Zikmund Bab 6 Problem Definition.pdf - O U G IN TC O M ES...

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107 After studying this chapter, you should be able to 1. Explain why proper “problem definition” is essential to useful business research 2. Know how to recognize problems 3. Translate managerial decision statements into relevant research objectives 4. Translate research objectives into research questions and/or research hypotheses 5. Outline the components of a research proposal 6. Construct tables as part of a research proposal Chapter Vignette: Deland Trucking Has a “Recruitment” Problem David Deland, who has owned his trucking business for 20 years, struggles with the spreadsheet in front of him. His recruitment specialist sits glumly across from his desk, pondering what kind of response to give to the inevitable question, “Why are our recruitment costs so high?” Next to the specialist sits James Garrett, a business research consultant who has been hired by the Deland Trucking Company to get a handle on the recruitment expenses the company has seen skyrocket over the last six months. “I just don’t get it,” David sighs in frustration. “We have seen a 45 per- cent increase in our trucker recruitment advertising costs, and our trucker intake and orientation expenses are killing us! James, I just don’t under- stand what is happening here.” James and the specialist have had some initial discussions, but there is no easy way to reduce those costs without reducing the number of truckers that Deland hires. “Perhaps we can find a more efficient way of advertising our openings,” suggests the recruiting specialist. “Maybe we can reduce the number of orientation sessions or travel expenses associated with the hiring process.” David counters, “Well, I don’t see how we are any different from our competitors. We use the same recruitment and orientation approach that they use. I have no handle on their expenses, but the fact that our expenses are skyrocketing must mean something is going on.” James stares at his copy of the spreadsheet. “There is no easy way to do this, without hurting your ability to keep drivers in your trucks,” he says. “Is it that the costs for driver selection and recruitment have gone up?” “No, the costs have been the same,” responds the recruiter. “It’s just that we have had to do so many orientation and hiring sessions since the first of the year.” “David, it might be best if I get a look at some of your hiring statistics, as well as your driver census over the last year,” comments James. Turning to the recruiter, James asks, “Can you give me some of your driver data to look through?” “Sure,” says the recruiter. “We have lots of info about our drivers, and the driver census is updated monthly. We even have some exit data we have gathered from a few drivers who have left us. I don’t know exactly what the trend is with those drivers who leave, since we haven’t had a chance to really analyze the data. I will send it to you through e-mail this afternoon.” James drives back to his office, reflecting on his meeting. As he passes by trucks on the way, he peeks at the drivers who are going in the same direction as he is. What do they think about LEARNING OUTCOMES CHAPTER 6 PROBLEM DEFINITION: THE FOUNDATION OF BUSINESS RESEARCH © COMSTOCK IMAGES/JUPITER IMAGES

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