Barclays Bank believes that university students are an extremely valuable segmentation for business banking markets.
Barclays Bank believes that university students are an extremely valuable segmentation for business banking markets, but the business of banking services is intensely competitive. In order to Barclays Bank attract more university student customers and to keep them in a long term, Barclays requires understanding the target market, what are universities students in the UK “needs and wants”. By describing the research process, the objectives of this market research will be notified.
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Following with the research questions and research design and method details will be formed. In addition, this research proposal is helping Barclays to increase its market share, and using market research to ensure Barclays provide the right product and services to the UK students target market.
I. Research Objectives
The main objective of this research proposal for Barclays Bank is to achieve the target which can provide the right products or services to university students in the UK and understand what are their “needs and wants” for bank account. Otherwise, we will add value propositions to attract more students for Barclays and keep these customers over time.
This has divided into the following objectives:
To understand the reason that students choose Barclays as their first bank account.
To investigate what feature would be considered when university students start a new bank account.
To inspect the property for Barclays banking services can attract new university students.
To increase university student account market.
To ensure the graduate students will continue obtain their bank account.
According to Kumar (2005), a well managed severe, systematic, reliable, demonstrable, experimental, and critical is substantial research. In the next parts, it will describe the following research process for Barclays Bank.
Kumar (2005) has defined those eight steps for process of research, which is shown in Figure 1:
The following research will be chosen some parts for the proposal.
Figure 1 Research Process (Kumar, 2005)
II. Research Questions
Defined the Research Questions
According to Saunder et al. (2007) research design questions are related for many aspects:
? What intrigues me?
? Why am I doing it(Is it a contribution to knowledge?)
? What models, frameworks, etc?
? How am I going to collect data?
Research Questions for this Proposal
In this research, the title “Barclays Bank and targeting University Students” is being chosen the object of research and analysis. Otherwise, the questions are to understand student customers’ needs and wants. By using questions can get information that can utilise on market decision. There are four main research questions that can be developed and easily to understand this research objective.
Which bank is your first account
What bank features would attract university students
What bank services would customers need
What reason would affect customers to continue their account
Grinnell (1993) has pointed out that the word “research” can define as ‘a structured inquiry that utilises acceptable scientific methodology to solve problems and creates new knowledge that is generally applicable’. Methodology sections will separate into two factors which are research philosophy and research method.
In research philosophy area, the research methods are discussed ontology and epistemology commonly. According the theory, both of methods are related to philosophical perspectives.
? Ontological perspective: The researchers can discover the essence of knowledge which exists in the world (Snape & Spencer, 2003).
? Epistemological perspective: The perspective is to discuss what knowledge can be believed (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
Research Philosophy for this Proposal
For this research, it utilises the epistemological aim to help the proposal to find out the right services, which may provide Barclays Banks to attract more university students. In addition, to understand the purchased behaviour by students, it may use EKB model on research survey to realise Barclay’s customers.
? EKB model: Engel et al. defined EKB model in 1978. EKB model will be the method for survey, and it can help to realise customers buying behaviour on decision-making. Engel et al. (2001), defined five steps that consumers decided to purchase the products, which are shown in Figure 2. These steps are showing the process of purchase behaviour by customers.
Figure 2 EKB five steps (Engel et al. 2001)
In order to find out the value propositions for Barclays Bank, the main two research methods which are qualitative research method and quantitative research method will be considered in this proposal. Quantitative and qualitative research methods are the two ways usually use in the research area.
? Quantitative research method: This method is to collect quantifiable data and make it from objective views to produce the final results (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
? Qualitative research method: This method is focus on understand and describe peoples’ perspectives to create a logical outcome (Snape & Spencer, 2003).
Creswell (2003) point out that how to choose a research method in the analysis research, which is based on the target audiences or past experiences.
In addition, customers’ behaviour may affect their purchase decision. According to Engel, Kollat and Blackwell theory, EKB model is the basis of decision-making process for customer behaviour, and this process is referred to the actual consumers’ cognitive thinking when they purchase products. That is to say, EKB model is one of important elements to understand what customers’ thinking when they have decision-making situations.
Research Method in this Proposal
?Quantitative research method was identified to be more suitable for this research.
? Quantitative questioning will be used in the proposal. All quantitative questions will be shown in Appendix.
? Using EKB model in questionnaires and it will be shown in Appendix as well.
? Likert scale will be one of the parts in the questionnaires, Likert scale will be used in most of questionnaires. The typical five levels for Likert item are: Strongly disagree, disagree, neither agree nor disagree, agree, strongly agree.
IV. Research Design
Defined Five Research Design
There are five kinds of research design different purposes such as,
? Experimental design: This main concept of design is to analysis of qualitative or quantitative research which can examine the differences and form the foundation (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
? Cross-sectional design: This design is usually used in quantitative research (Kumar, 2005).
? Longitudinal design: Longitudinal design is a study to determine the amount of changes (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
? Case study design: Only single instance will be studied in the most case, and details related to that case will be collected. This model is suitable for qualitative research (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
? Comparative design: The research can be seen as the comparative design which has consisted of more than one case and to compare or evaluate the differences or similarities (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
Research Design for this Proposal
As for Barclay’s research, the aim is to add value propositions that can utilise in marketing decision. To consider of this research design, this research is to find out the customers behaviour for university students in the UK and to the collect a certain number of different information is needed to support for this research.
This research would follow case study and collection data in order to have a deeper understanding of the impact on value propositions from the research, obtaining the appropriate strategy by the UK university students’ requirements. Moreover, the EKB model and Likert scale discussed previously will be the fundamental theories to analyse the survey data.
V.Data Collection Design
Defined the way of Data Collection
According to Kumar (2005), data collection can be use in observations, interviews, and questionnaires these possible ways. The advantages of interviews are that when researchers are helpless to fulfill participants, researchers still can see specific information from interviewees, and interviewees can describe “history” which is suitable to the research case of topic to wider and deeper understanding (Creswell, 2003). In addition, researchers can be more flexible by asking questions which is comparing with interviews questionnaires (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
For research, the direction we need to see is the students’ consideration when they opening a new account. Qualitative research strategy in interview is too unstructured than in the quantitative research design. Researchers can an unstructured interview, which is more like a general chatting and more similar to having conversations with interviewees; researchers have to make a discussion guide with which has listed questions to understand (Bryman & Bell, 2007).
Data Collection Design in this proposal
The collection of the information is to be the first step of data collection. The data focus on the bank services and marketing decision. In addition, there are three methods that will be use to collect the require data.
? First approach :Face-to face
? Second approach :Telephone
? Third approach :Mail by post or email
However, using three methods are too complicated to this research; Table 1 is shown the compare results.
Compare Mail by postTelephoneFace-to-face
FlexibleNeed addressNeed phone numberGo to every university
Ask QuestionsLess questionsLess questionsMore questions
Table 1 Comparison ofthree kinds ofinvestigation methods.
After the compare evaluation, the mail survey approach is most appropriate to investigation of this study, these reasons are:
? This study research has budget consideration and restriction. Mail by post may be the lowest cost for the required questionnaires.
? The mail or email address from interviewee is easy to obtain.
? The questionnaires cannot be too long, but it is clear to see on mail.
? The validity by mail questionnaire is low.
? The mail questionnaires may have a high rate of non-response bias, but it can improve by send more mails. This action may help to reduce the rate of return non-response bias.
? The mail survey, takes a long time, but it may not influence the data results.
According to Patton (1990), the sampling method can be defined like ‘criterion sampling’ and the sampling is adopted in this research. It will find samples from criteria that receive research objectives. This sampling method also can ensure that the interviewees are supplied with complete information feedback that is required in the research (Patton, 1990).
Using the Sampling method in the qualitative research can be same as in quantitative research, for instance, random sampling method. Most of the samplings in qualitative researchers are with some purposes or criteria since sampling may affect the outcome significantly (Coyne, 1997). However, the sample size is required in qualitative research; the result is not larger than quantitative research. Researchers are using purposeful sampling to acquire sufficient knowledge interviewees who can present the related research topic, and help researchers to get wider and deeper view points from interviewees (Patton, 1990).
Sampling method used in this proposal
There are several sampling methods that can adopt in survey research. For research, random sampling will be chosen as the research method.
Following elements are the approaches for sampling:
? Element: Target market , all the UK university students.
? Population: Estimate5000 university students.
? Sampling Units: Collection of about 5000 survey elements from the population.
? Frame: A frame is a list of sampling units, same as 5000 sampling units.
? Select sampling methods: Random sampling.
Questionnaire Design in this proposal
SNAP is an assistance software tool that can create questionnaires.
This questionnaire will divide into three sections:
? First part: Personal information for Interviewees
University students in the UK or not.
Demand for the services.
? Second part: Interviewees’ personal bank.
First bank account.
Bank name, it is Barclays or not.
? Third part: Using EKB model to design questionnaire (Likert scale will be used).
Banking service satisfaction.
VII. Collection Data
Defined the method of data collection
The approaches to collect data have mention in front of part. That is, there are kind of ways can use in interviews. Interviews can be face-to-face, through telephone, or gather a lot of people to do the interview at the same time, which is also known as priority group (Creswell, 2003).
Data Collection in this proposal
? Collection data will follow the front part which decides to choose mail by post method to collect to necessary data.
? There are 5000 surveys will be sent by mails and emails.
(2500 mails by post, 2500 by emails)
? Following data collection time divided into two main stages. Collection time will be a month. First stage is to collect post mail will from 1st of June 2011 to 16th of June 2011. Although first stage is to collect post mail, email questionnaires feedback may return as the same time. Moreover, this period of time will continue collection data until 30th of June 2011. These stages are shown in Table 2.
1st June 2011- 16th June 2011Collect mail by post from interviewees
1st June 2011- 30thJune 2011Collect email from interviewees
Table 2 Survey Collect Time
VIII. Data Analysis Process
Defined Data Analysis
In the qualitative research validity can be seen from three ways, which are descriptive validity, interpretive validity, and theoretical validity; or to consider from another aspect which can be classified as internal validity and external validity (Johnson, 1997).
? Validation of research
Validity is divided into three types, including content validity (Content Validity), criterion validity (Criterion Validity) and construct validity (Construct Validity).
Content validity: The primary purpose is to systematically check the appropriate of questionnaires; the questionnaires consider the samples and conduct appropriate proportion.
Criterion validity: It is outside test criterion with the assessment based on the correlation coefficient. Criterion validity refers to test data which has been found, also name as the statistical validity.
Construct validity: It refers to the test the measure theoretical construct or common quality level which observed variables and other theoretical consistency.
Data Analysis in this proposal
In this research, SPSS will be use in data analysis. As for the collect data, all questionnaires will be recorded and transcribed. The benefit of doing transcription is to help researchers who can get all details mentioned and to re-examine the data afterwards. The process of data will firstly help researchers to organised and it enabled to rethink and restructure the following analysis stages. At the same time the second stage data were collected and filed.
In this data collection, the clearer idea information between data and final findings will be formed, and it will shown data analysis to support results.
With the research process, the budget will come with it. Higdon& Topp (2004) has pointed that, to reach the project objectives of timeline and methodology, the research proposal budget is intertwined with its development. Therefore, the detail of the budget will be notified. The budget of details required to expense to a complete itemized accounting list for the project (Higdon& Topp, 2004).
The budget table3 and 4 will displayed the total research fees.
Table 3 Worksheet
The research plan will spend one month.
Table 4 Equipment
Mail by post 2500 mail letters ?500.002500 stamps?1250.00
Email2500 email ?0
Data collection and analysis will consume a month as well.
Total fees ?10250.00
21st May – 27th MayProposal Needed
28th May- 30th MaySurvey Development
1st June- 30th JuneData Collection
2nd July – 6th July Statistical Data
8th JulyFinal Report
Here are some reasons that our team should be chosen.
Our research team provides complete the research methodology and Data Collection.
The objects reflect the goals and orientations of the organisation.
Our agency wish to submit Barclays Bank with a compelling demonstration that has effectively represents.
The research results will reflect new projects and interests, and provide for both current clients and new in customers.
We can discuss this plan at your convenience.
The valuable segmentation for Barclays Bank business banking markets is university students, however, the business banking competitive. Barclays Bank wants to attract more student customers and keeps them in over time. This research proposal starts from research process. Quantitative research method is adopted and the data collection is through by mail interviews. Then, the secondary data is from journals, articles, books. Finding of the research will help Barclays to increase its market share, and the market research will ensure Barclays provide the right product and services to the UK students target market.
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Online Survey Software: SurveyMonkey