THE IMPORTANCE OF COMMUNICATION IN SECRETARIAL ADMINISTRATION
Communication is the heart of all social intercourse. Whenever man has come to establish regular relations with one another, the nature of the systems of communication created them; the forms these have taken and the measure of effectiveness they have attained have largely determined the chances of bringing communities closer together or making them one. It is the aim of this research to find out how important communication is to secretarial administration and the problems associated with it. A number of past related literature were examined as it relates to communication and its importance in the administration of a secretariat. The questionnaire was designed, validated and administered on the respondents. Data gathered thereof were analyzed using simple percentage analysis. By and large, it was discovered among others that communication helps in the dissemination of the goals of the organisation especially to a secretary, it is also used for the organising of human material resources. It was however, recommended intreallia that communication outfits should rehabilitate their network and promote dialoged by making more use of non technical language in their communication. To this end, the researchers, considering that the interest of new issues will continue to grow, realises that the importance of the new order we seek is not only a goal but a stage in a journey. It is continuing quest for more within all organisations. This research represents what the researchers believes they have learnt. And this above all, is what they wishes to communicate.
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Communication services started in 1886 when the British colonial power in Nigeria established a wireless contact between Lagos and London under the CABLE AND WIRELESS COMPANY. This was followed by the establishment of telephone services in government offices in Lagos. By 1928, the first service trunk had extended to the hinterland reaching Ilorin, Jebba and Calabar. Further, the service extended to the principal town of the country reaching Kano by 1952.
Telecommunication infrastructure was purposely developed to support the colonial administrative set up and as such, services were developed in two parallel schemes. The internet services were provided by the governments posts and telecommunications (P &T) Department while the external services were carried out by the CABLE AND WIRELESS COMPANY. This parallel scheme persisted up to 1984 even though, after independence in 1960, government took over the CABLE Company known as NIGERIA EXTERNAL TELECOMMUNICATION (NET) a limited liability company. When NET was established in 1963, it was jointly owned by government and the CABLE AND WIRELESS on equal basis. The second phase of taken over came in 1972 when the government acquired 100% of NET shares. Over the four development plans expenditure, the set objectives were quite ambitious but actual implementations over these period was less impressive. They were:
i. At the end of first plan in 1968, the country had installed 22,000 main telephone lines.
ii. At the second planned period from 1970 to 1975, the network stood at 52,000 main telephone lines. The second planned period also ushered in the use of satellite for International Gateway in Lagos with standard A – EARTH Station at Lanlate in Oyo State.
iii. The third planned period from 1975 to 1980 saw the network grow to 188,000 main telephone lines, 5,000 telex lines and the extension of the Euro-West Africa submarine cable via Abidgjan to Lagos.
iv. The fourth phase from 1981 to 1985 brought in a second international Gateway at Kujama, Kaduna state in 1983. The total installed capacity as at the end of 1984 was 250,000 main telephone lines.
With effect from January 1985, government decided to make fundamental changes in the structure of the communication section. NET and telecommunication arm of P & T were merged to form what is known as the Nigerian Telecommunication limited, by the then minister of communications col. A.A. Abdullahi, while the postal unit still remains government department called Nigerian Posts (NIPOST) responsible for postal services only. NITEL was given the responsibility of providing integrated internal and external services with autonomy as a commercial organisation to support itself without government subvention. The ownership was however, 100% government.
The world in pursuit of general economic development, started experiencing a progressive departure from government and state owned natural monopolies to commercialized and privatized public utilities and enterprises. On the heels of these melodramatic changes, are the emerging technologies which are redefining the traditional methods of business practices and social integration. In consonance with the burgeoning trends world –wide, coupled with the focus on performance of parastatals and government owned enterprises as the raison d’etre for the creation by the federal government of the defunct Technical Committee on privatization and commercialization (TCPC), the Nigerian telecommunication eventually gained the status of a fully commercialized but government owned entity in January 1992. With the subsequent signing of the performance agreement by NITEL Ltd in May, 1992, the Onus of sourcing and appropriating funds and the general management of human and material resources of the company fell on it’s shoulders.
Understandably therefore, and in pursuance of the initiative towards the deregulation of it’s telecommunication sector, the federal government formally inaugurated the Nigeria communication commission (NCC) on the 16th of July 1993 to set standards, regulate, monitor and arbitrate on all activities in the eight areas open to private sector participation. Before the renaissance period, communication was a commodity for the monarchs in the old British days. Within that period, the government dispatched to people, what they felt the people should be. The press was for the kings in which case, the press was used as a government property. This was during the authoritarian days of British, but the period of libertarian days developed communication. In this case, telecommunication during the use of analog which was manually operated was efficient and effective. The development of communication came when Electro-mechanical mode of telecommunication was invented via the digital which is presently in use, having gone computerized.
Personal computers are becoming a daily tool for many students walking across campus are often listening to their Walkman. Fax machines are so popular that fact-food restaurants like MeDonal and Mr Gigs use them to take orders. Another communication development is the cellular car phone. Dipaoli (1989) reports that nationally, the industry is attracting customers at the rate of 80,000 per month- a growing faster than VCRS certain technological innovations seem well suited to enhance rather than limit communication. In organisation communication, for example, video conferencing may come to be used by many companies on a routine basis. Some experts propose that telecommunication can be used a major new force for organisational design and redesign. According to Keen in 1987, business communication will inherently involve organisational, as well as technical change, and as we have already seen, there is also great potential for educational application of technology, many of which might ultimately encourage rather impose communication. Of necessity, the new communication technologies have vastly increased the amount of intercultural communication, people of different culture have more information about each other and are more accessible than ever before and are also more interdependent.
The introduction of the Global system for Mobile Communication (GSM) in August 2001 strengthen the development of communication. We can see that we owe a great deal to communication technology, especially in the administration of a secretariat, as well as our modern way of life when we telephone a record album, we are enjoying the benefits of communication developments, through technology. As a result of these development in communication, we are much more aware of the world in which we live. By opening a newspaper or magazine, a secretary can find out immediately about world or local news, this serving as reference point. Other source of reference in secretarial administration that have been brought about by communication are television set which by turning, events taking place in other parts of the world can be viewed. By dialing a telephone, one can speak with people around the world. Developments in communication have also allowed us to share what we know with other people, which may benefit them. Doctors all over the world share information about curing diseases, engineers share information pertaining formulas and methods of building stronger structures, scientist share discoveries about our environment. Above all it (communication) has given rise for personnel in secretariat and other organisation to pass on knowledge to others to add to their collective store of learning. In short, the development of communication has helped us to share our success, failure, discoveries, misconceptions and truths.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
This study attempt to find out the importance of communication in secretariat administration. The quality of services rendered by NITEL and other communication establishments have been attracting criticisms from people in all works of life, the government functionaries businessmen, the media and the general public and staff of NITEL are all very critical of communication services, this complaints range from those favoritism to unfriendly attitude of management to subordinates and of subordinates to customers. Most government establishments do not put their customers in the prime place as they are supposed to be. There is now Keen competition as individuals now own private firms where they render telecommunication services, and to compete means in applying the marketing system. The research also hopes to investigate if these criticism are justified, or if they are never rundown of the communication industry.
PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of this research work are as follows:
1. To identify some importance of communication vis a vis secretariat administration.
2. To identify the problems associated with communication
3. To find out some types of communication equipments used in NITEL and other communication firm.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Students who wish to go into a research of this nature will benefit from this study, as the researchers will make appropriate references to the work, which will help communicators to decide on how to make stronger, their techniques of redundancy. Also, the management and staff of any given secretariat will benefit from this study as it would help the management more to attain a new information and communication order-essentially a series of new relationship towards subordinates.
The following research question have been asked as a guide for the study.
1. What are the importance of communication to secretariat administration?
2. What are the problems associated with communication in NITEL?
3. What are the types of communication equipment used in NITEL and other communication firms?
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