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Problem Statement

1. A detail statement of the problem that you would like to investigate.

2. Research aim, objectives and research questions: What are the potential research objectives and questions that can address the problem?

3. Justification and potential output of the research project: Why is your chosen project important both theoretically and practically? What are the potential outputs  and outcomes of your research?

4. Conceptual framework: An analysis of the literature relevant to the research topic that will give you the conceptual basis for conducting this research.

5. Methodology: Based on the conceptual framework, research aim(s) and objectives, you need to provide a detail description of the data collection methods and tools, data sources and the methods/tools that you will use to analyse the data.

6. Organisation of the study, project budget and schedule: Write the names of the chapters/sections of your research report, and briefly discuss what you will write in those chapters/sections followed by a brief description of budget for conducting this study and project schedule i.e., Gantt Chart.

The paradigm shift of production has been greatly influenced by the rapid growth of technological innovation in the IT sector. Most investments highly depend on services offered by the staff to accomplish tasks at hand. Therefore it is paramount that staff members get motivation to allow them offer the best services as far as production is concerned. Staff enrichment is defined by the level of output in terms of the end products. Companies are going viral in replenishing their key asset, human capital (Brigham & Ehrhardt, 2013). Basically, employee training improves their performance at workplace and personal level. Researchers reveal that training increases performance up to 2.5% (Tacchella et al., 2013). Consequently, highly skilled employees link their experiences to human investment plan via training that enables them to reap maximum knowledge and skills applicable in the IT sector. Although technical training leads to employee performance, embracing focused curricular approach would yield maximum results in the output level. Human capital investments fuel future growth in the global economy.

The global economy is defined by the need to nurture the human capital for competitive advantages. This is specifically applicable to information technology systems where productivity is highly dependent on employee skills translating into huge gross profits. The knowledge based theory of firms substantiates this need by highlighting major characteristics of training such as improvement in service delivery, product development and design, expertise competence, and improved human relations amongst others (Webb, Perry & Fennelly, 2015). Consequently, IT industry has reported a positive growth of 6.5% annually due to improvement in human capital investments that translate into significant importance of theory and practice through training.

Research Objective/Questions

Human capita refers to the human resources of an organization of an organization. They are the employees, labours, managers and others. Human resources are considered as the most important resource of organization as the success of that organization totally depends on the performance of them. Human capital investment means the process of developing the employees of an organization by giving them necessary training and educations related to their work. This type of training and education helps to develop the skills of the employees. Human capital investment is very mc necessary in case of the information industry technology as this industry demands the most educated and skilled employees in the area of information technology (Kwon & Rupp, 2013).

There are three variables exist. They are human capital, organizational performance and the effect of employee satisfaction between human capital and organizational performance. There is a deep link exists among these three variables as three of them are dependent on each other. Human capital is the most important element in the success of any organization. A company will be a successful one if the employees of that organization are efficient and highly skilled. On the other hand, the satisfaction of the employees is a crucial factor to establish a link between human capital and the organizational performance. Proper motivation drives the employees to contribute their best in the success of the organization (Ployhart et al., 2014).

As per Jalil et al. (2015), there are some problems associated to these three variables. The investment in the human capital is a crucial factor. There is a strong need of identifying the areas where training and education is needed. On the other hand, the human resources of an organization need to be properly motivated to increase the profitability of the organization. These are the problem areas regarding the three variables. There should be proper strategies to address these problems (Martin, McNally & Kay, 2013).

The major aim of this research is to: identify effective ways of human capital investment with reference to Australian IT Services Industry, to determine the extent to which collaborative software contribute to employees performance, to assess the effects of training on employee output level, and to assess how motivation contributes to productivity lines of organizations. 

Specifically, the study will seek to answer the following questions:

RQ 1.To what extent does collaborative software contribute to employees’ performance?

RQ 2.What is the effect of training on employee output level?

Justification of The Project

RQ3. How does motivation contribute to productivity lines in organizations?

3. Justification of The Project

 Organizational growth is highly influenced by the level of technology embraced. Innovation is a major component within various business environments used for economic growth and developmental agendas. This paper therefore shall boost Business Corporation amongst shareholders, clients; the management and take into account the needs and concerns of other interested parties (Kehoe & Wright, 2013).  The project shall henceforth solve issues related to poor customer relations, low profit margins, low productivity, low commitment levels, time wastage, and additional expenses. Workers performance shall also be harkened thus maintaining high standards of production hence effective corporate image for the company (Organizational Conduits). The outcomes of the study will in particular be useful to organizations in that, organizations will be knowledgeable in terms of IT services provision. Basing on the findings, the management will offer support to human resource department to ensure an inclusive environment is created for efficient drive and task accomplishment at workstations maintaining organization’s statuesque. The employees will have ease time of accomplishing their tasks by giving their best in terms of quality of service. Significantly, motivation and performance will hike due to mutual understanding amongst the parties involved (Martin, McNally & Kay, 2013). By a means of extension, healthy relations within workplace will be cemented between the management and junior staff hence high productivity. The human resource professionals shall use the project to substantiate the roles of HR professionals in proper management of human resources. Impartial environment shall be created in the long run. Profoundly, other researchers shall obtain knowledge and guidelines of tackling challenges with regards to technological advancements. They shall analyze past cases dealt with by other researchers to solve the problem and come up with alternative ways of handling the issue. 

Potential Output of The Research Project

The study will provide a rationale on capital management strategies. Purposively, speculated outcomes are that the management shall employ the best techniques of enriching the staff by identifying their needs while on duty and identify any hardships experienced during delivery.  Equally, suppliers and customers shall be vetted to measure their level of satisfaction with regards to the services and products of the company.  Production processes, and logistics will be brought on board for evaluation.  Additionally, factors such as contradicting needs and expectations, workplace pressure, different goals, personality differences, and conflicting roles shall be centred upon to measure the intent of workers satisfaction (Ployhart et al., 2014).  Further, the effects of the outcome to the market environment shall be established to help businesses in fighting economic crises. Strategically, it is expected that workers performance level will be boosted through training, effective communication, and motivation. The objectives of the study as well as questions shall guide the research process on the requirements of the tools to use for effective outcomes. Basically, data collection and findings will offer answers to the stated questions addressing each partisan to the type of information system and technology used by firms (Campbell, Coff, & Kryscynski, 2012). In doing so, the problem shall be solved peacefully leaving each party satisfied since their concerns shall form the core guide to research process. Significantly, the output shall serve the economy and business world by defining technology, identifying the level of job satisfaction, and evaluate the impacts of human capital investments on performance (Index, 2016).

Potential Output of The Research Project

The type of technology embraced determines the procedures used by organizations to meet the needs and concerns of the market domain. For instance, organizations policies are described by the level of technology used in terms of work schedules, staff mobilization, services rendered to clients, and waiting time. There are a number of ways to approach human capital investment to improve employee performance (Ployhart et al., 2014). These range from; training, installing customer management software and enterprise resource planning software, and motivation. Fundamentally, the elements outlined support the problem statement outlined above as well as substantiating the stated objectives and research questions.

Using collaborative software to manage the company will yield a positive outcome in supporting decision making process. The software could be used to send instructions to multiple users such as the information from the management to other staff members informing them of business activities via cell phones (Kwon & Rupp, 2013). The software should be user friendly and generate other functions such as client database, electronic documentation, among other duties.

The disruptive economic theory of innovation fits into the company in question due to the nature of services provided. Application of this theory will widen the market scope of the company and allow it engage into diversification of its services and products as well. Further, market research on current trends of technology will improve the level of output and help the company in attaining new clients and equally retain its old clients (Bapna et al., 2013). In a way, the approach will displace competitors' established markets giving the company an extended network to operate.

                                                          Figure 1: Conceptual framework, source (author, 2016)

Proposed methods for improving performance are training, motivation, and using collaborative software for staff performance. The stated disciplines are also methods used by organizations to enhance human capital investment.

Collaborative software system will ease operations within and beyond the market dynamics. These may range from customer relations software and enterprise resource planning software. The customer relations software will allow the IT department to rate its output level against selected milestones (Khan & Khan, 2014). Such may include email correspondences, and event reports. The software will equally allow smooth data entry for example contact lists for affiliated members of the company. The software creates a good platform for obtaining customers feedback through testimonials, brand usage, and quality of services in terms of respond to inquiries (Joshi et al., 2013).

The enterprise planning software is a management tool for storage, collection, management, and interpreting data from other links of the business enterprise (Index, 2016). Competitively, such a software program will lead to efficiency since it allows planning on production costs, market organization, checking payments, and enhance sales within the operational business zone. Additionally, the software shall allow an aggregate view of major business processes on a daily basis such as handling cash transactions, orders, and payrolls.  Data sharing across all legal specs shall be necessitated by a single command click from an IT technician (Jiang et al., 2012).

 Alternatively, performance shall be realised by motivation; a process by which individuals satisfy their contentment via fulfilling their personal goals. In simple terms, it is why people engage into something and the incentive for the action chosen. Motivation as a human capital investment strategy demands moving people into the intended direction. HR professionals therefore maximize on collaborative style to boost employee job motivation levels. Collaborative elements range from salary increment, appraisals, free medical cover, and good workstations to allowances amongst others (Shaw, Park & Kim, 2013). The stated strategies are objects of increasing job satisfaction that leads to increased morale for workers hence best quality of products and services are witnessed.

The motivation theory recognizes motivation as a key element of improving the quality of workplace and ability to manage conflicts. For instance, companies that invest in motivation achieve high rate of staff retention and maintain their corporate aims if not increasing.  McGregor’s Y theory, the Herzberg’s Motivator-Hygiene theory, and self-efficacy however do not specify any standards of motivational behaviour. Therefore it can be argued that motivation is a subjective and emotional issue and is subject to change basing on the personality and environment (Brigham & Ehrhardt, 2013).

Training of staff on the use of technology is an important development initiative since it enables them to be informed on the current market trends as far as performance is concerned. Basically, training ensures that the staffs meet the needs of the organization and other parties of interest. Substantially, training will amount to growth and changing for the better staff development allows all members of an organization to obtain relevant skills with respect to organizational culture and practices (Santarelli & Tran, 2013). Professionalism and expertise is equally achieved. For the sake of an IT firm, training would include conferences, workshops, institutional courses, and study circles. Institutional courses shall be non-academic and purely by observation. Study circles would use professionals with common technological interests.

 Research hypotheses

  • H (1) Null hypothesis: there is no relationship between human capital investment and employee performance.
  • H (2) Alternative hypothesis: there is a direct relationship between human capital investment and employee performance.


5.Resaerch Methodology

  • Research design: a descriptive research design shall be embraced to help the researcher in addressing the outlined objectives. The design supports observation, and description of major variables spelled out with regards to conflicts. Qualitative methods of data collection shall be focused upon to qualify the characteristics exhibited by the target population. Specifically, descriptive research design will enable the researcher to familiarize with behaviour, attitudes, and personalities of the selected sample group.
  • Target population: Population is a group of individuals who portray characteristics of interest to the researcher as well as significant to the study. The target population of the study therefore shall include junior staff members, managers, and a few clients. The sample number of target population taken in this study is 400.
  • Sampling Design: Stratified random sampling technique shall apply in the research. The target population shall be split into segments randomly. Random picking of individuals from a list of names of the target population will be done. Such a technique will give equal chances of representation and participating into the project.
  • Sampling size: a sample is a section of the population singled out by the researcher for analysis.  Using a section of the population helps the researcher to study the entire characteristics relevant to the study in depth. Therefore the researcher shall select a few elements from the target area and implement the findings to the entire population as shown in the table below.

Table 3.1: Sample size

Population category

Target population

Sample size

Percentages %

Managers

100

50

25

Employees

200

100

50

Customers

100

50

25

Totals

400

200

100

Source: Author, 2016

  • Data collection instruments: Primary data shall be collected using questionnaires and interview schedules. These instruments are discussed below.
  • Interviews: One on one interview between the correspondents and the researcher shall be used to enable the researcher to obtain data. Face to face interaction will equally help the researcher develop a good rapport with the interviewee (Campbell, Coff, & Kryscynski, 2012). Significantly, the researcher will have pleasure to observe the correspondents and single out selected characteristics fitting the study.
  • Questionnaires: To substantiate the objectives of the study, semi structures questionnaires shall be adopted. Qualitative and quantitative measures shall be evaluated using open ended questions. The questionnaires will allow respondents freedom to express themselves and capture information that may seem to be left out by the interviewer.
  • Data analysis procedures: Consistence in question structures will be checked. Interviewees shall equally be guided on how to fill the questionnaires before the actual exercise. The quantitative techniques of data analysis shall be embraced in this study as there are various facts and figures are taken into account and then analyzed.

The organisation of the study is as follows:

  • Chapter One will be the Research Proposal as outlined in this assignment.
  • Chapter Two will describe the case study of human capital investment in-depth.
  • Chapter Three will include the details of methodology – literature review, data series and surveys (data collection methods), observing key indicators human capital investment,analysis methods.
  • Chapter Four will report the Findings and Analysis of the proposed research.
  • Chapter Five will summarize the important findings and discuss their implications on motivation.

The following table shows the timeline for the project completion. 

Task                               Start day     End day           Duration

                                                                                        (Days)

Project proposal             30/9/2016    30/10/2016            30

Data analysis                   25/3/2017    25/4/2017               30

Final report submission   30/4/2017    21/5/2017                21

30/9/20161/11/201622/01/201725/03/201730/04/2017

                                                                                                                                                                               Project proposal            930                                          30                

  Literature review                 111                               80                                                          

Data collection                      1/22                                                       60       

Data analysis                   3/25                                                                          30                                                                                                                                                                                                         Final report submission     4/30                                                                                                     21

The budget for the project amounts to $ 5,000 broken down as follows.

Particulars

Estimates ($)

Literature review

1000

 Data collection

2300

Researchers expenses

500

Data analysis

1200

Total

5000

 Literature review shall attract expenses such as books and other sources that give information with regards to conflict resolution. Data collection attracts costs of printing questionnaires and interview forms. Additionally, according to Index (2016), the researcher may incur some expenses such as meals, and travelling costs. Finally, since data shall be analysed qualitatively and quantitatively, the researcher may be required to acquire a computer to feed in data and draw charts, and figures (Bapna et al., 2013). The report will be written on the findings hence printing and binding charges.  

Bapna, R., Langer, N., Mehra, A., Gopal, R., & Gupta, A. (2013). Human capital investments and employee performance: an analysis of IT services industry. Management Science, 59(3), 641-658.

Brigham, E. F., & Ehrhardt, M. C. (2013). Financial management: Theory & practice. Cengage Learning.

Campbell, B. A., Coff, R., & Kryscynski, D. (2012). Rethinking sustained competitive advantage from human capital. Academy of Management Review, 37(3), 376-395.

Index. (2016). Investment: A History. doi:10.7312/ream16952-015

Issues and Recommendations’, Human resource Management,         vol.39 no. 4

Jalil, M. H., Othman, M. Y., Dakir, J., Sham, F. M., Yaacob, M., Yunos, N., ... & Adabi, F. (2015). Elements of human capital development according to Hasan Al-Banna. Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology, 2015, 133-140.

Jiang, K., Lepak, D. P., Han, K., Hong, Y., Kim, A., & Winkler, A. L. (2012). Clarifying the construct of human resource systems: Relating human resource management to employee performance. Human Resource Management Review, 22(2), 73-85.

Joshi, M., Cahill, D., Sidhu, J., & Kansal, M. (2013). Intellectual capital and financial performance: an evaluation of the Australian financial sector.Journal of intellectual capital, 14(2), 264-285

Kehoe, R. R., & Wright, P. M. (2013). The impact of high-performance human resource practices on employees’ attitudes and behaviors. Journal of management, 39(2), 366-391.

Khan, M. E., & Khan, F. (2014). Importance of Software Testing in Software Development Life Cycle. International Journal of Computer Science Issues (IJCSI), 11(2), 120.

Kwon, K., & Rupp, D. E. (2013). High?performer turnover and firm performance: The moderating role of human capital investment and firm reputation. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 34(1), 129-150.

Martin, B. C., McNally, J. J., & Kay, M. J. (2013). Examining the formation of human capital in entrepreneurship: A meta-analysis of entrepreneurship education outcomes. Journal of Business Venturing, 28(2), 211-224.

 Organizational Conduits: Communication Strategies for Effective Instructional Leadership. (n.d.). The Instructional Leadership Toolbox: A Handbook for Improving Practice, 57-78. doi:10.4135/97814522

Pawlak Z, 1998. An inquiry into anatomy of conflicts. Journal of Information Sciences19226.n5

Ployhart, R. E., Nyberg, A. J., Reilly, G., & Maltarich, M. A. (2014). Human capital is dead; long live human capital resources!. Journal of Management,40(2), 371-398.

Ployhart, Robert E., Anthony J. Nyberg, Greg Reilly, and Mark A. Maltarich. "Human capital is dead; long live human capital resources!." Journal of Management 40, no. 2 (2014): 371-398.

Santarelli, E., & Tran, H. T. (2013). The interplay of human and social capital in shaping entrepreneurial performance: the case of Vietnam. Small Business Economics, 40(2), 435-458.

Shaw, J. D., Park, T. Y., & Kim, E. (2013). A resource?based perspective on human capital losses, HRM investments, and organizational performance.Strategic management journal, 34(5), 572-589.

Shaw, J. D., Park, T. Y., & Kim, E. (2013). A resource?based perspective on human capital losses, HRM investments, and organizational performance. Strategic management journal, 34(5), 572-589.

Tacchella, A., Cristelli, M., Caldarelli, G., Gabrielli, A., & Pietronero, L. (2013). Economic complexity: conceptual grounding of a new metrics for global competitiveness. Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 37(8), 1683-1691.

Webb, E., Perry, M., & Fennelly, L. J. (2015). Employee Motivation Theory and Application. Security Supervision and Management, 231-240. doi:10.1016/b978-0-12-800113-4.00018-3

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