Date of this Version
Library Philosophy and Practice 2012
Libraries and Information Centres' services in Nigeria are being regarded as humanitarian services and therefore issue of compensation and benefits are not well defined. However, other forms of financial assistance embedded in the Nigeria civil service rule include things like Monetization, National Health Insurance Scheme, Contributory Pension, and Pension Benefits; all of which staff of Libraries and Information Centres also benefit from. Aside this is the Annual Appraisal Form (Aperform) that contains basic requirements expected of an employee before he can be promoted. Nigerian Universities also makes use of this to assess staff in order to determine their remuneration as at when due.
For corporate body organizations where special libraries and information centres form part of the organization, compensation and benefits will depend on the annual appraisal or job satisfaction based on criteria spell out in their organization's handbook. Evaluation forms also contains inter alia: what you are expected to do according to your job descriptions, your relationship with staff, creativity, sense of direction, delegation of duty, which will be rated as either fair, good, very good, satisfactory and excellence. All these indices hinges on employees' performances. Though an employer compensates his employee with motivation and benefits based on job performance, there is need for job satisfaction. Every employer expects certain degree of result oriented services that would fall in line with his vision and mission while every employee demands job satisfaction.
Ordinarily, the management of people at work is an integral part of the management process, put differently, managers need to understand the critical importance of people in their organizations so as to recognize that the human element and the organization are synonymous
(Tella, Adeyemi, and Popoola, 2007) Therefore, it is imperative to compensate an employee with benefits if he merits it. Cascio (2003) opines that because of the importance that compensation holds for people's lifestyle and self esteem, individuals are very concerned about what they are paid – a fair and competitive wage, while organizations are also concerned about what they pay because it motivates important decisions of employees about taking a job, leaving a job and on the job performance.
Compensation as a concept according to (Bernadin, 2007) refers to all forms of financial returns and tangible benefits that employee receives as part of employment relationship. Compensation as it were is divided into two parts and these are cash compensation which is the direct pay provided by employer for work performed by the employee and fringe compensation which refers to employee benefit programs. Cash compensation has two elements which include base pay and pay contingent. Base pay has to do with hourly or weekly wages plus overtime pay, shift differential and uniform allowance while pay contingent is concerned with performance allowances such as merit increases, incentive pay bonuses and gain sharing. Fringe compensation on the other hand refers to employee benefits programs. Fringe compensation also has two parts to it which are legally required benefit programs and discretional benefits.
Legally required benefit programs include social security, workers compensation while discretional programs include health benefits, pension plans, paid time off, tuition reimbursement, recognition award, foreign service premiums, responsibility allowance, child care, on campus accommodation, promotion, annual increment and a host of others ( Cascio, 2003; Dessler, 2005; Bernadin,2007). Benefits, in a nutshell are the indirect financial and non financial payments employees receive for continuing their employment with an organization.
The concept of employee compensation and benefits cannot be discussed in a vacuum. Various studies have established that salaries and benefits are closely related to job satisfaction (St. Lifer, 1994); and job satisfaction can bring about motivation which in turn affects employee job performance and organizational commitment.