total 53 Source: Researcher (2015) Mugenda and Mugenda (2003) indicate that a representative sample should not be less than 30 percent of the entire population. The researcher applied 40 percent on all levels of management as it is well above the minimum requirement and provided a good representative sample. The researcher used the convenience sampling technique to settle
  57. 57. 44 on the PCK headquarters Nairobi as it is easily accessible and has staff representing all the various satellite branches thus giving a good representation of the whole organization. The sample was chosen from each of the three categories of respondents identified for research. These were the corporate, business and operational level management team. The total sample size was 53 employees who are 40% of the entire Population which is in accordance with statistically allowed figure of 30% or more for sampling. Each object in this population had an equal probability chance of being selected since the study used the stratified random sampling (Fraenkel et al., 2000). 3.7 Data Collection Procedures The research used the questionnaire which was hand delivered to all the respondents at the Postal Corporation of Kenya Headquarters. The questionnaire was structured with both open and closed ended questions to enable the respondents to provide their views and general comments based on the objectives of the study. The questionnaires was dropped in the PCK head office and picked after two weeks having allowed detailed information to be provided for analysis. 3.8 ResearchInstrument Self-administered and a uniform questionnaire comprising of open and closed ended questions was used to collect the data. These were hand delivered to the target respondents at the headquarters of Postal Corporation of Kenya. The questions were framed in line with researcher’s objectives.
  58. 58. 45 3.8.1 Piloting of ResearchInstrument The researcher tested the research instrument at one of the branches of Postal Corporation of Kenya along parklands road in Westland’s who were not be part of the main study so as to verify gaps with the tools, the average time it would take to interview a person and cost implications on the budget. The station had about 20 staff members who were involved in the pilot study sample. The researcher used the split half method to carry out the pilot study. According to Wertsch (1991), Split-Half statistical method is used to determine the reliability of a typical test and is very common (Corbin, et al., 1990) argued that the value of pilot research in any research work cannot be overestimated. 3.8.2 Validity of Findings Crocker and Algina (2006) defined data Validation as an integrated evaluation judgment of an extent to which empirical evidence and theoretical rationale support the adequacy and appropriateness of inferences and actions based on test scores and other modes of assessment. It involves the inspection of all collected data for reasonableness, completeness as well as elimination of erroneous values. The researcher ensured validity through discussion with faculty and the supervisor. 3.8.3 Reliability of Research Instrument Reliability of the research instrument was ensured by the researcher through pre-testing the tool. Cronbach coefficient alpha testing measure was used. This measure shows how closely related a set of objects are as a group. Most consider this measure as a measure of scale reliability. Cohen and Swerdelik (2005) agreed that this is the most appropriate method of testing reliability since it only requires one administration of the test. Crosby (2003) on the other hand said that it is the more appropriate when the items have choices
  59. 59. 46 while Fraenkel and Wallen (2000) Indicated that a reliability Cronbach's alpha coefficience of 0.70 and above is considered very desirable for consistency levels. 3.8.4 Data Analysis and Presentation The type of data that was sought for in this research was mainly primary data which is mainly quantitative. Data cleaning was done manually by going through the returned questionnaires. A simple coding method was used to avoid confusion to the researcher. The data was analyzed using SPSS and excel spreadsheets to be presented in a quantitative form which aided the drawing of inferences. Parameters like the mean and cross tabulation Chi-square was calculated to find out the indicators of the various factors being researched on. Correlation analysis was carried out to ascertain the degree to which the depended variables influence the independent variable. The data was presented inform of tables, graph, charts and a final summary report with recommendations and areas of further research. 3.9 Ethical considerations Once the approval of the study Project by the graduate School of African Nazarene University was issued out, a research clearance letter and permit was obtained from NACOSTI (National Commission for Science Technology and innovation). The county level permission was obtained from the Nairobi county council and local District Commissioner. The researcher also went ahead to assure the respondent of the confidentiality of the information. The questionnaire avoided sensitive issues that could cause physical, mental and emotional harm to the respondent.
  60. 60. 47 CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS AND PRESENTATION OF FINDINGS 4.1 Introduction This chapter presents the findings of the study. The discussion and interpretations of the findings of this study are presented basing on the objectives that the study sought to achieve. The study sought to achieve the following objectives: to establish the role of organizational learning on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya; to determine the influence of customer focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya; to establish the relationship between organizational standards and service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya and to assess the influence of technological focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. All questionnaires that were given out were filled and returned registering a response of 100%. 4.2 Response Rate The researcher gave out fifty three questionnaires to the respondents. There was a hundred percent 100% response. 4.2.1 Level of Management The respondents in this study were categorized in three levels of managements as presentenced by table 4.1 below. Table 4.1: Classification of Respondents in Level of Management Designation Frequency Percent Corporate/Top Level Manger 6 11.30% Business/Middle level Management 14 26.40% Operational/lower Level Manager 33 62.30% Total 53 100
  61. 61. 48 There were 11.3% (6) respondents who indicated that they were serving in the corporate level of management, 26.4% (14) in business level, and 62.3% (33) in the operational level of management. 4.3 Demographic Considerations The table 4.2 below shows the gender distribution of the respondents at the PCK headquarters office in Nairobi. Table 4.2 Gender Distribution Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent Female 23 43.4 34.4 57.8 Male 30 56.6 42.2 100.0 Total 53 100 100 The respondents comprised of 43.4% females and 56.6% males. From this analysis there was more male than females in the three management levels. The study also sought to establish the number of years each according to tables 4.3 below Table 4.3 Year of Service for Respondents Total 53 100 Valid Percent Cumulative Percent 0-5 years 11 16.9 16.9 35.4 6-10 years 11 16.9 16.9 100.0 11-15 years 12 18.5 18.5 53.8 16-20 years 1 1.5 1.5 55.4 21 and above years 18 27.7 27.7 83.1 Total 53 100 100 The study found out that 16.9% of the respondents had worked at PCK for less than five years, another 16.9% for less than 10 years, 18.5% have worked at PCK for more than 10years but less than 15yeas while 1.5% fall under 16 to 20 years of service and finally 27.7% have worked for over 21year.
  1. 1. THE INFLUENCE OF FOCUSED STRATEGY ON SERVICE DELIVERY: A CASE STUDY OF POSTAL CORPORATION OF KENYA MARK OLIVAH INYANGALA 13S03EMBA012 AN APPLIED RESEARCH PROJECT SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AWARD OF MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION DEGREE IN THE BUSINESS SCHOOL OF AFRICA NAZARENE UNIVERSITY SEPTEMBER 2016
  2. 2. iii DECLARATION STUDENT’S DECLARATION I declare that this applied research project is my original work and that it has not been presented in any other University for academic credit Signature: -------------------------------------------------------- Date: ------------------------------ Name of student: Mark Olivah SUPERVISOR’S DECLARATION I confirm that the work reported in this applied research project was carried out by the candidate under my supervision Signature: --------------------------------------------------- Date: --------------------------------- Name of supervisor: Dr. Ndung’u Kabare AFRICA NAZARENE UNIVERSITY, NAIROBI, KENYA
  3. 3. iv DEDICATION I dedicate this research project to my darling wife, Mrs. Anne Wanjiru Olivah who has been my source of inspiration and my son and daughter Jahzeal Olivah and Mataniah Olivah. They have formed a strong pillar of support, determination and encouragement from the onset and all through to the completion of this project. This research wouldn’t be this successful without their love, care, support and sacrifice.
  4. 4. v TABLE OF CONTENTS DECLARATION ............................................................................................................. iii DEDICATION.................................................................................................................iv TABLE OF CONTENTS..................................................................................................v ABSTRACT................................................................................................................... viii ACKNOWLEDGEMENT................................................................................................ix LIST OF TABLES............................................................................................................x LIST OF FIGURES.........................................................................................................xi LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS.......................................................................................... xii DEFINITION OF TERMS............................................................................................. xiii CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION ANDBACKGROUND TO THE STUDY...............1 1.1 Introduction.............................................................................................................1 1.2 Background to the Study ..........................................................................................1 1.2.1 Postal Corporation of Kenya..............................................................................3 1.3 Statement of the Problem .........................................................................................5 1.4 Research Objectives.................................................................................................7 1.4.1 The General Objective ......................................................................................7 1.4.2 Specific Objectives ...........................................................................................7 1.5 Research Questions..................................................................................................7 1.6 Research Hypothesis ................................................................................................8 1.7 Significance of the Study..........................................................................................8 1.8 Scope of the study....................................................................................................9 1.9 Limitations of the Study ...........................................................................................9 1.10 Delimitations of the Study ......................................................................................10 1.11 Conceptual Framework ..........................................................................................10 CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW .................................................................13 2.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................13 2.2 Theoretical Review ................................................................................................13 2.2.1 Contingency Theory and the Mechanization of Mail Processing ........................13 2.2.2 The Resource Based View Theory...................................................................16 2.2.3 Profit-Maximizing and Competition-Based Theory...........................................17 2.3 Empirical Literature Review...................................................................................18
  5. 5. vi 2.4 Summary of the reviewed Literature .......................................................................38 2.5 Knowledge Gaps....................................................................................................39 CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY...........................41 3.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................41 3.2 Research Design ....................................................................................................41 3.3 Research site and rationale .....................................................................................42 3.4 Target Population ..................................................................................................42 3.5 Sampling Procedure...............................................................................................43 3.6 Sample size ...........................................................................................................43 3.7 Data Collection Procedures.....................................................................................44 3.8 Research Instrument...............................................................................................44 3.8.1 Piloting of Research Instrument.......................................................................45 3.8.2 Validity of Findings ........................................................................................45 3.8.3 Reliability of Research Instrument...................................................................45 3.8.4 Data Analysis and Presentation........................................................................46 3.9 Ethical considerations ............................................................................................46 CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS AND PRESENTATION OF FINDINGS...........47 4.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................47 4.2 Response Rate.......................................................................................................47 4.2.1 Level of Management ............................................................................................47 4.3 Demographic Considerations ..................................................................................48 4.4 Data Analysis and Presentation...............................................................................49 4.4.1 The Influence of Organizational Learning on service Delivery..................................49 4.4.1.1 Positive Feedback Structures...........................................................................49 4.4.1.2 Reduced lag Time...........................................................................................52 4.4.1.3 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................55 4.4.1.4 Customer Focus..............................................................................................56 4.4.1.5 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................59 4.4.2 The Influence of Corporate Strategies .....................................................................60 4.4.2.1 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................62 4.4.3 The Influence of Technological Focus.....................................................................63 4.4.3.1 Hypothesis Testing .........................................................................................65
  6. 6. vii CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY OF FINDINGS, DISCUSSION, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS.................................................................................................66 5.1 Introduction...........................................................................................................66 5.2 Summary of Major Study Findings..........................................................................66 5.3 Discussion of the Study Findings ............................................................................67 5.3.1 The Influence of Organizational Learning on Service Delivery at PCK ..............67 5.1.1 The Influence of Customer Focus on Service Delivery at PCK ..........................68 5.1.2 The Influence of Corporate Strategy on Service Delivery at PCK.......................68 5.1.3 The Influence of Technological Focus on Service Delivery at PCK....................69 5.4 Conclusion ............................................................................................................69 5.5 Recommendations..................................................................................................71 5.6 Areas for Further Studies........................................................................................72 REFERENCES.................................................................................................................73 APPENDICES..................................................................................................................80 APPENDIX I: INTRODUCTION LETTER .......................................................................80 APPENDIX II: RESEARCH QUESTIONNAIRE...............................................................81 APPENDIX IV: NACOSTI RESEARCH AUTHORISATION............................................89 APPENDIX V: NACOSTI RESEARCH PERMIT..............................................................90
  7. 7. viii ABSTRACT Kenya has experienced one of the most tremendous growths in the mailing industry in the last ten years in its history with the number of registered players in the same market industry hitting the one hundred and fifty mark by June 2013. The same growth was also visible in the use of mobile phone with the industry recording the subscription levels of 16,000,000 while the internet penetration levels hitting an estimated 33.3 %. These factors have made the postal mailing industry quite competitive. For courier and mail services the critical strategy is to meet the postal strategic initiative in the 21st Century, by initiating the Postal Corporation of Kenya growth and its competitiveness within the communication industry. Thus, the main purpose of this research was to investigate the influence of strategic focus at Postal Corporation of Kenya. The specific objectives of the study included: establishing the influence of organizational learning; determining the influence of customer focus; establishing influence of organizational core values on service delivery as well as determine the influence of technology on the service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. The study was anchored upon profit maximizing and Competition based theory, theory of economic development and contingency theory. This study sought to establish how the focused strategies have influenced the service delivery at the Postal Corporation in the light of increased competition and the constant change in the technology that has affected how most of the services if not all are operating. The study sampled 53 respondents from population of 132 staff members. Primary data was collected through administration of an interview guide. The data collected was mainly quantitative in nature hence content analysis was the best method of analysis as it was not limiting the respondents on answers and had the potential of generating more detailed information. Descriptive statistics such as means, cumulative frequencies and Chi-square cross tabulation were used in analyzing the data. Chi-square cross tabulation was computed to establish the level of significance between the study variables. The study found out that there are mechanisms in place for collecting stakeholders’ feedback that forms the basis for strategic reviews thus improving service delivery and introducing new and customized services and product as per the changing times, tastes and preferences. The data was presented in form of tables, pie charts, graphs and narrative report. The study recommends that the respective management board that ensures that the PCK adapts to the changing technology constantly upgrades the servers to enable it handle the increasing customer base efficiently. The study also recommends that the strategic plan should be made accessible to the relevant stake holders for assessment and contributions. This study is very significant to Postal Corporation of Kenya by giving it an in depth understanding on how it can restructure its Strategic plan and remain a force to recon with in the mailing industry despite the constant pressure from the competitors. The study is also significant to future scholars who will use it as a reference point in their studies.
  8. 8. ix ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I wish to take this opportunity to thank the Almighty God for giving me the chance, grace, health, strength, care, protection and the ability to undertake this research. I wish to express my heartfelt gratitude to the late Dr. Jecinta Mwaura and my current supervisor Dr. Ndung’u Kabare for their guidance, corrections and suggestions throughout the project, without which I would not have been able to complete this project successfully. I extend my gratefulness to all my friends and relatives for their moral support and encouragement that has helped me to complete this project. I wish to recognize the Africa Nazarene University MBA department for it tireless support towards my project writing and for organizing various research talks that has enable me grow my research writing skills. I extend my heart most appreciation to the entire African Nazarene fraternity for giving me a platform to grow in various fields, career wise and also equipped me with skills to operate in the market place.
  9. 9. x LIST OF TABLES Table 2:1 Four Organizational Learning Processes.…………….…………..…..…….…23 Table 3.2 Target Population………………………………………..……………..…...…42 Table 3.3 Sample Selection….………………………………………………………..….43 Table 4.1 Classification of Respondents in Level of Management…………………..….47 Table 4.2 Gender Distribution………………………………….…..……………………48 Table 4.3 Year of service for Respondent…………………….…..………..……………48 Table 4.4 There are Loyal and Repeat Customers…..……….…………………...…….52 Table 4.5 New Customers Come as a Result of Referral …………….…………….…...53 Table 4.6 Relationship between Organizational Learning and Quality Service Delivery.55 Table 4.7 Correlation between Feedback Structures and Increase Number of Repeat Customers………………………………………………………………………………..56 Table 4.8 Relationship between Employee Development and Timeliness….…….…….59 Table 4.9 Relationship between Employee Development and Product Mix…..…..…….59 Table 4.10 Relationship between Employee Development and Timely services to a Customer…………………………………………………………………………………59 Table 4.11 Frequencies of Adherence to Core Values, Clear Strategies and Open Information Policy…………………………………………………………………….…61 Table 4.12 Relationship between Corporate Strategies Products Diversification….…...62 Table 4.13 Relationship between Corporate Strategy and Strategic Reviews……….......63 Table 4.14 Correlation Employee’s Development and the Bew Customers Come as a Result of Referral……………………………………………………..…………….……63 Table 4.15 Influence of ICT Management Boards and Increased Online Services..…….65
  10. 10. xi LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1.1 Conceptual Framework……….……………..……………………….………11 Figure 4.1 Mechanism in Place for Feedback……….……………..……………………49 Figure 4.2 Systems to Track Parcels and Notify Customers….…………………………50 Figure 4.3 Basis for Strategic Reviews and other Action Plan.…………………………51 Figure 4.4 Customers Have Range of Products to Select From….….………..….……...53 Figure 4.5 There is Proper Mechanism for Internal Control…….……………....………54 Figure 4.6 Product Development……….………………………………………………..57 Figure 4.7 Strategies of Customer Focus…….……………………………………….….58 Figure 4.8 Knowledge on PCK Visions and Mission………………...…………….……61 Figure 4.9 Frequencies of Services Done Online at PCK………….…………………….64
  11. 11. xii LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS APMGs: Assistant Postmasters General CAK: Communication Authority of Kenya CEO: Chief Executive Officer DHL: Dalsey, Hillblom & Lynn E2E: End to End IT: Information Technology KPTC: Kenya Posts and Telecommunication Corporation Kshs: Kenya Shillings MPLSM: Multiple Position Letter Sorting Machine NACOSTI: National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation OCR: Optical Character Reader PCK: Postal Corporation of Kenya PMG: Postmaster General POD: Post Office Department UPS: Universal Parcel Service
  12. 12. xiii DEFINITION OF TERMS Core values - The Core values are the fundamental rules by which the Commission wants to conduct “business” (Marvasti, (2000). Mission is the purpose for which the Commission or department exists based on the circular on organization of government, statutes of parliament and mandate (Milewa, 2010). Pilot study is a trial version run done to prepare for the complete research study. Piloting study is also known as the feasibility study. It can also be a specific pretesting of research instruments, entailing some questionnaires or the interview schedules (Kariuki, 2008). Service delivery is a continuous, cyclic process for developing and delivering user focused services (Andrews, 1999). Strategic change is the process of an organization to align with the dynamics of its external and internal environment over time (Van de Ven & Poole, 1995). Strategic focus is a process that entails marketing strategy by which a company concentrates more of its resources on entering new market or trying to expand in a narrow market segment (Mintzberg, 1999). Strategic planning is the process of determining the long term and short term goals of an organization and the identifying the best courses of actions to be adopted and allocating the necessary resources to carry out these goals effectively (Brown, 2016).
  13. 13. xiv Vision -The Communication Authority of Kenya strategic plan 2008-2013 defined Vision as a vibrant and compelling image of the desired future state of the organization (Kimani, 2009).
  14. 14. 1 CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY 1.1 Introduction This chapter contains the background of the study which is exploring the shift from management to strategic management, relationship between strategy and structure and a brief description of Postal Corporation of Kenya. It looks at the problem statement, research questions, research objectives, significance of the study, limitations and delimitations of the study and scope of the study. 1.2 Background to the Study Strategic management is a very wide field that has kept on evolving overtime. Ansoff (2013) argued that strategic management involves coordinating various management functions to one direction or goal. He also stressed that inter communication should be structured in a way that allows both top to bottom and bottom to top information flow for feedback and corrections. This involves identifying and matching the strength and weakness to opportunities and threats to allow an organization perform optimally (Barney, 2001). Strategic management as a discipline offers diverse routes that allow for organizational restructuring and reorganization (Mahoney & Pandian, 1992). Thompson, Strickland and Gamble (2007) tried to differentiate strategy from immediate actions with resources at hand to fire fight an immediate challenge which is most often rehearsed. He also looked at strategy as a long term plan of action that is put in place to achieve a particular objective. Strategy is viewed as a deliberate move to search for an effective plan of action that places an organization to be at a competitive advantage compared to the other competitors in the industry. The search is an iterative process in any organization that begins with recognizing of where you are or your current state and
  15. 15. 2 the resources at hand that can be easily mobilized. The key differences between an organization and its key rivalry are the basis of its strategic advantage. When a corporation has penetrated well in to its market and is well established then this gives it some sought of advantage in the industry, no matter how small this is. The key concern now becomes identifying strategies to enlarge the scope of this advantages which definitely happen at the expense of other firm’s (Clayton, 1997). Biggart (2015) looked at strategy and its relationship to structure arguing that structure follows strategy and the strategy has to fit in the internal dynamics of the organization. He added that strategic management is the long term goals of a firm and the adoption of the strategic courses of action as well as the strategic allocation of the available organizational resources necessary for carrying out these very goals effectively. Schumpeter (1996) shed more light on the relationship between strategy and the existing environment by putting more emphasis on how companies come up with very great focused strategies but do very little on evaluating how these strategies impact on their overall service delivery. Globally Postal Corporation plays a very significant role in the economy. It is a saving vehicle for the poor in that it addresses the problem of inadequate savings for retirement with myRA, a savings system deducted from paychecks that earns a modest rate of return without risk of loss. It formed the better way of delivering federal benefits that could be loaded into Postal ATM Cards at no additional cost, saving the government and beneficiary’s money. All in all Postal services helps in reducing inequality and boosting the economy through the inclusion for low-income Americans to access banking facility which is a critical component of our modern society (Schumpeter, 1996).
  16. 16. 3 1.2.1 Postal Corporation of Kenya Most organizations in the world today invest so much in improving their service delivery to their customers. Most companies attribute their key success to the improvement of how they are delivering their service and bad leadership as the major contributor to low quality service delivery in the African continent (Huduma Kenya, 2013). The Postal Corporation of Kenya is a government Parastatal created by Postal Corporation Act 1998, after the split of KPTC into three separate entities. Kenya Posts and Telecommunications Corporation split into three entities on 1st July 1999 namely Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK), Telkom Kenya and Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK). Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK) was mandated to offer mail and other financial services, while Telkom Kenya was tasked with offering Telecommunication or phone call services, and Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK) was given powers to be the regulatory body. This saw the liberalization of the industry with more players being registered to come on board and offer Postal and communication services. Currently there are over ninety six different companies offering mail services and to be precise courier and parcel that have been registered by the Communications Commissions of Kenya, the official regulatory body in Kenya (PCK, 2009). With the liberalization of the industry, PCK suddenly found itself in the intensive deep waters of competition in the industry it had been monopolizing. PCK’s operation was centered on the conveyance of handwritten mails throughout the country. However, as new technology was adopted, gradually, the use of old communication services such as letters and public telephone booths became outdated. The inception of the internet made communication fast regardless of physical location. According to a report by Kimani
  17. 17. 4 (2009) very few people sent letters and the introduction of mobile phones made the telephone booths unappealing and undesirable .As a result, PCK inevitably had to go through the turnaround process least its own existence as a business operator ceased (PCK, 2013). In 2003, the parastatal engineered major restructuring process that were geared towards the transform the entire company, they scanned their business environment both internally and externally and put in place the implementation strategies through human resource planning that would give them an upper hand in responding effectively to the market dynamics. These key focused strategic initiatives were captured in PCK strategic (PCK, 2013). In line with the corporation’s community service duty and the universal service obligation towards the provision of cost effective, attractive, accessible , and consumer reliable postal services to all the citizens local residents, PCK has devised a number of focused Strategies to enable it achieve a cost advantage over its competitors. This includes reconfiguring their value chain by shifting to e-business technologies, simplifying product design and offering no frills service. They also shifted their focus from more capital intensive, un-streamlined and rigid technological processes, and adopted use low cost raw materials as well as component parts. In addition to these, they also relocated most of their facilities closer to their key suppliers. They also went ahead to re-engineer some of their key business and work process so as to remove the unnecessary activities and cut out low value added customer processes through setting up of Huduma centers country wide (PCK, 2013). PCP still has a significant effect on the economy. Every organization needs a physical postal address which becomes part of its business address location. In most of the rural part of this country has very poor internet
  18. 18. 5 connection is and thus PCK plays a great role in such areas in boosting their economic activities and link them to the rest of the world through setting up Huduma centers. 1.3 Statement of the Problem Since the formation of this government owned Postal Corporation of Kenya, the customers who happen to be Kenyan citizens have yearned to obtain quality services from this critical organization that was once a monopoly. A rapid change in the industry has been of great concern for both the academic and practitioners who are keen on strategic management literature (Eisenhardt, 2002). The concept of strategic focus on service delivery potentially impacts every aspect of how the corporation in question conducts business. The noticeable characteristic of most fast paced industries includes rapid product changes, product diversification, changes in process technologies, keen observation and identification of competitor’s possible strategic actions to be taken. This makes it so difficult to come up with most efficient, sustainable and effective competitive advantage (Fines, 1998; Williams, 1994). For any organization to survive in these fast paced industries, the company needs to be quick in adopting some flexibility in its strategic actions (Eisenhardt, 1999). The business of Postal Corporation of Kenya has faced with very stiff pressure from both the internal and external environment in the last five years. This has necessitated reassessing of the overall strategic business direction that PCK had previously embarked on. In that regard, the PCK Board and management has decided to implement a structured and focused turn around approach within its five-year corporate strategic plan. The turnaround approach will allow PCK to address the key challenges which include: the inability to meet its key financial targets as well as make good returns from its products, the increasing expenses
  19. 19. 6 on wage bills resulting from staff who are being underutilized due to duplicated roles, the underperforming of its key revenue generating units and the dynamics of an ever changing market situation. In most Postal corporation stations, customer service delivery has been identified as a key obstacle towards the realization of organization’s strategic goal. The process of customer service delivery has been characterized by delay in response to customer complaints, and offering of outdated or obsolete products. The Communication Commission of Kenya warned PCK that if it doesn’t strategically focus on modernizing most of its services through the eyes of its customers it may be overtaken by its competitors. According to the statistics by Tonui, (2013) PCK has lost a good chunk of their market share in the courier sector to their key competitors who have come out very strong and now control the over Ksh 3.3 billion (43 million uses Dollars) courier industry of which not long ago they were the underdogs while PCK was the monopoly in that business. Several studies such as; Strategies adopted by postal corporation of Kenya to gain competitive advantage in the mail sub sector in Kenya by Kimani (2009), Competitive strategies adopted by the postal corporation of Kenya by (Milewa, 2010), and attraction and retention of employees at postal corporation of Kenya by (Tonui, 2013) have all been carried out in the field of strategic focus at the PCK but to the best knowledge of the researcher, no research has been conducted on the influence of strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. This clearly shows a gap which this study seeks to fill by finding out the influence of Strategic focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya.
  20. 20. 7 1.4 Research Objectives This study consists of both general and specific objectives. The researcher looked on the following general objective which has been broken further into specific objectives and General objectives. 1.4.1 The General Objective This study endeavored to find out the influence of Strategic focus on the service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya. The researcher has identified four key specific objectives that he will be focusing on. 1.4.2 Specific Objectives i. To establish the influence of organizational learning on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. ii. To determine the influence of customer focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. iii. To establish the influences of corporate strategies on service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya. iv. To assess the influence of technological focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. 1.5 Research Questions i. What role does organizational learning play on service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya? ii. How does customer focus influence service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya?
  21. 21. 8 iii. What is the relationship between organizational standards and service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya? iv. To what extent does Technological focus influence service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya? 1.6 Research Hypothesis The study tested the following hypothesis H01: There is a positive significant relationship between organizational learning and service delivery at PCK. H02: There is a positive significant relationship between customer focus on service delivery at PCK. H03: There is a positive significant relationship between corporate strategies and service delivery at PCK H04: There is a positive significant relationship between technological focus and service delivery at PCK 1.7 Significance of the Study This study is important in many ways. The study documents the strategies adopted at the PCK and how they are influencing and impacting the service delivery. Customer service delivery is a strategic issue that plays a major role towards determination of the state corporation’s performance. The level of the achieved customer satisfaction is a strategic measure of the efficiency and effectiveness of organizations customer delivery process. The study adds value to strategic policy making debate in the public sector. The Postal Corporation will be benefiting greatly from this review. The researcher has shown how corporations strategically focus in implementing their service delivery strategies and come up with progressive reforms and the impacts of this service oriented strategies to
  22. 22. 9 overall organizational performance considering all the players in the industry involved in this process. The researcher has identified the areas that need to adopt organizational learning, how they can restructure their mandate and actualize their core values better. The researcher also identified the stake holders involved in this process and the role played by each stakeholder in the strategy formulation process. The process of monitoring and evaluating was necessary in identifying when change is needed and if there is a match or a gap between actual results and expected outcomes. This study will also be of good use to other key licensed players in the courier operation industry. The researcher has also shown how strategic management can be used as a tool to build a successful business that is very competitive in the industry. This study will be used as reference points for other studies in the area of strategic management by other researchers and scholars. 1.8 Scope of the study The study looked at the influences of focused strategies on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya in order to gain a competitive edge. The research focused on the corporate level of management; Business level and operational level of management where the key decisions strategy are made. The research was held at the headquarters office in Nairobi. 1.9 Limitations of the Study The organizations confidentiality policy in most organization PCK included was binding most of the respondents to answer some questions in a particular way for fear of victimization. To overcome this, the researcher assured the confidentiality of the
  23. 23. 10 information that was provided as well as presented the introductory letter obtained from the university and the research permit. The other limitations included limited time and the technical aspect of the study which did not permit in-depth, thorough analysis and understanding of all the variables involved in the study. Times constraints lead to unavailability of interviewees due to their busy schedules and strict working hours. The researcher drafted a work plan that factored in all the available flexi-times to meet with the respondents. The other strategies were leaving the questionnaires behind and collecting them at a designated time. There are over sixty one head post offices, four hundred and eighteen departmental offices and three hundred ninety two sub post offices, implying that the study population is extremely big. The researcher overcame this through sampling the headquarters which would give a representation of the whole population. 1.10 Delimitations of the Study All the senior managers are located at the head office in Nairobi thus being the crucial decision makers. All the other satellite PCK branches directly depend on the decisions made at the head office in Nairobi. This informed the researcher to restrict the research to head office in Nairobi where the key decision makers are situated and due to this the researcher administered the questionnaire to the Headquarters office in Nairobi. 1.11 Conceptual Framework A conceptual frame work can be defined as a set of principles or broad ideas pulled from the fields of investigation or research that can be used in structuring the subsequent presentation (Orodho, 2003). It is structured with theories and concepts which are pulled
  24. 24. 11 together as a guide or roadmap for the study clearly showing the existing relationship of research variables (Orodho, 2003). Independent variables Dependent Variable Figure 1.1: Conceptual Framework Source: Researcher (2016) The study sought to establish how past information in relation to organizational learning has been used to improve customer services delivery and their satisfaction as well as improvement of time deliveries and customer initiated product diversifications. The researcher sought to understand how product development and differentiation is done at Customer focus  Product development  Employee development on customer relation  Quality assurance Service Delivery  Increased number of repeat customers  Increase of new products (product mix) in the market  Increased online services  Reduced time taken per customers  Product differentiation  Timeliness  Quality  Corporate Strategies  Vision  Mission  Core values  Strategic plan Technological Focus  Marketing  Payments  Purchases Organizational learning  Feedback structures  Reduced lag times  Efficiency and increased productivity
  25. 25. 12 the PCK, how are the employee developments in relation to customer relation done as well as mechanisms put in place for quality assurance and management The research also sought to establish how the PCK’s vision, missions, core values and strategic plan is influencing the overall goal and service delivery to its customers. The research sought to understand how the technological changes have influenced the service delivery at PCK and how they have adopted the new technology by the number of services offered online.
  26. 26. 13 CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW 2.1 Introduction This chapter contains the literature review of the stated research topic. It covers the contingency theory and the mechanization of mail processing, the resource based view and profit maximization and competition based theories. It goes further to look at several empirical studies. In general, it illustrates the theoretical framework reviews, empirical reviews, summary of literature reviewed and the research gap. 2.2 Theoretical Review The early theorists on the concept of strategic focus argued that service delivery strategies are advents of strategic reorientations of the firms as the sole approach to the recovery of the declining firms (Hammer & Champy, 1993). On the sideline, empirical studies have indicated the association of successful turnarounds with cutback actions that ensure improved firm performance by increasing efficiency within the corporations. Ideally, there is a vivid gap in the information when collated with respect to the two points of view (Hammer & Champy, 1993). The study therefore seeks to employ Contingency theory; Resource based view theory and the Profit Maximizing and Competition based Theory. 2.2.1 Contingency Theory and the Mechanization of Mail Processing This theory is of the idea that for any given organization there is no one best approaches of management. This now calls for Organizations to develop their own customized managerial strategies depending on their own situation at hand. There is a great need to implement the various strategies in phases at the PCK and ensure that each implementation phase is done in good time monitored and evaluated after some time
  27. 27. 14 following the full PCK sector reforms. These can be done well by setting up emergent strategies and both short and long term planned strategies (Kimani, 2009). The PCK however is a state owned Corporation of Kenya that is hard hit by the waves of change in the industry, and with specific reference to the strategic focus in corporate service delivery (Kariuki, 2008). PCK is a parastatal that utilizes its limited resources to offer crucial services to the citizens and accrue profits that are reinvested in the firm or given out as dividends to the Government of Kenya the sole shareholder. PCK serves the local and international market as it competes with other players in the market to offer core postal services such as mail, financial, agency and courier services. PCK products and services constitute majorly on the corporation business which includes company letters, philatelic materials parcel, cargo, courier, postal financial services, deposit and payment agency services. It however retains a monopoly in postal rental boxes and mails weighing less than three hundred fifty grams in an attempt to help it offer universal Postal services and still be commercially viable. Other players are required by law to charge five times the cost PCK charges to qualify for this class of mail. According to Kimani, (2009) CAK was mandated to enforce the law but has been unable due to lack of capacity. The process of collecting and delivering of parcels or Mails in particular is very complex with a lot of labor. Labor in particular attributes to eighty three percent of the entire Postal corporation revenue. PCK has distinguished its task based on its clientele. PCK key tasks includes the direct contact with their extremely distinguished diverse customers, the staff in charge at this stage parks the products for transit and the processing system where all the outputs are hand delivered to customers businesses, homes and satellite postal boxes across the country. Thompson et el., (2007) saw this as
  28. 28. 15 a gap to get a mediating and harmonizing technology that standardizes the operations that are used to deal with diverse clients. Initially before the 1970 Post Office Department (POD) had an internal structure that guided and coordinated the operations that featured the Postmaster General (PMG) at the corporate level and six Assistant Postmasters General (APMGs) at the business and operational level management who provided leadership at separate bureaus. Contingency theory stressed on the rational of most the political driven actions. It also did not clearly distinguish the difference between private and public organizations. This theory is of believe that any "publicness" in an organization is considered as a function of the extended political influence on the same organizational behavior. For any individual to analyze the environmental influences on public organizations, then it is appropriate him to have a politically focused explanation (Boreham, 2004). A normal day today integrated postal operator performs the following core functions; inwards and out sortation, collection, local transportation, long hauls transportation, transportation to both the locale and international post office and finally the delivery of the mails. De’Dondar et al., (2004) in his research noticed that there is very little evidence that the functions of transportation, collection, and sortation have any significance in the economies of scale. With this limited line of product then an organization such as PCK needs a Management team that thinks outside the box to come up with other modernized product that keeps it running and that’s why the contingent theory applies well where they have several approaches to adopt with back up plans.
  29. 29. 16 2.2.2 The Resource BasedView Theory A study conducted by Kimani (2009) indicated that the theory of resource allocation is very relevant and it needs to be incorporating in the central characteristics of the innovation process. The ability and capacity of an economy to develop is thus very closely related to the process involved in the corporate resource allocation. The foundational resources for investments of any organization are derived from its undistributed profits, retained earnings and capital consumption allowances provided. These boost the organizations productive capabilities by enabling it to foster innovation and economic development. The approach on how major corporations allocate their vast resources is nothing but a matter of strategic choice. For every strategic choice that the corporate decision makers makes has ripple effects on the overall performance of the entire industry and the economy at large (Cazals et al., 2004). Innovative resource allocation is very strategic and therefore gives all the stakeholders control of resources if they are to engage them to other developmental process in line with their key evaluation constraints and the possibilities of alternative strategies (Schumpeter, 1996). They also require controls to keep the resources in line until the learning process has generated improved quality and lowered the cost of production that enables the investment strategies to reap more (Lazonick & O'Sullivan, 1996). Financial economics treats resources allocation based on fisher theories of investment as explained in his book theories of interest (1930). Interest theory resembles price theory which talks of the marginal propensity of consumption. The theory talks more about people’s marginal preference of present over future goods, which is also referred as time preference or human impatience (Fisher, 1990).
  30. 30. 17 Fisher's recognized that creation and distribution of value are related in a major way, resource allocation processes that generate innovation are developmental, organizational and strategic. At any point in time the system should be able to generate three conditions namely; financial commitment, organizational integration and insider control. It should support commitment of resources to promising investments and allows for the integration of human and physical resources to the organizational process (Fisher, 1990) 2.2.3 Profit-Maximizing and Competition-Based Theory This is based on the conventional assumption that business thrive to make profits and maintain competitive advantage over their rivals in the market place (Porter, 1990). Strategy which is described by (Thompson et al., 1999) as the movement and approaches that leaders employ to help the organization attract and please its stakeholders and achieve the mission and objective of the organization efficiently, is a top priority for the public sector managers for two very big reasons: the urge to proactively shape how the department will run and the need to create positive and lasting public perceptions and growth patterns. Great strategy formulation and execution is equal to great public management (Thomson et al., 2007). Many scholars have indicated in their findings that strategies follow structure (Pearce & Robinson, 2000). For any public sector organization to be effective structure must fit strategy. The firm should be able to adapt to changes in the dynamic competitive environment (Porter, 1990). Competition accelerated technological advances and changing customer expectations are various factors that shape the turbulent environment. Though structures provide an overall framework for strategy implementation, they should
  31. 31. 18 allow for the dynamic environmental changes and developments (Balogun &Johnson, 2004). 2.3 Empirical Literature Review Empirical researches involving strategic choice assume that political actors anticipate the decisions of other actors when making their own choices. Thus, actors' decisions are interdependent. The strategic choice model also suggests election effects for both the internal and external (Fearon, 1993). Empirical studies have indicated the association of successful turnarounds with cutback actions that ensure improved firm performance by increasing efficiency within the corporations. Ideally, there is a vivid gap in the information when it is collated with respect to the two points of view (Hammer & Champy, 1993). A research by Steiner (1997) distinguished between internal and external forces and their role in shaping strategic positioning in service delivery. Later on (Porter, 1990) also made his impute by distinguishing between corporate strategy and competitive strategy. Further complicating the problem is the fact that many strategic activities such as strategic planning (Ward, 1990), strategic management (Hax & Majluf, 2006) and strategy formulation (Andrews, 1999), are used interchangeably. Strategy can also be viewed as three related processes namely opportunistic decision making, strategic thinking and the strategic planning (Ward, Griffiths & Whitmore, 1990). According to (Scholes, 1999) strategy can also be viewed as the guiding line and scope of an organization for a long term, which aides it to achieve some added advantages through its maximum utilization of its minimal resources within the constant changing internal and external environment to meet the needs of the market and its stakeholders.
  32. 32. 19 Porter (1990) on the other hand simplified strategic focus further by stating that it is a situation where a corporate company choses to engage on the strategic analyses and planning before launching of new products or new business units. Strategic focus cannot be mentioned without considering strategic change. Van de Ven & Poole (995) on the other hand viewed strategic change as the difference in quality, the form, price and its overall state over a period of time in the firm's alignment with its both internal and external environment. Change is inevitable thus for any business to survive and remain relevant in the market industry they need to position themselves in a way to accommodate the changes that exist in their business environments. The business alignment with its external environment take place when its critical business patterns of the present, the budgeted limited resource being deployed and adaption in the environmental constant changes that indicates how the organization will achieve its goals (Johnson, 2004). Any slight change in this alignment forces drastic changes in the entire content of an organization’s focused strategy since all this is defined by the available resource, synergy stipulated scope and competitive advantages. Holmberg (1998) concludes that changes in the organizations external environment is brought about so that it can push the management to initiate change and implement it in the context of strategy. The overall goal of Strategic focus on service delivery strategies is to turnaround an underperforming firm to its former glory normal in terms of solvency, liquidity, ,acceptable levels of profitability, cash flow and retain its market share. Strategic focus on service delivery is a common concept in change management for purposes of financial realignment of corporations, given that the market conditions are constantly changing. This calls for implementation of a series of planned actions for the purpose of avoiding
  33. 33. 20 stagnation, failure and financial solvency. This therefore requires a strong leadership and it may include a restructuring of the corporate hierarchy, eliminating redundancies, a thorough investigation of problem root causes, and the development of a long-term strategy to revitalize and motivate the corporate culture of the organization (Hammer & Champy, 1993). A research by the Kimani (2009) supported the argument that it is very important for the management team to recognize these warning signals at their early stages and take appropriate action to counteract the decline and quickly put the business back on the road to profitability. A critical and careful thinking approach to resolving the problem that is methodically implemented throughout all levels of the organization is necessary. Pandit (1995) conducted a research to establish a theoretical framework of strategic focus. This study clearly indicated the applicability of GT in the frame working of the concept of influences of strategic focus on service delivery. In this case, the auxiliary objectives will be first to establish the kind of decline experienced by PCK then itemize the strategies used by the management and the effects that came with them (Kimani, 2009). 2.3.1 Organizational learning A successful recovery on service delivery involves increasing the confidences of the work force by building their capacity through training, improving their moral, equipping them with necessary resources, and valuing them as the organizational key assets (Marvasti, 2000).
  34. 34. 21 Prior to 1999 the communications sector which the postal services is part of was a monopoly of Kenya Posts and Telecommunications Corporation and handled both operational and regulatory functions. However after repeal of KPTC act in 1998, the two functions were separated where by the PCK was tasked to provide key postal services, the Telkom Kenya was to offer telecommunication services while Communication Commission of Kenya was to offer regulatory services. Since then the postal service sub sector in Kenya has witnessed tremendous growth and as at June 2009 there were 150 registered operators. The Categories of licensed postal and courier operators are: forty three International, three regional, five international inbound, twenty seven intra-cities, and one public postal licensee (PCK). A study carried out by PCK (2007) to identify competitors in the mail identified the following competitors as posing the biggest threat: DHL, FedEx, Universal Parcel Service (UPS), and TNT in the international market and G4Securicor Courier, Bus and freight companies, real and on time deliveries in the local market. The key to these competitors success was found to be reliable, secure and fast services that PCK was not offering. There was also the substitution of mail services by the faster and cheaper technology based short message services (SMS), electronic mail (email) and mobile telephone. According to a report by Kariuki (2015), mobile subscriber numbers had risen to over sixteen million by June 2009 and internet usage penetration levels of thirty three percent. The same report estimate the postal courier market share to be three percent in a market estimated to be worth Kenya shillings seven billion. Another report on Milewa (2010) indicated that PCKs service delivery precisely in mail deliveries were very erratic and slow. The PCK are currently trying to boost revenue by
  35. 35. 22 building up direct mail marketing, franchising out postal offices that are making loses and undertaking restructuring of its financial remittance as well as reengineering and restructuring its courier component. They are also planning to introduce new products such postal based savings scheme, hybrid mail system and in addition reinventing postal courier services. However, this has come under criticism with some analysts clearly pointing out that this strategic shift may not have an overall impact in the industry since competitors have already introduced products that have locked up the most profitable market niches. Most of the strategic focus studies contacted have been criticized for their overly analytical orientation, corporate management bias, lack of attention to the course of action taken and the learning element that lead to the creation of strategies (Mintzberg et al., 1999). Strategic focus is majorly founded on the organizational learning. Organizational learning is the processes of developing capabilities that have competitive advantage that are highly treasured by its customers. Crossan et al. (1999) argued that organizational learning has most of the time led to realization of new sources of capabilities that promote innovativeness, creativity and development new strategies. According to Eisenhardt (2002) he emphasizes that strategic focus cannot be effective without good sustainable organization learning process put in place. Argyris & Schon (1996) described organization learning as a process that entails pulling lesson from past experiences, understanding what needs to be done, putting in place corrective and monitoring and evaluation mechanisms’ that are value committed, having a good prescriptive and implementing the strategies to the latter. Crossan et al. (1999) found out that Organizational learning goes through four vital processes as per the table below for it
  36. 36. 23 to be effective and impactful to the overall goal of the organization. He also insisted that organization needs to have constructive critics from both the internal and the external environment for it to identify and pull out some of these lessons learned. Table 2.1: Four Organizational Learning Processes Level Process Outcomes Individual Intuiting Experiences Images Metaphor Group Interpreting Language Group Cognitive map Shared Communication Integrating Clear understandings Symbiotic relationship Routines Organization Institutionalizing Interactive system Policies, procedures and rules Diagnostic systems Source: Crossan, Lane and White, (1999) Crossan et al. (1999) described four organizational learning processes in the following manner. He described intuiting as the early detection or recognition of the possibilities inherent in a personal wealthy of experience. This process on its own has an effect on the individual's behavior alone but it only affects others if the person in question is their role model and they are trying to act like that individual. Interpreting is the process of trying to explant he insight and idea of one’s self and in comparison to others. Integrating on the other hand is a process that entails development of Symbiotic relationship amongst individuals and coordinating their course of actions through mutual adjustment. This encourages dialogue and joint action which is very crucial to the development of
  37. 37. 24 Symbiotic relationship which leads to institutionalizing. Institutionalizing in involves defining of tasks, specifying of course of actions and putting in place the organizational mechanisms that guides the certain actions. It also entails embedment of the learning process that takes place by individuals and groups. According to Crossan et al. (1999) the tension existing between adopting new learning and using previous lesson learned by other to help in examining these three levels of learning and the relationship between the levels, it also identifies processes that link the levels, links these processes to strategic focus and goes on to recognizes that organizational learning involves an interaction between cognition and action. These now brings a great revelation that organizational learning plays a key role in strategic focus. It now brings in some of the key learning PCK has pulled in to help in it remain relevant in this vibrant and competitive industry. In recent years, the concept of organizational learning has attracted a lot of attention from researchers in many disciplines, including specialists in the fields of adult learning, vocational education and training and school improvement. Most researchers have defined organizational learning as the extent that it is undertaken by members of an organization to achieve organizational goals, taking place in teams or other small groups, is distributed widely throughout the organization and embeds its outcomes. Eisenhardt (2002) observed the current theories of organizational learning and noted that they were very weak in spelling out the specific processes or actions that make the learning process. Organizational learning emphasizes on the effectiveness of the dialogue through which organization’s learn depends on a shared developmental history in which certain practices
  38. 38. 25 have been adopted as the accepted way of behaving in that community. A practice may be defined as a recurrent pattern of activity embodying explicit rules, precepts and instructions (Schatzki, 1996). Holmberg (2000) found out that the company will always learns as an organization because engaging in these practices enables co-workers to co- ordinate different subjectivities with different perspectives and experiences in relation to what then becomes, for the participants, the common object of their activity. Fenwick (2001) on the other hand differed with Organizational learning by arguing that it reduces individual autonomy, the sense of paradox disappears if we take into account of the theoretical recanting that has occurred in recent years in relation to the concept of the self-driven initiative. Gergen (1991) seconded this by challenging the traditional notion that being is self-sustaining ignoring the need for others. These has however been challenged the recent times. Holmberg (2000) noted that taking a political perspective increases the understanding of organizational learning. He notes that power relations are vital for organizational learning as they involve the whole organizational hierarchy. Boreham et al., (2004) argues that organizational learning looks at the relationships of employees amongst each other. Policy documents unchanged or unaltered created a barrier to well functional self- directing teams as envisioned by the management. 2.3.2 Customer Focus The researcher looked at theoretical literature on innovative pricing and its application to the postal industry. Similar studies include; Armstrong, (2001) and Armstrong et al. (1996) that focused on the consequences of bypass and universal service on innovative
  39. 39. 26 pricing. The structure of demands that it posits is much simpler than the one developed in this paper, with homogenous goods and inelastic demands. Armstrong et al., (1996) tried to develop a framework which had a little weakness in that it could not include the universal service obligations but gave allowances for the bypassing and production of multiple heterogeneous products. Panzar (2004) also developing a low cost model that offered an end to end (E2E) product. To become the best service provider, resolved to put aside resources that would enable it have low cost services with appealing features and excellent quality. They borrowed the concept from Porter (1990) that Strategic focus is basically identifying your customers’ niche needs and meeting them as well as developing the capacity to offer something different from rival competitors. According to Kimani (2009) PCK have turned to cooperative strategies that involve ways of responding to strong competitive pressures between organizations by identifying their capabilities and core competencies and combining it with their limited resources to achieve their goals. Cooperative strategies may be short term or long term and may include partial or contractual ownership. These strategies help the organization in accessing new markets, entering new businesses, introduction of new products, overcoming trade barriers, avoiding predatory competition, gaining access to complementary resources, sharing risk, research and development expenses, and risk capital (Hitt, 1995). Cooperative strategies includes strategic alliances, partnerships, mergers, acquisitions, integrations, outsourcing and offensive as well as defensive strategic moves to secure competitive advantage and protect a firm’s position. Strategic counteractions target the competitor’s strength or weakness and they can either be at one point or at various fronts
  40. 40. 27 at the same time (Porter, 1990). The essence of an offensive strike is to tumble the market leader or competitor in the industry while the defensive strategies are aimed at maintaining the market leader position by putting up barriers and shunning off competitors from trying to attack (Thompson & Strickland, 1999). Defining who is a customer in a government environment or Institution is made more complicated by power being fragmented and shared among government ministries, departments and by the existence of multiple interest groups. Trying to simultaneously satisfy multiple the goals of public programs is very difficult if not impossible, a good example being when customers have to be treated differently if government is trying to protect individual rights versus trying to provide efficient service. Barzelay (2011) realized that inefficient units can be transformed into very responsive customer friendly and a well-functioning provider of valuable services. He also believed that the same work unit within centralized staff operations is responsible for performing two conflicting functions: delivering services and complying with regulations. Osborne and Gaebler (1992) were convinced that government can be effectively customer driven because democratic governments exist, in their view, to serve their citizen customers. Customer-driven government, they say, offers many advantages over bureaucratic government. Some of these advantages include accountability to customers, greater in novation, more service choices, and less waste. Barzelay (2011) like Osborne and Gaebler, suggested that government's customers are usually citizens. According to Barzelay (2011), government organizations should be customer driven and service oriented. The Citizens who add up as customers of the government parastatal to be the always anticipate to be treated with respect. They expect the same treatment they get
  41. 41. 28 from a supermarket replicated to all the social security offices (Dilulio, Garvey & Kettl, 1993). This left Hitt (1995) wondering whether citizens should be treated as customers or as owners. He saw no reason why citizens cannot be treated as both customers and owners conclude that there is genuine value in the customer service approach. According to Balogun et al. (2013), the top priority of high level managers is to managers is development of strategies and ensuring they have the right middle and operational level management who can implement the new strategy. Their confidence resides in the kind of team they have that can successful execute the strategies. They ensure that during recruitment they can spot these characteristics given characteristics; the abilities, special skills, talents, academic background, job experience, personality traits and the temperament. 2.3.3 Technological Focus Parsons (1993) realized that many organizations have been unable to assimilate the benefits of information technology. He termed this difficulty as a strategic focus gap that results from different thought of theories that have evolved over time in different parts of the organization. In the essence, Information Technology team in most companies when they are formulating focused technology strategy, they speak of improving processing speed, storage capacity, and response times. For the technological strategies to be efficient then the strategic team needs to think in terms of competitors, industry trends, and the like. Aligning the Information Technology strategy with business strategy requires that each level become sensitive to the different needs orientations of the other and that information technology managers work directly with the strategic business
  42. 42. 29 planners in order to help them gain an awareness of technology and its potential benefits. Parson still insist that if the top management are armed with better understanding of IT, then strategic planning team are then in a better position to reformulate their initial strategies and identify opportunities to better address the various competitive forces that they confront in the market. Although there are so many differences between the public and private sectors that results from how both align their applications and technological strategies. In all kinds of organizations, applications strategies tend to be developed in separate operating bureaus, oriented toward constituent, customers and client’s demands. Closing the gap between these applications strategies and traditional activity based, supply oriented, and tool focused technology strategies are a ubiquitous problem across all sectors (Ellis et al., 2009). The overall goal of strategic focus in service delivery basically bringing back a poorly performing and strained company to normalcy in terms of customer base, solvency, building the customers confidence and loyalty, liquidity, levels of cash flow and profitability (Robinson, 2010). To achieve its objectives of strategic focus the entity requires identifying and tackling the causes of the distress, and coming up with appropriate measures resolve their financial crisis. They need to regain and maintain their stakeholder’s confidence and support so that overcome the internal bureaucratic red tapes and unfavorable industry dynamics (Hammer & Champy, 1995). Several studies have been done on the concept of strategic focus in Kenyan firms. These include; Strategic response by Postal Corporation of Kenya to competition in the
  43. 43. 30 telecommunication sector in Kenya (Omolo, 2011), and Strategies adopted by PCK to gain competitive advantage in the mail sub sector (Kimani, 2009). Despite the said importance of strategic focus in turnaround strategy on service delivery past studies have not adequately addressed the roles of the strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. The strategic focus can therefore be defined as the financial recovery of a company that had been performing poorly for a considerate period of time (Kariuki, 2008). It can also be referred to as a set of implementation course of actions that can be used to save an organization from business failure and return it to operational normality (Hammer & Champy, 1995). It is also closely related to turnaround strategies that try to rescue companies though areas like cost reduction and financial restructuring which are all aimed at the revitalization of a falling company or corporation financially (Marvasti, 2000). A research by PCK (2007) indicated that PCK operates a vast network of about sixty one head post offices (61), four hundred and eighteen departmental offices (408) and three hundred ninety two (392) sub post offices. It has three hundred and eighty eight thousand two hundred and eighty one (388281) private letter boxes, one thousand and fourteen (1014) private letter bags one thousand hundred and thirty four (1134) private letter posting bags one thousand three hundred and fifty six (1356) public counter positions, three hundred and twelve 312 stamp vending machines and five thousand (5,000) stamp vendor that have been Licensed across the country. According to PCK (2007), Mail contributes 75% to the total PCK revenue. PCK is facing competition from both international and domestic mail service providers, mobile
  44. 44. 31 telephony, electronic mail and commerce and this has led to declining mail revenues at average rate of six percent per year (PCK, 2007). Currently postal courier mail market share is three percent in a market estimated to be worth seven billion Kenya shillings. (www.cck.go.ke). Thus PCK seems to have lost competitiveness in the mail sector. The study thus seeks to determining and understand the strategies that PCK has adopted in its quest to regain and maintain its lost glory in the mail sub sector in Kenya. A study by Milewa (2010) found out that the competitive strategies adopted by PCK in response to increased market competition include;- product development, product differentiations, being more technological savvy, contacting market research to understand the market dynamics and for regular feedback. A low cost strategy that majors on differentiations is more attractive when the market is large enough to allow for profitability and has room for growth where other players have not identified the niche market. Thompson and Strickland (1999) indicated that it is expensive and difficulty for companies dealing with multiple market segments to meet the specialized needs of the each market segment. PCK also focuses on employing market penetration strategy involves going head-on, in an existing market with the currently existing products. This can be achieved by attracting new customers from other players in the market, retaining the existing customers through product and service customizations (Armstrong & Kotler, 2002). Product development strategy involves developing new products for existing market. Through need identification strategies a firm is able to identify new opportunities for product developing and modification in line with customer taste and preferences (McCarthy & Perreault, 1993).
  45. 45. 32 Michael Porter's on the other hand talks about the need for consistency in strategic positions which allows growth and development of a company culture that builds the identity of an organization and its stake holders allowing for recruitment and retention of a work force that is in agreement with its missions (Situma, 2006). A research Kimani (2009) supports the argument that it is very important for the management team to recognize these warning signs at their early stages and take respective action to counteract the downfall and quickly put the business back on the road to profitability. It is the most critical and careful thinking approach of resolving the emerging problems in all the levels of the organization. Kurt Lewin’s theory of change is based on (Unfreeze-Change-Freeze) that provides a strategic approach to change. The initial stage of change involves identifying the need for change and seeing the importance of breaking the exiting status quo. The second stage involves implementation of the changes or the introduction of the new status quo while the third and final stage is the acceptance and refreezing of the new changes as the normal status quo (Graham, 2002). 2.3.4 Corporate strategies Value is a common subject of discussion in corporate quarters. Most annual reports devote several pages to enumerate their values. Tenacity integrity, transparency, customer focus, honesty frequently appears in discussions and write-ups. Most of these values are societal obligations. If corporations or individuals were to neglect them or act contrary to these tenets, then they would be subject to legal action or in many cases lose
  46. 46. 33 out on business. With such value statements we cannot offer a choice to an individual or a corporate entity (Dayal, 2013). Organizational value system is very critical in providing in depth understanding, stability and consistency of systems, which are vital for management purposes. For well performing organization values supplement performance. The importance of organizational values is steadily gaining recognition as these are norms of corporate or individual behavior expected by society and apply to every individual and organization (Rowe et al., 1999). Organizational values exists either in strong or weakly shared form. Evaluations should be contacted in an attempt to assess the extent of consensus of an organizational value, and examine the organizational structures and process to try and explain the reinforcement of value systems or lack of it (Moothy, 1998). Padaki et al. (2000) found out that all management practice is founded on organizational values. However this finding was weak since most Values operates in silence and without direct articulation thus regarded as soft and not given much attention. Values are also likely to be regarded as the soft matter, and not given serious attention. However, the intimate connections to 'hard' management practice cannot be denied. The most critical thing for given organizations performance is to understand the existing value system, appreciating its implications, restructuring and designing both existing and new values systems. PCK vision statement is all about becoming the leading global providers of postal and related services while its Mission statement focuses on delivering superior communication and financial solutions to its customers and create recognizable value to
  47. 47. 34 stakeholders. Their value statements comprise of a set of beliefs and standards of behavior that drive PCK’s agenda and contribute to their corporate culture and identity. Their value includes; integrity, Professionalism, honesty, teamwork, fairness, accountability, stewardship and transparency in all their operations (Kimani, 2009). This core values on their own promote organizational learning and innovativeness. Lazonick et al. (1996) argues that committing the limited organizational resources to innovation means foregoing some other competing opportunities for the same resources while the learning process is taking place. The organizational Learning helps in shifting the perception of a problem and identification alternative solution as well providing appropriate room for further learning. The withdrawal of some of the learners or physical resources from the learning process before it is complete may endanger the success of the entire undertaking. Teece (1996) emphasis that the scale of innovative investment thus depends not only on the size of the investment in productive resources and in the abilities and incentives of learners, but also on the duration of the investment necessary to sustain that process over the period during which learning occurs (Fisher, 1990). PCK Board of directors was appointed by the minister for Information and communication to oversee the activities of the organization. Top management is comprised of a Postmaster general (PMG) who is the chief executive officer, eight General Managers responsible for Human Resource Development, finance and Strategy, Information and Communication Technology, Mail, Courier, Financial and Agency services, Corporation Secretary, Logistics and Facilities, Research and one head of department in charge of Marketing. The corporation has a total staff compliment of four thousand two hundred and twelve (4,212).
  48. 48. 35 PCK has continued to strengthen its capacity and diversified it products and services so as to satisfy its customers’ needs. The corporation has been working with individuals, medium sized businesses, private business, government agencies and nongovernmental organizations, to enhance quality service delivery. PCK is headed by a Board of Directors appointed by his excellence the president. The Chairman of the same the board is charged with the responsibility of providing guidance. The CEO who is initial was called the ‘Postmaster General’ heads the corporation and reports to the Board. The corporation is driven by the following: Mail service, financial services, courier services, Finance and strategy, Human Resource Management and Development, Information Communication and Technology, Logistics and Facilities Management Research and Development, Marketing and Customer service, Audit and Investigation, Legal Services, Procurement. Change Management, and Corporate Communication. Rowe et al. (1994) brought out the vision as is an organizational desired future providing a clear picture of where the entire organization is headed to. He went ahead to elaborate that achieving this desired state calls for use of the current strategy as well as development new strategies that would foster radical organizational changes. The high level managers need to develop a vision that translates to where they see their organization in future for them to gain the support of their stake holders. They also looked at strategic vision as a very desirable and realistic future state of an organization. He emphasized on the simplicity, clarity vision that can easily be understood by the stakeholders of the organization. Formulation of the vision varies from one organization to another. Rowe et al. (1994) clearly indicates that some organizational limit this process
  49. 49. 36 to the high level management termed as the entrepreneurial approach while other involves all the stakeholders. Robinson (2010) viewed mission as a set scope of actions taken by an organization towards realizing the set vision. Pearce and Robinson (2010) describe the mission of an organization as the unique purpose that sets it apart from other organizations of its type and identifies the scope of its operations. Since a mission helps a firm in wading toward the future it aspires, it must be able to influence behavior throughout the organization in order to be of much impact on the firm’s action. Parsons (1993) argued that the overall impact of technology to the citizen’s on accessing government online services in relation to their attitudes towards government at large is somehow debatable. The transformationalists on their end are predicting positive impacts of new technology while the instrumentalists have noted a number of constraining influence both social and economic on the dynamics of technology itself (Margolis & et al., 2014). Information technology has interfered with the control features of the previous traditional bureaucracies in PCK keeping in mind that most of the services it used to offer were rendered obsolete by technology. Fountain (1999) realized that costs of operation can drastically go down if the technology is adopted within the federal agencies, public and private sector. Delivering of key government services and information in an online or digitalized platform is referred to as E-government. This kind of platform is more efficient and reliable compared to the traditional structures which were slow and inefficient. The internet delivery systems are non-hierarchical and readily available. This has led to
  50. 50. 37 creation of interactive platform that allows the users to send and receive information at the same time. The two-way interaction brought about by technology has greatly attributed to improve the government service at large. It has brought all the governments services at door steps of the citizens thus in the long ended up building public confidence in government (Markoff, 2000). The Internet has brought numerous changes and brought about uncountable benefits in the entire economy thus positively affecting all the system that were initially (Kamarck, 1998). Chadwick (2011) on the other hand found out that most of the government web sites across the world were non interactive and non-deliberative thus ended up concluding that e-government platform may not actually change perception of people towards their government. In Africa and specifically in Kenya, even though the government is trying so hard to invest in technology, most of its ministries websites are very dormant. The website is supposed to provide a platform for feedbacks and customer cares where customers in this case happen to be citizens. But you notice that most websites are as old as ten years ago and no update has been made ever since. The primary goal for organizations to increase competitiveness is to improve the human performance in most cases if not all (Marshall et al., 2000). Organizations most often invest millions and billions of money every year in technology and its implementation, and anticipate getting increased productivity and performance from their investments (Marshall et al., 2000). In 1990s, Bill Gates the Microsoft chairman predicted that soon business would allow people to do a full day's work in four or five hours, freeing them to spend more time on leisure pursuits or with friends and family because of the technology development. A survey was conducted in1990s and found out that the average work per week was nearly
  51. 51. 38 an hour longer than in the early 1980s. These a survey found that more than sixty eight percent of respondents felt that there is more overwhelmed worker at work today (Cohen, 2005).The managers on the other hand expect more tasks to be completed at the same amount of time by employees because of the increased technology that they have invested (Brown & Leigh, 1996). In light the technological benefits there were still a section of untapped services in the industry that was very significant to the economy of Kenya. In realization to this fact, Postal Corporation of Kenya has set up more strategies that have led them to offer more services to its clientele other than just sending and receiving letters. This has brought about the formation of numerous and reliable Huduma Centers offering most of government services online or on E-citizen platform. This has greatly been achieved through the them interlinking with so many other government organs such as Kenya revenue Authority and many other services thus increasing its growth and customer base which is significant to the economy as well (Kariuki, 2008). 2.4 Summary of the reviewed Literature Most of the findings from previous studies have indicated the need for PCK to strategically focus on service delivery for its own profitability and survival. Browne (1999) has identified four crucial organizational processes that affect the intuitive individual’s behavior in a place of work such as PCK. This process involves recognition of personal streams of experience, developing shard understanding, amongst individuals, and ensuring that action takes place. Schatzki (1996) indicated that the Organizational learning relies most on effectiveness communication that is derived from a shared past experience in which certain practices have been embraced as the accepted way of
  52. 52. 39 behaving. According to Barzelay (2011) the government should be customer driven and service oriented since the Citizens expect the same treatment they get from a supermarket replicated to all the public offices. Organizational value system or standards provides consistency, in-depth and stability to management practices and they go hand in hand with performance. The importance of organizational values especially in management has steadily gained popularity and the most important point is that these are norms of corporate or individual behavior expected by society and apply to every individual and organization (Rowe et al., 1994). The Internet has brought numerous changes and brought about uncountable benefits in the entire economy (Kamarck et al., 1998). 2.5 Knowledge Gaps The literature reviewed indicated that different researchers have undertaken several studies to explain the major factors affecting service delivery at the PCK. However there is no specific literature and major studies known to the researcher that has been done on the influence of strategic focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. This therefore indicates that the explored theoretical and empirical literature is of little significance towards addressing the role of strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. Lack of theoretical and empirical literature on focus strategies for service delivery at the PCK have developed major knowledge gaps on innovative focus, customer focus and Operational excellence focus. The other clear gap from the studies is that none of the studies sought to investigate the afterward effects or influences of strategic focus on service delivery experienced by PCK.
  53. 53. 40 This is a gap that this study heavily acknowledges and forms the basis of motivation for conducting the research. This study will draw its focus into these gaps by gathering data that will be relevant to come up with effective recommendations on the role strategic focus plays in service delivery and thus assist in filling the missing gaps with solutions to service delivery problems.
  54. 54. 41 CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY 3.1 Introduction This chapter describes the research methodology used to accomplish the research objectives. The research design that was used for this study was clearly brought out. The study outlined the target population, sample procedures, data analysis and presentation, sample size, research instruments, the piloting of research instrument that was used in the research, validity of the findings, reliability of research instruments, research site and rationale, data collection procedures and finally the ethical considerations. 3.2 ResearchDesign The research was carried out with intention of assessing the influence of strategic focus on service delivery at the PCK. The research was quantitative in nature. This study was carried out using the descriptive survey method which was an appropriate research method for this type of study. Descriptive survey placed more emphasis on a limited number of activity and their interrelations. A case study on the other hand focuses on a detailed contextual analysis of a limited number of conditions and their relationships. These were used to assist in achieving at the research objective and answering the research questions. By focusing on this single corporation, this design led to the concentration and more refined findings that were identifiable to the context at hand. The research environment was carried out in Nairobi County which was hosting the headquarter office for PCK. It is deemed reasonable to use one hundred and thirty two as target population due to the population of the case study area. This being number of employees approximated to be at the PCK at that particular time.
  55. 55. 42 3.3 Researchsite and rationale The research was conducted at the PCK headquarters in Nairobi since it hosts most of the top, middle and lower level management team and thus all the decision are done at this point. The parent population was divided into three categories on the basis of divisions. Stratified random sampling was used in the study where individuals were grouped as top level managers, middle level managers and the lower level managers. 3.4 Target Population This is basically a sample of items, individuals or objects from which crucial information was gathered from so as to assist in data analysis (Corbin, 1990). The study targeted the corporate level management, Business level management and operation levels management at the headquarters offices in Nairobi. A sample was picked to reduce time and cost of the research. Table 3.2 Target Population Designation Percent Corporate Level 15 Business Level 35 Operational Level 82 Total 132 Source: PCK Human Resource 2016 The target population consisted of members of the top, middle and lower management team or the staff who deal on a daily basis with ensuring that day to day growth of that particular unit goal.
  56. 56. 43 3.5 Sampling Procedure A population of one hundred and thirty two people was chosen to solicit information. Mugenda and Mugenda (2003) clearly indicated that any sample size that is 30% of the population targeted or more is good enough to make conclusion on the basis of the study under investigation. A Stratified random sampling was used in the study. The parent population was divided into categories on the basis of divisions. A sample of 40% was randomly picked from each stratum of the respondents. Due to the heterogeneous nature of the population, the stratified random sampling method was the most suitable for this research. 3.6 Sample size Being an important feature of any empirical study, the main goal of the sample size was to make inferences about a population from a sample. This study sought to get its sample size from the three levels of Management (Mugenda, 2008). Table 3.3 Sample Selection Category Sample size of study population) Sample Corporate level 40% 6 Business level 40% 14 Operational level 40% 33 Total 53 Source: Researcher (2015) Mugenda and Mugenda (2003) indicate that a representative sample should not be less than 30 percent of the entire population. The researcher applied 40 percent on all levels of management as it is well above the minimum requirement and provided a good representative sample. The researcher used the convenience sampling technique to settle
  57. 57. 44 on the PCK headquarters Nairobi as it is easily accessible and has staff representing all the various satellite branches thus giving a good representation of the whole organization. The sample was chosen from each of the three categories of respondents identified for research. These were the corporate, business and operational level management team. The total sample size was 53 employees who are 40% of the entire Population which is in accordance with statistically allowed figure of 30% or more for sampling. Each object in this population had an equal probability chance of being selected since the study used the stratified random sampling (Fraenkel et al., 2000). 3.7 Data Collection Procedures The research used the questionnaire which was hand delivered to all the respondents at the Postal Corporation of Kenya Headquarters. The questionnaire was structured with both open and closed ended questions to enable the respondents to provide their views and general comments based on the objectives of the study. The questionnaires was dropped in the PCK head office and picked after two weeks having allowed detailed information to be provided for analysis. 3.8 ResearchInstrument Self-administered and a uniform questionnaire comprising of open and closed ended questions was used to collect the data. These were hand delivered to the target respondents at the headquarters of Postal Corporation of Kenya. The questions were framed in line with researcher’s objectives.
  58. 58. 45 3.8.1 Piloting of ResearchInstrument The researcher tested the research instrument at one of the branches of Postal Corporation of Kenya along parklands road in Westland’s who were not be part of the main study so as to verify gaps with the tools, the average time it would take to interview a person and cost implications on the budget. The station had about 20 staff members who were involved in the pilot study sample. The researcher used the split half method to carry out the pilot study. According to Wertsch (1991), Split-Half statistical method is used to determine the reliability of a typical test and is very common (Corbin, et al., 1990) argued that the value of pilot research in any research work cannot be overestimated. 3.8.2 Validity of Findings Crocker and Algina (2006) defined data Validation as an integrated evaluation judgment of an extent to which empirical evidence and theoretical rationale support the adequacy and appropriateness of inferences and actions based on test scores and other modes of assessment. It involves the inspection of all collected data for reasonableness, completeness as well as elimination of erroneous values. The researcher ensured validity through discussion with faculty and the supervisor. 3.8.3 Reliability of Research Instrument Reliability of the research instrument was ensured by the researcher through pre-testing the tool. Cronbach coefficient alpha testing measure was used. This measure shows how closely related a set of objects are as a group. Most consider this measure as a measure of scale reliability. Cohen and Swerdelik (2005) agreed that this is the most appropriate method of testing reliability since it only requires one administration of the test. Crosby (2003) on the other hand said that it is the more appropriate when the items have choices
  59. 59. 46 while Fraenkel and Wallen (2000) Indicated that a reliability Cronbach's alpha coefficience of 0.70 and above is considered very desirable for consistency levels. 3.8.4 Data Analysis and Presentation The type of data that was sought for in this research was mainly primary data which is mainly quantitative. Data cleaning was done manually by going through the returned questionnaires. A simple coding method was used to avoid confusion to the researcher. The data was analyzed using SPSS and excel spreadsheets to be presented in a quantitative form which aided the drawing of inferences. Parameters like the mean and cross tabulation Chi-square was calculated to find out the indicators of the various factors being researched on. Correlation analysis was carried out to ascertain the degree to which the depended variables influence the independent variable. The data was presented inform of tables, graph, charts and a final summary report with recommendations and areas of further research. 3.9 Ethical considerations Once the approval of the study Project by the graduate School of African Nazarene University was issued out, a research clearance letter and permit was obtained from NACOSTI (National Commission for Science Technology and innovation). The county level permission was obtained from the Nairobi county council and local District Commissioner. The researcher also went ahead to assure the respondent of the confidentiality of the information. The questionnaire avoided sensitive issues that could cause physical, mental and emotional harm to the respondent.
  60. 60. 47 CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS AND PRESENTATION OF FINDINGS 4.1 Introduction This chapter presents the findings of the study. The discussion and interpretations of the findings of this study are presented basing on the objectives that the study sought to achieve. The study sought to achieve the following objectives: to establish the role of organizational learning on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya; to determine the influence of customer focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya; to establish the relationship between organizational standards and service delivery at Postal Corporation of Kenya and to assess the influence of technological focus on service delivery at the Postal Corporation of Kenya. All questionnaires that were given out were filled and returned registering a response of 100%. 4.2 Response Rate The researcher gave out fifty three questionnaires to the respondents. There was a hundred percent 100% response. 4.2.1 Level of Management The respondents in this study were categorized in three levels of managements as presentenced by table 4.1 below. Table 4.1: Classification of Respondents in Level of Management Designation Frequency Percent Corporate/Top Level Manger 6 11.30% Business/Middle level Management 14 26.40% Operational/lower Level Manager 33 62.30% Total 53 100
  61. 61. 48 There were 11.3% (6) respondents who indicated that they were serving in the corporate level of management, 26.4% (14) in business level, and 62.3% (33) in the operational level of management. 4.3 Demographic Considerations The table 4.2 below shows the gender distribution of the respondents at the PCK headquarters office in Nairobi. Table 4.2 Gender Distribution Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent Female 23 43.4 34.4 57.8 Male 30 56.6 42.2 100.0 Total 53 100 100 The respondents comprised of 43.4% females and 56.6% males. From this analysis there was more male than females in the three management levels. The study also sought to establish the number of years each according to tables 4.3 below Table 4.3 Year of Service for Respondents Total 53 100 Valid Percent Cumulative Percent 0-5 years 11 16.9 16.9 35.4 6-10 years 11 16.9 16.9 100.0 11-15 years 12 18.5 18.5 53.8 16-20 years 1 1.5 1.5 55.4 21 and above years 18 27.7 27.7 83.1 Total 53 100 100 The study found out that 16.9% of the respondents had worked at PCK for less than five years, another 16.9% for less than 10 years, 18.5% have worked at PCK for more than 10years but less than 15yeas while 1.5% fall under 16 to 20 years of service and finally 27.7% have worked for over 21year.

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