-Introduction to office administration and management

-Organizational structures and department

-Office organization.

-The office

-The office personnel

-Office furniture and stationery




-Handling office correspondence

-Filing and storage of records


-Organization and methods





The emergence of management as an essential distinct and leading institution is a pivotal event in social history, purely if ever has a new leading   group emerged as fast as has management since the turn of 20th century. peter w drucker.

All kinds of institution –social, political, religious .etc. are formed by groups of individual to pursue common goals and objectives. The attainment of these commonly defined objectives shall be fulfillment of these  groups.

A business enterprise for example has the objectives of maximizing its profits through increased output and sales and to create an image in the society in general as a good employer and a good producer of quality products. It also contributes to the economic growth

If the activities of various individuals in the enterprise are not coordinated the results will be chaos. Each man in the enterprise shall be pushing his own  activity  with no collective objective in the mind, but if there is an agency that directs the activities of various individuals in an organization the results will be  synthesis and cohesion. Men will work on machines and materials to achieve the common objectives set forth by that agency.

Management can therefore be defined as principally a task of planning, coordinating, and motivating the efforts of others towards the specific objectives. In brief, management is the task of unifying efforts  efficiently to achieve well defined objectives. The resources available to an organization remain idle till they are directed by the dynamic human effort. Management therefore aims at seeing that the job gets  done efficiently.


There has been a lot of controversy in the use of these two words. Different authorities on the subject have expressed conflicting opinions. Others authorities makes no distinction between management and administration while others consider them as separate functions.

Administration is a higher level activity while management is a lower level function Administration is determinative function concerned with the determination of objectives and policies while management is an executive function involving the implementation of policies and direction of efforts for the achievement of objectives.

At every level of management an individual management performs both types of function. Every manager spends a part of his time in administration and remaining time on management.

Managers at a higher level spends more time on administration function i.e. determination of objectives and policies, while managers at lower level devote greater time on management function. As one descends the organization hierarchy the emphasis is on execution of plans increases. For the purpose of this course office management and office administration will be considered synonymous.


It can be defined as a task of planning, coordinating, motivating the efforts of others towards specifics objectives of the office. The institute of administrative management England says “Office management is the branch of management which is concerned with the  services obtaining, recording and analyzing information of planning and communicating by means of which the management of a business safeguards its assets, promotes its affairs and achieve its objectives’. Thus it can be understood from these definitions that office management means planning,organizing,coordinating and controlling the activities of the office.


Organization is an element of management An organization occurs when two or more people work together and coordinate their activities to achieve common goals. It refers to structure of relationships among individuals. It can also be defined as a social unit that is structured and managed to meet a need or to achieve common objectives and collective goals. Organizations have a management structure that determines relationships between the different activities and the members and subdivides and assigns roles responsibilities and authority to carry different tasks.

Principles of  an organization

  • Divisions of work
  • Unity of command
  • Unity of direction
  • chain of command
  • span of control
  • Adequacy of authority
  • Coordination and balance
  • Discipline

Features of an organization

  • Division of work
  • Common objectives
  • Coordination and communication
  • Plurality of persons.
  • Chain of command.
  • Principles of organization
  • Span of control
  • Unity of direction
  • Authority
  • Scalar chain
  • Specialization
  • Discipline
  • Coordination

Organizational structures

An organization structure is the basic framework within which the decision making behavior occurs It shows the different posts in organization and the responsibilities attached to these different posts

Various types of organizational structure

  1. Line organization (military)

The authority move from top levels to lower levels. There is direct vertical relationship connecting the positions at each level with those above and below


  • Simple and is readily understood but the staff
  • Responsibility for work at different levels in clear
  • Lines of communication both upward and downward are indicated
  • Chain of command are shown
  • Economic and effective
  • Discipline can easily be maintained


  • Works on a dictatorial basis
  • The organization is rigid and in inflexible
  • Each department tends to become an empire of its own
  • Where there is no overall planning, there are possibilities of lack of coordination of work at different departments
  1. Staff organization(functional organization)

Various departments are established and each department is required to perform some specific duties e.g. production, marketing, finance etc.


  • There is specialization by each department and responsibilities is also fixed
  • Coordination is a must as each department relies on each other and thus discipline can be maintained
  • Methods and operations can be standardized
  • Mass production is made by standardization and specialization


  • In a large organization with several departments, there may be too many experts and many bosses
  • The workers become confused because of the many bosses
  • The system becomes very much detailed and thus uneconomical
  • There are too high overhead expenses
  • Its difficult to fix responsibility on workers
  1. 3. Line and staff organization

Under this structure, a company is divided into departments each engaged in a particular undertaking.

Services are carried out in such a way that those very close or important are carried out independently by each unit e.g. purchasing of raw materials, production, planning and personnel.

Other service departments e.g. accounts, sales etc. provide service to all departments

The underlying idea of this method is that specialized work is to be left to experts who will give advice on specialized grounds e.g. investigation, research etc.

The staff officers have no executive positions in the concern and are thinkers while the officers are the doers


  • The principle of specialization is retained and responsibility fixed
  • Coordination is possible yet discipline can be maintained at the same time
  • Increased efficiency of operations is possible
  • Mass production is possible


  • Staff may be confused by those with higher power i.e between the executives and staff officers
  • Conflicts between line and staff officers
  • There is a possibility of issuing contradicting orders




1,Span of control-refers to the number of employees who report to a manager or number of subordinates that one manager can supervise directly. It is also called span of  management ,span of supervision etc.

Span of control will depend on the following factors

  • Ability of both subordinates and manager
  • Level of superior hierarchy
  • Faith in subordinates
  • Nature and type of work
  • Physical dispersion of subordinates
  • Need for communication
  • Types of organization and management


2, Delegation– Is the act of assigning formal authority and responsibility for completion of specific activities to subordinates

Barriers to delegation

Managers may be reluctant to delegate because of several reasons

  • Negative personal attitudes
  • Un receptiveness of other peoples view
  • Unwillingness to let go
  • Unwillingness to let others make mistakes
  • Perceived threat
  • A feeling of inadequacy

Subordinates may require delegation because

  • Lack of training
  • Lack of incentives

Guidance for effective delegation

  • Grant proper amount of authority
  • Define the results expected
  • Consider the capabilities of the subordinates
  • Make sure the authority is clearly stated
  • A supportive climate
  • Free communication
  • Develop a willingness to delegate
  • Follow unity of command and chain of command

Advantages of delegation

  • Improves morale
  • Decisions are likely to be better
  • Enables superior to perform higher levels of work
  • Enhance prompt action
  • Tool of development of subordinates

Disadvantages of delegation

  • May make serious mistakes
  • Mayn’t put in maximum efforts as the supervisor would do
  • If you assign responsibility without authority delegated work will not be properly done
  • If you delegate work to someone who avoids decisions he will not make mistakes but the work will suffer



Decentralization is the systematic effort to delegate to the lowest level  authority except that what can only be exercised at the central point .Decentralization is the opposite of centralization which is the  systematic and consistent reservation of authority in a few hands at top. Decentralization implies a greater power to persons and places away from the center. It also means a lot of important decisions will be made at the lower levels without being subjected to prior approval of higher authority.


-Nature of   growth of the enterprise.

-Outlook of top management

-Size of  and dispersal of operation

-Extent of dispersion

-Nature of  functions.

-Availability  of able  management.


advantages of decentralisation

-Relief of top management

-Motivation  of surbordinates.

-Intimate relationships

-Sense of competition

-effective control.

disadvantages of  decentralisation

-lack of control


-Lack of able managers




An office provides a number of office service to the whole organization. These services relates to the functions of an office. Such services may be provided from a central place for the benefits of all departments in an organization or to allow each department to have its own office services independently.


This is an arrangement whereby certain services common to all department like typing, filling supply of stationery etc are provided from a central place


The opposite of centralization is decentralization or departmentalization whereby each department provides for its services

Both  these arrangements have their respective advantages and disadvantages

Advantages of centralization

  • This arrangement helps to follow the principle of specialization
  • Its economical to the organization
  • Reduces the number of furniture and equipment as well
  • Reduces the duplication of work and activities
  • There is an even and fair distribution of work in a centralised office
  • This arrangement make easy to follow staff leave rotation policy
  • A broader experience of the work of the office is given to one place which in turn  means more facilities for staff training and development

Advantages of departmentalization

  • Departmental office services speed up work as there is less volume of work and documents
  • Its suitable for certain tasks of confidential nature like accounting personal work
  • Departmentalization reduces need for messengers and collection services between departments
  • Its offers personal contact between workers and executives
  • It reduces dissatisfaction of staff at the segregation of sexes that results from the creation of central services department of this type
  • This arrangement helps the workers to learn more in addition to their routine work
  • Sometimes lack of coordination and cooperation departments can result in delays, Departmentalization system avoids such delays


  1. The advantages of centralization are disadvantages of departmentalization and vice versa.


Typing pool.

Advantages of centralization of typing pool

  • Make economical use of typist labor as the typing pool supervisor spreads work evenly and fairly equal among the typists.
  • Sickness and holiday difficulties are easily overcome as reallocation can easily be done.
  • Training of new typist is easily done as all typist jointly contribute toward the training of s new member
  • Interruption to work is avoided as telephone and all other queries are dealt with by supervisor.
  • Noise especially emanating from manual typewriters is confined to one place.
  • Less time is wasted compared to departmental typing.
  • Higher standard of work can be achieved as there tends to be competition among typists.

Disadvantages of centralization

  • Lack of personal contact between the typist and the executive which to a large extent is supposed to create a good working relationship.
  • Increased need for messengers to collect scripts from the various department to the typing pool and back.
  • No specialization for particular work
  • Don’t give secretaries a chance of upward mobility.
  • It provides an atmosphere of gossip leading to waste of valuable time
  • Tendency by the supervisor to over work certain while giving less work to others.



  • Economy of space can be achieved.
  • A uniform system of filing can be established throughout the organizations
  • Files movement is efficiently controlled. This enables an efficient follow up system.
  • It avoids duplication where each department needs a copy a certain document
  • Suitable qualified staff are appointed or trained for the purpose
  • Less costly as few staff are appointed or handle for the purpose

Disadvantages of filing

  • Retrieval procedure may be longer than if it was localized
  • Filing staff may not have specialized departmental knowledge which is helpful when filling some certain documents.
  • It is desirable for confidential documents such as personnel records ,salary, legal documents etc.




The office may be defined as any place set aside for work of a clerical nature. The office may consist of a room or a building which is used for the of a clerical, administrative or communicative nature. Its purpose is to serve as an administrative  centre of an organization comprising of departments offices responsible for their respective functions.

Functions of an office

1.Basic functions

-Receiving information

-Recording information

-preparing and arranging information

-Giving information

2.Administrative functions

-Form design and control

-Selection and purchase of office appliances

-Personnel functions

-Safeguarding the assets

-Planning schemes and policies

-Maintenance of records
-Controlling of office  costs

-Development of office system and procedures

-Public relations


-Offer valuable service to all other departments

-As a formation or memory centre

-As an intermediary

-As  a coordinator

-As a  administrative nerve center

-As control centre

The office manager

Is the title given to the person in charge with responsibility to run the office.

Duties of an office manager

  • Ensures the smooth flow of work in the office
  • Chooses or advises on choosing machines and other assets required in the office
  • Trains the office staff
  • Advise top management of matters relating to office
  • Fights for the wellbeing (welfare) promotions etc. of the employees
  • Draws up or assists in drawing up, plans policies, relating to the running of the office
  • Motivates the staff towards realization of the company’s objectives

Characteristics/qualities of office manager

  • Leadership
  • Sound judgment
  • Methodical
  • Communicator
  • Strong character
  • Discipline
  • Politeness
  • Forward looking

Qualities of an office worker personnel

The office staff must have some qualities to perform their duties more effectively and successfully. The main qualities of an office workers may be classified as under.


  • Good hygiene
  • Attractive personality
  • Personnel interests
  • Qualification/training

2-Office etiquette- Office etiquette means the code of professional conduct or social behavior

  • Honest and loyal to his organization
  • Should be well disciplined
  • Behave with fellow office workers and customer in a polite and respectable way
  • Should give due respect to his seniors
  • Should be punctual and regular

Clerical activities

These include keeping records, preparing accounts .These kind of work in many office can be generally classified as

  • Communication
  • Calculations
  • Records
  • Reports
  • Routine procedures



Office premises and environment

Securing office building or space

The office building should not only be located at a suitable site, it also should be of the proper size and shape. Its design and arrangement should be such as to adequately serve the particular requirement of the enterprise

Owned office

Fully owned office has the following


  • Can be planned and designed to the exact requirements of the organization
  • Can be constructed in a suitable location to desire all the accidental advantages
  • The surplus space can be rented out
  • An attractive office building will enhance the prestige of the business with its staff, customers and the public

Buying an existing building

  • It saves time spent on construction or if its available at a bargain price
  • It may also be the only option in a specific location where all building space has already been occupied
  • But the plan and design of such buildings may not fit the exact requirements’
  • And the location may not be a suitable one
  • It’s of course possible to adapt or alter the design to suit the requirement but it will mean additional cost

Renting or leasing

  • This may be convenient
  • Arrangement for medium and small offices and newly started firms
  • Suitable where the requirements of space is limited or the business isn’t stable or permanent character
  • The cost of owning office accommodation is beyond the capacity of the firm


  • Its rarely possible to get the accommodation exactly suited to the requirements
  • To get it in the most suited location
  • Leased rented space can’t be adopted or altered suit the requirements or even possible to sub-lease surplus space


It gives management freedom to select the office space in keeping with financial capacity and the flexibility to shift the office to a better location as and when necessary

It also frees the management from maintenance costs and worries

Other aspects

  1. Size-
  2. –The size of the office building or the amount of the office space must be adequate not only for the present requirement but also for possible future expansion. The guiding principle regarding size is that it should provide adequate space for the staff and equipment to allow the most efficient performance of both.
  • Shape large
  1. A square or a rectangular shape is better than n a narrow one as the latter will obviously necessitate much working back and forth by the office staff and may not allow the most profitable utilization of  the space.
  2. Lighting and/ventilation
  3. Good lighting and ventilation is essential for ensuring a comfortable environment and for enhancing the morale and efficiency of the staff. The office should have adequate number of large windows, skylights etc. to allow entry of maximum light and free circulation of natural air.
  • Staff and customer convenience
  • –Careful attention should be given to arrangement for convenience and amenities of the staff and customers. The arrangement of the rooms should be such that customers can have easy access to the department requiring frequent visits from them eg cash department, sales department etc. Adequate provision of lifts and elevators(if necessary) cloak rooms, washrooms water fountains ,canteens for the convenience of the staff.
  1. Cost of office accommodation
  2. The cost factor will be ultimately determining the final location and selection of accommodation for the office. The cost of the office not only depends on the location of the office building or space but also depends on factors like size of space, internal arrangement etc. The aim should to strike a balance between the requirement and the capacity to bear the cost.


  1. Size

Size of the office building must be adequate for current and future possible expansion

-Interior decoration

It has been found from the experience that a pleasant coloring and tasteful furnishings produce a cheerful effect on the minds of workers .On the other hand a drab and groom physical surrounding depresses the mind and ultimately  affects the workers will to work. The office rooms should therefore be painted with pleasing colors and tastefully decorated to produce the desired effect.

  1. Shape

The shape may be square, rectangular long and narrow

Square or rectangular space is better than a long and narrow one as the latter will obviously necessitate much walking back and forth by office staff

  • Lighting and ventilation

Good lighting and ventilation is essential for ensuring a comfortable environment and for enhancing the morale and efficiency of the staff

The room/building should have maximum natural light and free circulation of natural air

Facilities of office organization and layout

  • Its essential that the internal arrangement of the office building fit on with the overall structure of organization and system of operation
  • The number, size and shape of rooms, the, location of the gangway’s or stairways and other arrangements should fit in with the location of departments and lay out of the staff and equipment
  • Sanitation and cleanliness-Dirty or insanity conditions not only creates an creates unpleasant depressing environment for the works but also affects their health as they have to spend a large part of the in the office.
  • Temperature and humidity. The temperature and humidity of the office rooms should be maintained at the proper level at too or cold or humid atmosphere induces physical discomfort and affects the efficiency of the clerks.

Staff and customer conveniences

The arrangement of the rooms should be such that customers can have easy access to the departments requiring frequent visits from them eg cash, sales.

There should also be provision for adequate number of cloak rooms, wash rooms, water fountains, and canteens for the convenience of the staff

Cost of office accommodation

The cost factor will dictate the final selection of accommodation for the office

The cost should not be uneconomical but at the same time efficiency shouldn’t be sacrificed merely for the sake of the economy in cost

Location of departments

  • Departments dealing with public like reception and mail office must be close to the entrance
  • Those requiring some concentration and much thinking like planning or M.D’s office should be kept a bit far to allow them to work in quieter atmosphere
  • The department with heavy machinery and equipment should be kept on ground floor
  • Those which serve other department should be kept centrally eg typing pool
  • Department should be located in such that toilets, wash basins and other facilities are within the reach of all
  • Some departments require natural light e.g. drawing department. They should be located accordingly
  • Some departments have very close relationship regarding their activities, and thus should be close to each other e.g. sales and credit

Sanitation and cleanliness

Dirty or insanitary conditions not only creates an unpleasant and depressing environment for the workers but also affects their health as they have to spend a large part of the day in office, thus the office should always be kept neat and clean

Temperature and humidity

The temperature and humidity of the office rooms should be maintained at the proper level as too hot and cold humid atmosphere induces physical discomfort and affects the efficiency of the clerks

Noise affects the efficiency of office staff to a great extent .Its important to control noise that may be external or internal

External noise may be caused by traffic movements on the street, noise from neighboring premises, factories etc.

Causes of internal noise

  • Machines movements
  • Movement and conversation of clerks, visitors
  • Creaking doors
  • Calling bells, telephones
  • Shifting of furniture from one place to another

Measures to prevent internal noise

  • Carpets or rubber mats spread on the floor will reduce the sounds caused by the movements of the clerks and other people
  • Felt pads should be placed below office machines which create noise in operation
  • Calling bells can be replaced with buzzers
  • Telephone may be kept in sound -proof booths to reduce the sound
  • Clerks must be instructed to maintain calmness
  • Workers must be engaged fully during the office hours so that they don’t waste time over idle gossip
  • Banging or creaking doors should be fitted with rubber or felt steps to reduce sound

Measures to prevent external noise   

  • Choosing the site of office away from noisy area
  • Affixing double glazing windows and doors

Office safety

Accidents can do happen to office employees, serious accidents may cause permanent disability and at least prolonged hospitalization

Nature of accidents

Accidents in offices may be caused by

  • Exposed electric wire in loose connection
  • Slippery floors or loose carpeting
  • Open drawers of desks or filing cabinets
  • Tilting backwards in reclining chairs
  • Sharp edges of office equipment, broken glass etc.
  • Unguarded moving parts of office machines
  • Pencils, sharpeners, pins etc.
  • Running or rapid walking along stairways or through doorways
  • Reading while walking along passages
  • Inadequate lighting or worn out tread on stairways

Causes of accidents

  1. Mechanical causes
  2. Physiological causes
  3. Psychological causes

Measures for ensuring safety

  • Provision of safe working place
  • Safeguarding hazardous machines and equipment
  • Provision of safety clothing
  • Maintenance of orderliness and cleanliness
  • Provision of first aid service
  • Provision of fire lighting equipment
  • Safety education and training of employees
  • Promoting safety consciousness

Office security

In large organizations, office security is a major problem for office managers

Everyday risks pilferage or theft of cash and materials by staff or public have to be faced by almost all organization

To protect confidentiality of office secrets as well as the assets and employees against such risks, an adequate security arrangement for the office is essential

Causes of security hazards

  • No check on unauthorized and undesirable visitors
  • Unguarded entrances and exits of the office building and compound
  • Leaving windows and skylight opens
  • Access of all and sundry to confidential documents of all kinds
  • Copying of confidential documents by unauthorized persons
  • No checking of visitors brief-cases
  • Access to cash and safes by too many people and keeping of too much cash on the premises
  • No control over keys of safes and doors
  • No check on taking of files and documents out of the office by staff
  • Staff talking freely of confidential matters inside and outside the office
  • Cars and good vehicle left unguarded in places where these can be tampered with
  • No system of checking in and out of the staff and outsiders leaving open chances of pilferage of stationery, office equipment etc.
  • No security vetting of newly recruited staff

Security measures likely to be effective

Safeguarding the premises

Closing all doors, windows and sky lights

A fool proof burglar alarm system should be installed to alert security staff

Compound should be regularly patrolled by security staff

Regulating the entry of visitors

  • Entry of all visitors should be checked
  • There should preferably be only entrance of visitors
  • Preferably each visitor should be provided with a pass
  • Unless well known to the office a visitor should be allowed to visit the department he has business with
  • Brief cases of visitors should be checked at the entry point

Security regulations for the staff

Each member of the staff should be vetted for security during recruitment

  • Security regulation for the staff should be trained carefully in consultation with the representatives
  • Each employee should be issued with an identity card with photograph and signature of the person
  • Each employee irrespective of seniority should be asked to identify himself
  • Regulation should provide for checking of briefcases and package of staff at the same time of entry and exist
  • Protecting confidentiality of mail and communication systems



This refer to how the office premises are to be divided up for the purpose of carrying out the different functions of an office

Open office

Consists of a large hall, or room wherein the entire clerical staff seat and work

Advantages of open office

  • Better space utilization is possible because space has not been lost by partitions
  • The supervisors feel easy to watch the office
  • Its possible to reduce the number of supervisors
  • The layout of the office can be altered or changed easily
  • There is more economy in arrangement of light
  • It reduces the movement of staff
  • Better working conditions possible
  • Decoration ,cleaning and maintenance can be done inexpensively


  • Work will be affected by visitors and movement of the office staff themselves
  • There is internal noise, because conversation and talk in the office
  • Infections and diseases may spread quickly
  • Secrecy can’t be maintained
  • The office will appear to be a crowded place
  • Top executives may not feel comfortable in an open office
  • A big hall may not be efficiently supervised

Partitioned or private offices

These offices are small rooms occupied by departments. Each department will be placed in each  room. Such rooms are allotted by considering the nature of confidential matter to be dealt in or for top official etc.



Office landscaping

Office landscaping means to make efforts to bring nature to an office by  natural things on size of office staff. The introduction of the office staff landscaping increases efficiency of the staff and helps to reduce strain. The following can be taken to achieve this purpose.

  • Some flowers can be kept in the office in pots.
  • Some natural scenery can be painted on the walls of office.
  • Sometimes office equates having the shape of wild animals or birds can be used.
  • Low volume music.






Outline the purposes maintaining business records.

  • To measure the progress of the business overtime.
  • Proper study of the position of the of the firm.
  • Comparison of businesses.
  • In case of dispute
  • Past records, events, progress etc. are very necessary to decide policies and plans.
  • Certain records are kept for a number of years from the legal point of view.
  • Records are good evidence in court of law in case of suits.
  • For general use.

Give a classification of a business records

  • Personal records
  • Correspondence records.
  • Accounting records..
  • Other business records.
  • Legal records

Outline the principles of record management.

  • Verification-Records can be verified whenever needed
  • Classification-Records must be classified according to their use.
  • Records must be maintained for some justified reasons.
  • Information-The require information must be a available whenever needed.
  • Record system must be elastic in capacity so that expansion or contraction of records is possible,
  • Reasonable cost. The cost of record management must be  a reasonable one.

What is filling?

Is a process of classifying and arranging the records so that they can obtain without delay.

What are the advantages (importance) of filling

  1. Serves the purpose of ready reference.
  2. They saves time and increase efficiency
  • Safeguard the documents against loss.
  1. Files serve as reliable basis for future planning and action.
  2. Past records are good evidence in case of dispute.
  3. A proper control is facilitated


What are the characteristics of a good filing system

  1. Compactness-Should take up too much space especially floor space for filing cabinet
  2. Accessibility
  3. Simplicity
  4. Simple
  5. Elasticity
  6. Cross-reference

Give the procedure of keeping documents

  1. They are first classified under headings like orders invoices correspondences etc.
  2. After this, they are filed in respective filed on the basis of classification system followed by the organization.
  3. The documents are kept for a specific period say , 5 years based on the retention policy of the organization.
  4. After this period these documents re destroyed.

What are advantages and disadvantages of centralized and departmental filing

Centralized filling

  • Leads to development of specialist filing staff.
  • All files are controlled in one room.
  • More supervision and control files is possible.
  • It ensures that all correspondence about the same subjects are filed together.
  • A Uniform system of filing can be established throughout the organization.

Departmental filling

  • Files are quickly made available as they are not too many.
  • As every department keeps its files within, they are readily available.
  • The filing system is not so large and therefore easier to handle.
  • It doesn’t need a specialist staff for filing and this reduces costs.
  • Its more suitable for confidential documents as they aren’t open to every member or the filing department.

Explain various filing classification, giving their advantages and disadvantages

  1. Alphabetical.

-Documents are filed according to the first letter of either name of the sender or subject.

-Similar to words in English dictionary or telephone directory.


  • Convenience of grouping paper by name of the company etc.
  • Direct filing with no need for index i.e. the first letter will tell you where the document is located
  • Simple and easy to understand even explaining to new staff
  • Its possible to open one file for miscellaneous papers which can’t make up their own files



  • In large systems it takes longer time to find papers
  • Congestion under common names
  • For large organizations ,papers may be reasonably be filed under different headings
  • It’s difficult to forecast space requirement for different letters of the alphabet.
  • There are possibilities of a document being filed under a different name due to differences in spelling etc.
  1. Numerical

Correspondence are arranged according to numbers rather than letters

This system is useful for filling orders or other items kept in numerical sequence

An index is necessary for locating the correct file


  • They have unlimited possibilities for expansion
  • Highly accurate system
  • Cross referencing is simpler than with other systems
  • The file number can be used as a reference for correspondence
  • The filling index may be used for other purposes e.g mailing lists as well


  • It takes longer to free material as it involves two operations i.e the recording of paper on the card index and the filling of the document
  • Filing and finding in indirect
  • A separate index must be provided
  • It takes time for a new employee to fully understand the system etc
  1. Geographical

Files are divided according to their places of origin eg countries or by provinces in a country

File   within each group are arranged alphabetically


  • Suitable for companies that have several branches spread over different parts of the world ,country ,county etc.
  • Convenience of reference where the location is known
  • pDirect access for filling purposes


  • Possibility of error where knowledge of geography is weak
  • Geographical location must be known in addition to the correspondents name
  • Index is necessary for occasional reference
  1. Chronological

All documents are filed in order of their dates of receipt


  • Useful if dates are known
  • It provides for unlimited scope of expansion


  • It is not always suitable
  • Incoming letters might become separated from outgoing ones .
  • Subject classification-files are classified according to subject headings or topics


  • All documents referring to a particular subject are kept together in one place
  • The files can easily be expanded or contracted by simply adding or subtracting old ones


  • Determining the list of divisions is difficult and requires someone with a knowledge of the business and its files
  • Determining under which subject heading it should be filed, requires a trained and careful employee

What is filing equipment and what purposes do they serve

  • These are equipment designed for storage of information in an organization and consists of covers, folders filing cabinets etc.
  • They serve the following purposes
  • protection of documents  against loss, damage and deterioration
  • prevention of theft or unauthorized use
  • insertion, location and extraction of documents must take less time or effort

Discuss the various aspects of filing cabinets

  • A file is a collection of papers or documents dealing with one person or topic
  • The equipment in which they are kept is known as a file cover or binder
  • Filing equipment includes file cover and filing cabinets.
  • These are different types of file covers
  1. Box files

These have a solid box like construction and spring loaded compression pad which holds down the filled material firmly

Box files may be used to keep letters, leaflets, catalogues etc.

  1. Lever arch files

These contain metal devices opened and closed in the center of the folder operated by the lever

  1. Concerting files

These are made up of a number of succession pockets into which similar documents can be collected readily for processing like petty cash vouchers and such documents which don’t need to be punched e.g. certificate etc.

  1. Ring binders

These are made of hard covers and two or more rings which open to allow the insertion and removal of documents

Explain various types of filing methods

This refers to how file covers or binders are kept in the filing cabinets

  1. Vertical filing

This is the keeping of files within the drawers, racks or in the shelves when one is on top of another

They lie horizontally i.e. east to west

  1. Suspension filing

The files stand in vertical positions, but in order to prevent them from falling off from the filing cabinets, two metals are fixed on the sides of a filling cabinet’s drawer

  1. Lateral filing

This is where the files are stored on a shelf or in pockets suspended side by side from frames

This method saves space because of great height


  1. What is indexing?
  2. Outline the importance of indexing?
  3. What are the different types of indexing?
  4. Briefly explain what is meant by cross reference?


An index is a device for finding the position of a document or file in a system quickly and easily

Filing index helps the location of any letter, record, files etc. Thus it provides quick reference which is essential of a good filing system

Classification and indexing are not the same.

Classification-is a method of filing and the manner in which the files of different subjects are arranged.

Indexing-is a method of making reference to the files

Importance of indexing

  • Indexing is an essential part of a good filing system as it is a guide
  • It provides a ready reference
  • It facilitates easy location of files
  • Even if the files are arranged in self-indexing methods, index will further speed the work.
  • It possesses minimum information

Types of indexing

  1. Page index

This is when the contents of a particular folder or cabinet are summarized on a piece of paper together with their position and placed at either the front or back of the folder e.g. one found at the back of a text book

  1. Loose card indexes

This is a small cards showing the names of all correspondents and the files where their information is filed,

The cards are kept together and whenever a file or documents is required, reference is first made to the it is located.

  1. Visible card index

They are filed together with the documents and overlap so that one line of entry on each card projects and is visible thus forming one line index.

  1. Strip index

The cards stand upright in cabinet drawer boxes. The name and other identifying features are exposed to view. The cards are sub divided into section using letters of alphabet with projecting guide cards.

This system is useful where correspondence is removed frequently for reference.


Strip index

It’s the method of recording information on a strip of paper for quick reference. The strips are bound together one on top of the other with a position of each one being visible

This system is useful where correspondence is removed frequently for reference.


  1. Punched card index

A series of holes are punched in the edge of each card, each hole represents on item of information such as department, age, gender etc.


It’s possible for a correspondence to be filed in 2 or 3 different files but only one file is available.

A good cross reference system is needed .Its a form of a card or folder directing a person to where a document which can be filed under more than one is found.


E.g. A letter Akola-Okubu might be filed under Akola-okuba file or in Okubu-Akola file

Where a letter from Akola-Okubu is filed under Okubu-Akola file a cross reference card is put under Akol-Okubu file to direct where its located’






In big firms where a photocopying machine is available, several copies are made and filed in all relevant files reach bearing the information on where the original is.


Importance of cross referencing

  • when more than one name is used by a person or company
  • when correspondence may be sought under more than one name
  • when firm is known by its initials
  • when the name has changed


Marking absent files (out card)

If a file is likely to be removed for a couple of days marked folders should be inserted in the place to collect any paper referring to the absent file.


What is micro filming? 

Is a method of retaining or keeping information by photographic records to reproduce when needed.

The record are micro-photographed and kept either on roll film, micro-fiche, aperture card or jacket

-When needed for reference the negative is shown on a screen or a copy is made.

-Micro filming is only important only when a great multiple of permanent records must be kept e.g. office of register of births etc.



  • Save space and weight .Bulky files are replaced by compact cartons of films.
  • Documents can be sent abroad -Micro filming reduces cost of postage if information has to be sent by expensive air mail.
  • There is little risk of misplacing.
  • There is saving of filling equipment as well as floor space.
  • A film can be enlarged on a paper thus providing quick and accurate duplicate copies of the original documents.
  • A film is more durable than paper and provides a much more permanent record. A film is more wear resistant than paper.


  • A reader is required in order to refer to the inform action
  • Its difficult to locate the information required from the film
  • Poorly prepared film will not be readable
  • It requires special equipment which is expensive
  • Specialized knowledge is required to prepare the film and to refer
  • Retrieval of information takes time



Office forms

Objectives of forms control

  • To introduce forms which are really necessary and ensure clerical work don’t become confusing due to many forms
  • Ensure forms so designed as render best possible use at minimum cost
  • To produce forms by the most appropriate and economical method
  • To supply copies of forms only to those who are to use them
  • To study whether introducing new forms proposed on review of old forms is essential
  • To review all forms periodically so as to determine their utility
  • To evaluate forms design on the basis of the time required to use forms

Essentials of a good office forms

  • The writing surface, the style of print, the paper sequence of information and method of entry should be easy for rapid completion of the form
  • Good appearance and balanced arrangement of information of the form
  • Adequate space should be provided for the expected information
  • Every form should be provided for the expected information
  • Every form should have an appropriate title
  • Should be cost effective
  • It should be easy to reproduce the form
  • The quality of papers and color must be appropriate


Advantages of forms control

  • It economizes time, paper costs etc. by using the correct forms
  • The work is simplified as the only required information is provided
  • It helps to reduce errors
  • Less frustration to workers as they will be knowing what is required
  • It improves the overall efficiency of the office work
  • It helps in faster processing because only the relevant information is obtained

What are common faults in forms

  • Insufficient horizontal space allowed for the expected information
  • Too much printed information such as publicity slogans printed on the form
  • Lack of distinction between forms e.g. pro-forma invoices and invoices ,credit and debit notes
  • Inadequate margins (at least 25mm) should be allowed at the left hand side of the form, for filling purpose and some space on top and the bottom for insertion into a type writer
  • The space for a signature placed too near the bottom edge of the paper




Reprographic services

1 Photocopying

Is a process of obtaining a copy of a document directly from the original with photographic details

Is only used when few copies are required or when on exact photographic reproduction is necessary


  • Exact copies without losses of only detail are obtained
  • When only a few copies are required its the cheapest form of duplicating
  • Color copies can be obtained in some machines
  • Large sized documents can be reduced by some machines
  • It can be operated by a junior as compared with typing which requires a skilled typist
  • Quicker than duplicating or printing as no need for the preparation of the master


  • Too expensive for large number of copies
  • Photocopies tend to fade after some time
  • Some machines don’t photocopy colors

2 Duplicating

This is the process whereby a master copy is prepared from which are obtained a large number of other copies

There are two basic methods of duplicating documents;

  1. stencil
  2. spirit duplicating
  3. Stencil duplicating

This process involves the use of a thin fibrous sheet called stencil which is covered with a chemical coating through which ink cannot pass .They are not  easy to write on but straight forward to type


  • If more copies are required then this method is quite cheap
  • The errors can be corrected by using the fluid
  • The copies obtained are more clear and can be used permanently
  • The copies can be reproduced by using electronic stencil
  • Stencils can be used several times if stored properly


  • This method is expensive if only few copies are required
  • Its not suitable for color production
  • More time is required to prepare a stencil than photocopying
  • Its not suitable for attractive printing material like sales promotion literature because the paper used isn’t of high quality
  1. Spirit duplicating

In this process the master copy consists of a sheet of art paper that has a special carbon on its reverse side. This method of duplicating involves two parts, the preparation of the master and the production of copies from this master


  • Preparation a master is easy and quick
  • Color can be duplicated simultaneously
  • Its suitable for producing hard within work for diagrams, maps, charts etc.


  • Difficult to correct mistakes
  • Quite expensive can give only 200-300 copies from each master
  • The image becomes weaker as the carbon deposit is used
  • The quality of work reproduced resemble carbon copies unlike stencil duplicating

3 Printing

This is a special type of duplicating used in most large offices where thousands of copies eg 50,000 are required and their high quality printing is important

Its master copy is a metal plate or paper plate which is typed using a special type writer


  • The quality of reproduction is best of all processes
  • It’s a very economical if large quantities are needed
  • It’s speedy because up to 5,000 copies an hour can be produced
  • Any paper can be used
  • Plates can be stored and re used again
  • Different color printing and typefaces or sizes can be used


  • It’s expensive if only few copies are required
  • It needs specialized and trained operations
  • Separate runs are required for different colors
  • Additional office space required for duplicating and stores for materials

What are factors to be considered when deciding on the appropriate duplicating process

  • Number of copies required
  • Frequency of demand i.e. how often the machine will be used
  • Number of colors required
  • How urgently are copies needed
  • Who would receive the document, this would decide whether type written or printed. Type set appearance is preferred




Office correspondence

They  also  called mails. mailing which is the process of receiving and sending letters in any organization

Mails may be divided into three parts

  1. incoming mails
  2. outgoing mails
  3. interdepartmental mails


  • Incoming mails

Incoming mails section handles all correspondence coming to an organization

The following points provide a general guideline for dealing with incoming mails

Collecting mail

Mails in most cases collected by the messengers

There are fixed times for collection of mails usually in the morning and once in the afternoon

All the mails collected by the messenger should be brought to the office in a locked briefcase to be opened in the mail office

Opening mail

Registered mails must be signed for and dealt with immediately

Mails should be opened at least by two clerks in the presence of a supervisor or other senior official

Open all letters except those marked private, personal or confidential. Those will be opened by those they are addressed to

If a letter states having enclosures, there should be checked and securely affixed to the letters concerned to eliminate possibility of them getting misplaced

Re check envelops for contents before dis carding to make sure that they are really empty

Recording incoming mail

In small departments, amok may be kept to record all incoming mails but record at least all those letters that enclose cash or cheque etc. That are received by registered or forwarding mails to departments steps include

  1. Read through all the mails and sort into files urgent, important and routine
  2. Get files for any relevant or previous correspondence and clip letters to files
  • Distribute mails as quickly as possible after it has been received and sort out as delays may prove expensive
  1. Personal and confidential letters should be forward un-opened
  2. Mails finally are handed over to the boss sorted out e.g. routine, general, important, personal, confidential, registered mail etc.
  3. Those mails intended for more than one department should be dealt with accordingly
  • For very urgent letter  of immediate attention ⚠  of several officers, photocopies should be made out of such letters and sent to all of them thereby saving time
  • Outgoing mails

Delivering mails to mail office

Clear responsibility as to who would take outgoing mail from various departments to the mail office

There should be fixed timing for delivery of mail to mail office

Places i.e. out-trays should be known where to find letters

Mails should be sent to the mail office open not sealed except the confidential one

If any envelop is to be given special attention e.g to be sent by registered or express mail etc.a suitable note in the pencil should be made at the top of the envelop for guidance of the mail office staff

Preparing mail for dispatch

  • All letters received in the mail office should be checked
  • Letters should be matched to their correct corresponding envelope
  • Letters should be folded and then put in the envelops and sealed
  • Some firms use window envelops for outgoing mail to ensure that letters are not put in the wrong envelopes
  • They are then weighed for correct postage and the amount noted
  • Stamp the letters or parcels. This is done by hand or by the franking machine

Recording outgoing mails

The book records brief details three of the addressee, nature of the document and postage

If is a franking machine is used letters must be delivered to a post office

Registered and express mail should be taken to the post office and proper receipts and acknowledgements obtained




Organization and methods (o &m)

O&M refers to the systematic attempt on the part of an enterprise to improve and maintain office at a high level of efficiency.

It is through O&M that office operations and procedures are continuously improved. Work simplification is possible and better communication and economy are achieved

Objectives of O&M

  • Eliminate waste of time, human energy, space, equipment, stores and stationery
  • Improvement in output and quality of work
  • Improvement in office services
  • Making the staff efficiency conscious

Functions of organization and methods

  • Defining precisely objectives of different functions and operations
  • Drawing up a plan of work indicating the general and specific purposes of the tasks involved, nature of the information to be procured and the sources of information to be tapped
  • Making a thorough examination of the existing procedures
  • Making detailed study of the sources of information
  • Examination of all relevant facts gathered in the course of investigation and study and suggesting new or modified procedures if found necessary
  • Once the suggestions of the O&M department are accepted helping the administration and staff in implementing the suggestions

Outline the principles which guide O&M

  • All unnecessary operations should be eliminated
  • all operations which can, with advantages, be combined should be so combined
  • all operations should be in their correct sequence to avoid back tracking
  • all necessary operations should be as simple as possible
  • the shorter the office work cycle the higher will be the overall productivity
  • the work flow should not only be fast but also have an even tempo

What are steps in conducting O&M assignment

O&M functions should be a continuous process, but sometimes the O&M officer may be asked by higher management or a particular department manager to conduct a survey and make recommendations for improvement

In a particular area of operation

In conducting the assignment the O &M officer and the team will have to take the following steps

  1. Determine the objective
  2. Planning the assignment
  • Preparatory meeting
  1. Collecting the facts
  2. Analyzing the facts
  3. Submitting proposals for change
  • Helping in the implementation

What are the advantages and disadvantages of O&M?


  • Improves general efficiency of the office
  • Reduces the clerical and paper work and ultimately reduces wastage
  • Out down since unnecessary steps requiring clerical labor and documents are eliminated


  • It tends to have an adverse effect on staff morale
  • Work simplification is carried out theoretically which could not be workable when put in practice
  • It requires constant training on staff, so as to enable staff to cope with the introduced systems




 various aspects of office stationery and furniture

Definition office stationery- is a general term referring to all writing materials used in the office e.g. papers, envelops, rubber, ribbon, stencil, correcting fluid, stamp pad etc.

It’s necessary to maintain effective control on use of stationery projects the correct image of the company

Stationery control

  • The stationery should be bought centrally and in bulk to secure quantity discount but overstocking should be avoided.
  • The issuing system must be planned properly to eliminate wasteful consumption as far as possible
  • The proper control over the use of stationery must be included in the duties of office supervision
  • The stock must be maintained as little as possible
  • The good quantity paper must be used for important documents to customer so as to maintain the company’s goodwill
  • The possible re-use of stationery items should be explored
  • The stationery storage must be arranges so as to prevent deterioration and to save space,lighting and heating
  • Stock levels must be set out to avoid running out of items of stationery or overstocking
  • Purchasing of stationery
  • Receipt of stationery
  • Bin card
  • Issue
  • Stock verification

Discuss the aspects of office furniture

Definition office furniture consists of tables, chairs, desks and tools, storage and filing equipment like filing racks and cabinets, cupboard, lockers, safes etc.

Basic principles in selecting the furniture

  1. Suitability
  2. Comfort design
  • Durability
  1. Weight
  2. Space
  3. Cost
  • Hygiene
  • Usefulness appearance

Types of furniture

  1. Executive furniture

High officials have different tastes for furniture and the executive furniture is purchased according to their tastes

This is mainly to impress the visitors and it should add prestige of the person using it and the prestige of the firm

  1. Built in furniture

In the present period, buildings are constructed in space-saving method. Cupboards are mainly built  in the walls of the rooms

Thus expenditure is reduced and space is also saved. The cleaning job becomes easy because only the front portion needs to be cleaned

  1. General furniture

General furniture is designed to facilitate the work of clerks. The size of a table depends upon the nature of the work to be performed. Different clerks may be doing different types of work. The clerk who works on the ledgers requires a big table and chair according to the requirements

Guidelines or principles to be considered when purchasing furniture

  • Only required furniture should be purchased and its cost should be within reasonable limits
  • Multi-purpose use should be considered while planning the purchase of furniture
  • The furniture should use the space economically
  • The design of the furniture should be aimed as maximum comfort and convenience of the users
  • The top of the table will be adequate to work with
  • The drawers should slide in and out smoothly
  • The edges of the furniture must be rounded off
  • The back of the chair should be adjustable
  • Clerks should not be placed face to face because it encourages conversation
  • The furniture should be adaptable, simple, durable etc.





Is an approach to the theory of management which emphasizes the individual workers need for satisfactory relationship with other members of his work group and his need to participate in decision that affect significantly his work

Ways of improving human relations

  • Creation of congenital work environment
  • Provide enlightened leadership and set examples
  • Democratic and permissive climate in the organization
  • Proper and speedy redress of staff grievances
  • Personal attention to staff problems
  • Well planned communication systems
  • Abundant opportunities for personal growth
  • Treat staff with dignity and respect
  • Recognize them, and praise them in public
  • Be sincerely interested in their subordinates

Importance or role of human relations

  • Improve people-organization relationship
  • High productivity due to high motivation
  • Reduce industrial arrest
  • Reduced resistance to changes
  • Enhance development of team work



Outline reasons why open plan offices are popular

  • They are economical in terms of space
  • Supervision is easy
  • They minimize staff movement
  • Economy of equipment
  • Economy of lighting
  • Promote transparency of operations

What are duties of the accounts departments

  • Preparations of the final accounts
  • Preparations of the budget
  • Budget control
  • Credit control
  • Payment of salaries
  • Payment of debts
  • Receiving payments

Outline ways of safeguarding files against unauthorized access

  • Lock them up in cabinets
  • Restrict access to non-registry staff

Outline the advantages of using office forms

  • Time saving
  • Limit responses
  • Ensure uniformity of details

Outline ways in which an office worker may build good relations with seniors

  • Complete work or schedule
  • Follow instructions
  • Report work related difficulties or problems promptly and accurately
  • Requests for assistance if needed
  • Help where appropriate
  • Be courteous
  • Give feedback to confirm understanding
  • Adhere to policies and regulations

What are the functions of  a research and development department

  • Develop new methods of manufacturing
  • Discover new products
  • Explore new markets
  • Find ways of improving existing products
  • Develop better packaging

Explain factors to be considered when choosing a filing system

  • It should be easily accessible
  • It should be suitable for the type of correspondence
  • It should cater for future expansion
  • It should be suitable to work with
  • It should allow quick reference
  • It should be able to safe guard documents/information

What are the measures to be taken to reduce delays in the distribution of mail

  • Assign staff for distribution
  • Establish clear channels for distributions
  • Establish specific time for distribution-classify collection point
  • Institute proper follow up systems and fix responsibilities
  • Maintain constant communication with departments

Outline various advantages of office automation

  • Saving on time taken to perform in certain functions
  • Less labor may be required
  • The staff experience less fatigue
  • Less monotony compared to manual
  • Reduce paper work
  • Encourages specialization
  • Improves efficiency

What are the benefits of an office to an organization

  • It is a center for communication
  • It safeguards an organizations assets
  • It provides a place where records are kept
  • Its a meeting place for the organizations departments or clients

Outline the desirable qualities of a receptionist

  • Interested in people
  • Good memory
  • Patient
  • Tactful
  • Well-dressed/groomed
  • Mastery of official languages

Name the details which may be obtained from a file absent card

  • Name of the borrower
  • Department of the borrower
  • Date borrowed
  • Date returned
  • Name and number of the file

Explain the methods of preparing a master for duplication

  • By electronic scanner
  • By using a thermal copier
  • By using a type writer
  • By hand writing
  • By photographic/electrostatic processes

Describe the responsibilities of an office supervisor

  • He coordinates the work in the department
  • Monitors work progress
  • Distributes work among staff
  • Identifies training needs
  • Solving work related problems
  • Deals with staff issues e.g. discipline

What are the advantages of reproducing documents Using computer printers

  • The copies are neat
  • Printers are very fast
  • Colorized production is possible
  • Easy to correct errors
  • No preparation of an intermediary device
  • Storage of data is easy e.g flash disk

Suggest measures to improve accuracy in filing

  • Ensure that every document filed has the mark releasing it for
  • Sort papers and group them before filling
  • Place correspondence in the correct file
  • Arrange correspondence in chronological order with the most recent on top
  • File daily
  • Use a cross reference where applicable
  • Seek guidance when in doubt

Suggest ways in which an organization may control the quantities of stationery used by departments

  • Monitor the quantities used by each department
  • Appoint somebody to be in charge of stationery requisition
  • Issue stationery only against a signed requisition
  • Store stationery under right conditions to avoid wastage through deterioration
  • Set minimum and maximum levels of stock to overstocking
  • Have set times for issuing stationery
  • Issuing relevant stationery to relevant departments

What are the benefits of having an effective stock control system

  • It prevents pilferage
  • It ensures that stock levels are maintained
  • It minimizes the amount of capital tied up in stock
  • It minimizes wastage of storage space

What are measures a manager could take in order to enhance human relations in his departments

  • Allow initiative from staff
  • Fair distribution of work
  • Equal treatment in disciplinary cases
  • Accept constructive criticism
  • Sensitivity to workers feelings

What are benefits of a public relations departments to a customer

  • Addresses customer queries
  • Deals with customer complaints
  • Organizes community assistance projects
  • Creates awareness of the organizations activities/products

What are the challenges that employees face in coping with challenging technology

  • High cost of retraining
  • Limited access to training facilities
  • Inadequate time for training
  • Reluctance to embrace new technology

What are ways in which poor grooming and dressing can negatively affect human relations in the office

  • Inappropriate dressing may elicit negative comments from colleagues which may strain relationship
  • Bad breath and odor may lead to isolation of a colleague
  • Unkempt appearance draws wrong conclusion and encourages gossip which stains relationship
  • Showily dressing may be interpreted as pride or evidence of superiority complex which may lead to isolation
  • Excessive use of perfumes and make up may cause irritation to colleagues

Suggest ways in which an organization may promote its image to customers

  • Prompt delivery of goods and services
  • Presentable and effective front office staff
  • Prompt response to customer queries/complaints
  • Periodic press releases
  • Partnership with community in charitable events
  • Fair pricing of products

What is the procedure for stock -requisition for a department

  1. Establish required items and quantities
  2. Compare with allocated quota
  • Fill in the requisition slip
  1. Get authorization
  2. Submit requisition to store
  3. Verification by store clerk
  • Issue of required items
  • Record received items
  1. Distribute to users

What are organizational factors that could promote good human relations

  • Provision of a good working environment communication
  • Clear tasks and responsibilities
  • Provision of adequate tools and equipment for the job

What are responsibilities of a purchasing department

  • Purchasing goods and materials
  • Preparation of orders
  • Maintaining stock records
  • Maintaining records of supplies
  • Sourcing for suppliers

What are the effects of poor human relations in an office

  • Poor quality of work/service
  • Sabotage
  • Absenteeism
  • Lack of team work
  • Conflicts among staff
  • Low staff morale
  • Staff lateness

Outline factors to be considered when deciding record retention policy

  • Space available for use
  • Frequency of reference
  • Legal requirements
  • Need to retain documents in original form as evidence in court
  • Availability of duplicates in other departments
  • Equipment available for storage
  • Need of retention for auditory purposes

Suggest measures that an organization may take to ensure effective use of stationery

  • Issue stationery in reams and packets
  • Ensure there is proper follow up of use e.g. cheek dustbins for wasteful use
  • Recycle/re use of used stationery where possible e.g. printing paper envelops
  • Carry out regular inspection on stock taking
  • Provide good quality stationery
  • Restrict the amount of stationery to be used

Outline disadvantages of microfilming

  1. A reader is required in order to refer to the information
  2. Its difficult to locate the information required from the film
  • Poorly prepared film will not be readable
  1. It requires special equipment which is expensive
  2. Specialized knowledge is required to prepare the film and to refer
  3. Retrieval of information takes time

What are the ways in which staff can display good office etiquette

  • Time management -complete tasks on schedule observe official working hours
  • Response to different clients-handle them with tact, courtesy and diplomacy
  • Responsibility-show initiative, work without supervision

Discuss ways in which production department depends on the marketing department in an organization

  • It promotes the goods produced by the production department in an organization
  • It gives customers feedback to the production department
  • It trains the sales man and makes them knowledgeable about the different products produced by production department
  • It carries out market research and advises the production department in different product designs available in the market
  • It sells the goods produced by production department

Outline measures that the organization may take to enhance good public relations with its customers

  • Handling customers issues with urgency and concern
  • By providing official dress code
  • By providing suggestion boxes as a means of soliciting feedback from customers
  • By using appropriate communication with customers
  • By participating in charity events
  • By providing quality products

Outline services offered by an office to an organization

  • Filling documents
  • Storage of information and making the same available in future
  • Connecting the departments with customers ,suppliers etc
  • Circulating all necessary information to all concerned

What are benefits of using E-mail in office

  • Its a fast means of communication
  • The same message can be sent to many people simultaneously
  • Large amount of information can be sent inform of attachment
  • E-mail messages can be sent to the recipients mail box at any time at the senders convenience
  • Its cheap means of communication
  • Its a worldwide service

What are the reasons for filling documents

  • To preserve records for future reference
  • To protect records against damage
  • To provide evidence in case of any dispute e.g in a court of law
  • To keep the office tidy
  • Preserve documents from wear and tear

What are limitations of using carbon paper as a means of making copies of documents

  • Only few copies can be made at a time
  • Copies tend to fade with time
  • Confidentiality may be compromised
  • Copies may be untidy

What are the reasons for cross-referencing when filing documents

  • When more than one name is used by a person or company
  • When correspondence may be sought under more than one name
  • When firm is known by its initials
  • When the name has changed

What are the ways in which a worker can show consideration for others at work

  • Sharing resources and information fairly
  • Not making unnecessary noise
  • Taking up their work when colleagues are absent
  • Being sympathetic to their colleagues
  • Being respectful to colleagues
  • Listening to other peoples opinion

Outline the procedure used when handling outgoing mail

  • Mails should be collected from departments at a regular interval that are pre-arrangement
  • Clerks must ensure that letters are put into the correct envelops and all enclosures attached to relevant letters
  • Letter should be sorted according to the type of service required so that they can be weighed according to the category of service
  • Letters should then be stamped with the correct amount of postage
  • Where there is need to keep the record of the amount used on postage, the details of the mails should be recorded
  • Franked letters must be delivered at the post office counter and mails requiring special service, should be delivered at the post office and a receipt obtained

What are the reasons for choosing photocopying method to reproduce documents

  • Exact copies without loss of any details are obtained
  • Quicker than duplicating or printing as no need for the preparation of the master
  • Color copies can be obtained in some machines
  • Large sized documents can be reduced by some machines and smaller ones can be enlarged
  • There is no need to verify the number of copies as the quantity is preset before

What are the measures that should be taken to ensure that the forms designed are suitable

  • The writing surface, the style of print, the paper sequence of information and method of entry should be easy for rapid completion of the form
  • Good appearance and balanced arrangement of information of the form
  • Adequate space should be provided for the expected information
  • Every form should have an appropriate title
  • Should be cost effective
  • It should be easy to reproduce the form
  • The quality of paper and color must be appropriate

What are the factors/reasons that may discourage organization from using alphabetical filing method

  • In large systems it takes longer time to find papers
  • There is likely congestion under common names
  • It is difficult to forecast space requirement for different letters of the alphabet
  • There are possibilities of a document being filed under a different name due to differences in spellings

Highlight five measures that may be taken to minimize noise in an office

  • Carpets or rubber mats spread on the floor will reduce the sounds caused by the movements of the clerks and other people
  • Below the office machines which create noise in operation, felt pads can be placed which reduce noise
  • Calling bells can be replaced with buzzers
  • Telephone may be kept in sound-proof booths to reduce the sound
  • Clerks must be instructed to maintain calmness
  • Workers must be engaged fully during the office hours so that they don’t waste time over idle gossip
  • Banging or creaking doors should be fitted with rubber or felt steps to reduce sound

As an office manager you were asked by your boss to assess the best place to locate a new office. Discuss the factors you would consider while deciding about a new office site

  • Office premises should be located in a good area with good reputation
  • It should be located in those area where necessary facilities e.g. electricity, water, telephone etc.
  • Office premises should be close enough to those businesses or other concerned persons with whom your organization is required to deal in most of the cases
  • The office site must be suitable from the point of view of natural lighting temperature, cleanliness, safety etc.
  • It should be located in such a way that there must be no problem for future expansion
  • The cost of obtaining office premises must be reasonable and within the financial resources of the business

Outline the principles of office layout

  • The arrangement should allow for a smooth flow of work with minimum of staff movement
  • The floor space should be as free as possible to permit free movement
  • For the benefit of easy supervision of staff’ good and efficient appearance of the office, desks should arranged in a standard plan
  • All equipment e.g. filling cabinet, telephone etc. likely to be used by everybody in the office should be so sited that within easy reach of those who should use it.This reduces movements of staff and disturbance of work
  • The number and location of gangways should be allowed in such a way that each employee should be able to leave and reach his desk without having to disturb others.
  • The arrangement of furniture should not obstruct natural light and ventilation by placing them in front of windows


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