Applications of Research in Business Decision-Making

Applications of Research in Business Decision-Making

 Content Outline 

  1. Introduction
  2. Marketing
  3. Human Resource Management
  4. Financial and accounting research
  5. Production and operation management
  6. Cross-functional research

Read: MCQ on Research Methodology 


It is an established fact that research assists in business decisions and further in different functional areas of management. Business managers in human resources, production, marketing or finance regularly face situations that require effective and actionable decision-making. Most of these decisions require additional information which can best be addressed by research.


Marketing is one of the areas of business where research is the lifeline. It is carried out on a wide variety of topics and is conducted by the organization as well as outsourced to research agencies. Broader industry or product-category-specific studies are also carried out by market research agencies that assist in business decisions. There are various issues which require attention for research including market potential analysis, market segmentation, demand estimation, market structure analysis and business trend analysis. An organization also carries out researches related to product, pricing, promotion and place. These days with the increase in competition and the need to retain customers, customer relationship management, satisfaction, and loyalty have been added to the areas in which significant research is being carried out.
Human resource management and organizational behavior involve basic research as a lot of academic and macro level research may be adapted and implemented by organizations into their programs and policies. Applied HR research is more predictive and solution oriented. There are a number of academic and organizational areas which attract more research. Such areas include performance management, organizational climate, talent and aptitude analysis, organizational change management, employee selection and staffing, organizational planning and development, job analysis, performance appraisal, recognition and reward studies, compensation analysis, training and development, employee relationship analysis, negotiation and wage settlement, turnover and attrition and work life balance studies. Critical success factor analysis and employer branding are some emerging areas in which HR research is being carried out

Financial and accounting research

The area of financial and accounting research is so vast that it is difficult to provide a framework of the research areas. However, there are some prevalent research issues including asses pricing, corporate finance, capital markets, takeovers and mergers, financial reporting, the impact of factors on returns, financial derivatives, credit risk modeling, corporate decision-making analysis, investment risk appraisal, analysis of corporate financial reporting behavior, accounting based values, evaluation and usage of accounting information by investors and evaluation of management compensation schemes, analysis of audit regulations, analysis of audit methodologies, corporate governance, accountability of audit committees, risk estimation and analysis, business policy and merchant banking. 

Production and operation management

Production and operation management is the area of research which quantifies implementation of the research results on huge cost and process implications. Research in this area is highly focused and problem analysis, specific. The decision areas in which research studies are carried out include product/service design and development, resource allocation and capacity planning, demand forecasting and decision analysis, production scheduling and material requirement management, work design planning and monitoring, project management and maintenance management studies, logistics and supply chain and inventory management analysis, quality estimation and assurance studies including total quality management and quality certification analysis, just in time technology and economic order quantity are topics adapted by organizations for optimizing operations.
Since business management is an integrated amalgamation of all these and other areas sometimes requires a unified thought and approach to research. These studies require an open orientation where experts from across the disciplines contribute to and gain from the study. For example, an area such as new product development requires the commitment of the marketing, production and consumer insights team to exploit new opportunities. Other areas requiring cross function efforts are corporate governance and ethics, technical support systems, enterprise resource planning systems, knowledge management, data minding and warehousing are integrated areas requiring research on managing coordinated efforts across divisions


In the area of business management, each of the disciplines such as marketing, finance, human resources and operations have adapted and modified the research process to develop models and approaches which are unique and customized to the applications. This could be as simple as customer feedback or as complex as a highly structured and quantitative demand forecasting and analysis. For any research to be recognized as significant and contributing to the field of management, it must follow some basic tenets, i.e., it must be unbiased and systematic in conduction. It must have a clearly defined agenda or purpose and if the study conditions are explicitly followed, the findings obtained should be replicable


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