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  1. 1. WHAT IS RESEARCH?Research is an often-misused term, its usage in everyday language very differentfrom the strict scientific meaning. the field of science, it is important to move away from the looser meaning and useit only in its proper context. Scientific research adheres to a set of strict protocolsand long established structures.Often, we will talk about conducting internet research or say that we areresearching in the library. In everyday language, it is perfectly correctgrammatically, but in science, it gives a misleading impression. The correct andmost common term used in science is that we are conducting a literature review.WHAT IS RESEARCH? - THE GUIDELINESFor a successful career in science, you must understand the methodology behindany research and be aware of the correct protocols.Science has developed these guidelines over many years as the benchmark formeasuring the validity of the results obtained.Failure to follow the guidelines will prevent your findings from being accepted andtaken seriously. These protocols can vary slightly between scientific disciplines,but all follow the same basic structure.
  2. 2. Types of process?I. Pricing StudiesWe help you determine the ideal pricing for your new product launches as well asfor existing products. We can also measure the market standards in pricing for thatproduct category vis-à-vis competitors. We capture data based on dynamic pricing,i.e. we can calculate pricing based on different variables. We also create severalrandomized choices for respondents which can be idealistic or realistic. We cantailor make interfaces for your product shelving and design the look and feel of theconjoint as per your specific requirements.II. Package and Product TestingWe do product and package testing to estimate consumer and market response for anew product going to market. On the basis of the data captured from this testing,our clients can design more effective product launches taking into considerationthe various product attributes and market zones.We can also test vis-à-vis competitors how the product will fare in terms ofproduct attributes.III. Needs AssessmentDo you need to obtain specific information regarding your organization and areasfor best practice implementation? AbsolutData’s Best Practices Surveys can helpyou measure your target audience’s opinions about their needs and aspirations. Wecan help you assess the effectiveness of:
  3. 3. Sales Strategy and Customer Management - the impact of your strategyformulation and communication process across your sales organization,Sales Talent management - Effectiveness of your hiring processes and cultivationof employees/manpowerSales Process Design and Productivity – sales process and the support provided forits executionMetrics and Rewards – Monitor and measure performance as well as the rewardssystem in place at your organizationThese surveys consist of agree/ disagree types of radio button questions and areideal for Managers, Representatives or Operational Managers.)IV. Employee Skill Assessment StudiesIn order to accurately identify where the various organizations can target their skillimprovements, we program surveys for organizational Sales Skill Analysis. Thesetypes of surveys are known as Upskilling Surveys.These projects provide a valuable opportunity for the employees to tell theorganization what they must do in order to succeed.Usually, a particular sales team is nominated by the manager(s) to participate in theAssessment for the project. To gain an understanding of current capabilities, theteam members in the focus roles will first be asked to do a self-assessment of theskill model. Then, the direct manager will perform an assessment, using teammembers’ initial feedback as a starting point.
  4. 4. These surveys ask the team members to consider their capabilities across a broadrange of skills, some of which are core requirements of their current position, andsome of which will increase in importance as the business evolves.Usually, the survey consists of agree/ disagree types of radio button questions.They may be for the Managers, representatives or operational managers. Also,these surveys require complex mapping. For example:The login page may direct the manager to assess various employees using the linkinserted.The manager can view the responses of their employees.The manager can view the names of the employee etc.V. Employee Productivity SurveysOur main offering in Employee Productivity Surveys is Time and ProductivitySurvey (TPA Surveys).This type of survey is typically conducted for the sales processes. It offers the teammember the opportunity to provide confidential feedback directly to the leadershipon how the executive team can help them work more effectively.Specifically, questions are asked about the amount of time for trade off betweenselling versus administrative activities, the effectiveness of the various salestools/resources available, and the team member’s personal sales process.
  5. 5. This survey contain following major sections:• Sales Activity Section - This section focuses on how they spend their time.• Sales Process & Strategy Section - This section will focus on the variousprocesses and strategies they employ in the role.• Sales Resources Section - This section will focus on the sales resources and toolsthat are available for them in their role.• Other section – this section asks the demography etc.These surveys are for both Managers and representatives.VI. Customer SatisfactionThis type of survey is used for organizations to identify skills that are critical formeeting the needs of their customers. Once these skills are identified theorganization intends to dedicate training and development resources to these keyfocus areas.As part of this survey, we target a select group of customers whose feedback isstrongly valued by the organization. The type of questions asked is mixed,including:Background and history of the customer relationshipCustomer rating for the organization’s skillsVII. Ad/Copy TestingThis type of survey is done to track the audience mindset about the client’sproduct. Estimate if they are well informed about your product or not, if the ad isworking or not, if the ad is converting into sales. We can also make productattribute matrixes based on client requirements to test where the ad fits on thematrix.
  6. 6. VIII. Competitor Research and AnalysisEstimate how competitors are faring on similar products. Estimate market share,calculate and compare market standing vis-à-vis competition.IX. Tracking and Market PerformanceWe can conduct a time based analysis over different periods of time, to understand:Customer churn out over a period of time and emergence of new customersProduct performance in marketThe benchmarking of your product/services against the overall market, comparablebusiness models, and other competitive models by geographical region. Thesecontribute significantly in validating existing business initiatives and developingmore effective business strategies.X. Brand and Corporate Image ResearchAcross multiple countries, multi lingual, maxdiff conjoint is used to analyze thebrand image and how consumers align to the concepts of the brand. We also assesswhether consumers prefer personal use or corporate use of the product/brand. Thistype of surveys is specifically relevant in cases where sales are based on thebrand’s image and not the product in particular. We measure the product’s brandequity in the market as well as the brand perception vis-à-vis competition.
  7. 7. Process of research?Problem Recognition & DefinitionAll research begins with a question. Intellectual curiosity is often the foundationfor scholarly inquiry. Some questions are not testable. The classic philosophicalexample is to ask, "How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?" While thequestion might elicit profound and thoughtful revelations, it clearly cannot betested with an empirical experiment. Prior to Descartes, this is precisely the kind ofquestion that would engage the minds of learned men. Their answers came fromwithin. The modern scientific method precludes asking questions that cannot beempirically tested. If the angels cannot be observed or detected, the question isconsidered inappropriate for scholarly research.A paradigm is maintained as much by the process of formulating questions as it isby the answers to those questions. By excluding certain types of questions, welimit the scope of our thinking. It is interesting to note, however, that modernphysicists have began to ask the same kinds of questions posed by the Easternphilosophers. "Does a tree falling in the forest make a sound if nobody is there tohear it?" This seemingly trivial question is at the heart of the observer/observeddichotomy. In fact, quantum mechanics predicts that this kind of question cannotbe answered with complete certainty. It is the beginning of a new paradigm.Defining the goals and objectives of a research project is one of the most importantsteps in the research process. Clearly stated goals keep a research project focused.The process of goal definition usually begins by writing down the broad andgeneral goals of the study. As the process continues, the goals become more clearlydefined and the research issues are narrowed.Exploratory research (e.g., literature reviews, talking to people, and focus groups)goes hand-in-hand with the goal clarification process. The literature review isespecially important because it obviates the need to reinvent the wheel for everynew research question. More importantly, it gives researchers the opportunity tobuild on each others work.
  8. 8. Creating the Research DesignDefining a research problem provides a format for further investigation. A well-defined problem points to a method of investigation. There is no one best methodof research for all situations. Rather, there are a wide variety of techniques for theresearcher to choose from. Often, the selection of a technique involves a series oftrade-offs. For example, there is often a trade-off between cost and the quality ofinformation obtained. Time constraints sometimes force a trade-off with the overallresearch design. Budget and time constraints must always be considered as part ofthe design process (Walonick, 1993).Many authors have categorized research design as either descriptive or causal.Descriptive studies are meant to answer the questions of who, what, where, whenand how. Causal studies are undertaken to determine how one variable affectsanother. McDaniel and Gates (1991) state that the two characteristics that definecausality are temporal sequence and concomitant variation.The word causal may be a misnomer. The mere existence of a temporalrelationship between two variables does not prove or even imply that A causes B.It is never possible to provecausality. At best, we can theorize about causalitybased on the relationship between two or more variables, however, this is prone tomisinterpretation. Personal bias can lead to totally erroneous statements. Forexample, Blacks often score lower on I.Q. scores than their White counterparts. Itwould be irresponsible to conclude that ethnicity causes high or low I.Q. scores. Insocial science research, making false assumptions about causality can delude theresearcher into ignoring other (more important) variables.SamplingIt is incumbent on the researcher to clearly define the target population. There areno strict rules to follow, and the researcher must rely on logic and judgment. Thepopulation is defined in keeping with the objectives of the study.Sometimes, the entire population will be sufficiently small, and the researcher caninclude the entire population in the study. This type of research is calleda census study because data is gathered on every member of the population.
  9. 9. Usually, the population is too large for the researcher to attempt to survey all of itsmembers. A small, but carefully chosen sample can be used to represent thepopulation. The sample reflects the characteristics of the population from which itis drawn.Data CollectionThere are very few hard and fast rules to define the task of data collection. Eachresearch project uses a data collection technique appropriate to the particularresearch methodology. The two primary goals for both quantitative and qualitativestudies are to maximize response and maximize accuracy.When using an outside data collection service, researchers often validate the datacollection process by contacting a percentage of the respondents to verify that theywere actually interviewed. Data editing and cleaning involves the process ofchecking for inadvertent errors in the data. This usually entails using a computer tocheck for out-of-bounds data.Feature of reaserch?To stay abreast of trends in research and development at home and abroad, theOffice of Research and Development was established on August 1, 2000. Currentlythere are three divisions–Academic Development Evaluation, Research andManagement, and Industry-Academic Cooperation–which function as the hub toenhance research productivity and to increase the R & D competitive edge of theuniversity.
  10. 10. To encourage interdisciplinary cooperation and academic excellence, the R & DOffice: Conducts surveys related to research and publications at regular intervals Encourages applications for research grants from government agencies as well as the private sector Implements policies to encourage and assist faculty to apply for research grants Awards publications in SCI/SSCI journals to put Fu Jen among the leaders in research in Taiwan Establishs interdisciplinary academic clusters and supports them with research grants to form unique features of the universityResearch Focus:To respond to the need of the society by providing a theoretical ground, the R & DOffice: Integrates research related to the Church and faith, ethics, and religious studies by constructing a theoretical backbone, the Fu Jen School, so that the Catholic identity of Fu Jen can be manifested through its research Strengthens the productivity of research centers, including: Institute of Scholastic Philosophy, John Paul II Peace Institute, Monumenta Serica Sinological Research Center, Center for the Study of Science and Religion, Catholic History Research Center, Pre-Qin and Han Dynasties Research Center, Center for Corporate Governance and Business Ethics, Faculty Development Center for Medical Educators, Chinese Textiles and Clothing Culture Center, Organizational Renovation Studies Center, Innovation and Incubation Center, Human Ecology Area Studies Center, Marketing Research Center, Survey & Statistical Analysis Research and Consultancy Center.
  11. 11. University Development:To prepare a comprehensive groundwork for solid future development, the R & D: Charts the mid and long-term development of the university; examines the scale and recruitment quota of academic departments in order to readjust priorities in university development Investigates possibilities for the merging of departments according to accreditation resultsIndustrial-Academic Cooperation:To motivate research and enhance corporate value, the R & D Office: Administers and facilitates faculty research projects which link academic research to the industrial sector in order to boost the value of research, create financial feedback to the university, and at the same time form a mutually beneficial relationship Assists in the publication of industrial-academic cooperative research and application for patents Coordinates related policies and encourages faculty and research teams to participate in joint projects