Research: Investigation of a problem

4.1 Introduction

The process of finding a solution to a problem after a thorough study and analysis of the situational factor is known as research (Sekaran-2000). This implies that research is an organized and systematic investigation of a problem. In a research, there are various methods, techniques and instruments been use to gather the information. After gathering the information’s, those information’s need to be analyzed and evaluated align with the research aim to recommend a solution for the problem.

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This chapter outline the various research designs and methods been used in this research.

4.2 Research Philosophy:

During choosing the research methodology, the researcher needs to adopt one which aligns with the research objective. Research philosophy mainly depends on how the researcher wants to carry out the research. The researcher can use multiple approaches to find out the best possible answer from the various dimensions. Saunder et al. (2003) approach appear reasonably logical as they compare research process with an onion layer and arguing about different layers. The onion shows there are three research philosophies.

Research process onion

Source: Saunders et al (2003, p 83)

According to Saunders et al. (2003) research process onion, there are three types of research philosophies. They are Positivism, Interpretevism and Realism. Comprehensive analysis of all the philosophies been carried out by the researcher to selecting the most suitable methodology for this research.

4.2.1 Positivism: According to Saunders et al. (2003), “The researcher in this tradition assumes the role of an objective analyst, coolly making detached interpretations about those data that have been collected in apparently value free manner”. This methodology is mostly carried through observation and focus on lightly structured methodology. The result of this philosophy is totally based on the real fact and gathered data rather than just interpretation of different opinions.

4.2.2 Interpretivism: This method of research philosophy is based on the ways, people think about various aspects of a particular topic. As different people analyze the same thing in different ways, the researcher can gain the different view of the particular topic.

4.2.3 Realism: Saunders et al. (2003) “Realism is based on the belief that a reality exists that is independent of human thoughts and beliefs.” It implies that, there could be forces on factors that could affect people and it does not matter whether the person aware about the presence of the factor or not.

Saunders et al. (2003) claimed that, often business and management research is a mixture of positivism and interpretivism and reflect the attitude of realism. It shows researcher(s) show not bound one self to just one type of research philosophy. For this research, the researcher use realism and interpretivism research philosophy and these were considered most appropriate by the researcher, though positivism approach was also used to get an unbiased result.

4.3 Research Approach:

Saunders et al. (2003) showed, there are two types of research approaches. They are Inductivism approach and Deductive approach.

4.3.1 Inductivism approach:

In this approach the researcher need to develop own theory after data collection and analyze those data. It is important for the researcher (s) to know the previous work in the same field.

4.3.2 Deductive approach:

is such an approach where the researcher(s) need to create a theoretical model and framework and try relating with the relevant discipline and finally collecting the data to test the created model or framework whether it match the researcher (s) expectation or not.

For this research, the researcher used inductive approach of research due to the limited time scale. The researcher tried to develop an own theory, collected data through different data collection method (questionnaire, interview and observation) and also tried to find out any previous research on the same field, though there were several on the same topic but none were done in the same organization.

4.4 Access to the data:

As a previous employer, the researcher explains the benefits, nature and the process of the research to several managers and enrollment officers. The researcher formally invites them to participate in the interview and fill up the questionnaires with the employers.

The researcher used existing contacts strategy to gaining access to the organization.

4.5 Sampling:

According to the Jankowicz (2000), “Sampling is the deliberate choice of the number of people who are to provide you with the data from which you will draw conclusions about some larger group whom those people represent.” It means that, sampling is a segment from a large group of people who will provide the data on behalf of the whole group.

As the population using to identify the practices and the major elements of recruitment and selection process at Grameen Phone and examine the effectiveness of the recruitment and selection methods used by Grameen Phone. The researcher chooses several Grameen Phone managers and enrollment officers as sample group for this research. Due to get the different view of the topic the researcher include HR Executives into this research as the managers may only think about the organizations point of view.

Figure: 4 Total numbers of the samples for this research (%)

Total population size for this research was 125. However a Total number of 97 respondents including 72 HR Executives, 18 training and development officers, 5 Selection and Recruitment Officer, 1 Deputy Manager and 1 HR manager are in sample size for the questionnaire from the Grameen Phone. Sample size was cut down to 97 from 125 populations due to their different time shifts of work and incomplete questionnaires. 3 Selection and Recruitment Officers and 2 Training and Development Officers were the sample size for the semi – structured interview. The researcher followed the simple random sampling process to run the questionnaire.

4.5 Source of information:

There are two sources of information, these are primary and secondary sources and the data gathered through those resources are called primary data and secondary data.

4.5.1 Secondary Data:

Anderson (2004) describes secondary data as “Data which has been generated else where for other purpose”. It implies that, secondary data is the data which is already exist and gathered by some other people for different reasons. This type data include both raw data published summaries.

Secondary data were mostly used by the researcher in the literature review to gain an in depth knowledge and to get a clear understanding of the subject area. Gathering the secondary data is time consuming and time effective for the researcher as most of the findings from previous researches already existed in form of books and journals etc. Moreover, as existing high quality data collected and analyzed by following well established procedures, the reliability and validity of the secondary data remains high. Stewart and Kamins (1993) said, secondary data are likely to be higher quality data than gather by the researcher himself.

4.5.2 Primary Data:

according to Anderson (2004), “Primary data is information that is collected by the researcher, usually for the purpose of particular research project.” It means that, for any specific project when the researcher collects data are known as primary data.

To achieve a great acceptability and to find the best possible result of this research, researcher used both primary and secondary data.

4.6 Research Design:

According to Smith et al (2003), a research design is ‘organizing research activity, including the collection of data, in ways that are most likely to achieve the research aims.’ Data can be collected by using quantitative techniques or qualitative techniques. Both the qualitative and quantitative methods been employed to carry out this research.

4.6.1 Quantitative Technique:

According to Hair et al. (2003) said, “Quantitative data are measurements in which numbers are used directly to represent the properties of something.” Babbie (1992) describes the quantitative research as “the numerical representation and manipulation of observations for the purpose of describing and explaining the phenomena that those observations reflect”. It implies that in quantitative technique researchers observation and finding are present through numerical form.

Generally quantitative technique focus to measure the phenomena. By using this technique, researcher will get the result in numerical or statistical form. Responses in quantitative method are not as explanatory as qualitative method. Quantitative method are often most appropriate for conducting needs assessments or for evaluations comparing outcomes with baseline data.

Finally Denzin and Lincoln (1994) said that, quantitative studies emphasize the measurement and analysis of causal relationships between variables, not process.

4.6.2 Qualitative Technique:

According to Mason (1996), qualitative research usually does use some form of quantification, but statistical forms of analysis are not seen as central and should be conducted as an ethical practice. It implies that the research involves more people’s understandings and interactions. Though qualitative research is not always appropriate for every research problems and there is more chance of sacrifice scope for detail.

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Mariampoliski (2001) said, “Qualitative technique provide competitive tool for advancing the state of knowledge and pushing insights”. This type of data can obtain through interview or observation. This method can be expensive and could long time to finish the process. This technique is used when the researcher wants to understand any phenomena in a descriptive way rather than any numerical figure. Due to its exploratory nature, this technique tries to describe, decode and translate any phenomena.

Mixed methods were used in this research. Cresswell (1994) also said, ‘researchers should make the most efficient use of both paradigms in understanding social phenomena’.

A positive approach for data collection in the Questionnaires was carried out with both for lower level employees and members of management officer.

Semi – structured (face to face) interviews were carried out with 3 HR Managers and, Recruitment and Selection Officer of different GP Center.

Four interview observations were done by the researcher as well.

This study is designed in such ways that helps in collecting necessary data for confirming or contradict the above mentioned hypothesis.

4.7 Questionnaire:

According to DeVaus (1991), “A questionnaire is a data collection tool, which requires each research participant to respond to the same set of questions in a pre-determined order.” It implies that all the respondents answer the same questions by themselves and the researcher make sequences of the question previously as per requirement to gather data.

The questionnaire was structured with questions based on both employer and employee’s perception about the existing recruitment and selection process are used by Grameen Phone and their effectiveness. The questionnaires were distributed to both employer and employees at several GP customer care branches. The questionnaire was standardized without any kind of bias from the researcher and was logical. The researcher try not to design the questionnaire too long and complicated as the respondents might feel bore or misunderstand the questions. To prevent the respondents from any misunderstanding, clear instructions were given in the questionnaire.

According to Saunders et al (2003), ‘the use of questionnaires to survey a sizeable population is a highly economical way of collecting data in a relatively short time, and therefore a popular and common data collection method in business and management research.’ Data collection through this method is time consuming and there is a scope that respondents can express their thoughts. On the other hand, low response rate is the big disadvantage of this method, as this rate may affect the validity of the result. Oppenheim (1986) said, there is no opportunity for additional explanations and Bell (1999) said poor questionnaires result in poor answers.

4.8 Semi – Structured Interview:

Semi – structured interview help interviewees to express their thoughts and concern freely. According to Saunders et al. (2003), interview is a good instrument for collecting valid and reliable information relevant to research objective. This type of interview helps the managers to display their concern about the existing recruitment and selection process of Grameen Phone.

In this study, interviews carried out were semi – structured in nature, contained few numbers of open – ended questions were asked. Interviewees been given enough space and time to elaborate the answers and the interviewer can identify the meaning behind the replies. Time and the length of the interview were taken into account to prevent the interviewee from being carried away from the interview.

4.9 Observation:

According to Cooper and Schindler (2003), “Observation alone can capture the whole event as it occurs in its natural environment.” It means that observation is a systematic, proper controlled and scientific method of data collection. This method has high validity in research conducting.

There is less possibility in this method that participant’s ideas would be influence the data since there is no interaction between the observer and the participants. Data can be gathered in real time through this method. However, Collins and Hussey (2003) said, there are some drawbacks of this method like ethics, visibility, restriction in the use of technology are major and for large sample group observational studies are difficult. Moreover, accuracy of the data collection depends on the skill of the observer.

For this research, the researcher observed several different recruitment interviews of employers at Grameen Phone. In most cases, participants were informed by the manager that the researcher would be present during the interview to gain some practical knowledge regarding recruitment interview, hence,the collected data were not influenced by the researcher’s presence.

4.10 Ethical Issue:

Saunders et al. (2003) said, ethical issues to be anticipated and corrected during the research design stage. Researcher need to be cautious about his / her own action and those affected by it during the research.

In this research, the researcher try to avoid any kind of bias during prepare the questionnaire. Both open and close ended questions were asked. Open ended questions gave the researcher chance to gain an insight of the provided answers, however due to their ambiguity nature qualitative answers are not easily evaluated. During the interview observation stage, the researcher was not allowed to use any recording device by the Enrollment Officer to ensure the organizational privacy. However, the researcher was allowed to take notes.

Privacy of the respondents and the organization is another ethical issue. According to Robson (1993), “The researcher needs to observe certain privacy rights for those who become subjects of the research.” To protect their employment relation, the employers completing questionnaire need privacy. Those who did not want to be a part of the research, their refusal were accepted.

The researcher had to make sure all the information received will kept anonymous to protect the confidentiality. Before gathering the secondary data, the originality of the sources were double checked by the researcher.

4.11 Reliability and Validity:

Robson (1993) said, “Subject error is an issue of reliability and this happens as a result of carrying out questionnaires on employers at different times can lead to different results.” It implies that, if the researcher gets different results in different time by using the same questionnaire then the subject error could take place and that is a matter of reliability of the process. Saunders et al. (2003) said, reliability can be measured based on the similarities between the results taken by different occasions and by different researchers. If the results are similar, the research is reliable.

Again, Robson (1993) said, “Reliability of the research can be measured by how accurate the researcher is with the actual findings.” For this research, the researcher used various sources of evidence which have been documented and it was essential for the researcher to achieve both reliable and valid result.

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