The president of the Association of Liberian Human Resource Professionals (ALHRP), Jonah S. Kotee, said ALHRP is committed to building the capacities of human resource professionals across the country to ensure that they perform well, and address the country’s HR professionals gap.
The ALHRP was established in May 2013 with the mission to establish and maintain partnerships with human resource professionals and institutions in addressing people management challenges, including capacity building that ensures effectiveness and sustainability.
Mr. Kotee made the assertion yesterday at the kickoff of a two-day intensive ongoing training of over 80 human resource professionals from different institutions held at the Monrovia City Hall.
“We are now collaborating with the Cuttington University (CU) Graduate School to ensure that we start to train people as professional HR starting with a diploma level. There is a gap in the HR profession, because Liberia does not have any university offering HR as a course, which makes it a gap in the country,” he said.
Mr. Kotee said since the inception of the association over the years, it has made tremendous contributions to the society and the profession through the successful execution of seven professional trainings with topics including the Decent Work Act, organization development and recruitment skills among others.
Today, he said, “We have a professional HR from Ghana that has come to lecture HR professionals on how they go about doing HR standard practices so that Liberian HR professionals can borrow some and adopt as an organization and people.”
According to Kotee, ALHRP intends to collaborate with the Ministry of Labor in rolling out portions of the Decent Work Act, creating and sharing job opportunities to support members and non-members and providing HR management consultancy for some international organizations, including GIZ/Participe, Action Aid Liberia, Medical Mondiale, ArmLib Liberia among others.
“We also want to ensure the enactment of legislation to function more as a regulatory autonomous agency for HR professionals, among others. As part of efforts and collaboration and advocacy in the next five years, the ALHRP intends to establish human resource management as a full fledged academic program to offer bachelors and masters,” he said.
T. Nelson Williams, a Member of the Board, said there is a need for Human Resource managers to be taken seriously at their various institutions, because they make a difference, especially ensuring that there is a good workforce.
Mr. Williams said the HR profession is a strategic business partner to all the agencies in the world, both the private and public sector, noting that chief executive officers have realized the importance of HR and ensuring that their capacities are built to make business successful.
To improve the sector, “We need commitment from the Civil Service Agency, the Ministry of Labor and the entire leadership to put emphasis on human resource management. We also need to ensure that they are respected and be viewed as strategic business partners in order to move our businesses forward,” Mr. Williams said.
Today, “We have a group now that is poised or responsible for building the capacity of people in the workforce in Liberia. We need people that can perform at a high level, because HR professionals are there to hire a good workforce and make sure that they are performing in their respective place.”
William T. Mbayoh, Jr., one of the participants, said he was delighted with the level of the training thus far, which is welcoming for Liberia, particularly the human resource profession.
“HR has been my field for several years and it’s great to have a new breed of expertise on board to tell us how HR works in Ghana and other parts of the continent. This training will influence the work we do as human resource managers at the end of this training,” Mr. Mbayoh said.
The training was also graced by ECOBANK managing director, George Mensah-Asante, who expressed his satisfaction about the training of HR professionals in the country.
Kojo Amissah, the trainer from CITAM Limited with offices in Ghana, said his organization has seen the need to collaborate with ALHRP to ensure that they raise the capacity of HR professionals and share experiences around West Africa.
“I realize that HR in Africa is the same since my visit to some of the businesses in Liberia yesterday. Interestingly, everyone is talking about capacity building, which mean the skills are actually limited,” Mr. Amissah said.
CITAM Ltd was established in 2007 as a training, consulting and recruiting firm to provide world-class service to individuals and organizations.
Over the years, however, it has gained the reputation as a major firm providing technology and management solutions with a focus on human resource management.