1.0 Introduction

In a bid to meet the challenges of teeming population in countries all over the world, government and private investors have come into the educational sector to establish institutions of higher learning. An integral part of the facilities made available in such institutions are hostel accommodation spaces for students to create an academic community which will help facilitate effective refinement and development of the students. However, most of these hostel facilities especially in institutions in developing countries are managed with conventional manual methods and this has been impacting negatively on the effective resource utilization and overall efficiency of these academic institutions. The manual method of managing and administering hostels in institutions is obviously not effective as it is attributed to the following challenges:

Difficulties in record management – data redundancy, difficulty in data update; difficulty in data recovery; difficulties in generating information about those students who had left the hostel, vulnerability to manipulations/human error;
Difficulty in tracking the history of a facility – a room or chalet or building;
Registration for hostel allocation is done manually, thus over time, handling of the paper files becomes cumbersome and untidy as the population of student increases;
The whole exercise is time-consuming and a waste of human and material resources.
The proposed system provides solution to the problems of traditional method of managing hostel facilities. The system attempts to improve institutions’ hostel services for stakeholders – administrator, management and students of the hostel. It automates the administrative processes and reduces the stress associated with searching for information on a student/a facility in a bundle of registers. It is specially designed to centrally allocate and manage accommodation spaces in a typical student’s hostel. The system user can store the data of those students who had left the hostel, and check the personal profile (retrieves from the database) of all the current students within few minutes. The students in the hostel will be recognized from the ID number allocated at the point of room allocation. This system automatically calculates all the bills and issues notifications.

The system has a unique approach to tracking information and report generation which is vital in data handling. This makes the proposed system more robust, more reliable and efficient. Entire gamut of the system comprises of several modules for room allocation, inventory management, time-tabling, transportation scheduling and other administrative activities. It can be well defined to track performance within the application of hostel accommodation system. The system uses one single central database to handle the complexity of student’s hostels management and all administrative functions.

The hostel facility management software is user-friendly application package specifically designed to automate, coordinate and look after all the processes of managing hostel facility. It is useful especially in large educational institutions with college hostels, school hostels, and organizations like military, large corporations and establishments with working employees’ hostels. All the functions that hostel management entails can easily be managed by hostel management software

1.1 Theoretical Background

There has been an astronomical increase in the number of educational institutions established especially in the last four decades all over the world. This development has brought education to the doorstep of people. Consequently it has increased knowledge and helped produce a population of enlightened citizens who can easily abide by the rules of civilized society and contribute meaningfully to the process of democratic governance. Most of the newly established educational institutions however, are using the old conventional techniques for managing their assets especially hostel facilities. This old techniques with its inherent limitations have impacted negatively on the overall organizational efficiency of this educational systems. In this paper, the development of an automated hostel accommodation management system is proposed.

Accommodation problem of the students has become the major aspect that the management board of the university should consider. The job for the college management has become more complicated. During the hostel registration in previous semesters, the situations were messy, unsystematically. Therefore, the college management board should try to avoid this type of situation. In handling these problems, a more reliable, systematic and easy-to-use computer system for the hostel allocation should be implemented. In addition, to make our society a caring society, the welfare of each student should be high-lighted, especially for students who are having a physical disfigurement in hostel allocation. To manage the hostel more systematically, a more reliable system is needed. The system of hostel allocations that is being used now is still done manually and partly computerized while the numbers of students who accommodate in the hostel keep increasing annually. To tackle the problem, the allocation of hostels should be fully computerized for the coming new intake

1.2 Statement of Problem

For the current, manual implementation hostel allocation system, the major problems faced by the college managements are defined as below:

Time consuming, cost ineffective and less productive in hostel allocation task performed by the accommodation officers.
Hard or difficult to manage the documents of the students’ accommodation records.
Not enough physical space to keep all the documents.
The information of the students could not be updated easily and frequently.
Difficulty in viewing the information of the students
Many redundant works performed by different staff.
Lack of manpower in handling and managing all the files, records, documents and students’ application due to the increase of the numbers of the students annually.

1.3 Aim and Objectives of the Study

The aim of the study is to develop an automated resource management system for hostel allocation. The following are the objectives of the study:

To develop a database application to manage hostel allocation.
To provide a system that will aid easy management of hostel allocation records.
To develop a system that will facilitate easy retrieval of hostel allocation reports.
To implement a system that can be easily used to update hostel allocation records.

1.4 Significance of the Study

The following represents the significance of the study:

It will provide an easy way for the University of Uyo to manage its hostel allocation.
It will guarantee easy storage and retrieval of hostel allocation reports.
It will provide an avenue to quickly update hostel allocation records
It will replace the manual system of allocating hostel
It will save time and office space due to the elimination of flat files and the use of computer systems.
The study will serve as a useful reference material to other scholars seeking related information.
1.5 Scope of the Study

This study is centered on Automated Resource Management System for Hostel Allocation using University of Uyo as a case study. It focuses on utilizing a database to manage hostel allocation information for students only.

1.6 Organization of the Research

This research work is organized into five chapters. Chapter one is concerned with the introduction of the research study and it presents the preliminaries, theoretical background, statement of the problem, aim and objectives of the study, significance of the study, scope of the study, organization of the research and definition of terms.

Chapter two focuses on the literature review, the contributions of other scholars on the subject matter is discussed.

Chapter three is concerned with the system analysis and design. It presents the research methodology used in the development of the system, it analyzes the present system to identify the problems and provides information on the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed system. The system design is also presented in this chapter.

Chapter four presents the system implementation and documentation, the choice of programming language, analysis of modules, choice of programming language and system requirements for implementation.

Chapter five focuses on the summary, constraints of the study, conclusion and recommendations are provided in this chapter based on the study carried out.

1.7 Definition of Terms

Hostel: An inexpensive place for accommodation usually found in boarding schools.

Allocate: To set aside something specifically for a person or something.

Accommodate: To provide someone with a place to say

Students: Someone who studies at a school, college or university.

Management: The planning, organizing and controlling of the affairs of an organization, institution or business.

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