THE SECRETARY AND THE EFFECTS OF NEW OFFICE TECHNOLOGIES ON RECORD KEEPING MANAGEMENT (IN SOME SELECTED ESTABLISHMENTS IN ENUGU STATE).
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 some selected establishments in Enugu.
As a result of this, research question were formulated as follows:
(a) Do the working environments 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?
The total population for the study was 70 while the sample for the study consisted 60 practising secretaries randomly selected from four establishments in Enugu, 60 secretaries returned their completed questionnaires which was used as an instrument for data collection. In analyzing the data, simple percentage were used. Findings show that:
(a) These new office machines have been acquired for these establishments and the practicing secretaries.
(b) Lack of maintenance had hindered secretaries from making effective use of these machines.
(c) The major reason for the acquisition of these machines is to enhance production.
(d) Some of the factors militating against the purchase of these machines were lack of funds and trained secretaries.
(e) These machines enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of secretaries.
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 made for the practicing secretaries in Enugu.
(b) These establishments should be subsidized by the managements to enable them purchase more of these machines.
(c) Stand-by generating plant should be purchased by these establishments that have power supply problems.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY:
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 charge, his life circle is marked with different stags 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 confidences of a superior, or employed to handle correspondence and manage routine and detailed work for a superior. Also Orisananya (1981) put it that, a secretary is a skilled and specializes 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 contributions and effectiveness of a secretary enhances the efficiency of an organization. This is the more reasons 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 only skills in shorthand and typewriting 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 requirements of technological knowledge will encompass data administration and information management, allowing the secretary to analyse complex situations and submit practical recommendations.
With the introduction of these new machines, people are trained to acquire new skills 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 load of a secretary.
Even though a lot of charges have begun in technology, the question now is have some establishments in Enugu State acquired these new office technologies for record keeping? The advantages such establishments may derive from the use of these new office technologies need not to be over-emphasised. Therefore, their presence and effective utilization is essential.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM:
The technological changes that are taking place in different disciplines are also being witnessed in some offices today. New technologies or machines have been developed to make secretaries more efficient or improve working conditions. But certain questions need to be raised, have these new office machines been acquire for office duties in Enugu? What are the factors that influence the availability or non-availability of these new office machines in every working environment or office? In what ways have these new office machines, where available, affected the productivity and efficiency of such organization?
However, the answers to these questions are readily available, and seeking answers to them constituted the major problem of this study.