Research and Analysis in Business

You provide research services for McDonald’s, a large, multi-national, fast-food company. The CEO has asked each department to undertake a critical review of their systems, processes and practices as part of a major organisational change agenda.  You have been asked to review an area of business practice and present a business report to key stakeholders with recommendations for improving practice.  To provide the basis for your report, you have been asked to conduct a critical review of information sources relevant to the area of practice. You should:



·      
Select an area of business practice and give the reason for your choice

·      
Undertake a critical review of different information sources (at least three) e.g. research digests, academic and professional literature, online databases, key texts relevant to the selected area of practice.

·      
In your write up of the literature review you should explain why you selected that particular source and highlight some of the different research approaches adopted by the authors and comment on the advantages and disadvantages of these different approaches.

·      
Draw meaningful conclusions from the review of the different information sources.

·      
Make justified recommendations to named stakeholders for sustaining and/or improving practice.

 

Your report structure should include:

·      
Title page (report title and their name, submission date)

·      
Executive summary (overview, methods of analysis, findings, recommendations)

·      
Table of contents (list of numbered sections)

·      
Introduction (terms of reference)

·      
Main body (headings and sub-headings – these could be for each information source reviewed). Candidates should use a mix of narrative and diagrammatic formats where appropriate to present their findings.

·      
Conclusion (including major inferences and recommendations for change)

·      
Reference list

·      
Appendix if used i.e. information supporting their analysis but not essential to its explanation.

 

Possible areas of business practice include (select one):

 

  • Attracting new customers
  • Improving retention of staff
  • Motivating employees
  • Product development
  • Reputation management

 

You also very welcome to choose one a topic you have identified.

 

Assessment criteria

 

 

Criteria/

Mark

 

F1-3

 

D1-3

 

C1-3

 

B1-3

 

A1-4

 

Legible and well presented. Good spelling and grammar with a logical flow and structure.

10

 

Poorly formatted, many inconsistencies and errors.

 

Basic formatting with some errors and mistakes.

 

Consistent formatting with some errors / omissions.

 

Good presentation with only minor errors / omissions.

 

Excellent presentation and well structured with no errors.

Knowledge and understanding of Research methods & processes

 

20

No consideration of relevant research methods.

Little knowledge of research methods, often descriptive.

Some knowledge of both research methods and processes.

Good understanding of a range of research methods.

Excellent understanding of the research process and range of methods.

 

Evaluation of sources and research methods.

 

30

No consideration of sources or research methods.

Little knowledge of sources of data or research methods.

Some knowledge of a range of sources but little on research methods.

Good understanding of a range of sources and methods.

Excellent understanding of a range of sources and methods.

 

Knowledge and understanding of research issues in business context.

 

30

 

No consultancy / commercial research specific issues identified.

 

Little understanding of difference between academic and commercial research.

 

Some issues identified but lacks consideration as to how they can be overcome.

 

Issues identified with appropriate suggestions to overcome them.

 

Excellent range of issues identified with well justified suggestions to overcome them.

 

Sourced Information and referencing

10

 

No references.

 

 

Few and insufficient and poorly sourced.

 

Sufficient referencing but limited in range.

 

Good range used and well referenced.

 

Excellent breadth and depth used.

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