The Home Depot


One major goal of this course is to draw connections between our data-driven analyses in class and real-world business applications.  To this end, you will be required to find an organization that will work with you to identify an issue/question/problem that you could address using a data-driven research approach.  Note: you will not be collecting data to analyze these hypotheses; rather, the goal of a research proposal describes the reasons for the study, the hypotheses, and an explanation of how the study will be carried out.

Objective: Prepare a Research Proposal to study a relevant management issue (determined by your interview with a manager). Find at least 3 articles about your topic and use them to develop a model and theory. Develop and propose a research project.









Home Depot

Student’s Name

Institutional Affiliation

Home Depot

Purpose of the Study

This research proposal investigates the customer service climate at Home Depot. Home depot is a market leader in the home improvement, construction, and retail industry. The purpose of this study is to examine the professional-consumer relationship, how customers receive rewards/benefits, and the overall customer experience. Home depot is at the heart of the modern doers of renovation, construction, and the popularly promoted trend Do it yourself. With more than 40 years of operation, the company has become a household brand in America. Founded by two brothers, the company has been run and operated on a close-knit customer-employee relationship. Home Depot has created a holistic approach to gain and retain clients. The company also operates a comprehensive review framework to ensure the company’s products and services align with the customer’s preferences and taste.

Since its establishment, Home Depot has implemented effective sale strategies to scale the heights to become the world’s largest hardware store for the home improvement and retail industry. During its first year of operation, the company erected a 60,000 square feet warehouse that housed more than 25,000 products, which dwarfed all the existing hardware stores in the market. Today, the company boasts a large network of more than 500,000 orange-blooded associates and shareholders in the US, Canada, and Mexico. Home Depot strives to provide efficient and quality service to its customers, shareholders, communities, and associates across all its 2,200 stores across North America. The majority of its stock is housed in an average of 105,000 square feet of hardware space, linked to an e-commerce business that offers more than one million products for professional contractors, DIY customers, and the industry’s largest installation business for the retail customer. As a result, the company has penetrated the existing market and accrued a good customer base in the region to become the market leader in the supply of household wares for home improvement and the retail industry (The Home Depot, 2021). Home Depot operates on firm policy to keep its customers, associates, and shareholders the top priority. With this, the company has attracted numerous sales that have bolstered high profits.  The company has employed approximately 504 800 and generates a total income revenue of $132 trillion annually, a 25.13% increase from last year (Home Depot, 2021).

In 1978, Home Depot had two branches in Atlanta, Georgia. Since then, the company has grown to multimillionaire business that boost a wide network of hardware stores tap into the building culture of Canada.  However, with continuous advancement, the company has maintained a close-knit customer relationship based on the founding customer “bill of rights” implemented by Marcus and Blank. Since its invention, Home Depot outlined a new policy that prioritizes the customer as the most valuable asset in the company in every store across the world. The company’s main goal is to earn customers’ trust and respect by offering the highest level of services in the e-commerce selection of products and the most competitive prices. In essence, the company’s mega growth and high-profit turnovers are linked to the wide and vibrant store chains across North America that run and operate on complex and well-integrated management systems. The company employs a customer-centric approach that ensures all the customers expect to provide the best assortment, quantity, and price selection from the catalog.  Every store operating under the franchise is run and operated by a manager, house manager, and a wide range of professional artisans, trained sales associates, and expertly trained floor associates who teach customers basic artistry according to client’s preferences. The clients also benefit from the wide range of incentives, discounts, community-based programs, DIY clinics, customer workshop and face-face sessions with customers, online design tools, decoration and design consultation, truck and tool rental for honing home improvement skills (Linda, Amy, & Jennifer, 2019).

All the customer service is committed and passionate about supporting their community, environment, and staff members through concise effort, hard work, innovative ideas, and positivity. Home depot is on a   mission to embrace zero-based carbon emissions by 2021 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions emanating from the products. In 1993, Home Depot restructured its supply chain to harness its commitment to ethical sourcing to reduce greenhouse gas emitted into the atmosphere as part of the global agenda to reduce environmental impact and that of our clients.  In furtherance, the company launched its in-house model to ban expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) film for packaging and branding by 2023. The company also targets generating or purchasing 335 megawatts of clean energy fit for consumption by 90,000 homes per year. This serves as the founding step towards operating sustainably, focusing on people, and strengthening our communities. In furtherance, Home Depot values its customers as the most important stakeholder in their entity. The brand operates on an inverted pyramid management model that places the customer at the top. These stakeholders’ interests are linked to high-quality goods and services at a relatively affordable price. In essence, Home Depot acts as the leading provider leading market provider of a wide array of materials and home improvement products combined with excellent customer service that deepens a greater lasting impact to customers as the top stakeholders of the business.

As the company advances, the management and leadership structures have transitioned from an adhoc framework to a more rigid model that aligns with corporate social responsibility efforts to satisfy all the customers’ interests. Home Depot has created a close-knit home improvement family with high retention rates compared to other competitors. The brand has a vibrant customer base that reflects professionalism, excellent customer experience, and an immense customer reward system. Once you purchase at Home depot, you feel like part of the family has been extended to your living room, and you can always find a room for them in your house. Shopping at Home Depot is an exciting, informative, and fulfilling experience, and people hardly want to leave, and when they do, they keep coming back for more.

This research proposal will help further investigate and whether or not a closer relationship with the customer agents can have counterproductive patterns. In essence, this research proposal will serve as a yardstick to evaluate the impacts customer representative have on the customer’s purchasing behavior and investigate whether or not a closer relationship with a customer agent promotes counterproductive patterns. Based on the existing literature, we predict a positive and significant relationship between professional customer relations, product preferences, and in-store clinics to honor home improvement skills and a negative, significant, and direct counterproductive purchasing behavior and customer rewards/benefits.

Home Depot has been recognized as the market leader and innovator for more than 30 years; thus, the management has created effective strategies and plans. The top executives are familiar with all the market dynamics thus have the potential and capacity to lead the organization to new markets while retaining the existing clients. Although this eases the running and operation of the business entity, it can limit the existing team’s potential to derive innovative ideas to match the ever-changing landscape of consumer presences based on the changing economy. However, the strategies and plans in place make it easier to identify areas that need modification. Furthermore, the brand’s customer service climate makes it easier for customers to raise issues and receive appropriate feedback after a comprehensive review of the problem to establish its root cause. Generally, the consumers and the employees work as a team and understand the core concepts required to make the dream work.

A comprehensive literature review shows that the three main pillars upon which the founding principle of a favorable customer service climate are customer experience, professional customer benefits/relationship, and customer rewards/benefits. Peer-reviewed literature define  the customer service climates as the  close-knit tight business models that perfectly aligned to enhance customer experience, relationships, rewards, and benefits. In essence, the customer service climate is anchored on transparency, honesty, teamwork, dedication, passion, and commitment as it is founded on a motivated in-role performance (Treacy & Wiersema, 1993). Looking at Home Depot’s existing case studies, there have been direct and significant relationships asserted by leaders in the past. As a result, it is plausible to derive practical and theoretical studies pertinent to our organization. Furthermore, our goal was to provide a deep understanding of these core elements and how they interact and relate to resemble and align with the principles of customer service climate. Transparency, communication, and honesty came to be derived from having an honest conversation with the clients. Treacy and Wiersema, 1993, coin the key pillar of successful customer service is transparency, honesty with the ability to create professional relationships builds tremendous customer loyalty. Experiencing value-based price and quality allows customers to air their preferences, present their requests, and build a positive relationship with an employee’s. Honest customers give the employees room for improvement to match their preferences with a hands-on approach. If there are cohesive business systems that value the customers’ impact, consumers will not feel comfortable and safe to talk to their employees. As a result, this will embed many issues that deteriorate the consumer-employees relationship, leading to low retention rates.

Research Strategy and Methods

Design Team

This research will serve as a guide for all employees at Home Depot. It will aid in the development of community-based programs, product development, and service provision. The existing customer service team will have a comprehensive understanding of key elements that solidify customer relationships.

Principal Investigator

  • Responsible for compiling and issuance of the research grant
  • Ensure the survey abides by the stipulated laws and regulations
  • Align the design to the proposed question

Co-Principal Investigator

  • Arrange regular meetups with the project team on the status of the project activities
  • Ensure the team’s work is up to standard and completed within the deadlines

Study Sponsor

  • Founder of Home Depot
  • Market leader for home improvement and retail industry materials and services.

Study Champion and Content Expert

Dedicated to improving the shopping experience for customers

Knowledge of the customer preferences and their purchasing power

Tried and testing marketing strategies

Graphic Design

A graduate

Create templates for employee’s surveys


For this research, I propose a cross-sectional design using customer surveys to measure outcomes and exposure of the study objects. We will run the cross-section design for one week to gain data on the customer-employee relationship. Our main aim is to collect data that matches the key elements associated with customer service climate. However, the overall research will span for three months consecutively. This time will be adequate to achieve milestones as presented below:

  • Polish up the questionnaire: May 15, 2021
  • IRB approval from College: June 12, 2021
  • Pilot test the survey with three employees from Home Depot: July 5, 2021
  • Collect data from the survey: August 25, 2021
  • Analyze the data and compile the findings: September 5, 2021
  • Finalize the report and share it with managers: September 20, 2021


This study will target frequent customers and first-time customers in the premises. The survey will only be administered to customers who voluntarily agree to participate. Researchers chose to administer the survey voluntarily to avoid bias, errors from unwilling participants. Surveying first-time consumers will allow us to analyze data based on first-time customer experience, signing up for a loyalty program, and the overall general experience of the climate service environment in the company. In essence, the high the number of volunteers, the more accurate our statistically significant levels will be. All customers will be invited to fill out the survey during cash.


This survey will contain questions based on customer experience, customer relationship and customer benefits to help measure the quality of the client-employee relationships, how loyal the customers are to purchase in the company compared to their competitors, how the employees cater to the demographics’ needs. In the first section, the survey focuses on the professional customer relationship and consists of questions such as” How well does the company recognize your value?” on a Likert scale ranging from 1(rarely) to 5(fully) (Hui, Law, & Xiong Chen, 1999).

Data Collection Methods

This study will utilize primary and secondary data to derive factual findings. This is because the primary data is suitable for building on this study by interviewing specific actors in the sector or published materials about the subject under investigation. However, the secondary data will be gathered from peer review articles and institutional documents to inform the research. The information gathered from the three key elements in the customer service environment will give the study an in-depth understanding of the customer experience phenomenon across all chain stores globally. The primary data will not be shared with unauthorized personnel to protect the identity of the volunteers. However, the findings of this research will be shared with the Home Depot management, but no information will identify you or your responses. The questionnaire will require approximately 20-30 minutes completing.

Reporting of Results

On completion, the Home Depot management will be presented with the concrete finding of the study. In the preliminary meeting, the researchers, together with the management team, will discuss the findings. This meeting will include a PowerPoint Presentation given by the Lead Principal Investigator to break down the results and make some recommendations for consideration by the organization. Also, the design team members will be present to ensure all the information presented is accurate. After the presentation, there will be a question and answer session. As researchers, it is our primary duty to answer all questions raised to make the management feel confident that our research is viable for application.


Home Depot. (2021). Home Depot Revenue 2006-2021 | HD. Retrieved from Home Depot:

Hui, C., Law, K. S., & Xiong Chen, Z. (1999, January). A Structural Equation Model of the

Effects of Negative Affectivity, Leader-Member Exchange, and Perceived Job Mobility on In-role and Extra-role Performance: A Chinese Case. Retrieved April 21, 2020, from


Linda, F., Amy, O., & Jennifer, R. (2019). The Home Depot, Inc. Retrieved from The Home Depot, Inc:

Treacy, M., & Wiersema, F. (1993). Customer intimacy and other value disciplines. Harvard business review71(1), 84-93.


The Home Depot. (2021). BUILT FROM ALL THE RIGHT MATERIALS. Retrieved from The Home Depot:




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