Monday, February 24, 2020

An Investigation on the Selection of Social Service Provider and Buyer Dissertation

An Investigation on the Selection of Social Service Provider and Buyer Behaviour - Dissertation Example According to (Pires and Stanton, 2002), social services are of key importance to the society as these help in strengthening the quality of life of individuals. Although, social service provision is more popularly linked to governmental organizations, there are in fact, a number of non-governmental social service providers as well. Some of these are professionally managed by trained personnel working full-time and paid adequately while others may be formed by volunteers working in their leisure time (Munday, 2007).The users of social services may vary in terms of the urgency of their needs and degree of their dependency on service providers. There may be a dying day-laborer requiring immediate medical care from the nearest possible provider on one hand, while a child laborer in the need of proper education for a bright future on the other. The need and dependency of the former does not leave him much scope to dwell on choices and selection criterion whereas the latter can improve his chances of continuous support and future employment by making a prudent choice. A consumer of general commercial or other services follows certain steps, knowingly or unknowingly, in order to reach a decision while making a choice of a service provider. One of the models defining such a process is the EKB (Engel, James, David Kollat and Roger Blackwell) model with stages of problem recognition, internal and external search, alternative evaluation, purchase and outcome (Engel, J., Kollat, D. and Blackwell, R. (1968). But a consumer of social services differs from the general consumer on a number of significant parameters including sources of information, aptitude and spending capacity (Pires and Stanton, 2002). This affects the process followed adversely more often than not.The selection process of these consumers may be influenced by familiarity, proximity, endorsement and acceptance of claims prima facie without due diligence (Schiffman et al, 1997). This paper therefore proposes t hat there is a need to understand the decision making process and criteria employed by the buyers of social service, so that more targeted promotion or reach out programs can be developed by the social service providers. Social service providers across the UK are funded by the government and private donations and it is essential that the funding is justified in terms of concerted and targeted help made available to those who are in real need. However, the selection of a service is largely dependent on the individual who needs it, and therefore it is important that the service providers are aware of how this selection process occurs. 2. Research Objectives -To evaluate the factors that influence the selection of service provider It is expected that there will be both external situational factors as well as internal, psychological or personality factors that impact which criteria are adopted by the consumers. -To explore the specific criteria that the consumers of social service emplo y in selecting a service The proposed objective of the research is to understand the criteria that social service buyers adopt in selecting a social service for themselves. -To develop a framework for consumer behaviour for selection of social service provider Another aim of the research is to develop a framework that can be used to predict consumer behaviour for consumers of social services. 6. Literature Review A preliminary review of the available literature has

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