(1) Final essay-email: Plan a Follow-up Decision Making Process (150 points)
* INDIVIDUAL WORK *
For your final email-essay, you will use what you have learned about the process of data-driven decision making to write up a plan for a data-driven decision making process. The plan will be in the form of an email to your (fictional) manager at Salesforce or Netflix and address a decision made in follow-up to the case you have been following.
I recommend you approach the assignment as follows:
1. Choose a follow up data-driven decision
In the last two week’s assignments, you focused on the decision(s) made and the outcomes tracked in either the Netflix or Salesforce case. When such a big project is undertaken, new business questions and future decisions will emerge in the process. To choose the subject for your follow-up decision, brainstorm what questions or decisions may have emerged for follow-up. From those ideas, construct a follow-up decision project that is well suited for data driven decision making.
Choose a project with:
A clear and measurable objective.
An objective should be of reasonable scope and specific enough that a plan can be made to reach it.
For example, “solve gender discrimination” would be too board a scope and difficult to measure. But a specific aspect of gender discrimination could be addressed and measurable.
A data-focus. A large amount of data must be reviewed/analyzed to determine the findings that will inform the decision.
For example, the new decision may be a question in the implementation process of the previous decision or a new but related project.
2. Design a plan to reach a decision using data-driven decision making processes
Consider the steps, methods, and critical thinking skills you’ve considered in this course. Based on those, how would you design a plan for data-driven decision making process you choose? Consider what questions need to be answered, what data needs to be gathered/collected, what analyses would be appropriate to use, and what KPIs would be used to track the outcome.
I want you to think prospectively about what the steps would be. I want to see that you can write up a plan, a set of steps before you know the outcomes for those steps. You are welcome, even encouraged to talk about likely outcomes of the project. But don’t give the results of the analysis or say, this is definitely what the decision should be.
In terms of data and analyses to be used, I do not expect you to have precise knowledge of the data companies have. Nor do I expect you to perfectly understand how complex analyses work. And for many cases, complex analyses will not be appropriate. What I do want to see is your critical thinking skills. When you write this up (next step) I will want to see you explain and justify: Why this data? Why this method? What results/insights will it produce? (Does not need to be method from Week 3 Email-Essay.)
3. Write the plan up as an email
Write up the plan as business email. It’s critical that the reader can quickly and easily get to the information they want. Think about the structure of your email. Imagine a manager reading it. Can they quickly and easily read and understand your plan? Does one point follow the previous in a clear way? Remember what we’ve discussed about presenting information and storytelling. Also, you don’t need to recite all the details of what you learned in class back to me. I want you to use what you learned in the planning.
Scenario: The research and analysis have brought up other business questions. Your boss was so impressed with your work they have asked you to lead the project researching one of those follow up questions. Write an email describing your proposed project plan to your boss. Include:
Well-specified and measurable objective
What is the desired outcome?
What KPIs will be used to monitor this outcome once the decision is made?
Plan for decision making process an explanation of:
Data to be used/collected (why? what insights?)
Analyses to be used (why? what insights?)
Discussion of how decision will be made depending on the results of analysis
Use in line citations where appropriate
Include a reference list/bibliography
Minimum 2 references (including book and case study)
Minimum 1000 words / Max 1200 words
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