Among management control tools, the ones that are based on sampling methods, and applied to populations of objects, people and processes, seem to be particularly significant and useful. The method which implies the effective use of the simplest (and most powerful, useful and effective) sampling techniques is work sampling. Since its introduction, it has been developed as a specific technique able to control and improve the labour performance, but it has been also applied, more generally, to very different fields, as various examples will demonstrate. The purpose of this paper is to highlight the principles upon which this technique is based and to show some useful applications that are easy to generalize. The introduced equations enable to calculate the sample size and they can be easily put into work in a spreadsheet in order to reach, without any trouble, alternative findings with different sets of hypotheses.
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