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Background to the Study
Human resource or manpower has been identified as wealth of nation as well as a cardinal element of all aspect of management. As a wealth of a nation, it is argued that the economic development of a country depends largely on the quantity and quality of its manpower resource, the state of technology and the efficient deployment of resources in both the production consumption processes (Fapohunda, 1987: 100). In other words, manpower is important to both national development and organizational management. It is the manpower that must develop and manage the national resources into finished products and services. To Harbison (1972:3);
Manpower constitutes the ultimate basic for the wealth of nations… human beings are the active agents who accumulate, exploit natural resources, build social, economic and political organizations and carry forward national development. Clearly, a country, which is unable to develop the skill and knowledge of its people and utilize them effectively in its national economy will be unable to develop anything else.
In the same vein, Nwachukwu (1988:128) stresses the importance of qualified manpower in the social, political, and economic development of any nation. In his words;
No nation is known to have attained sustained high level of economic growth and development without an ample supply of qualified manpower. Of all the factors that unlock the force of economic growth and development, a country’s human resource is (the most vital, for without it, all other
factors have to wait).
Manpower is inevitably the required catalyst for the production of goods and services, this key to rapid socio-economic development and efficient service delivery (Eberinwa, 2007:254). In other words, it constitutes or refers to all the expenses, skills, judgment, abilities, knowledge-contacts risks taking and wisdom of individuals and associates, which are galvanized towards achieving organizational goals both public and private (Eberinwa, 2007:254).
Globally, efforts on socio-economic development today have recognized that for the world to meet up to its development challenges, manpower development must be properly addressed in the national development goals of virtually all nations. Prior to this, National Development Plans in Nigeria have always emphasized the importance of manpower in all ramifications. However, the bitter experience of the manpower planning and development in Nigeria is that despite all acknowledgement of its importance, available statistics on the state of the
Nigerian’s manpower planning and development show that Nigeria has one of the lowest Human Development Index (HDI) in the world. For instance, Nigerian’s human development index in 2003 as contained in the 2005 Human Development
Report (HDR) was 0.453 (Onah, 2006:xi). In addition, the Nigeria’s poverty rate which presently stands at about (60%-70%) is another indicator of low manpower planning and development. Hence, over 70% of the Nigerian graduates are unemployed and underemployed (Yesufu, 1996). In this sense, it is undoubtedly whether there is the problem of manpower utilization in Nigeria considering the indicators above.
It is equally important to stress that poor manpower planning and development has constrained the growth as well as the development of Nigeria. This situation creates as constraints, which sap labour morale, erode productivity, and quality service delivery in both public and private sectors in Nigeria. It is worthy of mention that manpower planning and development managers have always neglected training of employees as a means of ensuring the availability of
quality manpower supply at any shortfall.
The Nigerian banking sector/industry has been dominated with the manpower challenges of finding the people with the right types of skill at the right time and in the right places. In other words, this study is an attempt to take a critical assessment of manpower planning and development in the Nigerian banking sector using Oceanic Bank Plc as a case study.