Critical Factors in Nigeria’s Economic Recovery

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Marina in the central business district of Lagos

To reposition Nigeria and deepen her economy, the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria has tasked its members to leverage on the institute’s research apparatus to support government and business leaders with the relevant data required for decision making. Raheem Akingbolu reports

The leadership of the Chattered Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria (CIPM) recently took the bull by the horns as they suggested likely solutions toward revamping the nation’s economy. Going by the positions taken by experts drawn from public and private sector during the institute’s 49th Annual National Conference, held in Abuja, if Nigeria wants to achieve meaningful sustainable economic growth in the country it must begin to aggressively develop is human capital. The team of the conference, which was attended by over 2,000 delegates, was ‘Innovate Empower Engage’. They all agreed that an impressive performance of the economy of most developed and newly industrialised countries is an impressive commitment to human capital development hence the need for programmes to be introduced in all courses in Nigeria Universities that will help graduates in the country to be ready for workplace expectations.

The President and Chairman of Council of the institute, Mr. Udom Inoyo, in his address highlighted some of the institute’s roles in ensuring a reduction in the number of unemployable graduates in the country as well as its investment in the continuous development of the Human Capital through partnership with the government.

He stated that CIPM is committed to promoting student internship through collaboration between academic institutions and the industrial sector in the bid to improving the quality and standard of education curricula. He also pointed out that the institute has consistently supported policies that would develop and sustain entrepreneurial skills in Nigeria. The president urged the new set of the institute’s inductees to adhere strictly to the ethics of the profession and make practical contributions to the growth of the nation.

 

Capacity development

The Minister of Budget & National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, who delivered a keynote address, challenged the institute to develop templates and modules of capacity development that can improve the productivity of the Nigerian workforce.

The Minister noted that enhanced capacity of the workforce and the resultant improvement in productivity can contribute significantly to improvement in national output.

“As the foremost personnel management institution in the country, managing people is what your members do. I challenge you, individually and collectively, to develop templates and modules of capacity development that can improve the productivity of our people”, he said.

Udoma, who spoke on the topic: “The Nigerian Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), 2017-2020: People as a Critical Success Factor”, said the whole essence of the ERGP is to achieve a massive and sustained increase in national output.

While noting that as personnel managers their job is to develop management schemes that improve the productivity of their workforce, the Minister challenged members of the Institute to bring their expert personnel management skills to bear on the nation’s low productivity levels, as he pointed out that the greatest wealth of a nation is not in its natural resources, but its human resources.

Drawing their attention to the ERGP, the Minister said that it is a Plan that will drive Nigeria on to a path of sustained, diversified and inclusive growth; a Plan that will change the country in a fundamental way.

 

CIPM’s Position

In a communiqué issued after the conference, members of the institute were charged on the need to collaborate with National Industrial Court to create more awareness on decided cases and trends in labour and employment matters. They also promised to, henceforth, effectively partner with the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment to address unacceptable labour practices in the country.

The institute reiterated the need for members to leverage CIPM’s research apparatus to support government, organisations and business leaders with relevant data required for decision making. They were also urged to  take the lead in driving the discussion on “big data” and artificial intelligence and the potential impact on the future of work, workforce and education.

To remove obstacles that demotivate the workforce while promoting a lasting culture of high engagement and performance, the institute tasked members to engage and collaborate with leaders across key sectors.

On dispute resolution, government and organisations were advised to promote the option of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedures while CIPM should continue to create awareness on ADR and mediation as an alternative to formal legal process.

As part of its efforts to ensure the country has leaders with the right skills, competencies and motivation to drive the public sector into the knowledge and technological age, Human Resource managers in the sector were advised  to be accredited by CIPM, which is empowered by law to qualify Human Resource practitioners.

However, considering the concern about the state of the Civil Service as a critical instrument of economic recovery and growth, the institute reasoned that there is need for all stakeholders to collaborate with the office of The Head of Civil Service of the Federation to actualise the recently launched Civil Service Strategic Plan 2017 – 2020.

It further stated that to build the next generation public service required for the execution of government developmental initiatives, Government should deepen and consolidate Public Private Partnerships to resolve service delivery complexities, solve complex problems, gain economies of scale and scope to leverage innovative ideas and best practices from the private sector and other non-state sectors.

Like in the private sector, organisations were tasked to make innovation a part of the talent management approach by delivering relevant training and creating an enabling culture that supports innovation to drive business performance.

To this end, Government and organisations were encouraged to set up idea management platforms and establish a catalyst fund to promote innovation.

Aside a panel discussion on “Employment Law & Legislation in Nigeria- Where are we?” there were also nine Master Classes and five HR Clinics that focused on Talent Management, Engagement, Organisational Design and the entire Human Resources value chain