AVAILABILITY OF OFFICE EQUIPMENT AND ITS EFFECT ON OFFICE WORKERS PRODUCTIVITY IN KADUNA POLYTECHNIC


AVAILABILITY OF OFFICE EQUIPMENT AND ITS EFFECT ON OFFICE WORKERS PRODUCTIVITY IN KADUNA POLYTECHNIC

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CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the study
An office equipment have gone beyond manual typewriter, ink, pot, local storage facilities etc. into more complicated and effective modern office equipment. Some organization has embraced and purchases some of this equipment while others has not. In light of the above, the researcher decided to investigate the availability of this equipment and its effect on workers productivity.

In the early, age office activities which include paperwork was done manually with the use of machine such as manual typewriter, large duplicating machine, collating machine etc. These later developed into new modern office equipment due to the disadvantage which includes noise, bulkiness, lack of speed, waste of energy, time and resources.

Today, office equipment is required in every field of specialization, this is because they facilitate clerical work and preparation of office documents. The use of fax machines, WAP phones, teleprinters, internet and e-mail facilities etc. is now the order of the day. These have now made the work of the office professional more efficient than what it used to be and given rise to what is now known as the modern office. Other equipment include punchers, staplers, electric fan, air conditioners, enhanced furniture and fitting to create a more comfortable and convenient work environment for office activities to be carried out smoothly.

Mills and Ford (2008), noted that office equipment enable workers to work with minimum fatigue. It does not only increase efficiency but boost production process which is the main objective of the organization. Office work is made easier as less effort is put into achieve a greater result. An employee may not have to go from one place to another but can easily sit at his table and carry out his regular office activities. However, today’s office cannot be discussed without relating to technology.

According to Alli and Akinbi (1998), technology is an alteration in the life of an equipment, character, knowledge and method of doing things. The impact of these equipment resulted into acquisition of needed office professionals to effectively operate these facilities in order to be relevant in their labour market.
Pickard (2006), also states that employees who feel good are likely to be more productive. It is easy to instinctively understand that a few standard equipment in the office will make it a nicer place to be for employees feel better as a result. However, when the finance manager wants to know why thousand of money is wasted every year on caring for a few office equipment, it is difficult to effectively demonstrate the bottom line return on such an investment.

Many organizations are being driven by the value systems of office equipment rather than its contribution to the organizations productivity. In recent times, employees learn to operate new office equipment mainly through attending courses, trainings, workshop and seminars during which manufacturers will introduce their products and demonstrate by giving illustrations about their equipment to various operators.

Pickard further stresses that the office is the center of social interaction and the design provide better meeting rooms, open spaces and telecommunication facilities demands serious attention. The stacking plans for the building are equally important, an efficient office layout will take careful operational advances to optimize the use of assets, facilities and function in use.

Boating (1992) state that today’s modern office equipment depend largely on the use of office equipments to maximize and increase organizational productivity. Office equipment help in making office work easier, efficient and time saving and ensures accuracy.

Watson (1999), emphasizes that technology changes has tremendously made an impact in various organizations especially with regards to the office. He points out that office automation product looks nothing like it did just 10 years ago. Outfitted with some of the most modern business systems and equipment, the office today is a contemporary and strict place for business. The sound of noisy and distracting equipment or unsightly machines is now a thing of the past. The quality of output cannot be compared to what it looks like years ago.

Roger (2008), points out that environment now resembles any peaceful environment that you can easily relax in and not feel overwhelmed with huge and bulky machines. Some of the hardware cannot be seen easily unless you look really hard.

However, office professionals need to be trained to be acquainted with the use, procurement and maintenance of existing office equipment as well as know its relevance and benefits to the organization as a whole. This is to enable organization face the challenges associated with it. This is because despite the fact that the technology has changed and transformed the office to a better one. There are still some problems and aspects that cannot be overlooked as a result of those technological changes. The use of some of this equipment has adverse effects on the operators and the organization in general; which can also have effect on its production level.

The equipment has more from the traditional age to the modern age and therefore, there is need for the modern equipment to be available to the users. It is in this regard that the study is embarked on which is titled “An Assessment of the availability of the equipment and its effect on organization productivity.

1.2 Statement of the Problem
The impact of the office equipment is of paramount importance to any organization. However, there are some foreseeable problems along with the numerous advantages of its existence. Many organizations do not put this into consideration especially when it comes to organization productivity.

Office equipment increases the rate of intra and inter office communication, however, the cost of installation and keeping the equipment in a working state is exorbitant. He pointed out that the initial cost outlay and maintenance of the equipment will increase their expenses. As a result of this some organization do not purchase or make use of them without checking the cost effect.

Office professionals are not trained on the proper use of equipment or the various maintenance procedure that is required of equipment. He reveals that since not all products are manufacture or serviced by a single company, there should be a list of who to call incase of emergencies. As a result of this the slightest malfunction problem gets out of hand. There is no safety rule or training measures given to employee on how to go about using equipment without it affecting their health.

Many organization do not provide adequate necessary equipment for their employees even there is need for it, In some organizations these equipment, through they exist strict measures, rules and protocols need to be followed as declared by the management before employees can have full access to them.

There is also the general problem which is the fact that the benefit of using office equipment is not known to many organizations and as a result acquiring them is not their priority. The aspects of cost of purchasing it is core viewed as disadvantages and prefer to employ people to work instead of machine. This will not enable the employees to perform their duties efficiently and will slow down the production process.

In the light of the foregoing, the researcher will answer the following questions:
1. There are limited numbers of equipment that are available and those that are available are obsolete.
2. Does organization achieved maximum production without the use of equipment?
3. Inadequate funding for procurement and maintenance of office equipment?
4. How adequate are the furniture/fitting within the company?

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