“If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?”

As Albert Einstein famously said, “if we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?”. Searching for new concepts, new information and new knowledge are the foundations for research – and we pride ourselves on innovative research at Service Insights Ltd. So, why is new organisational research important in an era where, well, we seem to have everything solved – right?

Well, good research underpins good decision making, which of course is where it really starts to make a difference. 

Surprisingly often, research skills are simply ‘nice to have’ within the workplace, with organisations frequently being limited to working more on professional instinct alone. However, the value of independently reviewing the inner running of a business is being recognised as a vital factor in decision-making more than ever before. As a retail company would carry out sales trend analyses before stocking up on inventory or designing a new fashion line, organisations across all sectors are ensuring that to look towards the future also means incorporating research as evidence for making the right decisions. 

Having the methodological understanding set in the context of your business, and the practical toolkit to instil robust quantitative and qualitative research, businesses are able to evidence exactly how they are meeting their overall business aims and fulfilling stakeholder goals. Longitudinal tracking of these vigorous methods allows senior management teams to see precisely what is happening internally over time, including the impact of internal changes and external influences. Research methods know no boundaries – these tools can be applied to any organisation and any aim, whether it is tracking return on influence or investment, or improving internal structures, having reliable evidence to inform decision-making is priceless. 

One such organisation is Network Homes, a housing association managing 20,000 homes across London, Hertfordshire and the South East with an annual turnover of over £220 million. Service Insights Ltd recently visited them in north west London to deliver a bespoke Research Methods training course to a range of staff from across the business. This one-day course aimed to broaden staff understanding of research philosophy, methodology, and how best to apply appropriate tools and techniques to practical questions they wanted to answer.

Reuben Young, Policy and Research Manager at Network Homes found the training to be an insightful course in understanding and implementing research methodology in a commercial setting. He said, 

“The training was fantastically useful for the Research & Policy team at Network. It gave us a solid theoretical grounding in the research cycle and the choices and trade-offs between different styles of research. Since the training we’ve frequently referred to some of the terms we explored when scoping out new projects. It was also a great introduction to our field of work for four Charityworks graduates, currently working in various parts of the business, whom we invited along.”

Service Insights Ltd are now offering one-day Research Methods training courses in-house. For further details please contact Simon Williams, Managing Director, on simon.williams@serviceinsights.co.uk or phone 07740 854172.