THE IMPACT OF STAFF WELFARE ON WORKERS’ PRODUCTIVITY
1.1 BACKGROUND STUDY
In an era of globalization, market economy, hypercompetition, and rapid environmental change, an organization’s success rests on the performance of its people. The performance of employees is vital for a company to maintain its efforts toward the achievement of predetermined objectives. According to the Humana Resource Philosophy, employees are an essential company resource that must be handled with care to maximize return on investment and meet corporate goals. To protect the well-being of their employees, organizations must provide a variety of benefits. In this day and age, it is virtually hard to maintain a business without providing basic benefits for employee wellbeing. Organizations should recognize that a healthy and stress-free workforce is a significant asset and consequently provide welfare services and programs.
Welfare is a corporate attitude or commitment manifested in the explicit caring for employees at all levels, underpinning their job and the environment in which they do their duties (Cowling and Mailer, 1992). Specifically, Coventry and Barker (1988) assert that staff welfare includes providing social club and sports facilities as appropriate, supervising staff and works’ canteens, running sick clubs and savings schemes; dealing with superannuation, pension funds and leave grants, making loans on hardship cases; arranging legal aid and giving advice on personal problems; making long service grants; assisting staff transferred to another area and providing fringe benefits (such as payment during sickness, luncheon vouchers and other indirect advantages).
Productivity, on the other hand, refers to the ratio of goods and services produced in a certain time period to the resources employed (Singh, 2009). Cohen et al. (1995) claim that it is more than a narrow economic metric, as it also gauges how successfully the group accomplishes its needed responsibilities to please its internal and external clients. Productivity implies the efficacy and efficiency of the workforce.
Evidently, there are scholarly works on staff welfare and productivity (Owusu-Acheaw, 2010; Osterman, 2010; Singh, 2009; Cowling and Mailer, 1992; Coventry and Barker, 1988), but they have primarily focused on industrial settings to the exclusion of government ministries and parastatals.
The majority of Local Government Councils in Nigeria are underperforming. Suspicion stems from the observed poor road networks in the majority of Nigeria’s 774 Local Government Areas; the inadequate state of health facilities (both in physical structure and equipment); the deteriorated state of school buildings (with walls noticeably cracked and roofs destroyed) and furniture (tables, desks, and chairs); the absence of government-owned recreational facilities; and little or no encouragement for increased agriculture productivity via timely provision of agricultural inputs. The author claims that the substandard performance is a result of incompetent management (local government officials) and low worker morale due to a lack of attention to staff welfare services. Using the local government of Ibadan North as a case study, this research examines the relationship between employee welfare and worker productivity.
A delay in paying employees’ paychecks could result in apathy, which could affect their work effectiveness. It could result in embarrassing situations, such as inability to pay rent and subsequent dispute with landlord/caretaker; inability to pay for the education of his ward(s); poor dietary intake that could result in malnutrition; lack of access to adequate medical care; and inability to meet maturing social and financial obligations. The preceding could eventually lead to dissatisfaction between the affected employee and his/her employer, resulting in a negative work attitude (low morale) and low productivity.
Other benefits that the employee is entitled to, such as leave allowance, transportation, housing, overtime allowance, travel allowances, Christmas bonus, etc., though not legally binding on the Organization because they are not covered by the Trade Dispute Acts of Nigeria, increase the psychological satisfaction of the employees. The denial of such benefits to employees, particularly when it is customary and there is a precedent for the firm to provide them, could be detrimental. Cowling and Mailer (1992) suggest that the framework for welfare includes the employees’ right to health and safety and the right to be managed fairly. These rights are closely tied to the right to welfare.
Employee welfare is a dynamic notion since new welfare measures are implemented alongside social developments. Modern employee welfare encompasses all company efforts aimed at providing employees with facilities and services in addition to their earnings and salaries. Because they have a direct relationship with the productivity of the workforce, welfare facilities are crucial to the health of a company. Employee welfare measures boost the organization’s productivity, encourage motivation, and foster positive organizational relations, hence preserving industrial peace and retaining personnel for a longer period of time. These issues make it very clear that a study on the effect of staff welfare on worker productivity is required.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
Determine whether a welfare program exists for workers in the Ibadan North local government region.
2. Determine if the absence of access to health facilities has an impact on the productivity of workers in the Ibadan North local government area.
Determine whether Ibadan North local government employees receive their allowances on time.
4. Determine if there is a correlation between poor staff wellbeing and a decline in worker productivity in the Ibadan North local government region.
5. Determine if salary payment delays effect worker productivity in the Ibadan North local government region.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
Relevant research questions associated with this study include:
Exists a benefit program for workers in the local government area of Ibadan North?
Does the lack of access to health care facilities impact the productivity of workers in the Ibadan North local government area?
Do employees of the Ibadan North local government receive their salaries on time?
Is there a correlation between the decline in productivity of workers in the Ibadan North local government area and the lack of staff welfare?
Does the delay in payment of wages influence the output of employees in the Ibadan North local government area?
1.5 Significance of the Research
The significance of the study’s findings lies in the fact that they will provide information regarding employee welfare programs and employee performance inside the business, hence ensuring high organization productivity and the achievement of organizational goals. Other state businesses will be able to follow the research’s recommendations to increase employee engagement and, as a result, derive the greatest possible advantage from their employees’ performance.
This study will be utilized by government agencies and other organizations because it provides useful information for the formulation of policy and a regulatory framework on human resource management and, in particular, welfare programs for improved organizational performance and employee well-being.
This study will contribute to the existing body of knowledge by examining previously unexplored or unconsidered parts of the literature and incorporating these aspects into the current investigation. This work will therefore serve as the foundation for future research in the topic.
1.6 RADIUS OF THE STUDY
1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
In conducting this study, the researchers were hampered by a shortage of time, respondent reluctance, and restricted resources, among others.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Welfare: a statutory procedure or social endeavor aimed at promoting the physical and material well-being of those in need.
Productivity is the efficiency of productive effort, particularly in industry, as measured by the output per unit of input.
THE IMPACT OF STAFF WELFARE ON WORKERS’ PRODUCTIVITY