(Solution) Oakwood International 5C002 Evidence-Based Practice

Task One Report

You are required to prepare a report to senior managers at their forthcoming annual meeting. The report needs to:

Evaluate the concept of evidence-based practice including how it can be applied to decision-making in people practice.  (AC1.1) Short references should be added into your narrative below. Please remember to only list your long references in the reference box provided at the end of this section.  Wordcount: Approximately 450 words.493
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Evidence-based practice As defined by Young (2022), evidence-based practice refer to the concept of making informed decisions by combining the best available evidence with critical thinking. CIPD Profession Map states that people professionals should be evidence-based. This means using evidence from different sources such as organisational data, scientific literature, practitioner judgements and stakeholder concerns. However, in order to make better decisions using evidence, people professionals should follow key steps (Young, 2022): Asking – translate a problem into an answer Acquiring – Look for evidence from different sources Appraising – check source validity and reliability Aggregating – weigh the evidence Applying – use the best evidence in decisions Assessing – evaluate the impact of the decision
Advantages and disadvantages of EBP Evidence-based practice helps people professionals to make informed decisions supported by evidence. It prevents decision makers from relying on anecdotes, personal experiences and received wisdom (Young, 2022). Organisations can achieve better results when all decisions are based on evidence. Its disadvantage is that past evidence may not be applicable in the current management environment due to changing business world. It is also noted that the best evidence is not always available, for example, an evidence to support usefulness of new technology may be limited (CEBMa, 2019).  
People practice issues Some people practice issues that need to be supported by evidence include learning and development and rewarding decisions. When making decisions related to these issues, HR manager can use rational approach to evidence-based practice. Rational model involves using facts and taking step by step procedure to analyse these facts and any other evidence available (Xu et al., 2022). For example, when introducing L&D programme, HR need to conduct learning need analysis to identify skill and knowledge gaps and use HR dashboard to compare individual capabilities. In regard to reward decisions, performance management data and scientific literature can be appropriate to support the decision on the best reward system to introduce. Rational model reduces potential errors and decisions that are based on assumptions or biases. However, people professional might be constrained with insufficient evidence and facts when using rational model. It is also time consuming as it takes step by step procedure to analyse facts.
  Organisational issues Organisations like customer satisfaction and declining productivity require a great deal of evidence to support decisions. When deciding the type of strategies to improve customer satisfaction and boost productivity, group decision making approach to evidence-based approach can help gain useful insights. Group decision making approach is about getting employees to work as a team, wear different hats and help to find best possible solutions (Kertzer et al., 2022). Employees are encouraged to brainstorm ideas to help improve customer satisfaction and productivity. These ideas are then used to design strategies and policies to help organisation achieve its goals. Group decision making takes the advantage of wide range of perspectives and improve teamwork and contribute toward positive relationships. Its disadvantage is potential for conflicts in groups which can delay decisions.  
Evaluate a range of analysis tools and methods including how they can be applied to diagnose organisational issues, challenges and opportunities. (AC1.2)Short references should be added into your narrative below. Please remember to only list your long references in the reference box provided at the end of this section. Wordcount: Approximately 400 words. 447
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PESTLE analysis tool PESTLE analysis tool is used to scan external factors such as political, economic, sociological, technology and legislations (Battista, 2021). Organisation would want to understand the risk associated with political environment. For example, political instability scare aware investors and many contribute to economic decline, but political stability bring new investment opportunities. Furthermore, employer would want to understand how new legislations like equal pay and minimum wage will affect employment. The advantage of PESTLE tool is facilitating an understanding of wider environment and support strategic thinking (Christodoulou and Cullinane, 2019). Organisation can make decisions based on how they expect PESTLE factors to change in the future. However, its main disadvantage is that the changing business environment makes future unpredictable. For this reason, PESTLE analysis should be done regularly which can consume time and resources. It can also result to ‘paralysis by analysis’ as a result of too much data available to rely upon making decisions (Battista, 2021).  
Exit interviews Exit interviews are conversations between an employer and employee choosing to leave the workplace (Maranan, 2022). They are used to diagnose workplace issues such as reasons why people are leaving, effectiveness of rewards and benefits, skill and knowledge gap, leadership effectiveness and people perceptions about work (Maranan, 2022). The advantage of an exit interview is that it helps people professionals to find the root cause of employee’s departure and rely on this feedback for improvement. Exit interviews can also help organisation to leverage opportunities by gaining insights into where the organisation can improve. Exit interviews have disadvantages too. These include poor quality of data and lack of consensus of the best practices (Maranan, 2022). Some employees may be unmotivated or feel pressed for time to explore their feelings and may choose to remain silent or give false data rather than saying anything negative. Some employers may also use exit interview as an excuse not to have meaningful conversations with existing workforce (Mokibelo, 2020).
  Observation method Observing employees can be a great way for an employer to pinpoint issues related to knowledge transfer, skills gaps and performance. By observing how people are doing work, employer can avoid subjective assessments from customers and colleagues (Aschenbrenner, 2022). Its advantage is that it provides primary data or information needed to make informed decisions on areas for improvement. It also facilitates clarifications, insights, quick answers and opinions. Some disadvantage of observation include; employees may not be as efficient and productive due to interferences and workflow interruptions. This may not provide exact information needed. Additionally, observes may get nervous when they realise they are observed and may tend to perform work differently than they typically do. This can give misleading data (Aschenbrenner, 2022).  
Explain the principles of critical thinking including how you apply these to your own and others’ ideas. (AC1.3) Short references should be added into your narrative below. Please remember to only list your long references in the reference box provided at the end of this section. Wordcount: Approximately 400 words. 390
Critical thinking Critical thinking involves thinking clearly and rationally, analysing facts and arguments and understanding logical between ideas (Elder and Paul, 2020). According to CIPD Profession Map, people professionals have core knowledge such as evidence-based practice and people practice. For this reason, people professionals need critical thinking to appraise evidence and select the best possible evidence to make a decision. They also need critical thinking to avoid making biased decision in people practice functions like rewarding and resourcing.
Principles Considering unconscious bias – Critical thinkers should not hold beliefs or social stereotypes that some groups are better or superior than others (Acas, 2023). For example, an HR manager should not think that men works harder than women and fail to promote equality during hiring process.
Checking source validity – Figuring which information is important for decision making is a challenge for critical thinkers. Critical thinkers need to check where information come from, analyse the source reliability, accuracy, currency and authority.
Objective rational thinking – Objective reasoning is about having a logical consideration of all situation (Fitriani et al., 2020). Critical thinkers should not make decisions based on their personal feelings, but should be self-aware of their minds and focus solely on evidence.  
Using critical thinking to develop my own ideas I would use critical thinking to develop my own ideas by being objective rational thinking. I would take time to analyse arguments, evaluate evidence and differentiate between facts and opinion. For example, when I am reading a research paper to obtain insights to support my decisions, I would start by questioning sources of information and synthesise my own arguments.
Critical thinking in considering other’s ideas When considering other people’s ideas, I would ensure I am aware of unconscious bias. For example, in a group discussion, I will treat everyone fairly by giving them equal opportunities to participate as well as take equal roles. People can think in a manner that include unconscious bias, but it is crucial to be aware that everyone should be treated equally and fairly.
Assisting rational and objective debate Critical thinking is importance in rational and objective debate. Examples of how I can use critical thinking is by presenting evidence and take careful notes of their logic and information. I would listen carefully to what they are saying, question facts and try to understand the logic between ideas presented.  

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