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The main objective here is to ascertain the effect of human resource development on employee performance in ACEP Cameroon. The specific objectives here are to examine the effects of on the job training on employees performance, to analyse the effects of career development on employees performance, to examine the effects of  individual development on employees performance. A quantitative research design was adopted. The method of data analysis here is the quantitative method where the descriptive research analysis was used to gather information and a regression analysis was used  to know the effect between the independent and dependent variable. The findings reveal that on the job training has a positive and insignificant relationship on employee performance, career development has a positive and insignificant relationship on employee performance and individual development has no significant effect on employee performance and therefore it has accepted the null hypothesis. Based on the available research, it is concluded that  organisation should invest on training employee to improve performance and to enhance skills. The key recommendation here is that employee training should be improved to enhance performance.



1.1. Background to the study

Human resource development as a theory is a framework for the expansion of human capital within an organisation through the development of both the organisation and individual to achieve performance improvement. Many employees have failed in organisation because their need for training and development was not identified and provided as an indispensable part of management function. Human resource development deals with the activities undertaken to expose an employee to perform additional duties and assume  positions of importance in the organisational hierarchy. According to Nwachuku (2007), human resource development refers to any actions which is deliberately aimed at improving once skills, knowledge, habit or attitude in the performance of a given task, either in the present or in the future. It is the creation of an environment where people or employees may require or learn specific job related behaviours, knowledge, skills, ability, and attitude.

Human resource development is a function of ability, will and situational factors. An organisation may have employees of ability and determination with appropriate equipment and managerial support yet productivity falls below expected standards. The missing factors in any cases are lack of adequate skills and knowledge which are acquired through training and development. An untrained worker (employee) is like a dangerous animal. Once an employee has received adequate training, he or she is in a more confident position to contribute effectively towards the realisation of organisational goals. Training can therefore be described not as an end in itself but as a continuous activity and an integral part of a business system. The management activity of preparing employees for future job (task) responsibilities is known as Management Development Wealth and Davis (1982) mention that the distinction between training and development is of intend. Training prepares employees to do their present job.

A strategy for improvement workforce productivity to drive higher value for the firms has become an important focus. Firms seek to optimise their workforce through comprehensive human capital development not only to achieve business goals but most important is for a long term survival and growth. To accomplish this understanding, firms will need to invest resources to ensure that employees have the knowledge, skills, and competencies they need to work effectively in a rapidly changing and complex environment  results from appropriate behaviours especially discretionary behaviour and the effective use of required knowledge, skills, and competencies. Performance of an organisation is the outcome of activities of individual behaviour and personal traits, organisations can neither influence nor control all factors affecting the performance of both individuals and units through formal and informal means. Greater influence on individuals can be exercised informally communication, work culture and management styles (Nginyo, 2010).

The overall purpose of performance is to establish a high performance culture in which individual teams take responsibility for the continuous improvement of business process and for their own skills and contributions within a framework provided for effective leadership, (Amstrong, 2006), performance in firms is managed through human resources performance management. Performance management can be defined as a systematic process of improving organisational performance by developing the performance of individuals and teams. Dessler, (2008) defines it as a process that unites goals setting, performance appraisal and development into a single, common system whose aim is to ensure that the employees’ performance is supporting the organisations strategic aims.

Human resource development according to Amstrong (1999), human resources development is concerned with providing learning and development opportunities making training interventions. The overall aim of human resource development is to see that the organisation has the quality of people it needs to attain it goals for improvement performance and growth. The aim is achieved by ensuring as far as possible that everyone in the organisation has the knowledge and skills and reaches the level of competence required to carry out their work effectively, that the performance of individuals and teams is subject to continuous improvement and people are developed in a way that maximises their potential growth and promotion. The development of employees begin when the individual enters the organisation and does not end until they leave. Human resource development involves learning which permanent relative change in behaviour is and it occurs as a result of practice or experience. Education which is the development of knowledge and understand is required in all aspects of life rather than knowledge and skills related to a particular area is also an activity of human resource development (Hodgetts & Hager, 1999).

The principal element of human resource development include effective resourcing, induction, and formation of high quality employees, identification and improvement skills and motivation among existing and long serving employees, regular job analysis in relation to organisational objectives and individual skills, performance management and assessment of the human resources through identification of key tasks, a focus on skills and general abilities rather than paper abilities and provision of opportunities for personal growth and self-development in the process helping people to manage their own careers( Torrington & Hall, 2005).

The fundamental principle of human resource development is that it goes further than training program. According to Jackson (2009), training and human resource development are used together to bring about the overall improvement of employees performance. Training program have very specific and quantifiable goals such as understanding a specific process, on the other hand development program concentrate on broader skills that are applicable to a wider variety of situations such as decision making, leadership skills and goals setting, training program are typically tied to a particular subject matter and applicable to that subject only.

Employee’s performance is how an employee fulfills their job duties and executes their required tasks. It refers to the effectiveness, quality and efficiency of their output. Performance also contributes to our assessment of how valuable an employee is to the organisation. According to Price (2007), more recently performance measurements have had wider purposes which include identifying and enhancing desirable work behaviour and reinforcing this behaviour by linking rewards to measured performance. Employees ability to meet performance expectations is based on individual levels of capability, degree of support provided  by management performance assessment in most organisations tend to formalise, they take the shape of preprinted forms and typed instructions prepared for the appraising manager.

ACEP Cameroon is a Micro Finance Institution (MFI) set up in 1999 by the Cameroonian government with funding from the European Union (EU) and the Agence Francaise de Developément (AFD) with ACEP. ACEP Cameroon S.A belongs to the ACEP international network, its methods and technologies implemented are based on the model developed by ACEP development and deployed in all subsidiaries of the ACEP international network such as Senegal (ACEP Senegal) and Madagascar (ADEFI). The managers are responsible for the management of ACEP Cameroon, they are qualified experts with a solid and services sector. That is National Investment Corporation of Cameroon (SNI), investment and partners (IP), ACEP international (BICEC), the Cameroon chamber of commerce, industry, mines, and craft (CCIMA)

1.2. Statement of the problem



1.3. Research questions

1.3.1. The main research questions

The main research questions is to determine to what extent human resource development affects employees’ performance.

1.3.2. Specific research questions

  1. i) How does on the job training influence employee’s performance?
  2. ii) How does career development influence employee’s performance?

iii) To what extent does individual development influence employee’s performance?

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