The Impact Of Manpower Planning On Employee Productivity

Project and Seminar Material for Industrial Relations and Personnel Management

The Impact Of Manpower Planning On Employee Productivity


This study is titled the impact of manpower planning on employee productivity. The aim is to examine roles planning by planning of manpower on employee productivity. This study was carried out at Oxford University ‘Press, Ibadan. Total number of 100 questionnaires was administered on survey population and simple percentage was used to analyses the gathered information.

The researcher concluded from his finding that: (i) Organization must be. Conscious about staffing level,’ (ii) that organization should consider how long a particular job would exist (iii) That organization must invest in developing and maintaining the skills of its entire workforce, not only a few people at the top and that the nature of the reward system must be examined.

Chapter One

1.1 Introduction

Manpower planning may be defined as the strategy for acquisition, utilization, improvement and preservation of an enterprise’s human resources in order to achieve an organization’s goals and objectives.

Once a company has developed a long range strategy known as “Corporate Planning”, it becomes possible to estimate the number of people of all types and categories that may be required over the following years. At the time that these estimates are made, some companies take the opportunity to review their staffing criteria as well as the mere members required in each category. Thus, it may desirable to evaluate the performance of men with different qualifications who have been doing the same job over a period of time. Any conclusion arrived at would be taken into consideration when preparing a long-term Manpower plan.

Also, Manpower planning is functionally, indicating how many employees ought to be selected, trained, promoted, retired, dismissed and so on over the following years and hence, an estimate of the personnel facilities that will be required can be made. The factors that are usually taken into consideration in making up Manpower plan includes:

  1. The changing nature of business.
  2. The rate of retirement and other causes of staff lose.
  3. Changes in social employment conditions.
  4. Changes in education.
  5. Changes in job condition
  6. Changes in company’s organization.
  7. Promotion pattern.

Personnel or labour is considered an essential factor in the production of goods and services, for its need to blamed (with) other factors of production or inputs appropriately for optimal productivity.

Labour, under the capitalist system is a means of workers existence, provided the worker is prepared to sell his “labour power” to the capitalist, otherwise he belongs to the unemployment market.

1.2 Statement Of The Problem

Labour is the most crucial of all the factors production, of its operationally defective, the organization sustains a vicious cycle of ineffective and inefficient management procedure with resultant macro effect on the level of productivity. In his words, A.K Ubeku 1975 noted:

The Manpower requirement of any organization has to be planned for just as we budget Economic purposes. In a dynamic situation like the one in which we are now find ourselves in this Country, no Organization can grow effectively unless the functions of Manpower planning are carried out effectively. Some organizations without well-established personnel department fall into the error of looking for staff as when necessary. This is bad management. In every aspect of running a business, forward looking should be the rule, and this is even more important when we talk about adequate Manpower and the right type of Manpower in a country like Nigeria where Managerial and technical skills are few.

The derivation from standard manpower planning system with resultant effect on productivity led by a study carried out by Kalby (1980) on “Nigeria Worker”. It emerged as an established fat that “The Nigerian worker is capable of producing as much as his counterparts in Europe or Asia but for some limiting factors which are functions of management inadequacies”. Also, in the National development plan, the problem of manpower gap has been repeatedly predicted. In the light of the above -identified problems and the relevance of efficient manpower planning to productivity, this study wants to examine the extent to which effective manpower planning can eliminate the problem of manpower gap as well as the attainment of the goals and objectives of the company.

1.3 Purpose Of The Study

  1. The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of man power planning on employee productivity.
  2. To examine the human cycles, which are four generic human resources functions. There are recruitment/selection, performance/Appraisal, Rewards and Development as necessary steps towards filing the manpower gap which is cankerworm eating deep into the fabrics of productivity. While conducting the study into the above aspects of manpower planning at University Press PIc, Ibadan, the researcher has the following objectives in focus:
  3. Determine how the organization attains and maintains at the minimum cost, the equality and quantity of manpower requirement to satisfy the manpower needs of the company.
  4. Determine how the company is able to anticipate the problems arising from potential over or under supply of manpower needs from the labour market.
  5. Examine the corporate policies on vertical and horizontal mobility of personnel towards the enhancement of the corporate goals and objectives.

It is hoped that the study will generate further research into this important area of human resources and also to contribute to a general understanding of labour in the industry.

1.4 Scope Of The Study

This research work on University Press PIc., Ibadan, and a publisher in Nigeria is to examine the management tools with a view to assessing the level of manpower gap. The study population includes the management, senior, intermediate and junior members of staff. The respondents include the Executive Director, Departmental Managers or Controllers, Intermediate and Junior members of staff of various units within the company.

1.5 Methods And Sources Of Data Collection

It is important to mention the sources of data collection and method of collection for this project. The choice is predicted on pragmatic consideration especially in view of the constraints posed by limited time and inadequacy of other resources necessary to conduct research of this nature. The title of this research precluded that the project was primarily designed to be a case study of not just a company.

But mainly, a fundamental phenomenon out of the whole gamut of human resources/personnel functions at any corporate person. Therefore, adequate efforts have been made to highlight the research problem/objectives which is “Manpower Gap” – evidence of defective human resources functions at University Press Pic. Three basic data collection techniques namely: participant observation, structured interview/questionnaire and document analysis are utilized.

1.6 Data Collection

Scope of the study: University Press PIc has it’s headquarter in Ibadan. It has area offices or zonal operational offices in Zaria/Kano, Jos, Owerri, Lagos and Benin with average of 17 members of staff in each zone. The head office is comprising of Administrations/Human Resources, Finance, Publishing, Distribution and Marketing Departments with average of 19 senior personnel and an average of 23.4 junior personnel per department.

The research was conducted in the head office, Ibadan in the Administration Human Resources Department. Due to constraints imposed by time and cost, the research is restricted to the head office only. However, this was considered suitable for the fact that 212 or 69.5% of the total work force of 305 (as at march 2001) are in Ibadan.

Visits were made to all the departments including the company’s guesthouse. Interpersonal relationship was created which aided the collection of data from the chosen member of personnel.

1.7 Methods

Participant Observational Method

Although observation methods may be used in laboratory or field research, this work carried out under naturalistic settings is considered better carried on participant observational method.

Participant observational method is used in this study because of naturalistic consideration of the project. Karl Weick (1968) defined observational method as “the selection, provocation, recording and encoding of that set of behaviours and settings concerning organisms ‘in situ’ which is consistent with emplurial aims”.

Weick was careful to explain each term in his definition. By selection, Weick meant to emphasize that specific observer’s edit or focus their research observations in both intentional and unintentional ways. This selection can affect what is observed, what is recorded and what conclusions are drawn from the data.

In introducing provocation into the definition of observational methods, recognized the important relationship between experimental intervention and observational methods. Traditionally, a bystander has conceived observational methods as an unobtrusive and passive recoding. Like Weick, (1968) he argued that passivity is not inherent in observational methodology. The observer should be able to modify the research setting without destroying its naturalness. For example, a worker of different sex can be introduced into a maintenance crew or children may be moved from a quiet play area to a noisy one. Thus observational research can and should be experimental as well as correlational in nature. In including recording and encoding in his definition, Weick, (1968) emphasized that much of observational research consists of recording events through the use of field notes, category systems or other means. Encoding is the process of simplifying these records through some data reduction method such as counting frequency of different behaviours or activities.

Including “that set of behaviours and settings concerning organisms” in the definition is meant to communicate the fact that most observational research uses a number of different measures of behavior obtained in a variety of settings from both animal and human subjects. Weick (1969) admitted that the phrase “In situ” was the most difficult to define. It is meant to refer to those situations in which the participants spend most of their time or which are familiar to them. Williams (1969) faced the same difficulty in attempting to define naturalistic research. He concluded that the word naturalistic describes the research or method rather than phenomenon under investigation. Thus, it is important to specify the investigator’s activities rather than the subject matter studied that is, one can study behaviours at a cocktail party or in a doctor’s waiting room by observing interaction or by interviewing the participants. The former would be a naturalistic method but the latter would not. In addition, the introduction of experimental manipulations would not necessarily make the method “less natural”.

Finally, by empirical aims, Weick, (1968) emphasized the variety of functions observational methods can serve. They can be used also for description, hypothesis or theory generation or hypothesis or theory testing.

1.8 Justification

The justification for the choice of participant or observational methods in conducting the research could be categorized into three classes as shown below:

  1. F or Description
  2. The Subject Mater
  3. Inadequacies of other methods.

1.9 For Description

One of the major reasons for using an observational method is that it can tell us a great deal about behavioral patterns. This purely descriptive aspect of behavior has been neglected by most social sciences Barker (1968); (Williams and Raush 1969). In contrast, the physical sciences have descriptive handbooks of phenomenon they study. Chemistry has descriptive data concerning the properties of chemicals, biology devotes considerable resources to providing descriptions of fauna and flora, and of course astronomy is almost entirely based upon observation and description. Yet, very little descriptive material exist in the social sciences.

Descriptive materials not only provide information concerning what types of behaviours are found under what circumstances but also aids in the selection of problems and hypothesis without sufficient descriptive materials, erroneous selection and inference can easily be made. Barker’s (1968) conclusion was that researchers could often be led to investigate a phenomenon that may not exist or may be of little importance outside the laboratory. Thus, the use of descriptive records of behavior, as it occurs in situ, could possibly help avid these types of problems.

1.10 The Subject Matter

Often, observation may be the only feasible method by which to gather data. Individual may be unwilling to cooperate with the researchers: even with cooperative interviewers if the researcher does not know the subject’s jargon or language, interviews as an alternative system will be difficult to conduct. Observation of the individuals’ behavior would usually not be impeded by the difficulties. In similar fashion, the social scientist may be investigated in the laboratory.

Research about the efficiency of human resources administrators would be difficult to stage in the laboratory. Even if it were possible, ethical problems created by placing intense stress upon subjects would not permit such experiments. Instead, observation of people’s behavior could be studied at the office of human resources officers. While being present when such an event occurs is indeed difficult, social scientists have been successful in this type of research. The researcher on participant observational method of research has the additional advantage of recording on going behaviours as it occurs

1.11 Inadequacies Of Other Methods

Criticism of many of the other research methodologies centres in the concept of internal validity. Banana and Hunch (1972) and Cook and Diamond (1976) presented evidence that indicates that filed research provides more generalizable results than do other methodologies. They noted that laboratory research suffers from problems of demand. Characteristics, Campbell (1969) not found in many well-designed observational studies.

Laboratory situation may be thought of as unique social settings involving interactions between persons called subject and other persons called experiments. Critics see this setting as one that does not lead to generalizable results. Oren (1962) was among the first to note subjects participating in laboratory studies appeared to be motivated to figure out the purpose of the research and to “help” the experimenter by confirming the hypothesis. Oren himself hypothesized that the subjects used the cues provided by the experimental procedure to determine the purpose of study. Subsequent research (Rosenberg, 1969); Sigall, Aronson, and Van Hoose, (1970) indicated that subjects in a laboratory experiment tend to behave in ways which will make them look good.

Clearly subjects in laboratory studies, just as those had been interviewed, are aware that their behaviours are under scrutiny. One way to reduce the manifestation of such demand characteristics is to conduct the study in the field. In many occasions subjects observed in the field are not aware of their roles as “subjects”. Yet in many field observation studies the subject are cognizant of the fact that their behaviour is brief studied. The latter type of study is subject to the same difficulties of interpretation as the other method. It is for this reason that unobstructive or disguised observational studies in the field are advantageous.

A second major problem associated with non-observational methods lies in the difficulty in making predictions about real world behaviour. A good example of this problem is in the use of attitude surveys, which are probably the most frequently used social science method. Attitude surveys rally almost entirely on verbal self-reports which appear to be poor predictors of behaviour in situations. Abelson’s (1972): Liska (1975): Sedrest, (1969) and Wicker (1969). It would be worry to leave this work with the impression that it is impossible to predict behaviour from attitudes. Recent advances in this field Fishbein and Ajzen, (1975) have suggested that the expectation that attitudes should directly predict behaviour was overly simplistic.

1.12 Sampling Methods

As the scope of the research was restricted to Ibadan Head Office only, the population of the study is selected by non-probability accidental sampling method on survey population of 50% of the total work force. The senior members of staff study population is about two – fifth (2/5) hence 20% of the senior staff and 30% of the junior staff making up 37 and 69 semi and junior staff study population respectively. The nature of the research restricted the sample population to the company’s employees who are Directors, Senior Staff or Junior Staff. The members of management are inclusive because comparative analysis of their response in questionnaire with other employees would shed light on the perception of management to the problem of “manpower gap”. However, new employers whose appointments were not yet confirmed, other categories of temporary employees such as Industrial attaches and Youth Corps members were excluded from the sample population.

Secondary sources of data used are:

  1. Questionnaire; A set of objective questions and one free comment question was administered to the University Press PIc, Personnel. This was the major source of data that are directly relevant to the study’s objective.
  2. Structured interview; Direct interviews of some management personnel including the Managing Director was done. This proved an efficient way of eliciting information from the directors and principal officers.
  3. The use of company’s records, internal memos published papers and magazines.

1.13 Design And Administration Of Questionnaire

Questionnaire is one of the sources used for data collection in this research work. Since the survey method was adopted, the design of the questionnaire was categorized on respondent personal data and the normative model of job satisfaction which is one of the major areas this study seeks to investigate as leading question to the problem of manpower gap: Mixture of dichotomous and multi­ choice questions were used. This was to allow the access to detailed and accurate data. Control questions were injected into the questionnaire in order to check the respondent’s consistency in answering the questions. The questionnaire comprised of 38 questions with an accompanying letter.

The questionnaire is structured

  1. Section A for personal data, academic qualification and recruitment exercise contained in 21 questions.
  2. Section B comprised 17 questions based on knowledge of the company’s management style, job satisfaction and productivity.
  3. Section C is free comment

Non probability sampling method whereby the researcher simply reached out and took the cases that were at hand continued the processed until the sample read – the designated group of population per department. The researcher administered the questionnaire on

20% senior members of staff and 30% junior categories of the population size. Table below shed more light on the choice of correspondents.

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