The purpose of research

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INTRODUCTION

This chapter tries to describe and identify the purpose of the research. It includes brief introduction of research field containing background, motivation, purpose, aims and objectives, research questions, research methodology, and the probable threats of the research.

Background

It is well known fact that today most of the human beings are directly or indirectly affected by the development of the computer system. All the peoples are enjoying its success and new innovations. One of the innovations of the computer system is the Web-Based Information System (WBIS will be describe in chapter 2). Despite of having cultural diversity, linguistic diversity, geographical differences, working under different organizational culture, political diversity, legal difference, etc, in today's world peoples are trying to grow their market and share their information globally. WBIS provides easy means of platforms for all to achieve their respective goals within a short time and with the secure means of data transform. Most of the time WBIS act like mediator between clients and organizations or users and providers [1]. Organization incorporates WBIS in order to reach the various clients all around the world easily, fast and cheaply.

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Despite of its easy access throughout the world, there are lots of research has been done for measuring the user satisfaction. User satisfaction is the center concern for every product or services. For example if the product is of high quality but could not satisfy the mass users or the end-users then it cannot consider to be a good item or product. Generally, user satisfaction can be defined as "the extent to which users believe that the information system available to them meets their information requirement" [2]. This assessment is very important to focus mainly in the IS development, models used by organizations for WBIS. This provides a valuable contribution to the assessment.

Researchers have considered different aspects of information systems being assessed as product, process, service dimension, stakeholders, and user satisfaction. WBIS are considered by many people the new generation of information systems [3]. The wide spread of communication technologies exploited by WBIS, i.e. Internet; make these information systems more pervasive than traditional ones [4].

Because of the advances in Internet and Information Technology (IT) many Information System (IS) therefore delivered to the users in a bi-directional manner in a WBIS [1], enabling access through multiple channels in a dynamic and competitive environment. Considering this new environment together with the increased need for system assessment, this study aims to extract a framework to assess effectiveness of WBISs of organizations [5], which will also enable them to create a baseline for future investment decisions. A theoretical model is formulated for comparing the user's satisfaction which is directed to highlight the variables that play an important role in determining usage of websites.

WBIS are designed for a wide range of audiences with different skill sets and needs. It involves more end-users direct information consumption and interaction than the traditional IS. As such, user satisfaction is generally regarded as one of the most important measures of IS success [6]. The definition of user satisfaction has evolved with changes in the IS environment [7]. Early research on user satisfaction was conducted in the Traditional Data Processing (TDP) (manual data processing) environment [8], in which users interact, computer indirectly with the assistance of an analyst or a programmer [9].

Websites operate in a web-based environment. However, the interaction of users with web based system is same as they interact with their computers applications [71]. Once the users successfully access them, they can perform their work-related or personal tasks without needing to consult with computer analysts or programmers unless technical problems occur. In other words, they interact with it directly.

User satisfaction (discussion on chapter 4) has become one of the most important indicators of WBIS success since the arrival of the Internet era. WBIS satisfaction deserves its own set of measuring instrument. Instead of adopting the items measuring user satisfaction, related to different IS. It involves more users direct information consumption and interaction than traditional IS. There has been considerable research devoted to establishing a standard user satisfaction instrument since the 1980s [2], [8], [10], [11].

E-Service (discussion on chapter 3) generally can be defined as the electronic application used by the citizens or by some other application [13]. After evolvement of the internet, the way of service that has been given by the organization as well as by the big business houses has changed a lot. It has totally changed the procedure of normally conducting the business. Companies are now able to sell their services by integrating number of services in the web. No matter whatever kind and whatever type of the nature of the service, their intention is to provide such kind of service that would make a citizens or a consumer access to it without any difficulties and technical hazards [14]. These concepts made the development of e-service more effective and efficient, despite knowing the fact that large numbers of technical people as well as resources is considered to maintain the service with a long run vision.

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As we know the advancement in internet and IT has made many e-service turned into a dynamic and competitive environment. The services that have been provided by the respective public or private organization are now not only focused towards making their task easier or maximizing the profit but also, they are extremely focused on how the citizens can get the simpler service without any technical difficulties.

Organization that has been providing e-services has to face numerous challenges and issues regarding the verification and validation of the service. In order to get rid of such subtle but sensitive issue e-services should be presented in an effective manner to fulfill the requirements of the users [15].

However, the ultimate goal of any organizations whether service oriented or profit oriented is to make their customer satisfy, otherwise the organization may go to vain. In this globalization world, major players in the business is the citizens/peoples, if they are not satisfied with the services for what they are paying for then sooner or later the organization would suffer. Until and unless the proper design and functionalities are familiar, customers will really face very difficult to interact with the e-services provided by the Industry's /Organizations.

So, one of the major challenges for any kind of organizations is to make any kind of services i.e. web site to make it as easier as possible for citizens/users/customers [16]. At current, organizational web sites are focused to meet customer's requirements and their expectation, which finally enhances the usability and well as the operability of the web sites. The improper function in wrong place makes the operation more complex which ultimately results the users/ citizens/customers dissatisfaction and move away to the same old fashion of doing things manually.

Hence, a challenge for WBIS is to address a broad spectrum of users and find all of them to make services more efficient and easily accessible. The e-services, at the current situation have been a vital application in today's era of IT. We can even say that the globalization of the industry as well as rapid use of internet has made the citizens/users/customers feel the essence of e-services in order to reduce the time in getting the appropriate service they are willing for.

Purpose

The purpose of this thesis is to explore how user aspects of WBIS can be measured in different ways that are relevant for informing continued design in use. WBIS that has become an emerging issue in today's context and of course the improper management in WBIS makes the end-user unable to access different web based services. We are focusing on WBIS from different perspective and trying to evaluate the performance according to user's satisfaction point of view.

Aims and Objectives

Considering purpose statement, the ultimate goal and objectives of this thesis is to investigate the satisfaction of the users in the use of e-services. As today, world is globalised and all the people as well as the industry are behind achieving the success without wasting much of the time. But, this may be in vain if the user of the application would not get simpler and easy access to the application for those services which they have paid for or for those in which they are a part. Taking these things in mind, we have set up few objectives to achieve our goal. They are

  • To explore previous studies in IS effectiveness and user satisfaction.
  • To present a novel framework for measuring satisfaction from usage of WBIS.
  • To enhance the proposed framework and to appraise its validity via website analysis.
  • To suggest an efficient way that should be taken for the implementation of WBIS to enhance user satisfaction.

Research Approach

This section basically focuses on the approach of doing research. We will present the research questions and describe our choice of methodology.

Research Questions

Research Questions are the statement that would overall take the whole research in an appropriate path. According to the research question, the researchers would try to mould up their thesis in a proper way so that they can give an accurate shape to the thesis. The following research questions would be answer in our thesis. They are

  1. How does the effectiveness of WBIS play out concerning e-services?
  2. Which is the most effective model of WBIS according to present context? [for]
  3. Are the end-users satisfied with current WBIS implementations?
  4. How can designers capture and include feedback from users as improvement tools?

Research Methodology

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According to Dr. Deryck D. Pattron "Research Methodology is defined as a highly intellectual human activity used in the investigation of nature and matter and deals specifically with the manner in which data is collected, analyzed and interpreted." [17]. Different research approaches exist in order to achieve some goal like experiments, surveying, conducting interviews or questionnaires with concerned stakeholders. In general term, there exist two main approaches that are quantitative and qualitative [18].

The main concern of quantitative research approach is to examine and analysis of results generated by some experiments, surveys or simulation. All the research questions that we mentioned above can be understood after conducting surveys i.e. quantitative study of the problem [18].

The qualitative research approach gathers an in-depth understanding about the behavior and the reasons for that behavior. In contrast with quantitative approach, the qualitative approach is done in natural real environment. The strategies associated with qualitative research approach are biography, narrative research, phenomenology, grounded theory and case study [18].

To answer the above research question we will be using the mixed method approach, i.e. qualitative and quantitative study in order to reach our goal. As WBIS is the interesting issues in today's web-based information system [19], and therefore to achieve our goal we will study the current web based of different organizations and compare them according to the ease of the users and other outcome is to make a field visit interviews related to users satisfaction, in this way we will fulfill our qualitative study. We will propose our framework relating the effective use of WBIS. We will be conducting survey as a part of our quantitative research.

Study of available resources/Qualitative Approach

In order to understand the overall gist of the research, a thorough study is needed in that particular area of research on which an individual is interested in. Previously a done study on those areas is also the helpful means. For the literature review we have we will be accessing the popular databases like IEEE explore and ACM digital library. Other than this Google scholar would also help us in numerous ways in finding the resources that we need. After the literature review we will be able to figure out the shortcomings in the WBIS and come to propose solution. Hence, we can say that the basic behind our thesis is to come up with some specific solution in the web based services i.e. e-services and the satisfaction of the user in that specific area.

Survey/Quantitative Approach

In order to validate our research, we will be conducting a survey. The survey is a widely used quantitative research which will enable an individual to get the required current data [18]. We will put some questions to the participants and their feedback will be considered in order to give appropriate result to our research.

Inclusion and exclusion Criteria

To be very specific in the area we are working on, we made up a search strategy where we analyzed our research question carefully. We picked up key words so that it will be easier for us to find the relevant materials for our study. We than split our research questions in order to present or find the appropriated ideas and concept.

With the help of aforementioned concept, we then proceeded in the databases like IEEE and Google scholar to find our material. We also consulted the books to find the relevant literature and different ideas about various authors.

Validity Threats

There is always a threat to research. The most common threat we are familiar are the internal threats and the external threats. Other than this, the two more threats to research are statistical conclusion validity threats and construct validity threats [ref].

Internal Threats

According to study the internal validity threats can be defined as "The factors that cause interference in the investigator's ability to draw correct inference from the gathered data are known as internal validity threats" [18 : ]. In our thesis the main factors for the internal threats would be inappropriate procedure insufficient technical skills of the researchers, improper participation from the respondent and of course the questions that have been put. In order to overcome this threat we will initially be conducting pilot survey and will be analyzing the necessary information that would best suit for completion of the thesis in an efficient manner.

External Threats

It is related to the generalization of the fact [20]. If the generalization of the fact is falsely stated then the overall research would be in wrong track which finally changes the moral of the whole work. In our study the external threats may be inappropriate selection of the questionnaire and as well the biasness of the respondent in providing the exact fact. To solve this issue we will request the respondent to give feedback according to their understanding and experiences in the related field.

Statistical Conclusion Validation threat

This type of threat normally refers to the wrong conclusion drawn from the data that has been collected. As survey is done and the data are collected, so there might be the chances in predicting the results. Hence, in our case we will be sincere enough to evaluate the data and come to a conclusion of the research.

Construct Validity Threats

The last threat is the construct validity threats which define the wrong interpretation of the definition as well as the wrong use of the variable. In our case, we will be going through the databases like IEEE and ACM very thoroughly so that we will try to avoid it as best as possible.

Thesis Outline

This section defines the overall format of the thesis as well as the chapter divided. It provides ease to the reader while going throughout the thesis report. It will also help finding the answer to the research questions which we have formed.

  • Chapter 2: (Web Based Information System) Discusses about the problem of developing web-based information systems and how important is it for the current organization.
  • Chapter 3: (e-Service) Discusses about the types of e-services at present and we will be discussing about how e-services is helping in balancing the managing change in an organization and how it is being friendlier to the user.
  • Chapter 4: (User Satisfaction) Discusses about the idea on the user satisfaction evolved with changes in the IS environment.
  • Chapter 5: (Theories and Models) Discussing about different theories from different researchers, some of the effective models.
  • Chapter 6: (Survey Design) Details out the procedure of survey design. This chapter explains purpose of the survey design and interviews, reasons for choosing survey as a preferred type of data collection, specification of the form of data collection etc.
  • Chapter 7: (Discussion) This chapter rounds up and concludes the thesis and presents the directions for future work.

Reference:

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