Since 1994, South Africa’s first democratic election, the public service and the state in general has been the object of numerous interventions to “transform” it. Transformation has referred to four principle initiatives. It has included measures to (1) integrate the diverse governments and administrations of the apartheid period into a single public service. Much attention has been paid to (2) changing the direction of public spending to focus on, for the first time, the majority Black population. There have also been important efforts to (3) change the demographic character of the public service, to make it more representative of the composition of South Africa’s population. This paper focuses on a fourth element of ‘transformation’, one that has included measures to ‘de-bureacucratise’ the public service in South Africa.