Overview of Recommendations in a Case Study
The recommendations section is considered the most important section when it comes to how to write a case study assignment.
Rightly, the main objective of a case study report is to generate recommendations aimed to solve the business problem under analysis.
Therefore, before you come up with suggestions on the appropriate solutions, it is important to understand what recommendations in a case study entail.
What is Recommendations in a Case Study?
So, what is recommendations in a case study?
Recommendations in a case study generally encompass the suggestions you make as solutions to the problem a business or an organization is facing.
In the Alternative Courses of Action (ACA) section, your analysis is supposed to provide numerous potential solutions to the problem being studied.
Now in the recommendations section, you need to choose the most appropriate of these alternative courses of action and expound on it.
You are required to prioritize these alternative courses in order to come up with recommendations that align with the key findings of the analysis.
This section of the case study report has to justify why the chosen course of action is the most effective in solving the said problem.
As such, you have to consider how well the selected strategy will address the root cause of the problem.
This requires you to determine whether this strategy will seek to change or accommodate existing business practices.
The recommendations made must therefore be intertwined with the analysis section of the case study; reflecting on what the analysis found.
Purpose of Recommendations in a Case Study
Another key aspect on how to write recommendations in a case study entails understanding the purpose of the recommendations section.
Accordingly, the absolute goal of a case study report is to find a solution to the problem under analysis.
Among the various potential solutions, you need to propose one.
The purpose of the recommendations section is to identify the most feasible of all these potential solutions.
In this, you have to draw from analysis to create links between prevailing business problem and potential interventions.
You are required to consider the prevailing circumstance of a business enterprise and determine which of the solutions would be the most appropriate to implement.
It is important to ensure that recommendations are succinct and clear. This can be achieved by writing them in one short sentence.
Just like in a research paper, the recommendations made should be SMART, where they should be accompanied by a few explanatory sentences.
They also have to be feasible in terms of operational capacity and political willingness among all business stakeholders for them to be easy to implement.
Essentially, they have to be connected to the business problem!
Tips on how to Write Recommendations in a Case Study
You could apply several tips to make sure that the recommendations section of the case study effectively serves its purpose.
These tips include:
1. Choosing the most feasible alternative: This requires you to identify the solution that is not only more pragmatic but also addresses most of the issues affecting the business.
2. Justifying the choice: It is necessary to explain how the alternative chosen best solves the problems facing the business. Justification should be brief.
3. Applying theory and practice: It is important to integrate theoretical and practical knowledge acquired in your class lessons when writing the recommendations section.
4. Using persuasive language: The recommendations section should adopt an audience-centered tone to help persuade the reader into embracing your view on why the selected alternative is the most effective solution.
How to Write Recommendations in a Case Study
Now that you understand what it entails and its purpose, you explore how to write recommendations in a case study.
Note that writing this section is a systematic process.
The process encompasses the steps below:
1. Reviewing the Problem
The first step on how to write recommendation in a case study entails conducting a comprehensive review of the problem being analyzed.
Before you determine the most appropriate solution to the problem at hand, it is necessary to have a good picture of the issue the business is facing.
This requires you to go through the analysis section and determine whether inquiry done aligns with the identified problem.
Therefore, the solution proposed has to be linked to the problem as well.
Doing this requires you to identify the standpoint you view the problem from.
In this, you should ensure that the problem can be clearly stated and the analysis done focuses solely on the identified problem.
2. Assessing Alternative Courses of Action
The second step as reflected in typical recommendation in case study samples involves reviewing the alternative courses of action identified in the analysis section.
After going through the case study problem you need to review the potential solutions in order to identify which of them is the most suitable.
This step requires a thorough examination of the ACA section to find whether all the alternatives have been effectively analyzed.
The examination has to compare and contrast the advantages and disadvantages of the alternatives to find out whether the suggested alternative outweighs all the available ones.
This analysis has to be done in consideration of the problem, business objectives, and prevailing circumstances.
3. Determining the Most Suitable Course of Action
This is one of the key steps when it comes to how to write recommendations in a case study.
It entails selecting one of the options identified in the ACA section.
In this, you will have to choose the option that is most effective in solving the problem the business enterprise is facing.
Selection has to be done through a comprehensive analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of all the suggested alternatives.
The selection process should consider some factors, including:
1. Pragmatism: The alternative selected must implementable. This is in relation to the enterprise’s level of expertise and knowledge and financial and human resources.
2. Time constraints: The alternative should be implementable within an appropriate timeframe to ensure that the problem does not persist for too long to threaten the survival of the business.
3. Economic considerations: It is also important to ensure that the alternative selected is the most cost-effective. This requires conducting a cost-benefits analysis.
4. Ethical requirements: The alternative selected should also adhere to expected ethical standards in order to avoid potential reputational damage.
5. Legal considerations: As well, the alternative must be aligned with all the laws and regulations governing business operations.
4. Expounding on the Selected Course of Action
This step requires you to justify why you have chosen a specific alternative.
You are supposed to expound on the advantages the selected alternative provides in relation to solving the business problem at hand.
This has to be done in reflection of the weaknesses that the other alternatives present.
In brief, you should explain why the other alternatives might not be as effective as the selected one.
The explanation should consider key aspects such as the feasibility of the alternative and time it will take to implement the alternative (whether near-term, mid-term, or longer-term.
Importantly, you should create a direct link between the recommendations and the problem by demonstrating how the selected alternative is based on the assessment carried out.
Recommendations in Case Study Sample
Case study problem
Tata Motors needs to buy the Land Rover Company in order to diversify its market portfolio to counter the threat of entry of new vehicle manufacturers into the domestic market. The Land Rover Company comprises of Jaguar and Land Rover brands, and the Jaguar brand is making loses.
Alternative courses of action
ACA 1: Acquire either Jaguar or Land Rover brand.
ACA 2: Acquire the whole of the Land Rover Company.
ACA 3: Acquire just the Land Rover brand.
Acquiring just the Land Rover brand would be the most suitable alternative for Tata Motors. The brand is not only is not the profitable of the two but also appropriate for the ragged Indian terrain and therefore more marketable in India compared to Jaguar cars. This strategy would also enable Tata Motors gain access to advanced technology and knowledge that would be incorporated in its Tata vehicles and thereby giving it a competitive advantage over its local rivals. The acquisition as an expansion strategy would require Tata Motors to change its structures to achieve synergy between its organizational culture and that of Land Rover. It would as well be necessary to devise systematic methods for technological exchange to ensure efficiency in operations and technology transfer. Finally, employees from both companies should be involved to increase the opportunity for smooth transition.
Case study problem
A Multinational Company X is facing challenges associated with its polycentric talent management practice. The company has opted to hire local talent and manage its multinational companies as distinctive entities in order to curb potential cultural and communication barriers. However, this approach has caused serious problems for the company, including limited international experience, restricted strategic planning capacity, and differences between local management and main company management.
Alternative courses of action
ACA 1: Expatriation
ACA 2: Multinational teams
ACA 3: Information Tech
ACA 4: Centers of Excellence:
The Multinational Company X should adopt an inclusive approach to resolve problems caused by the polycentric talent management style. Such an approach would incorporate different techniques to enhance talent management. Among the alternatives available, combining multinational teams, centers of excellence, and information technology as the key strategies would be the most effective approach in addressing the existing problem. Concerning multinational teams, different subsidiaries would work together to identify the staff members best suited in facilitating the sharing of specific knowledge within a subsidiary. Centers of excellence would be built at the headquarters to house a team of competent staff recruited to guide the multinational company on effective talent management methods. On the other hand, information technology would be used to share talent management practices knowledge between different subsidiaries and the parent company. It would facilitate cooperation between the multinational teams and centers of excellence.