Effects of organisational change on operations and human resource planning in VRA (A State Owned Enterprise)

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The Government of Ghana in responses to ever-changing world economic order initiated Economic Recovery Programme (ERP) and Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) which lasted from 1984 to 1994. During the implementation of ERP and SAP, the World Bank was a major financial donor and supported the energy sector projects by granting concessionary loans to the sector. However, after general evaluation of the SAP and ERP, the World Bank in 1996 decided to cease the granting of concessionary loans to the sector. In response to the World Bank decisions and other factors like constraint on scare public sector resources to finance or guarantee expansion of power system and lack of private participation in the sector to raise the necessary funds to finance power projects, the Government of Ghana has initiated Ghana Power Sector Reform Programme. The Ghana Power Sector Reform Programme has put pressure on all institutions under the sector to keep up face the consequence of folding up. Volta River Authority in response to these pressures introduced a series of change programmes to enhance efficiency in generation, transmission and distribution of electrical power under the caption “Medium Term Reform Programme”. The study therefore seeks to examine among other things, the nature and direction of change in Volta River Authority, the forces behind the change, how the organisation is organising itself in responds to the change and also investigate the effects of the change programme on operations and human resource planning in the organisation. Qualitative research approach was adopted for this study. These include desktop study, structured interview questionnaires and personnel interviews at different departments and locations of Volta River Authority. The study revealed that Volta River Authority is moving from state owned to joint state and private owned organisation. It was also found that both internal and external factors are responsible for the current organisational change in Volta River Authority. The factors include re-structuring in the Power Sector under the theme Ghana Power Sector Reform Programme, increase in demand for electrical power in the country, pressure from funding agencies like World Bank, Africa Development Bank and Government of Ghana and the introduction of new technology in power generation. The study also revealed that the current human resource plan of Volta River Authority does not contain any action plan and this calls for a review of the existing human resource plan to meet human resource requirement of the emerging structure of the organisation. It was found that Volta River Authority has expanded its operations under the restructuring programme. In the case of power generation, it has employed new technology in the form of Thermal Plant which is different from that of hydro, the traditional electrical power generation source of Volta River Authority and has also entered into telecommunication business. Recommendations made include the formulation of new human resource plan to meet human resource requirement of the organisation. The human resource planning should cover every aspect of human resource plan especially action plans and proper job description. The need for management to intensify the education of employees on the change programme in order to reduce the anxiety among the employees was also recommended. It is also recommended that Volta River Authority should leave the retail of electric power to other companies and concentrate on the power generation and transmission.
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Master of Arts in (Industrial Management), 2000