The extent of application of information technology in human resource management by insurance companies in Nairobi.
Apollo, Catherine W
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Basic human resource systems can be enormously paper intensive but today, its becoming more unwieldy and inefficient to rely on manual human resource systems. There are rapid advances in information technology, a turbulent labour market, and mobile workforce in a global market place necessitating higher recruitment and retention efforts by employers. All the management functions are thereby faced with both a challenge and opportunity and especially so the human resource professionals are being asked to do more with less, to do different work and do it better, necessitating the increased use of information technology, to among other things, speed up recruiting and improve employee development, performance management and succession planning. The objective of the study was to determine the extent to which information technology is being used in human resource management by insurance companies in Nairobi. The literature review looked at the insurance industry in Kenya, information technology and human resource management, and the emerging applications to human resource management. This revealed that the integration of information technology in human resource planning, recruitment, selection, placement and termination, training and all other human resource activities can provide critically needed advantages in quality, cost effectiveness and operational flexibility. The study was a census survey. A descriptive research design was adopted for the study and primary data was collected using a semi-structured questionnaire which was administered on a drop and pick later method though some were filled with the presence of the researcher. The respondents involved the human resource managers or the information technology managers where the former was unavailable. Data collected was then analyzed and it revealed that the insurance companies in Nairobi have not fully embarked on the use of information technology in the management of their human resources. The human resource functions have been automated to some extent which has resulted in efficiency in the processing of data, better and faster communication, ease of recruiting and training, and the general running of the human resource activities. Yet a lot remains to be done. There is still high integration of manual systems in human resource management especially with computerization and networking being just moderately installed in most of these companies. Some are still engaging in a hundred percent use of manual systems in their staff records, recruitment, selection, orientation, training and development, performance appraisal succession planning, promotion, turnover, discipline and leave administration.