ABSTRACT This assignment emphasizes on Research Methods used in Management industry as mentioned in the title of this module. Research has become a very integral part of today’s industry, no matter in which area one wants to start the business or service, research has to be involved. So, the purpose of this module is to identify the research methods and techniques, and other related issues. The assignment is divided in three parts which illustrates the three learning outcomes of the module. The purpose of part one of this assignment is to make the student familiar with 1. Research questions or hypothesis 2.
Identify different methodologies used in research 3. Prepare an action plan and methods for monitoring and updating. Second part illustrates 1. Data collection methods i)Primary research technique ii)Secondary research technique 2. Analysis of appropriate date i. e. i)Qualitative Data ii)Quantitative Data And the third and final part shows how to: 1. Record findings 2. Present and summarize the findings in suitable methods 3. Evaluate the methodology and analysis of the findings 4. Propose recommendations for future research ? LEARNING OUTCOME 1 1. 1. Identification of Research Question/Hypothesis & Justification of Choice
This section of the assignments allocates us the task of selecting research criteria in which we are currently involved in, recently completed or want to make a fresh start. I would like to choose the topic of research in the telecommunication industry on lower level, i. e. internet cafe & phone booth systems. I have chose this topic as I have been working in an internet cafe myself and have seen the industry go as high and then towards its downfall too. The reason behind this according to my understanding and research is that every industry has its own peek and downfall periods.
The telecommunication industry got a boost with the introduction of VOIP (voice over IP). Some time ago using the internet was as expensive as buying a computer/laptop. But with the latest technology and research in the industry this got quite cheaper and nowadays people can buy an unlimited internet connection at their home for as cheap as ? 5 a month. 1. 2. Research Questions and Methodology My aim and question of research here is that why the internet cafe industry is going down and for this purpose I have prepared a small questionnaire for people who use internet cafe.
Question 1: What brings you in this internet cafe? Question 2: What do you like most about this place? Question 3: What improvements or changes would you like? Question 4: Do you have a computer and internet connection at home? Question 5: Why do you prefer to come to an internet cafe? I visited different internet cafe’s around the town and tried to get to talk to as much people as I could to have their opinion. As shown in the charts above most of the people like to go to internet cafe’s because they don’t have computer at home as they are visiting this country for short term or not yet bought a computer/laptop.
Some also mentioned they come for printing or scanning. Mostly people visit an internet cafe if it is clean, has a pleasant environment, service is good, better speed, friendly staff and help needed to use the computer is on hand. 1. 3. Action Plan for Updates As this is a topic or research area where it is not possible to limit it in a specific time period, rather here I had to be updated all the time, by the means of more research. I had to visit the internet places quiet frequently to keep myself up to dated with the ongoing events or culture of the places.
Telecommunication is a fast paced industry and is changing more rapidly than other comparative industries. But in the internet cafe’s these things doesn’t affect much as people who own them are reluctant to put the latest equipment unless someone is starting a new business and want new computers or products. The reason for that is obvious, people don’t want to invest anymore money in this business, they are happy with what they have and want to make as much money as they can from the same capital. ? LEARNING OUTCOME 2 2. 1. Data Collection Methods
In this part of the assignment I will discuss the different methods of data collection, analysis and techniques. I am going to outline the ways and techniques used to acquire data, types of data and how it is categorized in different sections. 1. Primary Technique This include the data which comes directly from the person or group being surveyed or questioned. This sort of data can be collected in various ways, most popular are: ?Questionnaires Like if you visit some restaurants e. g. pizza hut, you find a questionnaire on the table asking different questions to enhance and improve their services. Surveys Can be conducted in different ways, in today’s technological world the one very popular one is through internet, or can be hand written or questioning verbally. ?Observations This relates to a person doing a research and observes the changes in the business environment or any other related or given criteria. ?Interviews / group interviews A face to face questioning is also a great technique to find the facts, e. g. a very common is a job interview where the interviewer tries to assess the interviewee’s capabilities through asking different questions. ?Diaries / letters
This is also a technique but very less popular as access to diaries and letters of the researchers are limited, unless they publish it online. According to my own understanding it is a better technique as you get immediate data direct from the person or group. 2. Secondary Technique This is also known as desk research method or technique. In this method the data is not immediate or directly achieved. The main methods used for this kind of research are: ?Studies from other researchers Many people have researched using different methods and techniques and then publish their work online or in other ways for the benefit of new comers. Interpreting primary resources This means by checking the primary resources and interpreting with them to gather the data. ?Books / Articles Several authors have published their work and it is available in the form of books, articles and even in internet blogs. ?Documentaries They can be viewed through different means, and they are available in different medias as well, either in the form of written or an AV (audio video) format. E. g. many documentaries related to sea life and wild life are shown on different channels on TV. In all this study of mine my main source of data was collected through Primary research method.
As I was talking to people directly who were the users of these internet cafes. But also worth mentioning I also had to go and ask the people or the shop keepers around the cafe to have their opinions about the business. As mentioned in learning outcome 1 I have presented the questions and customer reviews in the form of charts (bar chart or pie chart) 2. 2. Qualitative Data vs. Quantitative Data The two major types of data to deal with are qualitative and quantitative data techniques. The way to attain them is through analysis and likewise there is qualitative analysis and quantitative analysis to collect the respective data.
Different authors and researchers have interpreted both in different ways and have presented theories for each of them. E. g. : “All research ultimately has a qualitative grounding” – Donald Campbell “There’s no such thing as qualitative data. Everything is either 1 or 0” – Fred Kerlinger (Both quotations from Miles & Huberman (1994, p. 40). Qualitative Data Analysis) Below I am going to explain to you both of these data types and analysis techniques in detail. 1. Qualitative Data: The aim of this type of data is to get the complete and detailed description. It is presented in different forms like words, pictures or objects.
It is more rich, time consuming and is not easy to be generalized. Researcher tends to work as a data gathering tool. “Qualitative data is a categorical measurement expressed not in terms of numbers, but rather by means of a natural language description. In statistics, it is often used interchangeably with “categorical” data. For example: favourite colour = “blue” height = “tall” Although we may have categories, the categories may have a structure to them. When there is not a natural ordering of the categories, we call these nominal categories. Examples might be gender, race, religion, or sport.
When the categories may be ordered, these are called ordinal variables. Categorical variables that judge size (small, medium, large, etc. ) are ordinal variables. Attitudes (strongly disagree, disagree, neutral, agree, strongly agree) are also ordinal variables, however we may not know which value is the best or worst of these issues. Note that the distance between these categories is not something we can measure. ” By Wikipedia 2. Quantitative Data: The aim of this type of data is to classify features, count them and construct statistical model in an attempt to explain what is observed. The esearcher uses different means of gathering data like questionnaires and tools to get numerical data, unlike the qualitative method where researcher behaves as a tool to gather data. This data is more in the form of numbers and statistics. This is more efficient but may miss contextual detail. “Quantitative data is a numerical measurement expressed not by means of a natural language description, but rather in terms of numbers. However, not all numbers are continuous and measurable. For example, the social security number is a number, but not something that one can add or subtract. For example: favourite colour = “450 nm” eight = “1. 8 m” Quantitative data always are associated with a scale measure. Probably the most common scale type is the ratio-scale. Observations of this type are on a scale that has a meaningful zero value but also have an equidistant measure (i. e. , the difference between 10 and 20 is the same as the difference between 100 and 110). For example, a 10 year-old girl is twice as old as a 5 year-old girl. Since you can measure zero years, time is a ratio-scale variable. Money is another common ratio-scale quantitative measure. Observations that you count are usually ratio-scale (e. g. , number of widgets). By Wikipedia The above explanations of both categories of data clearly identify and differentiate both type of data, and a pictured example above clarifies it even more. Now we will come back towards my research area to see which type of data research techniques I have used and how I categorize the data I have collected. Firstly most of the data I gathered comes under the category of qualitative data and the major source was through primary research technique. The reason is I interviewed the people myself and gathered the data directly where I (researcher) was acting as a data gathering tool.
I did use questionnaires and interviews to ask specific questions from the people using the internet cafes. Secondly, as discussed most of the data was of the qualitative nature, as when talking about the internet cafe, one cannot answer that this internet cafe is used because it is 30% of quality. As per the nature of the questions most of the data collected is qualitative and is shown in the charts given above. Somehow some answers were categorized as quantitative data, e. g. : question no. 5 shows the number of people who come to internet cafe to use internet, or printing.
And we know when we talking about numbers then we are relating to quantitative data. ? LEARNING OUTCOME 3 3. 1. Findings and summary In the last part of this assignment I am going to summarize my findings using suitable methods, evaluate the methodology used and analyze the finding and finally put my personal recommendations based on my findings and to identify areas for future research. 3. 1. 1. Findings As I used the questionnaire to attain data from different people as my major method of data collection, it was easy for me to maintain this questionnaire to keep a record a track of the answers given by people.
Since I didn’t ask any personal details from any of the people coming to use internet etc. there are no issues related to data protection. Second method which was used was personal interview for which I kept a diary putting person 1 and person 2 and so on to identify answers from different people. My findings from the whole process of this interviewing, questionnaire is that people still use the internet cafe in a huge quantity but since there is quite a lot of competition in this category of business, so the customers are divided in those different competitors. E. g. f someone is bothered about speed, he / she will use an internet cafe which is better in speed vice versa if someone is going there to get something printed, he / she will use the one which has a laser printer. Although there is a slight downfall in this industry because of the prices of computer are gone quiet low and people who can afford to buy a computer and an internet connection, they do buy it and prefer using it at home at their own ease. But even this kind of the segment of the customers occasionally visit the internet cafe for printing and scanning etc unless they buy these facilities at home too.
One very unusual category I came across was a person who had almost all the computer equipment at home but was still using the internet cafe because according to him he likes the environment of the internet cafe and can also get help immediately if he is stuck and having trouble with doing something on computer. And finally there is a category of internet users who are visiting this country or here on temporary basis and they even have computers / laptops at their place but don’t want to get in the internet connection contracts.
When I asked them why don’t they take internet dongles they said, they are not satisfied with the packages available and also even they are available mostly in contracted terms which these people don’t want. Above we have discussed the categories of people who use internet cafe’s solely for the purpose of internet or computer related facilities. But there are also other categories like people who don’t have a phone line at home come to use the phone booth services.
Some even have the phone line but are not satisfied with calling cards and calling directly abroad is expensive, so they use phone booths available in most internet cafes. The phone booths available in internet cafes are cheaper because they use VOIP (voice over IP) technology at the background to connect calls to international destinations. I have mentioned this technology in the start as a boost to telecommunication industry as through this technology the providers connect the calls with the help of internet to different world wide destinations instead of using satellite or other means which can prove very expensive. 3. 2.
Evaluation of used Methodology and analysis of findings The system and methodology I used as illustrated above in detail is the primary research technique and use of both qualitative and quantitative data analysis and research for both type of data. Although the major category was the qualitative data research methods, but there were two questions (ques. 4 & ques. 5 above) which can be categorized as quantitative type. Critically speaking these techniques proved quiet useful, but I still had trouble at times when someone gives an unusual answer to one of the questions which cannot be categorized in either qualitative or quantitative category.
E. g. I asked someone the reason of using the internet cafe? And the answer was ‘just’. To critically analyze my findings I would definitely say that to keep in the industry of internet cafe or rather let me quote it like this to keep successful in the industry of telecommunication and internet cafe one has to be updated on latest technology. As telecommunication is rapidly growing and new things are coming up everyday which can prove a lot cheaper for the business owners compare to those they are using currently, obviously they cannot keep changing the services veryday but they can definitely find a provider which can offer them a good deal to make them better then the competitors. Second thing I would like to mention is that a successful business in this category needs a clean and silent environment for most satisfaction of the people coming to use the services and this gives them a feel good sense and a feeling of preserving their privacy while using their email accounts etc. or even talking on the phone in the phone booths. Up to the mark equipment is also a major part, computers must not be too slow or too old, as this can annoy the customers and they might not visit next time.
All the provided services should be in good running order and if not latest then shouldn’t be oldest either. 3. 3. Recommendations for future research In future if I want to research on the same topic or if have to advise someone to research in this category, I would recommend the following: ?Don’t restrict to a specific area / shop: This means if someone is researching on internet cafe and telecommunication industry one should not limit himself to a specific area or region, rather try different shops in different areas of the city. ?Chose different categories of people:
From my experience I have seen that people from different ethnic backgrounds chose different sort of shops according to their own likes and dislikes. So don’t limit yourself to a specific type of people from the same ethnicity instead chose people coming from different cultures and ethnicities. ?Carefully choose your questions: Be very careful when you are choosing which questions to ask as the whole research depends on the questions you ask and this is going to be the base of research. ?Number of questions: Don’t ask too many questions as this can annoy people easily and will not help you either. Target correct people: Don’t go to an employee working in the internet cafe as they might misguide you or give you the wrong picture according to their own understanding, rather contact people / users directly. ?Research Techniques: Before even starting the research you need to chose your questions and according to the nature of these questions, an appropriate research technique and data analysis method is chosen. Be very careful in not mixing the data analysis method for qualitative and quantitative type of data and analysis.