Customer relationship management systems

Research Design and Methodology


In the previous section, this study highlighted the importance of CRM 2.0 and social media, by giving evidence from literature, which clearly emphasizes that Customer Relationship Management Systems need to be modified because of the introduction of social media, which changes the design of old CRM which integrate people, processes, and technology. However, now customer feedback is considered more significant and companies need to change their customer relationship model. In the history of information technology, applications such as forum, wikis, blogs, and social networking are being introduced. The effects have been so revolutionary that companies are beginning to use them in their own environment to change their business and customer relationship models.

This section will explain how the research will be designed to answer the research problems mentioned in the introduction. A suitable methodology will be identified for applicability to the research design.

This study will first aim to ascertain the number of consumers using social media and the relationship of social media with customer satisfaction levels. The second section of the research will try to find how telecom companies in Pakistan are using social media in their Customer Relationship Management Systems, what problems are faced during the implementation of current systems and how they capture and analyze the feedback and complaints of customers in their CRM.

Research Design

To find the answers to the questions mentioned in the first section, a survey has been undertaken of telecom company consumers in Pakistan. The focus of this study is to find out the use of social media in consumers and to analyze the possibility of using CRM 2.0 in telecom industry. This study will aim to find how companies use Web 2.0 technologies and this can be translated into measuring customer service satisfaction. After gathering this data, is this research will aim to identify a relationship between the use of social media and customer satisfaction levels.

For the purpose of this study an online survey was conducted using free online survey service to determine answers to the above-mentioned questions. The online survey was selected because Web 2.0 is a web technology and this study wanted to analyze the trend of using Web 2.0 technologies in youngsters, as well as the older generation.

There are approximately 93 million cellular subscribers in Pakistan (in the press release by PTA Khurram A. M, 2009). Although this research will use convenience sampling, it is nonprobability sampling. As a result, the total population is not represented with confidence and privacy laws on the internet prevent users from disclosing their demographical information which also influences the outcome of this research, so the methodology is based on inexpensive approximation due to time and space constraints. Also worthy of mention is that this is a qualitative research and there is currently no practical example of CRM using Web 2.0 technologies.

Data collected for this survey will be analyzed in two ways. The percentage of users using Web 2.0 technologies will be computed; two basic indexes will then be calculated, first for social media and second for customer satisfaction levels, the method of which is explained in the next chapter. We can also compare demographical groups to find which age groups social media is the most popular. If there are more users of social media in the younger generation, this means trends will increase in the future, so companies still have time to implement and consider using Web 2.0 technologies to capture customer conversation.

The second part of this research consists of operations and business constraints to CRM. CRM experts will be consulted to find current problems in customer relationship management systems; what changes they need to upgrade existing systems for the use of web 2.0; what is the mechanism of staff training and fraud/security mechanisms; and how they are using feedback and customer complaints in their CRM.

A qualitative structured interview was conducted of CRM experts from two different telecom companies in Pakistan to get answers to the above questions.

Research Methodology

The methodology suitable for research design mentioned above is based on the how data will be collected and interpreted. The survey will collect a wide sample to examine the use of social media. It will also examine the social aspect of human interaction with new web technology, so Quantitative Survey Research Methodology will be applied for the first part of the research. Pinsonneault and Kraemer (1993) explain that survey research produces quantitative descriptions of some aspects of the study population by asking about people's social attitudes toward any new phenomena and predicting questions. Information is generally collected of only a fraction of the study population. According to these descriptions, data will be collected from people using Web 2.0 technologies on the internet and are mobile phone users as well. It is very likely that those who use the internet must also have mobile phones (Rice, Katz 2003). Although according to Asia Internet Usage and Population Statistics there are 18,500,000 internet users as of June 2009 (unknown ), and as mentioned above there are 93 million cellular subscribers in Pakistan, it is difficult to find the exact number of users using web 2.0 technologies. Hence, some assumption will be made based on the population of Pakistan, to reflect a sample representation of users using web 2.0 technologies. According to the government statistical report (PAP, 2002), the population of Pakistan is 145.5 Million and 53.09 % of the population is between 15-64 years, whereas 43.4% of population is below 15. If we assume that only literate people can use the internet, it is important to realise that the literacy rate in males is 66 % and 42% in females. According to UNICEF (2008), the number of internet users per 100 is 8, of which 50% are between the ages of 15 and 24. At the same time, if we compare the unconfirmed statistics of Facebook users in Pakistan,( Burcher, 2009), there are 1,094,040 active user in Pakistan, with the ratio of male to female being 67: 33. Again, as we are using convenience sampling and it is a non- probability sampling method, it is considered unconvincing because of it bias (Fink, 2006, 50).

The null hypotheses (HO) and alternative hypotheses (Ha) for the survey are: HO: There is a high awareness of social media in mobile phone users of Pakistan. Ha: There is low awareness of social media in mobile phone users of Pakistan. To achieve this hypothesis a questionnaire was drafted containing 20 questions (Appendix A.1). The first section contained questions on awareness of Web 2.0 and social media among populations and second section contained questions to find satisfaction levels of mobile services used by each respondent. The pilot copy of the survey was sent to five participants. Their responses were noted and the questionnaire improved based on suggestions (Appendix A.2). A revised copy of the questionnaire was sent to 120 users through email and Facebook postings. The result of the survey has been interpreted in subsequent chapters.

The second methodology used in this thesis is qualitative methodology, This was used to get an in-depth understanding of the use of CRM in telecom sections and how it are used to analyse customer feedback and complaints of customers. The study also aims to account for future initiatives in social media. Structured interviews were conducted of CRM experts, to capture their thoughts of current CRM use, as well as harnessing any recommendations for the future.


Using Survey Research Methodology, findings of a survey of mobile phone users will be analysed to determine the awareness of Web 2.0 technologies. Subsequently, interviews of CRM experts we establish current problems faced by CRM and their responses to the result of the previously conducted survey in the next section.

Reference list

  • Burcher N., 2009, Latest Face book usage statistics by country - 12 months of extraordinary global growth accessed from on 10th December 2009
  • Fink, A., 2006, How to conduct surveys: a step-by-step guide, 3rd ed, Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, 2006.
  • Khurram A. M., 2009 ,Telecom Sector shows 20% Revenue Growth in year 2008-09 (Press Releases ) Accessed From Http:// on 23rd December 2009.
  • PAP, 2002, Population Association of Pakistan (PAP) Secretariat, accessed from on 3rd December 2009
  • Pinsonneault A.,Kraemer K. L., 1993 Survey Research Methodology in Management Information Systems: an Assessment, Journal of Management Information Systems archive Volume 10 , Issue 2 (September 1993) .
  • Rice E. and Katz J., 2003, Comparing internet and mobile phone usage: digital divides of usage, adoption, and dropouts, Telecommunications Policy 27 (2003) 597623 accessed from on 3rd December 2009.
  • UNICEF, 2008, Pakistan Statistics, Accessed from on 10th December 2009

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