1.1              Background to the Study

The secretary coordinates the activities of an organisation and operates the various processes and procedures that lead to the effective management of organisational business. These involve, inter alia, the selection of new directors, their induction and related staff meetings, the production of minutes and arrangements for follow-up action and communication and liaison between the organisation and the rest of employees. But the role has many other facets. The secretary may be responsible for the provision of legal and procedural advice and a contributor of information required by the organisation. The role must often balance the managerial imperative with the transparency and accountability required of any organisation.

            Productivity is the quality that indicates how well labour, capital, material and energy are utilized it is the output resulting from a given resources input at a given time. It is the concept that guides the management of a production system and then measure its success and that it is the measure of production efficiency, a ratio between input and output, input is frequently limited to input of labour. Low productivity when applied to secretarial in selected modern business organizations measure in the degree of quantitative and qualitative inadequacies in the output of workers. It can be seen as inadequate production. Low productivity is the way by which productivity can fall short of the high standards that are less than perfect in the working situation are not identified, the result is low productivity.

Secretaries are needed in every type of office, be it advertising and public education, law and medicine, manufacturing and industries, publishing and schools, insurance and bank etc they also work for politicians, writers and judges. It is an unarguable fact that the secretary is stronghold of any organization. Many achievements have been made by the management of the workforce of which the secretary is no exception. Secretary is derived from the Latin word secretary meaning something know to one or few and kept secret or hidden from the view or knowledge of others, simply puts, a secretary is a keeper of secrets. He or she is a person who works in an office, working for another person, dealing with letters and telephone calls, typing, keeping records, and arranging meeting with people secretary cannot be efficient and effective if he or she is working under poor condition.

However, there are certain factors which affect secretaries while on job and these factors positively or negatively affect their performances in the organisation where they belong to. It sometimes determines their longevity in the organisation. Some of these factors are technological factors poor language structure, sociological factors environment factors, and economic factors. Presently, the need for exposing secretaries to the use of modern office equipment has risen due to challenges they face in the modern word. The effect of language structure that secretaries in institute of management and Technology received during training cannot be over emphasized as in labour market and available jobs are meant for those who have good command use of word or good spoken English.

1.2              Statement of the Problem

Some secretaries failed to avail themselves of the opportunities given to them.  This has created a gap between most executives and their secretaries. Most of the secretaries complain that fringe benefits, inadequate modern machines, environmental factor, lack of training and poor relationship with others are factors that affect the productivity of secretary in public organisations. Also, the inability of employers in modern business organizations to remunerate and motivate their secretaries accurately in line with exportations of the present changing work environments in another pain or problem. This has led to low morale, poor standard of living, lateness and absenteeism on the part of the secretary.   

This study investigated factors affecting the performance of secretary in public organisation. The working condition of any organization plays an important role on the workers because the productivity of an organization depends mainly on them, lack of good working condition in terms of intrinsic and extrinsic values can lead to a great decline in productivity. It has been observed that many organizations fail to realize the importance of good working condition and this is seriously affecting their employees particularly the realization of this fact that brought the researchers investigate the factors affecting the performance of secretary in public organisation.

1.3       Research Questions

These are some of the questions the study is designed to answer:

i)                   what are the roles of secretaries in public organisations?

ii)                 What are the factors that affect the performance of secretaries in public organisations?

iii)               what are the office equipment needed by the secretaries of public institutions for better performance at work?

1.4       Objectives of the Study

The objective of this study was to investigate the factors affecting the performance of secretaries in public organisation. The specific objectives were:

i)                   to find out the roles of secretaries in public organisations

ii)                 to assess the factors that affect the performance of secretaries in public organisations

iii)               to determine the office equipment needed by the secretaries of public institutions for better performance at work

1.5       Significance of the Study

This study would help to identify the factors that contribute to low and high productivity of secretaries in public organisations. It will also reveal to prospective secretarial in the career what they should expect from the profession as regards people misconception and misunderstanding of the career. It will as well serve as a foundation upon which further academic research can be made.

1.6       Scope of the Study

            This study investigated the factors affecting the performance of secretaries in public organisation. It therefore limited to secretaries in the public organisations like the Nigeria Port Authority (NPA), National Television Authority (NTA), Water Corporation and the likes.

1.7       Limitation of the study

            The researcher was faced with insufficient fund which tended to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).

1.8       Definitions of Terms

The following terms were used in the course of this study:

Office: A place where the administrative work are done

Performance: the action or process of carrying out or accomplishing an action, task, or function.

Productivity: This is the ratio between output and all the resources used in production.

Public Organisation:

Secretary: employee in the office who deals with correspondence, keep records, makes arrangement of a particular member of staff.