Assignment 7: Recommendation Report (Collaborative)
- Due week 13; revision due week 15
- 2,800-3,000 words (not including figures, tables, captions, or the reference list)
- W + V Component
- 20% of final grade
- Use Chapter 18
Many customers think that customer service is getting poorer and workers are getting ruder. Your team’s task is to evaluate the service in a local business such as a restaurant, shoe store, or grocery store and recommend changes based on the following data:
- Primary research: your observations (gathered via note-taking, not audio- or video-recording).
- Secondary (library) research: peer-reviewed articles, trade magazine articles, newspaper articles, technical reports, white papers, and other sources related to best practices in customer service and other relevant topics. This research will help you develop the criteria for evaluation that you will use to assess customer service at your chosen business.
This collaborative assignment provides practice in primary (observation) and secondary (library) research, crafting informative and persuasive messages, developing visuals, citing sources, and designing a report. You will need to work as a group to gather data and write and design a recommendation report.
Choosing a Business
You may choose a chain business (e.g., Taco Time), but study just one location. The business you choose must be a real business with customer service that you and your group members can observe. Your primary audience is the manager or owner of that business—the person who has the power to implement your group’s recommendations. You need to identify that person (or people). While secondary audiences who might use the report may exist, for example, employees at the business, you will write for your primary audience.
Conducting Research and Citing Sources
For your observational research, you and your group members should define terms such as “friendly” and “effectively” ask questions like these and define :
- Are customers made to feel comfortable? How?
- How long does it take to get through the line during different times of the day?
- Is workers' communication helpful, friendly, and respectful? How so?
- Are workers knowledgeable about products and services?
- Do workers sell the products or services effectively?
The secondary sources you use should be credible. You and your team are responsible for the effective use of all secondary research material in the report and your presentation—whether you have summarized, paraphrased, or quoted source material, or whether the source material is a visual element such as a graph or table. See Appendix C in the text for details on citing and documenting sources in APA format.
Drafting the Report
Because you will need to work on drafts of the report at the same time, your group should develop the report with a tool such as Google Docs. Google Docs is an online space where you and your group members can draft and edit simultaneously: https://www.google.com/docs/about/. Using a tool like Google Docs ensures that your group is not keeping and working on different versions of the report—a recipe for losing work. Because Google Docs does not allow for sophisticated formatting, you will have to transfer your work to a Word document at the editing stage.
Designing the Report
A successful report will showcase professional, sophisticated, and usable design. (See the model report in Chapter 18; you may also review Chapter 6.) Your report should begin with a table of contents and a 300-word executive summary. The report should incorporate visual elements to show relationships among data and to illustrate, clarify, and emphasize your findings and analyses. Effective visual elements are usable, appropriate to the information being presented, and integrated into the surrounding text appropriately. (See Chapter 16 for details on “Integration of Visuals.”)
Make sure to look carefully at the rubric for this assignment as you plan, write, and revise your work.
Note for the revision: Turn on tracked changes before your group begins to revise. Leave tracked changes on as your group revises. Turn in your revision with tracked changes showing.
|Due By (Pacific Time)
||11/19/2015 08:00 am