The Effectiveness Of ASUP WhatsApp Group In Creating And Disseminating Information Among Academic Staff

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The Effectiveness Of ASUP WhatsApp Group In Creating And Disseminating Information Among Academic Staff


Abstract


The study focused on the effectiveness of ASUP WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff using members of Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) south-east branch as case study. The study is was specifically focused on assessing the effectiveness of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff; analyzing the challenges and concerns associated with using WhatsApp group for official communication among academic staff and identify strategies to mitigate potential risks and optimize the use of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 100 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are members of Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) south-east branch.


Table of Content


  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the Study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions
  • 4.4 Test of Hypotheses

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

In today’s fast-paced and interconnected world, effective communication is paramount for the success of any organization. The landscape of organizational communication has witnessed a significant transformation with the advent of digital technologies, offering various platforms for information dissemination. One such platform that has gained widespread popularity is WhatsApp – a mobile messaging application that enables real-time text, voice, and multimedia communication among users. As businesses seek to enhance their internal communication strategies, WhatsApp has emerged as a promising tool for information dissemination within organizational contexts.
The rapid growth of WhatsApp’s user base has been remarkable, making it one of the most popular messaging apps worldwide. As of September 2021, WhatsApp boasted over two billion active users globally (Statista, 2021). Its widespread adoption among individuals has naturally extended into professional settings, with organizations exploring the potential benefits of integrating WhatsApp into their communication channels.

The use of WhatsApp as a means of information dissemination within organizations has become particularly attractive due to its numerous features and functionalities. Firstly, WhatsApp facilitates real-time, instantaneous communication, allowing employees to exchange messages and updates promptly, regardless of their physical location. This ability to connect with colleagues and teams in real-time can significantly enhance the efficiency of decision-making processes and overall operational agility.

Secondly, WhatsApp’s group chat functionality allows for the creation of dedicated channels for specific teams, projects, or departments. This capability fosters collaboration and ensures that important information is disseminated simultaneously to all relevant stakeholders. The ease of sharing multimedia content, such as images, videos, and documents, further enriches communication, making it more engaging and effective.

Furthermore, the accessibility of WhatsApp on smartphones makes it a highly convenient tool for information dissemination. With an ever-increasing number of employees relying on mobile devices for work-related tasks, WhatsApp offers a seamless platform to access critical information on-the-go, without being tethered to a desktop computer or relying on email notifications.

However, as organizations embrace WhatsApp as an additional communication channel, it is essential to consider the potential challenges and concerns associated with its use. Issues related to data privacy and security have been raised, given WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption, which ensures message privacy but may also pose compliance risks for certain industries (Business Insider India, 2021). Moreover, the informality of the platform might not always align with the formal communication requirements of certain organizational processes or hierarchical structures.

To harness the full potential of WhatsApp as an effective tool for information dissemination, organizations must strike a balance between leveraging its advantages and addressing its limitations. Research in this area can offer valuable insights into best practices, strategies, and guidelines for optimizing the use of WhatsApp in organizational communication.

In light of the increasing relevance of WhatsApp as a communication tool within organizations, this study aims to investigate its impact on information dissemination efficiency and effectiveness. By exploring the benefits, challenges, and potential solutions, this research endeavors to provide a comprehensive understanding of how WhatsApp can be leveraged to enhance communication practices and foster better collaboration within organizational settings.
Overall, the integration of WhatsApp as a means of information dissemination represents a compelling frontier in organizational communication, with the potential to revolutionize the way businesses connect, collaborate, and thrive in the digital age. This study endeavors to shed light on this burgeoning phenomenon, offering valuable insights for organizations seeking to leverage WhatsApp effectively in their communication strategies.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

In recent years, the integration of WhatsApp as a means of information dissemination within organizations has gained significant traction. However, as this platform becomes increasingly prevalent in professional settings, several challenges and concerns have emerged, warranting in-depth investigation.

WhatsApp’s popularity and user-friendly interface have led organizations to adopt it as a communication channel. However, it remains essential to ascertain the effectiveness of WhatsApp in disseminating critical information within the organization. Does the real-time nature of WhatsApp enhance communication efficiency and decision-making processes (Akkas, 2021)? Are important messages promptly received and acknowledged, or do certain messages get lost amidst the constant flow of information in group chats (Al-Zaidi, 2020)? Understanding the impact of WhatsApp on information dissemination effectiveness is crucial for organizations seeking to optimize their communication strategies.

WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption ensures message privacy, but this feature may also pose concerns about data security and compliance, particularly in industries with stringent confidentiality requirements (Business Insider India, 2021). How do organizations balance the need for secure communication with potential risks related to data breaches and unauthorized access? Identifying the measures organizations implement to address data security concerns on WhatsApp is vital for safeguarding sensitive information.

WhatsApp initially gained popularity as a personal messaging app, and many employees use the platform for both personal and professional communication. This blending of personal and professional interactions may lead to challenges in maintaining clear boundaries between the two realms (Seyal et al., 2020). How do organizations manage this mix of personal and professional communication to ensure that essential organizational messages do not get overlooked or misunderstood?

WhatsApp’s ease of use and accessibility make it convenient for users to share information, leading to the potential issue of information overload (Chen et al., 2020). The constant flow of messages may overwhelm employees and result in critical messages being overlooked. How do organizations tackle the challenge of message prioritization and ensure that relevant information reaches the intended recipients promptly.

While WhatsApp’s informality facilitates seamless communication among employees, it may not always align with certain organizational processes that require formality and adherence to hierarchical structures (Masiero et al., 2020). How do organizations maintain the appropriate level of formality and respect within WhatsApp communication channels while fostering a collaborative environment

Addressing these problems will provide organizations with valuable insights into the effective and responsible use of WhatsApp as a tool for information dissemination, enabling them to develop strategies that optimize communication efficiency while addressing security and privacy concerns.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The main objective of this study is to examine the effectiveness of ASUP Whatsapp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff. Specifically, the study aims to;

  1. Assess the effectiveness of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff.
  2. Analyze the challenges and concerns associated with using WhatsApp group for official communication among academic staff.
  3. Identify strategies to mitigate potential risks and optimize the use of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff.

1.4 Research Question

The study will aim to provide answers to the following research questions;

  1. What is the level of effectiveness of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff?
  2. What are the challenges and concerns associated with using WhatsApp group for official communication among academic staff?
  3. What are the strategies to mitigate potential risks and optimize the use of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff?

1.5 Hypothesis of the Study

The study formulated and tested the following hypothesis in order to achieve the research objectives:

  • Ho: The level of effectiveness of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff is Low
  • Hi: The level of effectiveness of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff is High

1.6 Significance of the Study

The significance of the study on the effectiveness of ASUP Whatsapp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff lies in its potential to provide valuable insights and practical implications for improving communication practices and overall organizational efficiency. The study’s importance can be summarized as follows:
Enhancing Communication Efficiency: Understanding the effectiveness of WhatsApp as a communication tool within the organizational context can help optimize information dissemination processes. By identifying the strengths and weaknesses of WhatsApp as a channel for sharing information, organizations can fine-tune their communication strategies to achieve more efficient and timely exchanges of vital information.

Streamlining Collaboration and Coordination: The study can shed light on how WhatsApp’s group chat functionality can facilitate better collaboration and coordination among teams, departments, and employees. By uncovering effective practices for utilizing WhatsApp to enhance teamwork and streamline project management, the study can lead to improved organizational productivity and outcomes.

Cost-Effectiveness and Accessibility: WhatsApp’s utilization as an information dissemination tool can potentially lead to cost savings compared to traditional communication methods, such as phone calls or SMS. Additionally, its widespread use on mobile devices makes it accessible to a large portion of employees, promoting inclusivity and ease of communication.

Fostering a Collaborative Organizational Culture: By analyzing how WhatsApp influences communication patterns and organizational culture, the study can provide insights into promoting a collaborative and communicative work environment. An open and inclusive communication platform like WhatsApp can encourage transparency, information sharing, and employee engagement.

Guiding Policy and Guidelines: The study’s findings can inform the development of internal policies and guidelines for the responsible and effective use of WhatsApp in the organization. Establishing clear guidelines can help manage potential risks associated with informal communication channels while maximizing the benefits of using WhatsApp.

Potential for Future Research: The study can contribute to the existing body of knowledge on communication technologies within organizations. It may pave the way for further research on the integration of other digital platforms, their impact on communication dynamics, and their influence on organizational behavior and performance.

Adapting to Technological Advancements: As technology continually evolves, understanding the role and implications of WhatsApp as an information dissemination tool can help organizations adapt to future advancements in digital communication platforms. This adaptability is essential for remaining competitive and innovative in a rapidly changing business landscape.

The study’s findings can guide organizations in leveraging WhatsApp’s potential while addressing its challenges, ultimately fostering a dynamic, communicative, and productive work environment.


1.7 Scope of the Study

The study will analyze the effectiveness of ASUP whatsapp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff. It study will be carried among the members of Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) south-east branch. It will be narrowed down to ASUP members in Federal Polytechnic, Unwana, Ebonyi state. Hence, the respondents for this study will be obtained from and among ASUP members in Federal Polytechnic, Unwana, Ebonyi state.


1.8 Limitation of the Study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. However, the researcher were able to manage these just to ensure the success of this study.


1.9 Definition of Terms

ASUP:

The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), Nigeria is a registered Trade Union (CAP 437 of 1990). The Union is an affiliate of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC). The Union also interfaces with other Unions in the Education sector particularly in the tertiary sub-sector within prescribed limits in its constitution. The Union serves to protect and promote members’ interests as well as that of the Technical Education sub-sector and the Education sector in general.

Motivation:

This the process through which individual are charged to increase their action or performance either by internal or external factors.

Dissemination:

Is one-way, and involves sending information through publications, social media, presentations, a project website, and so on. Communication is two-way, and involves channels such as workshops, round-tables, and events.


1.10 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows.

  • Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  • Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  • Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  • Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  • Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.

Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on the effectiveness of ASUP whatsapp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff using members of Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) south-east branch as case study. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.


5.2 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was on the effectiveness of ASUP whatsapp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff using members of Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) south-east branch as case study.

The study is was specifically focused on assessing the effectiveness of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff; analyzing the challenges and concerns associated with using WhatsApp group for official communication among academic staff and identify strategies to mitigate potential risks and optimize the use of WhatsApp group in creating and disseminating information among academic staff.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 100 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are members of Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) south-east branch.


5.3 Conclusions

With respect to the analysis and the findings of this study, the following conclusions emerged;

The use of WhatsApp as a means of information dissemination in organizations offers numerous advantages, including instantaneous communication, group collaboration, and cost-effectiveness. However, organizations must carefully consider and address the challenges related to data security, information overload, and maintaining a clear distinction between personal and professional communication. By understanding both the benefits and limitations, organizations can leverage WhatsApp effectively to improve communication efficiency and foster a collaborative and engaging work environment.


5.4 Recommendation

Based on the findings the researcher recommends that;

Establish Clear Guidelines and Policies:

Develop clear guidelines and policies for the use of WhatsApp as an official communication channel. These guidelines should outline the purpose of using WhatsApp for information dissemination, the types of information that can be shared, data security measures, and guidelines for maintaining professionalism and appropriate behavior within the platform.

Data Security and Privacy Measures:

Prioritize data security and privacy by educating employees about the importance of safeguarding sensitive information on WhatsApp. Implement measures to ensure compliance with data protection regulations, such as encryption and two-factor authentication. Regularly review and update security protocols to address emerging threats.

Maintain a Distinction Between Personal and Professional Communication:

Encourage employees to use separate WhatsApp accounts for personal and professional communication to maintain clear boundaries. Emphasize the importance of keeping personal conversations separate from work-related discussions to minimize the risk of misunderstandings and maintain professionalism.


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