The SAIOM Days

It all started more than fifty (50) year ago….. The following extracted from the article O AND M AS A TOOL OF MANAGEMENT January 1970 Vol. 8 No. 1 gives us a glimpse where it all started - "In 1960 an enthusiastic and representative group of 0 & M-trained officials felt the need for some association where they could discuss matters of common interest in the 0 & M field. That, however, was not the real driving force because they were in fact imbued with a spirit of service to the people and the country they have the privilege to serve. Inspired by these thoughts, they got together and established the South African Institute of Organisation and Methods, thereby creating a central co-coordinating body (head office: Pretoria and various regional branches, also in Rhodesia) which could ensure that the techniques of organisation and work study, which in themselves are part and parcel of scientific management, are applied effectively in the interests of the economy of our country.

The institute has as its main object the promotion of the adoption and scientific development of 0 & M and related techniques. Apart from arranging lectures and training courses in 0 & M it was instrumental in arranging for the presentation with effect from January, 1966, of a National Diploma Course in 0 & M Study, at four of our largest technical colleges”.  SAIOM was also responsible for the formation of the National Productivity Institute in South Africa.

The Annual General Meeting held on 13 May 1993 was an historical event. Three motions were proposed and carried which will have a dramatic effect on the future of our Institute.

These motions were as follows:

  • That the name of the Institute be changed from the “Southern African Institute of Organization and Methods” to the "Southern African Institute of Management Services".
  • That the Council, in collaboration with the representatives of the Branches and the Local Government Division, investigate the possible broadening of the focus of the Institute and submit proposals in this regard to a Special General Meeting or the next Annual General Meeting, for consideration.
  • That the Council, in collaboration with the representatives of the Branches and the Local Government Division, investigate the changes in the existing structures and functioning of the Institute in order to improve its own efficiency and submit proposals in this regard to a Special General Meeting or the next Annual General Meeting, for consideration.

Organizations are operating in dynamic and complex environments. Many techniques and managerial practices of the past have become obsolete. This has been brought about by fast changing technology and the availability of large volumes of data. We have entered the so-called information age.  In order to survive organisations are forced to apply managerial practices and principles that will enable them to adapt quickly to changes in their environment.

The Organisation and Methods discipline in South Africa has a proud record in assisting organizations in optimising the utilisation of their resources. SAIOM has played a major role in laying down the standard of knowledge and proficiency necessary to pursue our profession. However, some of our techniques and approaches have once again become obsolete. To continue to serve organisations it has become necessary to revisit the role of the organization and methods discipline and to strategically realign our Institute to meet the challenges of the future. To address this problem, in 1992 the Council appointed a Strategic Planning Committee. Three areas of immediate concern are identified. These are the name of our Institute, present focus and the existing structure and working methods.

It was felt that the reference to “Organisation and Methods” as the name of our Institute did not describe our discipline as it is presently practiced. Many new techniques and practices have been added to the organisation and methods discipline over the years. The name "Management Services" was felt to be more representative. It was suggested that the name of our Institute should be changed to the "Southern African Institute of Management Services".

The second area of concern was the present focus of our Institute which was not totally directed at the needs and aspirations of the new style executive and manager. The new style manager understands that people, their environment and the system and procedures that they work with, are just as much part of the product as the design, material and services which the customer sees. Members at the Annual General Meeting were in agreement that this matter should be researched further and gave a mandate to the Council to pursue this matter.

The existing structures and working methods of our Institute are not in line with modern managerial practices and principles and therefore do not allow our Institute to adapt quickly to changes in the environment. It was therefore proposed that these structures be investigated to ensure more autonomy to branches and divisions and enhance participation by members in the activities of our Institute.


On 10 August 1994 SAIOM officially became SAIMAS. At the same time our profession came under fire in government departments and work study units had to change their name from work study to organisational development, they were told not to interfere in office automation and business process mapping were left to IT, they were allowed to create structures and told not apply the techniques that ensured that structures met the needs of the organisation.

A new trend “structure follows strategy” has left government departments in a perpetual mode of restructuring (following changed strategies) and creating unstable organisations.  However, the decision taken by Cabinet during the January 2006 Cabinet Lekgotla, that the Public Service Regulations of 2001 must be amended with regard to this matter. The amended Public Service Regulations of 2001 came into effect in July 2006. The Public Service Regulations were amended to state, “that an executing authority can only approve the organisational structure after consultation with the Minister for the Public Service and Administration”.  The implication of this Regulation is, that government departments can no longer change their structures or increase/decrease their establishments without consulting with the Minister of Public Service and Administration.  This regulation forces departments to compile full functional reports, which have to be submitted to the MPSA for approval.  The DPSA developed a restructuring guide as a means to assist organisations with their restructuring exercises. The guide is very comprehensive and designed to ensure effective organisational restructuring and implementation. The guide is not easy to follow if you are not a skilled work study or organisational development practitioner.  Even though the guide has been designed to ensure effective organisational restructuring and implementation, you must still be skilled in the practice of work study or organisational development.

This statement is strengthened by the report released by the Public Service Commission in March 2010 namely “Assessment of the State of Human Resource Management in the Public Service” (, the whole document can downloaded).


Since its inception SAIOM had 7 Presidents and SAIMAS 10 Executive Presidents (five different persons);


South Africa Institute of Organisation and Methods

Mr MF v/d Merwe February 1960 till April 1963
Mr JJH Bester May 1963 till April 1976
Mr GBS van Zyl Aug 1976 till Sept 1980
Mr JG Gous Oct 1981 till Aug 1986
Mr JS Steyn Sept 1986 till March 1988
Mr AP Nieuwoudt April 1988 till Aug 1989
Prof PS Botes Sept 1989 till April 1994











Southern Africa Institute of Management Services

Mr B Hoffman May 1994 till April 1996
Mr EM Morrison May 1996 till April 1998
Mrs MJ Loubser May 1998 till May 2000
Mr EM Morrison June 2000 till May 2002
Mrs Ria Loubser June 2002 till May 2004
Mr P Munsamy June 2004 till May 2005
Mrs MJ Loubser June 2005 till May 2007
Mr J Marais June 2008 till May 2010
Mr P Munsamy June 2010 till May 2013
Mrs MJ Loubser June 2013 till May 2015
Mr B Gouws June 2015 till May 2017
Mrs MJ Loubser June 2017 -


















(1963 – 1991)

The Hon. Mr T Naude 1960 till Oct 1963
The Hon. Senator Mr J de Klerk        Oct 1963 till March 1971
The Hon. Mr TJA Gerdener May 1971 till July 1972
The Hon. Mr CP Mulder  Aug 1972 till April 1977
The Hon. Mr AL Schlebusch May1978 till Dec 1980
The Hon. Mr AP Treurnicht Jan1981 till Nov 1982
The Hon. Mr FW de Klerk Dec 1982 till April 1985
The Hon. Mr E v/d Merwe Louw May 1985 till May 1987
The Hon. Mr A L Schlebusch June 1987 till March 1989
The Hon. Dr D de Villiers April 1989 till March 1991
















Mr PJ Badenhorst April 1993 till Dec 1994
Dr JH Visser January 1996 till June 1999
Mr EL Julies June 2001 till July 2004
Mr M Manyatshe Aug 2004 till June 2005









(Awarded for the first time in 1998 and six times since)

Nat Dep Comm Louis Eloff  - SAPS

Nat Comm George Fivaz – SAPS