Recommendations for a client
If you have done research for a client company or organization, you should include recommendations for action in relation to the problem you investigated. Based on the findings of your research, what specific solutions are possible and what measures should the client implement?
What should the recommendations look like?
Recommendations should be concrete and specific. They should be supported with a clear rationale and connected to your conclusions. How will the measure contribute to solving the problem or issue?
Example of an advice research question with practical recommendations
Research question (advice):
How can teachers at primary school X ensure that the social skills that contribute to maintaining peer relationships are promoted in children aged 1 to 4?
An important condition for controlling many social skills is mastering language. If children have a better command of language, they can express themselves better and are better able to understand their peers. Opportunities to practice social skills are thus dependent on the development of language skills.
The investigation revealed that mastering language is an important prerequisite for mastering social skills. On this basis, primary school X should create language development programs in collaboration with their preschool teachers, with the goal of continuously expanding the language skills of children aged 1 to 4.
Example of a descriptive question research with practical recommendations
Research question (descriptive):
To what extent does social isolation affect the public confidence of citizens in the Municipality of Amsterdam?
Sample sub-question (descriptive):
What factors influence perceptions of isolation in Amsterdam?
Based on the research results, it can be concluded that individuals’ age, access to the internet, and feelings of connection to their neighborhood have a strong influence on how they perceive isolation.
The study has shown that older people (especially those over 65) face the greatest risk of social isolation. To prevent or combat social isolation, it is therefore recommended that policy targets this group in particular.
Based on: Lievaart, N. F. (2009). Bowling alone without public trust (Master’s dissertation). Consulted https://www.ser.nl/~/media/files/internet/educatie/
Thesis / scriptieprijs_2010 / lievaart_volledige_scriptie.ashx
How many recommendations should you write?
As a rule of thumb, try to limit yourself to between three and seven recommendations in total. If you have more, group them together.
Note that you can have multiple recommendations for each conclusion. It is also acceptable to have one recommendation that is connected to more than one conclusion.
Remember that no organisation or company has endless amounts of money and time. Your recommendations should remain within their parameters and reflect the available budget, the deadline by which the advice must be implemented and any relevant rules (such as laws and regulations).
In your dissertation, use a separate section in your introduction to outline any preconditions set by your client. This section can be omitted if your client has not defined any preconditions.
Example of a research question with preconditions
Research question (advice question):
How can the management of the common website for elementary schools in the Brabant region be made more efficient within a year?
- The solution should increase efficiency by at least 10% within one year.
- The related budget should not exceed €10,000.
- The website’s design should remain unchanged.
Who will read your recommendations?
Of course, your client will be the main consumer of your recommendations. Many stakeholders in the company or organization may be interested, including managers, staff members who have been involved in the study and anyone who may have to deal with changes related to your recommendations.
* Some programs accept this voice, while others do not. It’s therefore best to check with your supervisor before using “I” or “we.” In general, we recommend avoiding this voice apart from in the preface to your dissertation.
A separate advisory report?
Your client may want to receive a separate advisory report that presents your recommendations in a structured manner.