I would research the background of the problem. In this regard, I would seek to understand the genesis of the problem of the poor-quality services and food at the unit. The focus of the research will first be to evaluate the service and food quality at the food unit. In this regard, I would also seek to understand the dimension in which the complaints of the services and the food quality is being raised. This will focus on the staff, the menu of the unit, and how the response of the customers’ needs and concerns are addressed. This will help me to understand the background of the problem which is very crucial in addressing the cause of the problem.
The other type of exploratory research that I would conduct is the research to clarify the actual problem and the hypothesis behind it. To understand the actual problem, I will need to link the background information with the exploratory study I will be conducting. For instance, to get to understand the complaints about lack of customer satisfaction with the services of the food unit (Sivadas & Baker-Prewitt,2000). in this regard will try to think of the many possible factors that could have led to the poor-quality services. As a researcher one of the most critical tasks is to identify and isolate the most likely causes based on the symptoms of the services and the food quality problem. However, some of the factors that appear as the key problem may after research appear that they are the symptoms of a more deeper problem. For example, by looking at the problem, one may conclude that the main problem is the poor quality of the services and products. However, the exploratory research would be conducted which would focus on interviewing individual customers and focusing on the actual problem. For instance, the research may reveal that there has been a lot of demographic variation in the campus and the change of lifestyle which may have led to the change in taste and preferences for the customers. This may have led to the complaint of the poor services and products. There could reveal why the customers at the food unit may be finding the quality of the food and services to be poor. The exploratory research on the actual problem will help to come up with the solution to the problem and get to address the real issues.
From the exploratory research, I will focus on establishing the research priorities. This will be regarding the objectives which the research is to address. For instance, in this present case, the poor quality of the services and food may be the problem. However, the research may reveal that it is just a symptom of the problem. The research priorities establishment will help to come up with a lasting solution to the problem.
The exploratory research should have research questions so that it can be able to address the real issues to the problem at hand. The research questions will help the researcher to gather relevant and latest information about the problem at hand.
Further, it would be recommended that one research on the relationship between the quality of the food and services. This is because, the quality of food and services has a great impact on the customer satisfaction (Taylor & Baker,1994).
On the food quality, he should focus on the taste, quality, food presentation, menu and the safety of food. On the case o the service he should focus on the reliability, internal design, environmental cleanliness and the employees dressing.
Taylor, S. A., & Baker, T. L. (1994). An assessment of the relationship between service quality and customer satisfaction in the formation of consumers’ purchase intentions. Journal of retailing, 70(2), 163-178.
Sivadas, E., & Baker-Prewitt, J. L. (2000). An examination of the relationship between service quality, customer satisfaction, and store loyalty. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 28(2), 73-82.