RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Effective management of call centre
EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT OF CALL CENTRES LOOKING AT ISSUES OF WORK DESIGN, STAFF MOTIVATION, RECRUITMENT AND TRAINING, PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT:
Research MethodologyMethodologyThe methodology chapter presents a depiction as well as a discussion of the methodology employed in research. This entails the compilation of information and data analysis to examine the hypotheses. The research philosophy, express the research rationale as well as the approach. It also describes the research strategy and finalizes with the delineation of data compilation and sample selection. Research StrategyThe research strategy signifies the most remarkable aspect in the entire research as well as the survey process is the research methodology. This is universally a method of acquiring data from preceding researches, magazines, articles, and journals. This gathering of information mainly facilitates the researcher in the short-term as well as in the long-term. Consequently, the researcher may implement diverse inferences through the research study. The research strategy chapter focuses mainly on the rudimentary aspects of the research study, which bear significance to the researcher. These critical qualities may encompass the research procedures, compilation of information, and utilization of diverse types of information. The chapter entails several merits as well as demerits of varied types of information, which enable the reader to straightforwardly comprehend the merits and de-merits associated to a specific method. The key aspect of contemplating a research process is to generate an insightful school of thought so that the researcher may achieve a credible conclusion.
Research PhilosophyThis chapter concerns assumptions on the perspectives pertinent to life, which underpin the research strategy as well as the chosen methods. The most universally known research philosophies, also referred to as epistemology are realism, interpretive, and positivism.
Research PurposeThree dissimilar research purposes include descriptive, explanatory, and exploratory. The descriptive research studies endeavor to depict situations as precisely as possible. In contrast, exploratory research studies are carried out when new insights ought to be attained in a specific focus of interest. This occurs when principally a familiar research subject matter is being scrutinized from a special angle. With the execution of explanatory research studies, elementary relationships between diverse variables are appraised and elucidated. This research will assume an exploratory study approach in investigating the linkages between how work design, staff motivation and training affects performance in call centers. Statistical analyses like correlation tests are usually executed in this type of research in order to achieve diverse insights into diverse relationships.
Research ApproachA research project design may assume two dissimilar approaches namely deductive or inductive. With a deductive approach, pertinent theories are verified and underlying relationships are explained. With the inductive approach, empirical data is initially ascertained, from which the hypotheses of the study is derived. This approach is also referred to as the qualitative approach. For this reason, the objectives of the research are founded, which are subsequently validated by means of quantitative methods.
Quantitative Approach to ResearchThe quantitative research methodology is considered as the most ordinary technique utilized in scientific researches. This approach utilizes data mined from diverse numerical based facets, and measurements. It appraises numerical data which are accordingly utilized to interpret the outcomes. The core philosophy of this study is dealt with statistical and numerical methods. While utilizing the quantitative research approach, it is essential that the researcher utilizes statistical data correlated to research areas and subjects.
Any discrepancies faced between numerical data and statistical data that are gathered from dissimilar sources in a sample population may be e illustrated by the quantitative based approach. The universal method of acquiring data in this case is via questionnaires or interviews. In order to authenticate or examine the hypothesis a number of mathematical or statistical techniques would be subsequently utilized. The researcher is not permitted to influence or corrupt the research as well as its components. The quantitative approach applies analysis of accrued information through statistical techniques whereby measures or the averages of central tendency are used on the sampled population.
Limitations and Advantages of Quantitative ResearchUtilization of quantitative measures, like quantitative data, is uncomplicated in gathering, translating, and storage, than a range of other forms of information collection methods. It also saves a lot of time in comparison to other forms of information collection methods. Any disparities in variables are easily found out and regularly measured. It is usually easy to compare the dissimilar variables in the sample data with the historical data through this approach.
The dominant limitation to this approach is the over generalization engaged, which may not produce the requisite information. Another drawback is the implicit generalised situation of the factual world. The utilized data would be objective and consequently, the data which is not capable of assessment numerically or statistically would by and large not generate any useful results. Another negative aspect of employing this approach is that, the whole research is executed in a controlled environment. Consequently, the numerical or statistical outcomes would subsequently be specific to the research. Such research outcomes would not be adequately flexible to be applied to generalised environments. Consequently, the statistical measures acquired cannot be appropriate in similar environments in the factual world. The quantitative approach thus, limits the scope of the research to some specific variables in specific situations whereby other essential variables may be neglected.
The deductive approach was considered as being the appropriate approach in this study. General theories were considered, which led to the formulation of the aims of the study. The questionnaire that would facilitate the data collection process was set up. The purpose is to test the existing literature to either reject or confirm the original theories towards the conclusion of the study. In this study, the research design will employ interviews whereby quantitative research techniques will be employed.
Research StrategyThe research strategy may be established on the basis of the research approach, as well as philosophy. It is essential to select the appropriate research strategy that will help in answering the research question (s) and meeting the research objectives. This dissertation pursues the deductive approach. The research strategy of choice in this dissertation is a survey, which is a usually pursued strategy in business research. This is because it permits the gathering of huge quantities of data from a considerable population in the most efficient way.
The rationale for employing questionnaires and surveys was that, they provide an unsophisticated access to the study of principles, and intent of the person who completed the questionnaire. Questionnaires or surveys may be customized to accumulate general data from roughly every human population. The data compiled from questionnaires or surveys is in essence quantitative in nature. In the course of the interview, the interviewer’s presence may encourage participation, and the interviewer may be able to judge the scope to which the exercise is treated sincerely.
Respondents will grant informed consent prior to their contribution in the survey. The researcher will guarantee this by informing the relevant respondents concerning the purpose of this study. This will include, the contents, time limit of the survey, as well as the potential risks and benefits pertinent to the study. The respondents will be updated in regard to their freedom to withdraw from or participate in the study. The respondents will as well be informed regarding the privacy of their identities. The researcher will guarantee this by not connecting the respondents to their answers in the survey.
Primary Study Sampling and Data Collection In order to realize the dissertation aims and also compile data for hypothesis testing, a questionnaire was carried out. Sampling was constructive in restricting collection of data to a explicit subgroup which is of significance according to the dissertation aims. It is therefore imperative to delineate the pulled sample population.
Methods of Data Collection This dissertation design employs the utilization of interviews in the event that quantitative research techniques will be employed. Secondary as well as primary data will be coalesced in this research in pursuit of the study aims.Qualitative Approach to ResearchThe quantitative approach is a method to examine an established hypothesis based on statistical and mathematical techniques. In comparison, the qualitative approach creates an original theory by itself. Qualitative approach facilitates in giving significance to real-time experiences. It also grants meaning to the experiences in order to improve the reach to a variety of concerns. This approach is applied in research in order to investigate the richness, saturation, as well as the degree of complexities. The qualitative based approach is based on different viewpoints, such as the absence of real experiences. This is usually referred to as realism. Realism contrasts for different people and differs with the passage of time. Realism also posits that knowledge has significance only in the event of a specific situation or only in a precise context. This forms the rationale as to why the researcher’s own perception plays a critical role in this approach. The researcher’s role in this regard would be to research and utilize effectively his aptitude towards creating innovative ideas and creative thinking.
Limitations and Advantages of Qualitative ResearchThe qualitative approach is adequately flexible to adopt change in accordance with the prevailing situation. This approach presents the researcher with the opportunity to focus primarily on the research process. The interactive questionnaire proposed for the qualitative approach facilitates the survey participants to communicate their ideas and explanations, thus resulting in detailed knowledge and creativity. This approach does not review the samples only, but also makes an allowance for the knowledge utilized by the researcher as well as the participants. The participants are relatively more involved and motivated in the research process since the questionnaire in this study is descriptive based.
A disadvantage of utilizing this approach would include the prejudiced nature of the researcher and particularly the research participants in connection with any of the issues in the questionnaire or the research hypothesis. Another prominent shortcoming of the qualitative based approach is the subjectivity and restricted capacity of the present research. This intends that in the event that, the research is conducted by use of similar samples, it may produce outcomes that would be varying. Qualitative based approach requires s greater time in comparison to the quantitative approach. Data will be gathered through holding interviews with the employees in identified call centres. A structured semi-interview procedure will be developed. This will entail closed as well as open ended questions in order to facilitate the researcher in quantifying the compiled data.
Data Collection Method
Randomly selected participants will be provided with a questionnaire or involved in the survey. Survey responses will be achieved by means of closed-ended questions. In the research, collection of secondary data will be engaged in order to supplement the techniques of primary data collection. This is because the researcher will conduct a descriptive survey. The researcher is principally interested in understanding the relevance of linkages between how work design, staff motivation and training affects performance in call centres. The primary objective of the researcher in utilizing survey is to grant him with constructive hints for theory building as well as refinement. The secondary research will comprise document reviews whereby a bulky quantity of publications as well as pertinent materials are analyzed and examined. A broad variety of journals, books, as well as articles will be utilized in order to compile pertinent information in regard to the subject matter.
A limitation in regard to convenience sampling occurs since there is no verification that the sample is representative of the entire population. Nevertheless convenience sampling is extensively employed in business research. In regard to time and finance restrictions, convenience sampling facilitates the researcher in obtaining an enormous quantity of data in an uncomplicated, time-saving as well as economic manner. Random sampling is considered to be the most appropriate instrument in conducting a representative survey in the event of a known population. Consequently the population, with its characteristics must be identified and must participate in the survey. These requirements are impractical for this research subject and consequently irrelevant.
Data analysisThe research will employ qualitative as well as quantitative techniques in analyzing the compiled data. This will mainly be realized through the use of SPSS in data analysis. This is because, SPSS offers a user-friendly interface. While using SPSS, it is uncomplicated to load data sets following compilation. It is also feasible to create new variables from the existent variables and subsequently analyze as well as present the data in an assortment of formats such as tables and graphs. SPSS is also unproblematic to use in computing robust quantities of data. Nevertheless, SPSS will necessitate that the researcher uses limited data.
In data analysis, qualitative methods will also be employed since the method provides better information in regard to strategy assessment data. The qualitative methods will embrace the utilization of individual accounts through interviews as well as narrative responses to the survey. The qualitative data compiled will be analyzed through a strategy of constant comparative data reduction. Data reduction refers to a concept employed in the analysis of inconsistent data in social sciences. The key advantage of employing data reduction is the consistency and simplicity of analysis whereby data are broken up and the completed data found.
The majority of these data will be supplied by the call centres’ employees. The questionnaires to be utilized will be Likert structured questionnaire. This will be in a scale of one to five to facilitate simplicity of entry, tabulation, and analysis of data. For precision of the data, the research will utilize primary data. On the other hand, the key inadequacy of this method is that it is expensive to the data collector and also time consuming. There may also be some aspect of partiality which may be linked with this study. Validity and Reliability of OutcomesIn this study, the reliability as well as the validity of the compiled data will be depending on the design of the real questionnaire utilized. However, in optimizing the latter, cautious planning of questions, the layout as well as distinct elucidation of the rationale as well as pilot testing will be considered. The validity, reliability, and generalizations will be addressed by employing data verification as well as construct validity checks. The researcher will be cautious in regard to reflexivity issues. Sources of information including books as well as journals should be considered in order to achieve reliable as well as valid data by means of triangulation.
Ethical Considerations Associated With Research
Ethics will be attended to by effecting a human subject’s application. It is in line with standard good practice in regard to research that concerns individual volunteers as research subjects. All pertinent ethical conditions will be considered through the requisite best practice standards. Permission will be solicited prior to engaging the individuals in interviews as well as the questionnaire. An approval to execute this research will be acquired from the call centres, management through the use of letters. Opinions will be documented in the questionnaires and confidentially will be maintained. Upon completion of the analysis of data, these questionnaires will be destroyed. All realized research findings will be considered extremely confidential in regard to the information offered by the respondents’. As an ethical obligation, comments will not be linked with the source devoid of the respondent’s express permission.
Burney S. Inductive & Deductive Research Approach, Karachi: University Of Karachi Press. 2008.
Chase and Aquilano. Production and Operations Management: A Life Cycle Approach, New York: Homewood Press. 2000.
Cooper & Schindler, Business Research Methods, New York: McGraw-Hill. 2003
Creswell, J. Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches, Beverly Hills: Sage. 2002.
Easterby, Smith. Management Research, London: Sage. 2005.
Forza, Cipriano. “Survey research in operations management, a process based perspective.” International Journal of Operations and Production management, 2002.
Jørgen Carling. Using SPSS in research projects, Berlin: Hovedfag. 2001.
Murat, Kristal. “The Effect of Quality Management on Mass Customization Capability.” International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 2010.
Phelps T. Organizing and managing your Research: A practical guide for Postgraduates, London: Sage. 2007.
Saunders, Lewis, & Thornhill. Research Methods for Business Students, Harlow: Prentice Hall. 2003.