The impact of training on employee performance at Kenya Medical Research Institute and Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (KEMRI/CDC), Kenya
Mutuku, Peter M
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The primary motive of every business organisation is to earn profit and human resources become the critical factor of economic development. In public health and in this age of increasing disease burden in sub-Sahara Africa which includes Kenya and especially in the big three diseases of poverty namely; Malaria, HIV and Tuberculosis it is imperative that cutting edge research is sustained to alleviate suffering. Public health research relies on qualified personnel in terms of knowledge, experience, skills sets and positive attitude adjustment of the human resources and training comes in to fill that gap. This study was a longitudinal case study of the Kenya Medical Research Institute and Centres for Diseases Control and Prevention (KEMRIICDC) in Kenya. The study set out to determine the impact of training on employee performance. Data was collected through personal interviews with supervisors and personnel files of employee to establish performance appraisal scores and training attendance. The study established that KEMRIICDC had provided five levels of training to its employees namely; in house training for ninety percent of the workforce, study specific also referred to as role based training for fifty four percent of the employees, external short courses for seventeen percent of the workforce, professional development programme for four percent of the workforce, management training for seventeen percent of the total employees and long term training for a quarter of the work force. In house training were considered to have impacted employee performance positively with improvements noted in collection of credible public health research data, publication of manuscripts, presentation in scientific conferences, employees being innovative in use of new technology and programming. The following trainings were found to have contributed to positive employee improvements; good clinical practice and laboratory practice, quality training, data management and structured query language for programming. The study established that training had led to improved employee performance with an average employee performance improvement of seventy two percent. It is important to note that the study also found out that twenty seven percent of those trained had their performance decline implying that it is not only training that affected employee performance. Training was found to have impacted employee extra responsibility with staff trained taking extra duties voluntarily at no extra compensation mostly and this improvement stood at sixty six percent. The study established that employees had taken extra responsibilities in the following areas voluntarily; participated in world malaria day and medical camps, acted in senior position, promoted to head departments and coordinated various research projects within the organisation. Training was found to positively improve employee attitude improvement and led to employees being confident about themselves and their work, motivated and had better relations with their co-workers and supervisors. The challenges experienced by the organisations included missing records and information on employee performance for the period 2007 to 2008. The study recommends the same research conducted as a cross sectional survey among research based institutions in Kenya for comparisons.
University of Nairobi, Kenya