INFORMATION RESOURCE MANAGEMENT IN THE MINISTRY OF PETROLEUM RESOURCES, ABUJA, NIGERIA
Human efforts towards attaining goals depends highly on effective communication, and the major ingredient that makes communication possible is information. Information is an important resource for individual growth and survival. The progress of modern societies as well as individuals depends a great deal upon the provision of the right kind of information, in the right form and at the right time. Information is needed to be able to take a right decision and also reduce uncertainty. If information is this valuable, it must be put to proper use, that is, made available to people or group of people who need it, after managing it properly. This study examined information resource management in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Abuja with particular emphasis on how the information resources were generated/sourced; acquired; processed, used; as well as the strategies used for the protection, security and preservation of the information resources. Also, factors that militated against effective information resource management were examined, as well as the effects of ICT on Information Resource Management. The population of the study was the entire staff of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, numbering eight hundred from the top management staff down to the middle/junior executive staff. A sampled population was taken from the larger population for the study using Morgan (1970) table for determination of accurate sample size from a given population. The research method adopted was the survey method, with an instrument of the questionnaire. The questionnaire was designed by the researcher in sections corresponding to the major area of information resource management. Two hundred and sixty copies of the questionnaire were administered to the sample size randomly selected. About two hundred and fifty copies of the questionnaire received a positive response and were collected back for data analysis. The raw data scores were analyzed in percentages using the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). It was reported descriptively on tables and also graphically illustrated. The data analysis was designed in such a way that every research question was addressed by using raw scores and their equivalent percentages. The study found out that information resources were not effectively managed in the MPR, based on the following factors: lack of training and workshops, lack of seminars and conferences on information resource management, lack of enough computer personnel to manage the technologies (ICT) available, and lack of adequate knowledge on the use of ICT by most of the staff of the MPR. The study also revealed that the demand for and use of ICT for information work was high, especially for processing information by management staff and information officers in the MPR. However, among all the ICT available at the MPR, the computer, telephone/telecommunications, and files/folders were the most used compared to others. The study also revealed that there was inadequacy of the new information technology (ICT) in most departments of the MPR, and also the absence of a standard electronic library and information centre, which suggested the absence of proper management of information resources. Based on these findings, the researcher recommended that, more ICT equipment and facilities should be provided at the MPR. Also, staff of the MPR should be trained regularly on Information Resource Management. Furthermore, a standard e-library and information centre should be put in place to manage printed and electronic information resources properly. It was also recommended that candidates should possess ICT knowledge before they can be employed into the organization. In conclusion, the researcher suggested further research in similar organizations like the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), Petroleum Equalization Fund (PEF), Petroleum Training Institute (PTI), Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and Petroleum Product Prizing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), in order to add to knowledge.