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Concept Of Ethics And Its Importance In Financial Planning

Question:

Discuss about the Research Philosophy in Pharmacy Practice.

This research program has been executed on the topic “Ethics in Financial Planning” which has discussed the concept of ethics and its importance in financial planning. The term ethics can be explained as the moral principles adopted by an individual which guides the individual while conducting an activity. Ethics plays a vital role for every professional as professional works by complying with the ethics or values. Financial planning is an important element which helps an individual in identifying the ways useful for the attainment of the goals by effectively managing the financial resources available (Chun, et. al., 2013). While performing the operations, a professional need to follow the ethical standards set. There are various ethical principles which a professional can follow for complying with the ethical standards. These ethical principles include integrity, objectivity, competence, fairness, confidentiality, professionalism and diligence. A professional may face an ethical dilemma while performing the operations and it is vital to follow ethical standards for overcoming the dilemma (Smith, 2010).

This research proposal will focus on developing the knowledge of the concept of ethics and role or importance of ethics in financial planning. Different research methods will be discussed in this research which will be used for collecting relevant and quality data for the research program.

This research program has been executed with an intention to develop knowledge of the concept of ethics and its importance in the life of a professional. A Professional faces different situations and for overcoming these situations, there is a need to adopt ethical principles. These ethical principles will be discussed in this research program with a motive to explain their importance in the life of a professional. This research program will develop the knowledge of the impact of non-compliance with the ethical standards set. This research will develop knowledge of the role of ethics in the financial planning system of this changing business environment.

With the change in the business environment, there has been a change in the manner activities of the professionals are being carried out. Ethical dilemmas are being faced by the professionals engaged in the financial planning system which needs to be dealt in an effective manner. These ethical dilemmas faced are affecting the quality of the services offered by the professionals in the financial planning system. This problem needs to be dealt in an effective manner. Ethics or ethical principles need to be adopted by the professionals for the purpose of maintaining the quality of the services offered to the service users.

Ethical Principles In Financial Planning

Ethics in Financial Planning is an important aspect which affects the quality of the services offered in the financial planning system. Research questions have been framed with a motive to form a base on the basis of which information related to the research will be gathered. Research questions formulated for this research program are listed below:

  1. What is the role or importance of ethics in financial planning?
  2. Which factors act as ethical issues affecting the attitude or behavior of the professional?
  3. Which ethical considerations can a professional adopt for dealing with the ethical dilemmas?

Ethics is crucial for the purpose of guiding the efforts or activities of the professionals in the right direction. Professionals operating or providing services in the financial planning system are facing ethical issues which are responsible for decrease in the quality of services. Code of ethics and professional responsibility are guiding the ethics in the financial planning. Different standards are being set by the different authorities for ensuring the compliance with the ethical principles or standards. Ethical issues are being faced by the professionals which are resulting in adverse impact on the quality of the services provided to the users or customers (Hunt, et. al., 2011).

In the words of Katherine et. al. (2011), there are various ethical principles available which need to be adopted by the professionals while providing financial planning service to the customers. These ethical principles guide the activities of the professional in a right manner. A financial planner must provide to the financial planning services by adopting the principle of integrity. A professional must consider honesty over the personal benefit. Another ethical principle is objectivity which ensures that the professional is providing services with honesty and fair judgment. There are various ethical issues which can affect the attitude and behavior of the professionals. Ethical values and principles guide the individual in the right direction.

The focus of the different bodies of the Australia is on enhancing the knowledge of the professionals providing financial planning regarding the ethical considerations. Companies are bound to comply the ethical aspects for meeting the ethical standards set by the different bodies of Australia. Different ethical dilemmas are present which affects the financial planning. Ethical dilemmas need to be dealt in the proper manner for enhancing the process of compliance with the ethical considerations. A professional must ensure that principle of confidentiality is maintained for providing safety to the confidential information of the client. Unethical code of conduct by the professional affects the client as well as professional. A professional must keep the interest of the client at priority rather than self-interest (Ali Aribi & Arun, 2015).

Ethical Dilemmas In Financial Planning

A financial planning manager needs to improve moral sensitivity for coping with the ethical dilemmas. A client may wish to keep the information confidential so as to safeguard them. A planner must disclose the conditions to the client while providing services. Ethical breaches have resulted in an increase in the number of cases of financial planning scandals. Ethical breaches are the result of low morale of the professionals. Ethical leadership scale needs to be considered for the purpose of enhancing the adoption of the ethical principles or values and complying with the laws set by the government of different bodies (Hunt, et. al., 2011).

Research methodology describes the various methods or approaches in detail which are used by the researcher for the collection, assembling, analysis, evaluation and interpretation of the data. This research program has explained the concept of ethics and its role in financial planning. For the collection of the data, different methods or approaches have been put to use which is explained as under:

Research methods or design: Different research methods are available which can be adapted for execution of the research and different activities of the research according to the plans (Bajpai, 2011). These different methods include experimental, opinion based, fundamental, problem solving, observational, qualitative, quantitative, applied, problem-oriented and mixed research method. Analysis of these research methods has been done for the purpose of selection of the most suitable method (Masrizal, 2012). A research method is selected for accumulation of the information related to the research topic. Selection of the research method is done after analysis of the various research methods available (Östlund, et. al., 2011). Research method selected for this research program is mixed research method. Mixed research can be explained as a research method which uses a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods for the accumulation of the quality data (Wilson, 2016).


Research Philosophy: In the words of Matta (2015), the term research philosophy can be understood as the way in which data for the research is gathered, analyzed and evaluated. Research philosophy which has been selected for this research is interpretivism (Balsvik, 2017). Interpretivism research philosophy can be explained as the approach to social science which focuses on humanistic qualitative methods for the accumulation of the data with the help of primary and secondary sources (Edirisingha, 2012). The focus of the interpretivism is on the subjective meanings and interpreting the meaning hidden behind the social phenomena. This research philosophy will help in developing the knowledge of the different aspects related to the research topic (Winit-Watjana, 2016).

Role Of Ethics In Financial Planning In Changing Business Environment

Research approach: a research approach has been chosen for this research program as a theory of the research. A deductive approach has been selected for the research program as this approach is considered more suitable and appropriate for the research. The deductive approach helps in focusing on the general aspects and moving towards the more specific aspects (Clapham, et. al., 2012). This approach has helped in developing the knowledge of the general and specific aspects related to the research topic. A questionnaire has been used for the purpose of collecting the data related to the general and specific aspects (DeValut, 2017).

Research strategy: according to Endo, et. al. (2016), the role of a research strategy in the execution of the research is an important aspect. Research strategy adopted for this research program has guided the research questions and objectives towards the completion of the research successfully by utilizing the resources effectively (Ahmad & Tarczynski, 2011). An explanatory research strategy has been chosen for this research program as this strategy helps in developing a better understanding of the phenomena by identifying the facts related to the research topic. The purpose behind the selection of this strategy is to develop the understanding of the concept and different factors which are related to the research topic (Govindan, et. al., 2014).

Data collection: data collection is the process of accumulation of the data or information related to the research topic. Data which will be used for this research program will be collected from primary and secondary sources both (Ting & Sandel, 2016). A combination of both sources of data collection will be used for collecting reliable data for the research. Primary data is the raw form of data which gets collected specifically for the research and gets collected directly from the respondents (Amaya, et. al., 2015). A questionnaire will be prepared for the purpose of accumulation of the primary data. A sample of the questionnaire is attached in this research program (Kenyon, et. al., 2016). Secondary data is the second-hand data which is accumulated by the researcher from the already published sources. Secondary data will be collected from the internet sources (Bevan, et. al., 2013). Reliability of the data is more in secondary data (Johnston, 2014).

Procedures and techniques: data collected with the application of the primary and secondary sources of the data collection methods. Data which is collected in this research will be in large quantity and for the purpose of analysis of the collected data, random sampling technique will be put to use. Random sampling technique is an effective technique which provides equal opportunity to every data of getting selected for the analysis process. This sampling technique will form a base for the effective analysis of the data collected (Kulshreshtha, 2013).  

Research Questions

Data analysis: analysis of the data forms a base for the purpose of presenting the data in an understandable manner (Clark & Vicki, 2017). It is vital to present the data effectively for meeting the objectives of the research. Analysis of the primary and secondary data will be done with a motive to disclose the relevant data related to the research (Gorard, 2013).

Choice: there are various alternatives available which have been analyzed and evaluated for choosing the most appropriate alternative.

Resources required for the research: different resources are required for the purpose of execution of the research program successfully. These resources include financial resource, time, knowledge, and skills and human resource. The financial resource will be required to implement the plans as per the planning is done in the designing phase of the action plan. Time is allocated to different activities so as to ensure completion of the research properly. Skills and knowledge will be used for the execution of the research effectively. Human resource is required for the collection of the data for the research.


Research timeframe: research timeframe describes the different activities which will be carried out within the allocated timeframe with a motive to attain the objectives of the research. An action plan has been prepared which has defined the different activities with the duration allocated for the execution of the activities. These activities will ensure the completion of the research properly and attain the expected outcomes of the research (Freshwater, 2015).

Action plan

Sequence

Activities

Initiation date

Duration (in Days)

Completion date

Description of the activity

1)

Decision regarding research topic

26 October 2017

1

26 October 2017

In this phase, the decision will be made regarding the selection of the research topic.

2)

Initiation of the planning process

27 October 2017

6

01 November 2017

In this phase, the planning process will be executed for the formulation of plans.

3)

Initiation of execution process

02 November 2017

10

11 November 2017

In this phase, execution process will be initiated for the implementation of the plans.

4)

Decision regarding data collection methods

12 November 2017

2

13 November 2017

In this phase, the decision will be made regarding the methods of data collection for the research.

5)

Initiation of data collection process

14 November 2017

8

21 November 2017

In this phase, data collection process will be initiated.

6)

Analysis and evaluation

22 November 2017

5

26 November 2017

During this phase, analysis and evaluation of the collected data will be done.

7)

Conclusion and recommendations

27 November 2017

3

29 November 2017

During this phase, the conclusion will be drawn for summarizing the findings of the research.

Limitations: during the execution process of this research program, it has been identified that few limitations can affect the execution process. These limitations need to be dealt effectively for ensuring the completion of this research successfully. These limitations identified are pen down below:

  1. The short span of time available for the execution of the research is one of the most important limitations which affect the relevancy of the research program. Data collection methods and sampling techniques have been selected for dealing with this limitation.
  2. Lack of permission to access the sources of data has another limitation identified while executing this research program.
  3. Another limitation is lack of availability of sufficient resources for conducting research program.

Different methods have been selected in this research program so as to make sure that the data is collected as per the plans and contributing to the quality of the research. Mixed research method has been used for the purpose of assembling the required data for the research. The reason behind the selection of the mixed method is to apply qualitative and quantitative research methods. Information collected with the use of primary and secondary sources of data has formed the reliable base for the data collected. Objectives and research questions set in this research program have guided the researcher in utilizing the different methods or approaches as per the requirement of the objectives.

Research Methodology

Primary and secondary sources of data collection have been chosen for the purpose of presenting the quality data. For the collection of the primary data, the questionnaire will be prepared and presented to the respondents or the targeted market. Analysis of the gathered responses will be done for forming the base for the quality information. Internet sources have been used which have been published after 2010 and this is done for the purpose of assembling current and updated data related to the different aspects related to ethics and ethics in financial planning. For the analysis of the assembled data, a sampling technique has been chosen so as to analyze the data effectively and within the available span of time.

Targeted participants or targeted market is the place or people from where data related to the research topic is to be gathered. For the assembling of the primary data for this research program, the questionnaire has to be distributed to the respondents. Data will be assembled by distributing the questionnaire to the employees working in the finance department of the organizations. This will help in collecting the relevant data as these employees are aware of the role of ethics while providing financial planning services to the customers. For the collection of the secondary data, internet sources have been targeted. These internet sources will provide quality data related to the research program. Random sampling technique has helped in the execution of the data analysis process.

During the execution process of this research program, different ethical issues need to be dealt with so as to execute the research properly. These ethical issues can affect the quality of the research and for maintaining the quality of the research ethical principles will be adopted. These ethical issues identified during this research program are related to confidentiality, fair presentation of the data collected and responsibility. Confidentiality has to be maintained so as to protect the confidential data. Data collected need to be presented in the fair and honest manner which will contribute to the quality of the research. Research needs to be conducted with own efforts. This research has been executed with own efforts so as to ensure that the research is conducted specifically and fairly for the attainment of the objectives of the research.

Ethical issues affect the quality of the services offered by the financial professionals?

  • Highly agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Highly disagree

Ethical values or principles guides the efforts of the professional in the right and fair direction?

  • Highly agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Highly disagree

Data Collection

A professional need to take the ethical considerations into account while providing financial planning services?

  • Highly agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Highly disagree

Ethical considerations contribute to the quality of the services offered to the customers?

  • Highly agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Highly disagree

Different bodies are bounding the activities of the professionals within the ethical framework set?

  • Highly agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Highly disagree

Conclusion

Thus, from the above discussion, it can be stated that ethics are a crucial aspect of the life of every individual. There are various factors which can affect the ethical values or principles adopted by the individual. A professional engaged in the financial planning system may face situations where the professional is in dilemma. There are few ethical issues which can affect the ethics adopted by the professionals. These ethical issues include self-interest; equate moral behavior with legal behavior, conflicts between the duties or a professional or demands of the company and integrity issues. All these ethical issues need to be dealt in a proper manner with the application of the ethical principles or values. Different bodies in Australia are focusing on the compliance with the ethical values and ensuring the actions of the professionals providing financial planning services.

References

Ahmad, B. I. & Tarczynski, A., 2011, “Wideband spectrum sensing technique based on random sampling on grid: Achieving lower sampling rates”, Digital Signal Processing, 21(3), pp.466–476.

Ali Aribi, Z. & Arun, T., 2015, “Corporate Social Responsibility and Islamic Financial Institutions (IFIs): Management Perceptions from IFIs in Bahrain”, Journal of Business Ethics, 129(4), pp.785–794.

Amaya, A., Leclere, F., Carris, K. & Liao, Y., 2015, “Where to Start: An Evaluation of Primary Data-Collection Modes in an Address-Based Sampling Design”, Public Opinion Quarterly, 79(2), pp.420–442.

Bajpai, N., 2011, “Business Research Methods”, Pearson Education India.

Balsvik, E., 2017, “Interpretivism, First-Person Authority, and Confabulation”, Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 47(4-5), pp.311–329.

Bevan, S., Baumgartner, F. R., Johnson, E. W. & Mccarthy, J. D., 2013, “Understanding selection bias, time-lags and measurement bias in secondary data sources: Putting theEncyclopedia of Associationsdatabase in broader context”, Social Science Research, 42(6), pp.1750–1764.

Chun, J., Shin, Y. & Kim, M., 2013, “How Does Corporate Ethics Contribute to Firm Financial Performance?: The Mediating Role of Collective Organizational Commitment and Organizational Citizenship Behavior”, Journal of Management, 39(4), pp.853–877.

Clapham, M., Nevin, O., Ramsey, A. & Rosell, F., 2012, “A Hypothetico-Deductive Approach to Assessing the Social Function of Chemical Signalling in a Non-Territorial Solitary Carnivore”, PLoS One, 7(4).

Clark, P. & Vicki, L., 2017, “Mixed methods research”, The Journal of Positive Psychology, 12(3), pp.305–306.

DeValut, G., 2017, “Learn About Deductive and Inductive Market Research”, The Balance.

Edirisingha, P., 2012, “Interpretivism and Positivism (Ontological and Epistemological Perspectives)”, Prabash.

Endo, T., Yamamoto, A. & Watanabe, T., 2016, “Bias factor method using random sampling technique”, Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, pp.1–8.

Freshwater, D., 2015, “Mixed Methods Research”, Journal of Mixed Methods Research, 9(4), pp.295–296.

Gorard, S., 2013, “Research design: creating robust approaches for the social sciences”, SAGE, London.

Govindan, K., Azevedo, S. G., Carvalho, H. & Cruz-Machado, V., 2014, “Impact of supply chain management practices on sustainability”, Journal of Cleaner Production, 85, pp.212–225.

Hunt, K., Brimble, M. & Freudenberg, B., 2011, “Determinants of Client-Professional Relationship Quality in the Financial Planning Setting”, Australasian Accounting Business & Finance Journal, 5(2), pp.69–99.

Hunt, K., Brimble, M. & Freudenberg, B., 2011, “Determinants of Client-Professional Relationship Quality in the Financial Planning Setting”, Australasian Accounting, 5(2), pp.69–99.

Johnston, M. P., 2014, “Secondary Data Analysis: A Method of which the Time Has Come”, Qualitative and Quantitative Methods in Libraries, pp. 619 –626.

Katherine Hunt, Mark Brimble & Brett Freudenberg, 2011, “Determinants of Client-Professional Relationship Quality in the Financial Planning Setting”, Australasian Accounting, 5(2), pp.69–99.

Kenyon, G. N., Meixell, M. J. & Westfall, P. H., 2016, “Production outsourcing and operational performance: An empirical study using secondary data”, International Journal of Production Economics, 171, pp.336–349.

Kulshreshtha, A. C., 2013, “Basic Concepts of SamplingBrief Review: Sampling Designs”, UNSIAP.

Masrizal, M., 2012, “Mixed Method Research”, JKMA: (Jurnal Kesehatan Masyarakat Andalas) (Andalas Journal of Public Health), 6(2), 53-56.

Matta, C., 2015, “Interpretivism and Causal Explanations”, Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 45(6), pp.543–567.

Östlund, U., Kidd, L., Wengström, Y. & Rowa-Dewar, N., 2011, “Combining qualitative and quantitative research within mixed method research designs: A methodological review”, International Journal of Nursing Studies, 48(3), 369-383.

Smith, J., 2010, “Removing the roadblocks to quality financial advice”, Adviser Voice.

Ting, C. & Sandel, T.L., 2016, “Methodological challenges to collecting primary data on Internet users in rural China”, Information Development, 32(2), pp.117–126.

Wilson, V., 2016, “Research Methods: Mixed Methods Research”, Evidence Based Library and Information Practice, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 56-59.

Winit-Watjana, W., 2016, “Research philosophy in pharmacy practice: necessity and relevance”, International Journal of Pharmacy Practice.

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