The Research ReportWHAT IS RESEARCH?                Just close your eyes for a minute and utter the word research to yours...
Definitions;         Research has been defined in a number of different ways.               A broad definition of research...
THE REPORT:                      It is important that the result of the study and the recommendations to solve       the p...
All reports should have an introductory section detailing their purpose of the       study,giving some background of what ...
The final part of the report;       The final part of the report will contain the conclusion drawn from the findings, in m...
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What is research


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What is research

  1. 1. The Research ReportWHAT IS RESEARCH? Just close your eyes for a minute and utter the word research to yourself. What kinds ofimages does this word conjure up for you? Do you visualize a lab with scientists at work with Bunsenburners and test tubes. Or an Einstein like character writing dissertations on some complex subject, orsomeone collection data to study the impact of a newly introduced day care system on the morale ofemployees? Most certainly, all these images do represent different aspects of research. Research, asomewhat intimidating term for some is simply the process of finding solutions to a problem after athorough study and analysis the situational factors. Managers in organizations constantly engagethemselves in studying and analyzing issues and hence are involved in some form of research activity asthey make decisions at the workplace.WHY MANAGERS SHOULD KNOW ABOUT RESEARCH? As a manager can face the competitive global market with its multitude of complex andconfusing factors with greater confidence. Knowledge of research not only helps one to look at the available information insophisticated and creative ways in the fast paced global environment that businesses face. E.g.;- modern technology.BUSINESS RESEARCH; Business research can be described as a systematic and organized effort to investigate aspecific problem encouraged in the work setting that needs a solution. It comprises a series of stepsdesigned and executed, with the goal of finding answers to the issues that are of concern to themanager in the work environment. This entire process by which we attempt to solve problems is called research. Thus,research involves a series of well-thought-out and carefully executed activities that will enable themanager to know how organizational problems can be solved. Or at least considerably minimized.RESEARCH AND THE MANAGER; A common experience of all organizations is that the managers there of encounterproblems big and small on a daily basis, which they have to solve by making the right decision, inbusiness, research is usually primarily conducted to resolve problematic issues in, or interrelated among,the areas of accounting, finance, management, and marketing.Prepared by, Arunachalam Maghilan Page 1
  2. 2. Definitions; Research has been defined in a number of different ways. A broad definition of research is given by Martin Shuttle worth - "In the broadest senseof the word, the definition of research includes any gathering of data, information and facts for theadvancement of knowledge." Another definition of research is given by Creswell who states - "Research is a process ofsteps used to collect and analyze information to increase our understanding of a topic or issue". The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines research in more detail as "a studiousinquiry or examination; especially : investigation or experimentation aimed at the discovery andinterpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories or laws in the light of new facts, or practicalapplication of such new or revised theories or laws". We can now define business research as an organized, systematic ,data-based, critical,objective, scientific or investigation into a specific problem, undertaken with the purpose of findinganswers or solutions to it. In essence, research provides the needed information that guides managersto make informed decisions to successfully deal with problems.THE RESEARCH PROPOSAL: Before any research study is undertaken, there should be an agreement between theperson who authorizes the study and the researcher as to the problem to be investigated, themethodology to be used, the duration of study, and its cost. This ensures that there are nomisunderstandings or frustrations later for both parties. This is usually accomplished through theresearch proposal. The research proposal drawn up by the investigator is the result of a planned, organized,and careful effort, and basically contains the following; 1. The board goals of the study 2. The specific problem to be investigated 3. Details of the procedures to be followed 4. The research design offering details on 1. The sampling design 2. Data collection methods 3. Data analysis 5. Time frame of the study, including information on when the written report will be handed over to the sponsors 6. The budget, detailing the costs with reference to specific items of expenditure.Prepared by, Arunachalam Maghilan Page 2
  3. 3. THE REPORT: It is important that the result of the study and the recommendations to solve the problem are effectively communicated to the sponsor, so that the suggestions made are accepted and implemented. Otherwise, all the effort with the expanded on the investigation on the vain. Writing the report concisely, convincingly and with clarity is perhaps as important, if not more, than conducting a perfect research study. Hence, a well – thought – out written report and oral presentation are critical. THE WRITTEN REPORT: The written report enables the manager too weigh the facts and arguments presented there in, and implement the acceptable recommendations, with a view to closing the gap between the existing state of affairs and the desired state. To achieve its goal the written report has to focus on the issues discussed below. The written report and its purpose; Reports could aim at different purpose and hence the form of the written report would vary according to the situations. It is important to identify the purpose of the report, so that it can be tailored accordingly. If the purpose is simple to offer details on some specific areas of interest requested by a manager. The written report and its audience; The organization of a report, its length, and focus on details, data presentation, and illustration will in part, be a function of the audience for whom it is intended. The letter of transmittal of the report would clearly indicate to whom the report is being sent. Characteristics of a well-written report; Despite the fact that report writing is a function of the purpose of the study and the type of audience to which it is presented, and accordingly has to be tailored to meet both, certain basic features are integral to all written reports. Meaningful organization of paragraphs, smooth transition from one topic to the next, apt choice of words, and specificity are all important features of a good report. the report should to the extent possible, be free of a technical or statistical nature. Care should also be taken to eliminate grammatical and spelling errors. COMPONENTS OF THE RESEARCH REPORT; It is obvious that the research report should bear a title that indicates in a sufficient manner what the study is about. It should have at the beginning a table of contents,the research proposal,a copy of the authorization to conduct the study,and an executive summary.Prepared by, Arunachalam Maghilan Page 3
  4. 4. All reports should have an introductory section detailing their purpose of the study,giving some background of what it relates to,and the problem studied,setting the stage for what the reader could expect in the rest of the report. INTEGRAL PARTS OF THE REPORT; The title page; The title of the report should sufficient indicate what the study is all about, Eg, A study of customer satisfaction on the pizza hut at tirupathi A study of portfolio balancing & risk management in investment firms In addition to the title of the project,the title page will indicate the name of the sponsor of the study,the names of the researchers and their affiliations,and the date of the final report. Table of contents; The table of contents with page references usually lists the important headings and subheadings in the report.a separate list of table and figures should also be in the table of contents. The research proposal and the authorization letter; A copy of the letter of authorization from the sponsor of the study approving the investigation and detailing its scope will be attached at the beginning of the report along with the research proposal, the authorization makes clear to the readers. The executive summary; The executive summary is a brief account of the research study that provides an overview,and highlights the following important information related to it;the problem statement ,sampling design,data collection methods used,result of data analysis,findings,and recommendations,with suggestions for their implementation. The introductory section; The introductory section starts with a statement of the problem under investigation.the research objective,together with background information of why and how the study was the case of basic research the introductory section will offer an idea of the topic that is researched,and why it is important to studyit. The body of report; In this part,the details of the interviews conducted ,the literature survey,the theoretical frame work,and the hypothesesare furnished. The design details such as sampling and data collection methods, as well as the nature and type of the study,the time horizon.the field setting,and the unit of analysis, will be described.Prepared by, Arunachalam Maghilan Page 4
  5. 5. The final part of the report; The final part of the report will contain the conclusion drawn from the findings, in most cases a list of recommendations for implementation will follow. Frequently a cost-benefit analysis will also be provided. Any limitations to the study. Acknowledgments; Help received from other is next acknowledged. Usually the people who assisted in the study by collecting the questionnaires, acting as liaison persons, helping in data analysis, and so on….are recognized and thanked. The organization is thanked for the facilities provided, and its members for responding to the survey. References; Immediately after the acknowledgments, starting on a fresh page, a list of the references cited in the literature review and at other places in the report will be given. If any in the text, are referenced either separately at the end of the report, or at the bottom of the page where the footnote occurs. Appendix; The appendix, which comes last, is the appropriate place for the organization chart, newspaper clippings or other materials that substantiate the text of the report, detailed verbal narration of interviews with members, it should also contain a copy of the questionnaire administered to the respondents. It would help the reader to follow the text.Prepared by, Arunachalam Maghilan Page 5