Project Topics

THE ROLE OF VOCATIONAL TRAINING IN BRIDGING SKILL GAP IN THE BUILDING INDUSTRY OF NIGERIA

THE ROLE OF VOCATIONAL TRAINING IN BRIDGING SKILL
GAP IN THE BUILDING INDUSTRY OF NIGERIA

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1   BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

Skills
are what an individual possesses which may be learnt informally and/or
on-the-job. Skill Gap is the difference in the skills required on the job and
the actual skills possessed by the staff. A Skills Gap arises when a worker does not have all the skills
necessary to do the job effectively. Therefore, skills gaps refer to the
situation where an industry has workers but they are not skilled enough to meet
the organizations’ objectives (Jean, 2003).

The
building industry is growing but it seems the stock of competent skilled
construction workers has dwindled (Odusami & Ene, 2011).  A skill gap is the shortage in performance.
It is the difference between what is required or expected and what we actually
get. Put in another way a skill gap is the required performance minus the
present performance. Hence it is also called the performance gap. Basically, a
skills gap or performance gap is the difference between the actual or present
performance and the optimal or future performance.

Vocational
training is an educational training which encompasses knowledge, skills,
competencies, structural activities, abilities, capabilities and all other
structural experiences acquired through formal, on-the-job or off-the job which
is capable of enhancing recipients opportunity for securing jobs in various
sector of the economy or even enabling the person to be self-dependent by being
a job creator. Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004) opined that vocational training
is an aspect of the educational process involving, in addition to general
education, the study of technologies and related sciences and the acquisition
of practical skills, attitudes, understanding and knowledge relative to
occupations in the building sector. Manfred and Jennifer (2004) advocated that
vocational training comprises all more or less organized or structured
activities that aim at providing people with the knowledge, skills and
competencies necessary to perform a job or a set of jobs whether or not they
lead to a formal qualification. These definitions show that the relationship
between vocational training and skill development towards a sustainable
building industry in Nigeria. Common indicators of Skills issues are poor workmanship and building failure.
Nigerian cities with the exception of the enclave of the rich and powerful are characterized
by poor quality structures, poor layout and streets access, lack of essential
utility services, inadequate security, and social services (Alemika, 2010).
Apparently, deficiencies exist between the skills of vocational workers and
those required to meet the needs and expectations of employers in the Building
sector which prompt the researcher to examine the role of vocational training
in bridging the skill gap that exist in building industry in Nigeria. The skill
gap in the Nigeria building industry can be attributed to the dwindling stock
of competent skilled construction workers and the influx of unskilled,
inefficient and dissatisfied workers who see the building sector as a last
resort (ITF, 2014). Adequate and effective vocational training in Nigeria can
meet the highly skilled human resource need in the Nigerian building industry. Skill
needs in building sector includes building drawing skills, surveying,
landscaping and site preparation skills, foundation skills, ability to use
machines for construction, ability to use hand tools for practical work, brick
and block laying skills, roofing skills, masonry skills in building, concreting
and reinforcement skills, carpentry and joinery skills, final finishes skills
and plumbing skills. In recent times, the government of Nigeria through the
Federal Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development has shown concern
about the present dearth of skilled artisans and craftsmen in the building
construction industry. They asserted that artisans and craftsmen constitute an
important component of the value chain in housing delivery and essential for
the production of well-built, good quality and durable housing on a greater
scale across the country. The ministry is using two vocational training centres
located in Lagos state to upgrade the skills of this category of
tradesmen. The ministry recently completed the renovation and upgrading of
its facilities at the Harvey road, Yaba-Lagos training centre and a school of
Architectural and Building Technicians is being constructed in Kuje, in the
FCT. Efforts are being made by the Nigeria Federal government to establish six
more skills acquisition/ vocational training centres in different parts of the
country, as well as undertake a review of the curricula for artisan and
vocational training in conjunction with relevant institutions.

1.2   STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

Apart from skill obsolescence that occurs over time
in the Nigerian building industry, there are other factors that cause skill
gaps which an effective vocational training would have curtailed.  A major factor is the changing pattern of
working in building industry. The current trends in the world of work such as
globalization, commercialization, flexi-hour, deregulation, outsourcing, contract
work, homework and freelancing have led to marked changes in industry
structure.  New definition, new meaning,
and new application of knowledge drive all these changes.  New forms of work structures which are
flexible, adaptable, less hierarchical, and multi-skilled and which encourage
continuous learning are becoming sources of competitive advantage in the
building industry.  International
competition for jobs and workers has also intensified, leading to the global
talent hunt for innovation-driven knowledge workers. However, the researcher is
examining the role of vocational training in bridging these skill gaps that
exists in the Nigerian building industry.

1.3   OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The
following are the objectives of this study:

1.  To
examine the role of vocational training in bridging the skill gap that existed
in Nigerian building industry.

2.  To
identify the skill gaps in the Nigerian building industry.

3.  To
examine the effectiveness and adequacy of vocational training in Nigeria.

1.4   RESEARCH QUESTIONS

1.  What
is the role of vocational training in bridging the skill gap that existed in
Nigerian building industry?

2.  What
are the skill gaps in the Nigerian building industry?

3.  What
is the effectiveness and adequacy of vocational training in Nigeria?

1.5   HYPOTHESIS

HO:
Vocational training has not bridge the skill gap in Nigeria building industry.

HA:
Vocational training has bridge the skill gap in Nigeria building industry.

1.6   SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The
following are the significance of this study:

1.  The
outcome of this study will educate the general public, government and policy
makers on the level of vocational training in Nigeria and also the skill gaps
that existed in the Nigeria building industry considering the role of
vocational training.

2.  This
research will also serve as a resource base to other scholars and researchers
interested in carrying out further research in this field subsequently, if
applied will go to an extent to provide new explanation to the topic.

1.7   SCOPE/LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY

This
study on the role of vocational training in bridging skill gap in the building
industry in Nigeria will cover the successes and failure of buildings and other
structures in Nigeria has a reference in ascertaining the level of competency
of Nigeria builders. It will also cover the structure of vocational training in
Nigeria.

 

LIMITATION OF STUDY

Financial constraint– Insufficient fund tends 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).

 Time constraint– The researcher will
simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently
will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.8   DEFINITION OF TERMS

Skill:
the ability to do something well; expertise.

Training:
the action of teaching a person or animal a particular skill or type of
behaviour.

Vocations:
A regular occupation, especially one for which a person is
particularly suited or qualified.

REFERENCES

Alemika,
O. (2010, February 17:34). Revamping Technical Vocational Education. Daily
Champion.

Federal
Republic of Nigeria (2004). National policy in Education (4th ed.) Lagos. NERDC
Press

Jean
C. B. (2003). Education and Vocational Training, a Mainstream for All Groups
across All Member States. A paper presented at the conference Impulses for
European Employment Policy, impulses for Germany BMWA.

Manfred,
T and Jennifer, W. (2004). Vocational Education and Training key to the Future.
Greece: Colibri Ltd.

Odusami,
E.D. & Ene, G.C. (2011). Constructivism: the Career and Technical Education
Perspectives. Journal of Technical and Vocational Education, 6(1), 78-92.