A lot has been written by many authors about new office technologies and how they have immensely affected secretarial performance. This study was therefore conducted to find out the secretary and the effect of new office technologies on record keeping management in institute of management and technology, in Enugu. As a result of this, research question were formulated as follows: -
a) Do the working environment of practicing secretaries have each of the new office equipment?
b) Are the available new office equipment being put into effective use?
c) What factors influence the availability or lack of these new office equipment?
d) How are the job performance of secretaries affected by these new office machines?
It was concluded that the acquisition of new office technologies could make secretaries more effective in the performance of their duties. Based on these findings, the following recommendations were made.
a. A reasonable purchase of these machines should be make for the practicing secretaries in Enugu.
b. This establishment should be subsidized by the management to enable them purchase more of the machines.
c. Stand-by generating plant should be purchased by these establishments that have power supply problems.
TABLE OF CONTENT
Technological advancement has ushered in drastic changes in record keeping through the introduction of new office technologies and new methods of communication. Man is an embodiment of change, his life circle is marked with different stages of metamorphosis which when it finally actualizes, adulthood is made secretarial profession, an inseparable bed fellow of management no exception. The secretary has been defined as one entrusted with secrets or confidence of a superior, or employed to handle correspondence and manage, routine and detailed work for a superior. Also Orisananya (1991) put it that, a secretary is a skilled and specialize type of employee in an establishment or part of it who is charged with some aspects of organizational functions in the unit including dealing with people’s correspondence and other business matters, with the above definitions, it can be deduced that the secretary is an important officer in any establishment and that the contribution and effectiveness of a secretary enhances the efficiency of an organization. This is the more reason that the secretary needs a proper training to be able to carry out her functions.
The training of an efficient and effective secretary should cover not any skills in shorthand and type-writing but also in other managerial skills. These skills should be backed up by appropriate demeanour and etiquette at all times. Evans (1980) noted that the secretary’s role will be supporting, but with the added requirement of technological knowledge will encompass data administration and information management, allowing the secretary to analysis complex situations and submit practical recommendation.
With the introduction of these new machines, people are trained to acquire new skill for operating them. It is therefore, noted that proper record keeping makes it easier for information to be retrieved for use with a lot of ease. This, of course, had tended to reduce the work lead of a secretary.
Even though a lot of charges have begun in technology, the question now is how to improve the secretary with the new office technologies for record keeping? The advantage of such purpose may be derive from the use of these new office technologies need not to be over-emphasized. Therefore, their presence and effective utilization is essential.
REALITY OF NEW OFFICE TECHNOLOGIES
Reality according to Morris (1991) is the quality or state of being actual or truth that exist objectively. The study will now look into what different authors say about some modern office technologies concerning their existence and facilities. The word processors, fax machines, paper shredding, machines, electric type writer, teleprinters, dictating machines, collating machines and mostly computer, including many others can be referred to as new office technologies.
Most of equipment and machines accomplish task within a very short time which would have taken several basic processes at the same time usually with some automatic control. There are also machines which can write, copy, computer, enter more than one form in one cycle of operation. This new office equipment helps in the production of more accurate and standard document.
The researcher has made it clear that instead of displacing the secretaries of their job. It will improve their efficiency at work. Furthermore, office skill journal (2010) asserts that technology is changing the work of the secretary, but not eliminating it. New technology in the form of word processor, telex, computers and fax eliminate drudgery. These machines have mechanized the secretarial skills and stabilized office procedures and studies hence, it is not worthy that the procedure never intended to displace secretaries from their jobs but rather improve their job efficiency and effectiveness.
The use of these machines have tremendously simplified the work of secretaries, but the need for training and retraining is essential to get full understanding of the operations of the system involved.
An electronic computer is a machine or electronic correlates and otherwise processes and prints information from coded data in accordance with a pre-determined program. It is not the complex machines as often thought to be but electronic which processes data to produce a result. It is a tool secretaries can use to assist in the complicated and time-consuming task of generating information. In other words, it is an information processing machine.
Stanley Thornes (1998) pointed out that, a computer is not just to gather, store and process data but also serve as a communication center for distributing numerical data and information throughout an organization. Their speed, level of accuracy and flexibility of processing information are unmatched by any of the other methods. These manipulate data in the form of electronic pulses at the rate of million of pulses per second. It comprises on important components such as input, output, storage, control and arithmetic units.
The input unit enable the system user to transmit information and receive output from the computer. The input devices include the keyboard, card readers, paper tape readers, the light pen used for interactive purposes and voice syntheses.
This produces the end result of the calculations on readable version. Such information can also be produced in the form of data which can be fed into the computer. Output units include video display unit (VDU), printers, card punch, paper tape, punch machines and loud speakers used to out sounds.
This is the computer’s memory. The data fed into the input are converted into electrical pulses and retained in the memory. The stored information kept for further instruction of the future use.
This is the control panel that allows the other parts of the computer to be automatically brought to use as directed by the programmed data.
This performs the actual arithmetic calculation at very high speed.
ELECTRONIC TYPE WRITERS
Most offices are now equipped with the electronic typewriters because of the advantages they have over the manual machines. Such advantages are: - volume of document, copies produced, key depression, storage carriage return, tabulation. According toSpleman (1990) the electronic typewriter have emerged as the newest equipment in the every changing world. He states the electronic typewriter, enhances productivity by eliminating key strokes, carriage return, line spacing, tabulation etc. Furthermore, Denyer (1986) assets that the electronic typewriter has a memory and although it foes not have may functions as word processor, it is more labour saving than other typewriters. The users are power actuated and only a slight depression of these keys is necessary. The users are power actuated and only a slight depression of these keys is necessary. The users also exerts less physical effort and type for much longer period than he/she could on the manual typewriter. Hence, this could be used in processing information.