1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Public sector productivity is important to the performance of a country. Thornhill (2006) identifies three main reasons why public sector productivity is crucial. First, the public sector is a major employer of labour. Second, the public sector is a major provider of services particularly business and social services. Third, the public sector is a consumer of tax resources. To him, changes in the public sector productivity may have significant implications on the economy. Public sector productivity involves efficiency and outputs as well as effectiveness and outcome (Pritchard 2003, Tolentino 2004). In Kalliola’s formulation (2003), at least two points illustrate the issues that make the whole question of public sector productivity a highly contentious one in many countries. One is whether or not citizens are being provided with what they need. The other question is on how the services concerned (public servants) make better use of the resources at their disposal.
While factors such as aging population and increasing healthcare and pension costs add to budgeting pressure, citizens are demanding that governments should be made accountable for what they achieve with the taxpayers’ money (Curristine et.al: 2007).
The issue of productivity and performance enhancement in the public sector is nothing new, scholars and practitioners have worked for decades to identify what makes governance productive and effective. Over the years while there have been a variety of studies concerning government worker motivation and productivity, few, if any, studies have focused specifically on state workers’ perceptions about what factors affects their productivity . With more than five (5) million workers employed by state governments, any improvement in state workplace productivity could have significant financial and service impact for society. Workforce productivity remains a primary element for success in most organizations, including those in government. Knowing what factors influence productivity is a prerequisite to improving performance and at the same time contain expenditure growth (Haenisch 2012).
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In fact, the use of the concept of productivity has been intermingled with the concept of performance (Jackson, 1999; Stainer and Stainer, 2000). Researchers have identified each concept in different ways. Productivity of the workers’ in the public sector is a function of many factors ranging from top management support, committed personnel at all levels, performance measurement system, employee training, reward structures, community involvement and feedback to correction of budget-management decisions. It is thus important to build up capacities for productivity improvement (Holzer and Seok-Hwan, 2004)
Public sector workers have been viewed to be less productive because about 39% of them are not fully engaged in their jobs, about 54% of them are not satisfied with their jobs, while about 39% of them are somewhat or very likely to make a concerted effort to find a new job with another employer in the coming year. (Bond and Galinsky 2006). While some scholars have argued that the solutions to the challenges faced in the Nigerian public service is by decentralization of political power and the responsibilities of sub-national government, others argue that appropriate human resource management practices and increasing the scale of operations will improve efficiency among government workers.
On the basis of this therefore, this study aims at investigating issues pertaining to maximum productivity in the public sector will be achieved.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
There is significant evidence that productivity advancement in government organizations has not kept pace with the increase found in the private sector (Haenisch: 2012), Nigeria today is regarded as one of the most corrupt nations in the world and to this effect, there have been several civil service reforms which each reform has adjusted or changed several things in the previous reform. The last civil service reform was the Obasanjo Civil Service Renewal Program, 1999-2001. One of the crucial challenges faced by the Obasanjo administration on assuming office on 29th May, 1999 was the issue of how to address the crisis in the public sector (Olaopa, 2008).
Aspects of the crisis identified were inefficiency in the delivery of social services (Olaopa, 2008). Years after these reforms, there seem to be no improvement in the productiveness in the Nigerian public service. It is however crucial to note that these negative characteristics are still very much rampant in the present Nigerian public sector. These lapses have led to weakening of public institutions, distrust of government by citizens, collapse of infrastructures and a development of a sense of despair amongst the Nigerian peoples
Moreover, there is significant evidence that productivity advancement in government organizations has not kept pace with the increase found in the private sector and a number of factors still limit the success of most attempts to measure or improve productivity (Killefer and Mendonca, 2006). It is imperative to find out those factors that still limit productivity of Nigeria’s public sector.
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
- What is the relationship between workers’ productivity and public service effectiveness?
- How effective are the facilities put in place to enhance productivity in the public sector?
- How effective are the policies put in place to enhance productivity in the public sector?
- What are the factors responsible for low productivity in the Nigerian public service?
- How can productivity be enhanced in the Nigerian public service?
1.4 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
At the end of this research, the following will be achieved;
- To examine the relationship between productivity and public service effectiveness
- To examine the effectiveness of the facilities put in place to enhance workers’ productivity in the public sector.
- To examine the effectiveness of the policies put in place to enhance workers’ productivity in the public sector.
- To examine the factors responsible for low productivity in the Nigerian public sector
- To know how productivity can be enhanced in the Nigerian public service.
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H1: There is no relationship between workers’ productivity and public service effectiveness
H2: The facilities put in place to enhance productivity in the public sector are not effective.
H3: The policies put in place to enhance productivity in the public sector are not effective.
H4: There are no factors responsible for low productivity in the Nigerian public service.
H5: Productivity cannot be enhanced in the Nigerian public service.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This research work is significant in that the reason why the Nigerian public service was established will be examined, if the public sector is achieving reasons why it was established, how effective has it been, to what extent it had achieved its purpose and to what extent it is relevant.
Also, there have been relatively few researches effectiveness and productivity in the Nigerian Civil Service. What this research attempts to do is to focus on how productive the public sector is and bring it to the enlightenment of the general public
The significance of this study is to add to general knowledge on the relationship between workers’ productivity and public service effectiveness in Nigeria.
This research is also significant in that it can serve as a source of secondary research for other scholars who will be researching on aspects relating to public service effectiveness and workers’ productivity.
1.7 DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The scope of this study is to examine the level of productivity of workers in the public sector. This helps to identify the extent to which workers in the public sector carry out their duties and how well they value their positions. The research is limited to the Oyo State Ministry of Information in the fourth republic specifically between 1999 and 2013. And the limitation of this study is seen in that Public sector productivity cannot be quantified.
1.8 OUTLINE OF THE STUDY
Chapter One: This chapter is the introduction to the Study of Worker’s Productivity and Public Service Effectiveness. It highlights the research questions and objectives.
Chapter Two: This chapter is the Literature Review and Theoretical Framework. It carries the definition of terms; the meaning and definition of Productivity, the meaning and definition of Public Service and also the meaning and definition of effectiveness. It also includes reviewing works done by other scholars and theoretical framework.
Chapter Three: This chapter emphasizes on the historical development of the Nigerian public sector and its various reforms.
Chapter Four: This chapter is the Presentation and Analysis of data. It also tests the various hypothesis of the research and discusses the research findings.
Chapter Five: This chapter is the summary, recommendations and conclusion of the work. It summarizes the entire findings of this research.
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