AN EVALUATION OF HUMAN CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT AS A STRATEGY FOR INCREASING PRODUCTIVITY IN PUBLIC ORGANIZATIONS
(A case study of Nigeria Prisons, Kaduna Command)
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Human capital represents knowledge, skills and abilities that make it possible for people to do their jobs. The world today is very different from the one which experienced the two world wars. During the second half of the twentieth century, considerable advancement in science and technology along with the establishment of broadly-based government and strengthening of institutions, has led to significant socio-economic progress and improvement in lives of a large number of people in many countries, (Asian Development Bank 1999).
In today’s intensely competitive and global market place, maintaining a competitive advantage by becoming a low cost leader puts a heavy premium on having a highly committed and competent workforce. In a growing number of organizations human capital is now viewed as a source of competitive advantage.
There is greater recognition that distinctive competencies are obtained through highly developed employee skills distinctive organizational cultures, management processes and systems (Siddharil Chaturvedi 2004). In the prison service, a close study of colonial and past colonial laws seems to emphasize the custodial functions of the prison while silent on correctional functions of the modern prison. In view of the increasing emphasis on correctional educational in most countries in Europe and North American, it becomes clear that there is the need to humanize the Nigerian prisons system through provision of education which will not doubt help ex-offenders develop positive social skills (Evawoma-E Enuku,U. 1991) the rate at which the in-mates population is growing can not be compared with that of the staff.
For instance, the average daily prison population in 1976 was nearly 26,000, a 25 percent increase from 1975 ten years later Nigeria prison population was about 54,000 by 1989 the prison population had increased to 58,000 and in recent years prison population has been on the increase reaching well over 70,000 in 1997 (Evawoma Enuku U. 1998).
The over growing couple with in-human conditions in the prisons have led to the prisons being variously described as “human cages” (Kayode, 1987) human zoos (Neuswatch, 1985; tell, 1998). It therefore becomes very pertinent that there should be proper personnel development in the prison service to enable them discharge their duties effectively. Also, the fact that prisons are built for correction and re-integration of ex-convicts the need for effective human capital development in the staffing of prison personnel cannot be over emphasized.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Human capital development cannot be over emphasized, if organizational goals must be achieved. Human capital development is mandatory in collaboration with other resources in achieving organizational goals and objectives. Human capital development as a means of increasing productivity cannot be achieved unless it is adequately planned and executed by the management. This is done by ensuring that the staff development policy is strictly adhered to.
In making provision for development programmes, there is bound to be problem especially in the presence of limited resources and increasing need for updating workers at the work place to be able to meet up with the day to day challenges that come up due to technological advancement and loss of staff through retirement, resignation, dismissal, death etc. These factors usually make it necessary to employ new hands who require development programmes if not there will be poor performance, crippled work, reduced morale and the staff cannot be abreast of challenges within and outside the organization. Based on the problem indentified the researcher is faced with the following questions:
1. Are there enough provisions for development of staff?
2. Do personnel consider development to be important?
3. Is lack of development programmes responsible to reduced efficiency?
4. Are there enough resources available for staff development programmes?
5. Are there yard sticks used in measuring efficiency?
The above questions are of concern to the researcher
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The objective of this study is to critically examine Human capital development as a means of increasing productivity. The specific objectives are:
1. To identify the need for human capital development programmes in prison services.
2. To examine the problems of developing employees for productivity
3. To look into whether the development of qualitative programmes increases productivity and smoothen the provision of prison services.
4. To determine human factors as an integral part of organizational resources for organizational survival.
1.4 STATEMENT OF HYPOTHESIS
For the purpose of this study, the following hypothesis are formulated:
Ho: Human Capital development does not have significant effect on employees’ productivity.
H1: Human Capital development have significant effect on employees productivity.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The importance of this project cannot be over emphasized because the prison as stated under the statement of the general problem is an institution for reformation of the character of in-mates. It was also observed that the number of these in-mates is growing by day. Going by these therefore, there is
1. The need for human capital development in the service to be able to face the emerging challenges.
2. The findings of this research will highlight the strengths and weakness in the area of human capital development that will be very useful in making recommendations that will enhance improved performance of the staff.
3. The findings of this research will give rise to a reference material for students and other researchers with interest in human capital development or the prison service in Nigeria.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
In this research, the researcher will focus on evaluation of Human capital development as a means of increasing productivity in public organizations for national development using Nigeria Prisons Service as a case study. It may not be possible to cover the entire organization; but basically, it is normal to state the nature of the project work and to guide anybody who might wish to use the work to study an organization for future use. For that purpose, we are to look at human capital development as a means of increasing productivity in public organizations.
1.7 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
The limitations of this research can be viewed from the fact that the it became difficult to granted interviews to the researcher by members of staff of the Nigeria Prisons Service, Kaduna Command. They were so busy that appointments were booked, changed and new booking obtained before the conduct of the interviews.
Also some considered the information required to be official and as such wanted to obtain permission from their superior before participation.
However, efforts were made to reduce the limitations to the lowest minimum by proper education of the interviews that the research is an academic exercise from which findings could help in improving prison service.
1.8 HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF COMMAND PRISON KADUNA
Kaduna prison camp was established in 1962 when the prison was established. No missionary ever worked there. It was sullied for by the priest working in Narayi. It started as a chapel where the in-mates worshiped but later parishioners around the vicinity came to attend mass there, thus arose the need for a bigger church. It is the first and only open prison in Nigeria. Imprisonment is not new as there have always been a means of isolating the deviants so as to prevent them from causing further trouble in the society. For example, the Ogboni House was used as prison by the Yorubas and the existence of prison among the fulanis who used their buildings to isolate offender as a form of punishment were recorded. The first prison in Nigeria was established in 1872 located on Broad street Lagos prison began all over the world not as ultimate institutions for punishment and correction but initially means for the custody of persons caught up in the criminal justice systems. Awaiting trails or the execution of their punishment such as whipping, banishment and death (Rolhman cited in Alemika, 1987). However, in the mid-nineteenth century, the function of the prison as short term custodia facility changed in Europe and North America to institution for ensuring punishment, penitence and correction of the offender.
Nigeria had a dual prison system for more than half century until the consolidation of the federal and local prison in 1965. This consolidation followed findings from Mr. Garrat’s report in 1960 of the situation in the prisons which were crowded dirty and under staffed. The take over of the prisons by the federal government was the greatest land mark in the history of prison administration in Nigeria. This led to improved condition of service and recruitment of more educated prison staff. The Nigeria Prison Service, a department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs was headquartered in Lagos and headed by a director responsible for administering nearly 400 facilities including regular prisons special penal institutions, and lock up.
All of these facilities since 1975 came under federal control. Each state had its own prison headquarters under the supervision of Assistant Director of Prison, and the prisons themselves, depending on the type, size and in-mate population, were variously under chief superintendents, or assistant superintendent. The average daily prison population in1976 was increased by 25 percent Kaduna housed more than 4000 inmates. The most common offenses were theft, assault, traffic violations and unlawful possession, which together accounted for 53 percent of prison admissions between 1982 and 1984. Thieves represented the largest single category of offenders, accounting for between 37 and 46 percent of prison admissions between 1982 and 1984 admission to prison in Kaduna Exceeded 10,000 in 1983. This figure did not reflect the geographical distribution of crimes. The prisoners constitute people between the ages of twenty six and fifty consistently constituted the largest category of prisoners, ranging between 53 and 78 percent between 1980 and 1984. In 1984 Christians and Muslims accounted for 45 and 37 percent of prison admissions respectively and women for almost 4 percent prisoners admitted were connected, whereas the rest were on remand or awaiting trail. Among those convicted about three fourth served terms of less than two years while 59 percent were first-time offenders and 41 percent were recidivist. Foreigners constituted an unknown proportion, 1989, for example about 200 aliens from other West African states were held in Kaduna Federal Prisons for illegal emerald mining.
Although the government had announced a prison construction program, little progress was evident and conditions were projected to worsen by the year 2000 Kaduna Prison population rose drastically. This has lead the Government resorting to periodic amnesty to reduce the inmate population usually on the occasion of regime anniversary or a national holiday.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
In this research work, the following terms have their respective meaning as follows:
1. Manpower: Manpower refers to the total supply of people available or currently working on a specific job or task.
2. Planning: Planning is a guide against future uncertainties through forecast and setting of targets and verifiable objective that are quantifiable. Planning helps an organization to get where it want to be in future
3. Development: Development is the ability of an organization to increase its capacity as well as employees abilities and capabilities in an endeavor to react to existing and anticipated pressures and changes.
4. Mentoring: Mentoring has been identified an important influence in professional development in both the public and private sector in other to increase employee performance retention, commitment to the organization and knowledge sharing.
5. Productivity: The amount of output per unit of input (Labour, equipment and capital)
6. Performance: The accomplishment of a given task measured against preset known standards of accuracy, completeness.
7. Compensation: Compensation is a psychological mechanism by which feelings of inferiority, frustration or failure in one field are counter balanced by achievement in another.
8. Utilization: Utilization refers to the final achievement of an organizational objective with regards to manpower, which had to be measured in some ways like testing the effectiveness of staff and their efficiency towards designed goals.
9. Training: This is the process of having adequately learn how to do his job effectively and to prepare himself for promotion.