What aspects of your business keep you awake at night? What insights do you need to be able to address these issues with confidence and clarity?

The Applied Research Group (ARG) is comprised of a team of professional researchers who are passionate about conducting rigorous research within organisations, to solve real business issues and gain the insights you need to enhance your business. Building on the strong research and consultancy heritage of the Centre for People at Work (CPW) which specialised in HR, leadership and Occupational Psychology, we have now expanded our research capacity. Now, not only do we conduct research into ‘people at work’ issues but, we also work with organisations to research a broad range of business issues.

Depending on your budget, timescales, and complexity of research, we offer a range of research services to meet your needs:

  • Student Research Project- Commission one of our students to conduct a research project for you. Under the supervision of an academic, our students can help you with your research needs ranging from data collection, through to data analysis and report writing. This option offers the most affordable option but may only be suitable for simple research projects with clearly designed tools and expected outputs.
  • Academic Research Project- Commission our academics directly to conduct a Short Applied Research Project. Our experienced researchers will ensure reliable and valid data collection, accurate and systematic data analysis, detailed and objective interpretations, clear and practicable recommendations. Another affordable option, whereby the costing is flexible and done on the number of days needed for one of our academic experts to deliver the outcome. Our academics can help you fully design a project to gain the insight you need.
  • Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) – A subsidised opportunity to recruit a graduate to develop and transfer their knowledge into business growth and innovation over a 6-24 month period. This represents a longer-term commitment, but with the added benefit of introducing a specialised graduate into your organisation to apply their skills and knowledge over a longer period of time with the potential for long-term recruitment afterwards.
  • Match-funded PhD - A subsidised opportunity to either sponsor a PhD project, or for you or a colleague to become a PhD student, to conduct in-depth research into a specific business issue over a 3 year period. PhDs represent the most rigorous research pathway, requiring unique, cutting-edge research to be conducted to the most rigorous of standards. 

Our research specialisms

Your people

We can help you research Human Resource issues such as recruitment and selection, training and development, time management, managing diversity and equality, Human Resource Management, career development, Management and leadership development, employee satisfaction and morale, organisational culture, cross-cultural management, and training evaluation. Within WBS, we have unique practical expertise in areas including coaching and training (Dr Rebecca Jones), psychopathy in the workplace (Dr Holly Andrews), and change management (Dr Mark Loon). Within WBS we have also developed two psychometric tests; the Time Personality Indicator and the Career Competency Indicator which can be used to profile your people and identify effective development solutions. Please contact Dr Helen Watts for more information on these tests. Interested in the academic work we do in this areas? Find out more about our Careers and Leadership Development research group.

Your customers 

We can help you research Marketing issues such as customer satisfaction, customer retention, product/service quality evaluation, brand perceptions, Personal selling and sales strategy, buying behaviour and marketing strategy. Within WBS, we have unique practical expertise in areas including satisfaction within membership organisations (Dr Helen Watts), customer-to-customer interaction (Dr Richard Nicholls), and the ageing consumer (Dr Richard Nicholls). Interested in the academic work we do in this areas? Find out more about our Complex Customer Interaction research group.

Your innovations

We can provide research to help you take the right steps with your new business or launch of a new product/service. We can assess start-up feasibility, conduct concept testing, and help you to objectively evaluate the costs and benefits of innovations. We can also help you evaluate corporate strategy, Policy and organisational development. Within WBS, we have unique practical expertise in areas including service innovation (Dr Vessela Warren), enterprise risk management (Dr Abdul Taroun), environmental and economical sustainability (Dr Kay Emblen-Perry), international expansion (Dr Laila Kasem) and SME innovation (Chris Boulton and Nigel Walton).  Interested in the academic work we do in this areas? Find out more about the Managing Operations, Risk and Sustainability Research Group (MORS) and the Digital Economy Research Group.

Your systems

We can help you to research and develop electronic solutions relating to electronic entertainment, Immersive Environments, Character animation, computer graphics and serious games. We can also help you to evaluate the success of, or potential to use, e-business and sociotechnical networks. Within WBS, we have unique practical expertise in areas including systems modelling (Dr Joy Garfield) and interactive intelligent systems (Dr Chris Bowers).

Our research methods

Would you like to get under the skin of your employees, colleagues, customers or users through in-depth qualitative research? Or, would you like to gain a broader measure based on scores, ratings, and statistics through a quantitative survey? Or, maybe a bit of both?

We can conduct research using a range of qualitative approaches including

  • Focus Groups
  • Depth Interviews
  • Telephone interviews
  • Online consumer research (netnography)
  • Desk-based research
  • Usability testing

We can also conduct research using a range of quantitative approaches including: 

  • Online Surveys
  • Telephone surveys
  • Experiments

We can either just help you design your data collection tools or offer advice on your planned research process, or take care of the entire research process end-to-end from data collection through to analysis and reporting.

Our research services

Student Research Project

Would you like one of our students to conduct a simple, short research project for your business? For example, maybe some data collection? Data entry? Data analysis? We offer a scheme which allows you to contract a student to conduct a research project for you, but with the assurance of being under the supervision of an academic. Our students can help you with your research needs ranging from data collection, through to data analysis and report writing. This option offers the most affordable option but may only be suitable for simple research projects with clearly designed tools and expected outputs.

Academic Research Project

Do you have a business issue which requires attention quickly and directly by one of research consultants? We offer a simple, quick and direct way of working with our academics directly to conduct a research project. Our experienced researchers will ensure reliable and valid data collection, accurate and systematic data analysis, detailed and objective interpretations, clear and practicable recommendations. The costing is flexible (no project too small), based on the number of days needed for one of our academic experts to deliver the outcome. Our academics can help you fully design a project to gain the insight you need.

We can provide quantitative research (e.g. questionnaires) and qualitative research (e.g. in-depth interviews, focus groups). Depending on your time and budget constraints, we can help you just to gather data you need, do the analysis you need, or we can provide the full research package; administration, data collection, analysis, and final reporting.

As experienced researchers, we ensure:

  • Reliable and valid data collection
  • Accurate and systematic data analysis
  • Detailed and objective interpretations
  • Clear and practicable recommendations

Our experts are experienced in employee surveys, focus groups and psychometric profiling, market research, customer surveys, customer profiling, and controlled experiments for market testing.

Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP)

Do you have a business issue which could be addressed by a recently qualified graduate over a fixed time period?

Knowledge Transfer Project (KTP) subsidises your recruitment of a graduate to work on a specific growth project in your business over a 6-24 month period. Not only are the costs subsidised, but the graduate is also supervised by one of our experts within the Business School to help ensure that the objectives are met. This represents a longer-term commitment, but with the added benefit of introducing a specialised graduate into your organisation to apply their skills and knowledge over a longer period of time with the potential for long-term recruitment afterwards. Find out more about KTPs.

PhD

Do you have a business issue that requires long-term, in-depth exploration?

We provide opportunities to either sponsor or undertake a PhD project.

Co-funding a PhD project, or undertaking a PhD, over a three-five year period provides an opportunity to address a challenging business issue through in-depth, innovative research at the highest level.

PhDs represent the most prestigious research pathway, requiring unique, cutting-edge research to be conducted to the most rigorous of standards.

If you wanted to co-fund a PhD project, the cost of the project could be split between the university and your business. Supporting a PhD studentship could raise the profile of your business and help to position your business as a forerunner of your industry, engaged in innovative and rigorous research. Interested in finding out more about our academic publications and PhDs? Please visit our WBS Research pages.

Get in touch

To find out how we can help your organisation, call Sally Docherty on 01905 85 5279 or s.docherty@worc.ac.uk

Find out more about the Worcester Business School team.