Nandipha Mfecane, Chux Gervase Iwu & Faeda Mohsam

Quality of administrative services in a South African higher education institution. Stakeholder perceptions

Article information:
Volume VI 2022, No 1, Pages: 83-108
Nandipha Mfecane, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa, e-mail:
Chux Gervase Iwu, University of the Western Cape, South Africa, e-mail:
Faeda Mohsam, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa, e-mail:

Abstract: Student administration in a higher education institution encompasses admissions and registration, accommodation, health services, assessments, and several aspects of a student’s life from the first contact with the institution until graduation. We set out to determine how students felt about these services at a South African university. The need to understand how students perceive these services is becoming increasingly important, especially in higher education, because it impacts not only student recruitment but the overall image of the university. Findings from this study can lead to much needed improvement of service quality. Data was collected from students using an open-ended questionnaire while interviews and focus groups were used for administrative staff. We realised a mix of feedback in terms of how students and administrative staff felt about the quality of service at the university. In part, the findings suggest the need to sufficiently cater for staff and students for them to experience enriched job experiences and better teaching and learning services from the university respectively. This study not only contributes to the literature on administrative competency of higher education staff, but it also offers a new way of looking at stakeholders to understand the various skills, i.e., functional skills, essential skills, and emerging skills, required for optimal effectiveness of administrative professionals in the new world of work.

Keywords: customer service, customer satisfaction, service quality, higher education, administrative staff, students.

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