The advancement of democracy in South Africa has resulted in the need to strengthen the ability of the public service to render first class service delivery to its citizens. The challenge of satisfying the demand for basic services in the current dispensation has intensified. It is anticipated that once this initial challenge has been overcome, the tide will turn and secondary services such as transfer of ownership of forestry plantations will become the new challenge. The quest for efficient and efffective service delivery is paramount, regardless of whether services delivered are basic or not. Performance management taken at both individual and organisational level, is a necessity for service delivery. The research findings (focusing on service delivery within the Chief Directorate: Forestry), demonstrated that the presence of performance management and other supporting systems does not guarantee automatic improvement in service delivery. The distinction is how effective an organisation can apply performance management in conjunction with a complete set of functional policies, systems and instruments to improve its impact on service delivery.