THE ROLE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY IN RE-ENGINEERING THE NIGERIA BANKING SYSTEM
1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY
The re-engineering processes in most of the banks in Nigeria especially the commercial banks has experienced rapid growth with the advancement in the level of information technology.
The re-engineering process was first experienced in 1993; as at 1994 in the US, a lot of companies invested heavily on re-engineering as a result of the revolution which took place.
According to (Hammer and Stonton, 1995) stated that the term "re-engineering" has been heavily over used, misused and simply. Generally the most widely used definition of the concept of re-engineering was given by in their book "The Re-engineering Revolution" as the fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of business processes to bring about dramatic improvements in performance. The most important key words in this definition are dramatic improvements, radical, process and redesign.
Firstly, “dramatic” improvements in re-engineering do not mean making marginal improvements to businesses. It is about making quantum leaps in performance, achieving breakthroughs. Performance can be measured in various ways, reduced costs, increased earnings, increased speed, and greater accuracy depending upon what is important to a particular business. The hallmark of re-engineering is always a dramatic breakthrough in performance. According to the former Managing Director of Wema Bank, Chief Samuel Adegbite, "re-engineering is the fundamental re-thinking and radical redesign of business processes to achieve dramatic improvements in critical contemporary measures of performance such as cost, quality service and speed In the banking industry, re-engineering process simply means restructuring or repositioning of the general operations of a bank such as development of advanced information technology, development of relevant consumer banking products, efficient human resources management and development, strategic planning, infrastructural development, improvement in the efficiency of how customers are served, among others. It involves the upgrading of service delivery in branches in order to bring about significant changes. The branches are consequently empowered to offer on-line real-time services, reduce response time to customers, offer competitive rates and charges, achieve improvement in internal layout/aesthetics, external environment, customer driven personnel and procedures, Ihyembe, (2000). One of the important components or driving forces of the re-engineering process is advanced information technology. The development of up-to-date information technology has provided limitless opportunities for banks to innovate in the areas of new products/services and cut down turn-around time often associated with these products/services, it also creates unprecedented threats to them Etim, (2000). This is because information technology is a vital service enabler that defines and refocuses competition such that its deployment in the right mix normally alters quality and speed of service delivery. Re-engineering process is so crucial and relevant in contemporary bank management that the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) reiterated the need for banks in the country to carry out proper re-engineering in order to compete effectively in the new and emerging global market trends and also as a survival strategy in the new millennium The process involves re-evaluating and re-invigorating various units of an organisation in order to respond to the dynamics of the market and enhance their performance. Re-engineering process is expected to produce corporate strategic vision, redesigned structural framework and must ultimately result in radical transformation of an organisation. Strategic re-engineering must be technology driven and should evolve observable change of staff attitudes to work. This may include among other things the way and manner staff conduct themselves, project the image of the bank, their level of commitment to duty, their relationship with subordinates/superiors and also the customers they serve. The study of this process is fundamental in view of the ongoing competition in the industry coupled with the emergence of the concept of Universal Banking System which consequently meant the phenomenal increase in competition as a result of new entrants, ie. merchant banks converting to commercial banks and also licensing of new banks. This competition is also capable of being intensified as a result of deregulation and globalisation in which local banks are exposed to international competition.
1.2 STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM
What really instigated the study were the changes required and the benefits to the bank, and problems encountered in the course of implementing the process of re-engineering in most banks in Nigeria. Attempt will also be made to evaluate the performance of the project. Core aspects of banking will be examined viz. information technology, banking products, customer focused strategies, relationship management, relationship, management, and general operations.
1.3 AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF STUDY
The main aim of the research work is to the role of information technology in re-engineering the Nigeria banking system. Other specific aims of the study are:
- To examine the effect of the re-engineering process on the Nigeria banking system
- To examine the relationship between am improved level of information technology and the re-engineering of the Nigeria banking system
- To investigate on the factors affecting the implementation of the re-engineering processes in most Nigeria banks
- To carry out performance analysis using some indicators and to also find out the benefits of the exercise to all the stakeholders ie. shareholders, customers and staff
- To proffer solution to the above stated problems
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The study came up with research so as to ascertain the above stated objectives. The research questions for the study are stated below as follows:
- What is the effect of the re-engineering process on the Nigeria banking system?
- Is there any relationship between am improved level of information technology and the re-engineering of the Nigeria banking system?
- What are the factors affecting the implementation of the re-engineering processes in most Nigeria banks?
- How to carry out a performance analysis using some indicators and to also find out the benefits of the exercise to all the stakeholders ie. shareholders, customers and staff?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: information technology has no significant effect on the re-engineering of the Nigerian banking system
H1: information technology has significant effect on the re-engineering of the Nigerian banking system
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY
The study on the role of information technology in re-engineering the Nigeria banking system will be of immense benefit to the commercial banks in Nigeria, the study will also be of great importance to the federal government of Nigeria and the members of staff of most commercial banks in Nigeria as it will discuss in details the effect of the re-engineering process in the Nigerian banking system and other macro-economic policy affecting the banks.
1.7 SCOPE OF STUDY
The study on the role of information technology in re-engineering the Nigerian banking system will cover effect of the re-engineering process in the Nigerian banking system and other macro-economic policy affecting the banks
1.8 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.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Re-engineering Process: This is the upgrading of service delivery in branches, which involves introduction of new system, human resource planning and development, infrastructural development strategic planning in order to bring about positive significant changes