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Unit21 Managing information
Tesco Plc is a United Kingdom-based international supermarket chain. It is the largest British retailer, both by global sales and by market share, and the fourth largest retailer in the world behind Wal-Mart of the United States. Tesco only use to specialize in food and over the years it has diversified into areas such as clothes, electronics, telephones, internet services and many other products and services.
Tesco’s main business activities since 1968 were stocking groceries plus a much smaller range of non-food goods than Extra. Tesco have to order the most of the food they sell which consists on contacting the suppliers and making an order for new stock which will be sold in the stores. Also the store has to be very organized and presentable and also make sure the stock is up to date, so when customers come into the store they can get exactly what there looking for. Also Tesco offer many deals to their customers like buy one get one free or buy one get second product half price. They do this because it’s a strategy for a long term profit. Other main activities are advertising and promotion to get more customers buying from there stores although this is done outside of the store.
Store summary at 24 February, 2007
As of 24 February2007, at the end of its 2006/07 financial year, Tesco's UK store portfolio was as follows.
Total area (m²)
Mean area (m²)
Total area (sq ft)
Mean area (sq ft)
Percentage of space
After doing my research on Tesco I have noticed Tesco gains its information through many different ways such as:
- Primary research
- Secondary research
- Internal data
- External data
Research can be done in two ways Qualitative and Quantities and they are both very useful and both produce accurate information depending on subject:
- Qualitative information- this can not be interpreted in numbers and informs business originations bout the opinions and preferences of individuals. This is like primary research, qualitative research allows a person to investigate in their own style and gain the results which is to the subject at the present time and not something which was done before for another purpose.
- Quantitative information- this can be examined spastically, quantitative research is something which is used to estimate something or find out something for reference.
There are different sources of secondary research and they are internal and external sources.
Internal data sources
Internal source is usually low-priced information for the company conducting research and is the place to start for existing operations. Internally generated sales and pricing data can be used as a research source. The use of this data is to define the competitive position of any business, an conclusion of a marketing strategy a business would have has used in the past, or gaining a better understanding of the company’s best customers.
There are three main sources of internal data (sales and marketing ii) accounting iii) miscellaneous.
Sales and Marketing: this means:
- Type of product/service purchased
- Type of end-user/industry segment
- Method of payment
- Product or product line
- Sales territory
- Date of purchase
- Amount of purchase
- Application by product
- Location of end-user
Accounting and financial records
This is often overlooked source of internal secondary research information and can be important in the identification. Accounting records can be used to evaluate the success of various marketing strategies and profits from a direct marketing campaign.
These can include such things as register reports, service calls, number (qualifications and compensation) of staff, production and R&D reports. Also the company’s business plan and customer calls (complaints) log can be useful sources of information.
External data sources
There is a more to gather from statistical and research data available today and there are many sources and these include:
- Federal government
- Provincial/state governments
- Statistics agencies
- Trade associations
- General business publications
- Magazine and newspaper articles
- Annual reports
- Academic publications
- Library sources
- Computerized bibliographies
- Syndicated services.
Secondary research is data that has already been collected and is in existence. Secondary data can also be known as desk research.
Examples of secondary data may include things such as:
- Sales figures
- Annual report
- Internet data
- European commission
- Commercial publications
- International publication
- Information on competitors
The way secondary data can be done is maybe one of the following:
Promotions/ prices of competitors
Trends in stocks/ shares
Prices for the industry sector
There are also advantages and disadvantages of secondary data like below:
It can save time, it can save money, it can be easier to get hold of, it can be accurate (depending on who has done the research before and how accurate it can be)
The data may not be accurate; who did it and it would need checking and may take time to do so. It can be out of date and it may not be specific to your exact problem.
Secondary data has a lot of limitations and disadvantages, the limits is that the secondary data is not relevant to the research topic or it is not available and most of the time available in insufficient quantities. Also data may be in different format or units than is required by the researcher. Most of it is several years old and may not reflect the current conditions it is common that a thorough research of the secondary data should be undertaken prior to conducting primary research. The secondary information will provide a useful background and will identify key questions and issues that will need to be addressed by the primary research notorious.
Primary research is conducted from scratch, known as field research. It is original and collected to solve the problem in hand. Primary research is normally first hand information usually carried out to find out directly from the market or the needs of customers. You can do primary research by personnel interviews, which the most commons
SWOT Analysis is a tool for auditing an organization and its environment. It is the first stage of planning and helps marketers to focus on key issues. It produces a summary for developing marketing objectives or aims and ultimately strategies or plans. SWOT stands for strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Strengths and weaknesses are internal factors. Opportunities and threats are external factors
These are the attributes of the organization that are helpful to achieving the objective. Things like for example that the business and its staff do which they are effective at or well known for. A strength which a business could have is its reputation.
These are the things that a business does badly, that it is ineffective at or that it has a poor reputation for. It also includes factors that cause losses, disputes and complaints for a business.
Not associated within the business. These are the directions that the business could seize and profitably take in future because of its strengths or its elimination of weaknesses. For example the expansion of shopping on the internet means businesses can increase profits by selling their products on-line to make it more convenient for its customers.
The external developments which could jeopardize an organisations performance. Threats to a business arise from the activities of competitors and from failing to take opportunities or to build on successes. Threats also may come from changes in law, falling profits because of rising costs. Social developments such as changes in trends are also a major threat for businesses.
Strength- the company has a good reputation around the London as well as being the best selling company for food. Fire and rocks has not got a specific target group which the food is aimed for so it is bought by everyone. The price for a Milk shake is lower than its competitors.
Weaknesses- Fire and Rocks has a plain chocolate cake and it has competition from similar products from pizza hut and ask restaurant. The chocolate cake contains high contents of sugars and fats. The packaging can be very tricky at times to open which puts customers off the product.
Opportunities- Fire and rocks is known around over 30 areas in London so they can further enhance its reputation and exploit in other outer areas. The products can include other healthier ingredients and reduce its contents of sugar and fats.
Threats- The rise in obesity and health risks worries people and they may stop buying Chocolate cakes and other products that fire and rocks sell which means sales of cakes will reduce. Cakes not being sold could mean price wars with competitors like pizza hut and ask restaurant?
The PESTLE Analysis examines the external environment and global factors that may affect a business. It can provide a quick and visual representation of the external pressures facing a business, and their possible constraints on strategy. It is usually divided into six external influences on a business- political, economic, social, technological, legal, and environmental.
The factors which affect the activity of business. This is concerned with how political developments might affect a business’s strategy which is out of control of the business but need to anticipate changes and be able to react accordingly. Some political factors businesses may need to take into consideration are laws, political pressures and government’s view.
The performance of the economy having impacts on organisations. The business cycle is very important because it affects consumer and business spending. There are three parts to the cycle, the prosperity, recession and recovery. In the economy prosperity is when income, employment and demand are high and consumers and businesses spend lots of money. Whereas a recession is the opposite and this affects the economy as customers spend less because of low employment and income which effect business sales and profits because the demand for products and services fall.
Social factors often look at the people who live in that society, their values and beliefs. It focuses on cultural aspects and includes health consciousness, population growth rate, age distribution, career attitudes and emphasis on safety. Businesses are able to use the information to predict the size of the market for a product. Pressure groups can influence and affect business plans. For example the anti-smoking has led to no smoking in public places.
The rapid changes of technology can affect business strategies and organisations need to regularly review the changes to react accordingly beforehand. Production of products and products itself can become obsolete quickly. The growing of computers allows people to shop over the internet without having to leave the comfort of their homes. Organisations in the music and video industry are adjusting to changes in downloading of music and films so CD, videos and DVD sales are falling. However technological changes enable new markets to be open and introduced.
The introduction of new laws by the government through parliament means organisations have very little influence over laws past. Business is not in favour of regulation as it will increase costs which in turn lowers profit. The legal frame work constrains businesses, i.e. it tries to prevent exploitation of the weaker partying by the stronger party. Normally business is the stronger party.
Environmental or sometimes called ‘green’ factors can influence the decision of a business. Factors such as legislation to control pollution or consumer views about products. Environmental considerations may raise costs if taken into account but might also generate greater sales as people may feel the organisation is environmental friendly
Many products introduced into the market by businesses usually have a specific target market that they are aimed for. Some may have only one target group and others have more than one. However fire and rocks products are consumed by all segments of the market. On the other hand for example we may produce a product which they aim for an age group as their main target market.
SWOT Analysis of fire and rocks
Pestle Analysis of Fire and rocks
Fire and rocks
Although fire and rocks is not just for children, the rise of obesity and health problems has an affect on businesses. Is it right to sell foods with high calories and fats
The change of interest rates rising and falling is a factor which affects consumer saving and spending. Consumers may not go out much to eat which means less business spending which can lead to less demand for eating at restaurants so workers will lose their jobs
The reputation of their business needs to be kept positive within the society. Some adults feel fire and rocks need to reduce the amount of sugars and fats their products contains so there are no health risks
New developments and improvements of technology need to be continuously monitored. Fire and rocks need to stay ahead of its competitors.
The government introducing new laws which restaurants need to follow so they do not tarnish their reputation and business image
Fire and rocks must stay environmentally friendly by reducing and recycling their waste and disposing of packaging correctly, this will also give them a positive image. Harmful gases released from their restaurant where production of the food takes place which affects the local surroundings
I am going to prepare a data flow diagram for Tesco this diagram will identify the flows that are crucial to effective operations and show how information flows both inside and outside of the business.
On this task I have seen the effects that Tesco will have because of growth in information,
Information handling is the way a business holds or stores its information. This growth can be an expansion for the business. Tesco has been growing and expanding for many years they have to ensure that they use their information effectively.
The ability to manage information plays a crucial part in business success. Successful organisations understand their customers and their own activities. They keep up-to-date with market changes, anticipate future developments and keep stakeholders groups well informed, on the other hand some organisations are slow to find out what is happening, do not communicate effectively and make poor decisions based on poor information.
It is very important to handle information because of the following:
If information is not handled properly and maybe misplaced then when information is needed it may be difficult to find it. So therefore it is important that all information is handled with care and be well organised.
If information is not handled appropriately then important information may get loss, so information should be handled very carefully.
If information is not handled in a good manner then when a specific information is required it will be hard to find, and will waste a lot of time for the organisation.
All information should be handled correctly so can be easily used when it is necessary.
Information handling also has advantages like the following:
Handling information saves a lot of time so that is a big benefit for organisations; this makes it easy for employees at Tesco to gain access to information.
Handling information also helps to make errors when you don’t realise that you are making a mistake. As if the information is in a good order form then this will make it easy for information to be checked for errors.
It also is easy for people who are storing the information and those who are using the information.
At Tesco there are many functions that are available now, as there has been a very big change in the way a customer are served and the use of application of information and communication technology.
Theory of communication
Communication is the transfer of information between people. One person communicates with another e.g. letters, e-mails. Communication involves a number of elements like the following:
The sender Message
(Initiates the (the information
Communication) that is transmitted)
Was the message
Received and understood
The audience at whom
The message is targeted
The sender is the company who wants the process of communication
The message is the information that the business wishes to send to its audience.
The medium is the way in which the message is communicated.
ICT has completely changed ways of communication in Sainsbury.
The use of email to replace many communications that previously was carried out by letters faxes and phone, this is more convenient to use. Computers at Tesco complete tasks such as registering an order, requesting items from stores and maintaining stock levels. Now that Tesco use a database rather than having it written and kept in a file that has replaced filling and storing information. Internet websites have a link between Tesco and its market and customers. The Internet is used for research for future developments.
Tesco needs to communicate everyday it is part of their job to communicate; they have to communicate with their customers, suppliers, competitors and their employees. Tesco use the following three techniques in order to communicate, they are the following:
- Internal and external
- Formal and informal
- Upward and downward
INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL COMMUNICATION AT TESCO
Formal informal Information needed
Customer’s government government customer’s suppliers
Business engage into communication for a variety of purposes shown above in the diagram, this communication can be internal for example a memo sent from the director to the team leader concerning overtime pay rates is an example of internal communication. External communication takes place between an organisation and other organisations or an individual outside the business, for example a business providing details of job vacancies, as part of recruitment would be communicating externally.
Ways of communicating internally are the following:
- Written- this covers paper documents that are exchanged within a business such as letters, brochures and memo’s.
- Verbally- that usually is face-to-face interactions, telephone conversations, voicemail messages and voice recording.
- Electronic- this replaces forms of communication for example when stockist can be transferred to the managing director using electronic devices.
Ways of communicating externally are the following:
- Interviews- this is external communication because you are interviewing someone outside the business maybe because they are interested in the business.
- Other forms of external communication are websites, cd, electronic mail, videoconference and etc.
Is the exchanging of information and ideas within and outside Tesco using official channels? Examples of formal communicating are the following:
- Board meetings
- Team briefings
Takes place outside the official channels of Sainsbury’s. An example of informal communication is gossip.
EXPENSIVE video conferencing
As you can see above letters and memos at Sainsbury is the cheapest for of communication but on the other hand also is the lowest form of communication, whereas video conferencing, television, meetings are faster but are much more expensive.
At Tesco’s upward communication is used to show how important it is for Tesco, it is important for there employees to get all their new ideas to the manager or director. This ensures that all ideas of all employees are considered by decision makers.
Tesco’s downward communication is when the people (directors) from the higher level make all decisions, make all the programmes and also they make all the rules in the company. All decisions are made by the people above level and people from the level have no say and have agreed with all decisions made.
At Tesco affective communication is important element for the success of a business. Good communication can assist employees of all types within a business like the following:
- Good communication makes it easier to implement change.
- Good communication encourages and develops commitments to the business from employees at all levels within Tesco.
- Effective communication helps to ensure that the firm is coordinated and that all employees pursue the same corporate objectives.
Efficient and profitable
Supplies to arrive
CUSTOMERS BUSINESS MANAGER EMPLOYEES
Effective allows managers to with employees
Communication take good quality can improve
allows business to decisions the performance
Discover and fulfil of the workforce
Being aware of social change
Presenting the business
The above are the benefits of effective communication with stakeholders.
Sainsbury’s stakeholders are suppliers, customers, employees and the general public.
Good communication is important with each of the above stakeholders.
There are five main functions to do at Tesco using applications. The following are the functions:
- Administration main duty is to add new users
- All staff or all the workgroup duty is to e-mail
- Create documents for the business with name, address and other contact numbers clearly written and available on the document
- Information query and retrieval.
At Tesco there are many more functions now then before; the main reason for why there has been this change is because of serving customers and the use of application of information and communication technology. It has made things more quicker and easier for customers also Tesco maximises profits using the new technology.
- The use of ICT allows the functional areas to share information. The use of ICT has totally change ways of communication at Tesco.
- The use of database changed the old way of filing and storing the information.
- The use of e-mails has changed old ways of communicating with letters, faxes and telephones.
- The use of computers has changed many functions such as requesting items, checking stock levels, registering and etc.
- The use of internet is now available to Tesco in order for them to do research and develop ideas and the organisation itself like Tesco
In order for Tesco to present their information and data they need to use different software applications because different applications can only hold certain information to do so like the following:
- Word processor
- PowerPoint presentation
- Stock control applications
Tesco is quietly building a profile of you, along with every individual in the country - a map of personality, travel habits, shopping preferences and even how charitable and eco-friendly you are. A subsidiary of the supermarket chain has set up a database, called Crucible, that is collating detailed information on every household in the UK, whether they choose to shop at the retailer or not. This would help Tesco because they can see what each and every consumer buys and it would send certain gifts to the consumer.
Tesco also use database as external communication as they may use it to make orders and payments to suppliers. In a database the following information of all employees are kept a record of:
Word processing application
This is the most commonly used application at Tesco’s and most other organisations. Tesco’s use this application for all sorts of business documentations, the facilities that word processor provide are the following:
Formatting documents – changing paragraphs, margins, fonts, centring etc…
- Cutting and pasting
- Placing border around paragraphs
- Creating documents
- Page numbering
- Creating headers and footers
- Linking to information in other documents
- Merging documents
- Replacing words or names automatically throughout a document
This application is very useful to Tesco because it allows it to communicate and send letters emails not only inside the business but outside the business.
In Tesco a lot of calculations need to be done and in order for someone to sit there and do all the calculations it will waste a lot of time and money for them, so since the existence of spreadsheets at Tesco it has been very successful for them as it can calculate in large sums without any errors occurring.
A spreadsheet program in Tesco is used for budgets, forecasting and other finance related tasks that organize data values using cells, where the relationship between cells are defined by formulae. As well as using adding and subtracting long multiplications and division can be done very easily so therefore because of spreadsheets it is a lot easier and accurate for Tesco to use spreadsheet to do all their calculations.
Power point presentation
PowerPoint presentation is very useful application because when employees of Tesco’s have to do any presentation or they have to do presentation to director then they use PowerPoint presentation in order o do so, this makes them look very presentable and good respected organisation it also gives Tesco a very good reputation and this benefits Sainsbury’s as the whole organisation looks very attractive and very professional.
This task requires me to state the advantages of ICT software when enabling access to information, outlining the importance of its high level of accuracy and reliability.
Various technologies involved in the collection, storage,
Processing and communication of information by electrical means At Tesco information planning is used to do planning, monitoring and controlling.
There are many advantage of using ICT such as the speed of processing large data volume, you can process large amount of Data at a very fast speed, consistency of processing procedures, Benefits of connectivity because you can connect very fast,
Contingency procedures, you can also have a lot of benefits from Security or example you can put passwords on your work so that No one else can go through your documents apart from yourself, ICT is also very accurate so then you have a less chance of
Making any mistakes and if you do then you are alerted that you have made maybe a spelling or grammar mistake.
ICT can also be cheaper. With ICT you can create backup so if you were to lose or accidentally delete any work or documents with the help of ICT you can create back up of all work and you would not have to re-type any work at any time and waste in doing so.
ICT has large memory storage so you can save a lot of work without being worried about the storage place and because you can save large amounts in the computer then you do not have to worry about storage space and you would not need any space
to store any files and cabinets. There also is organisational communication for e.g. e-mail, Tesco can communicate with its customers, employees, suppliers and other stakeholders through the use of internet e-mail, they can e-mail any stakeholder and communicate which is a lot faster, easier and cheaper as you don’t have to make any phone calls in order to do so.
There are also lots of different software that are available such as word processor, spreadsheets, database, PowerPoint presentation and etc, these are all easy and straight forward to use and benefits Tesco as it don’t waste a lot of time, it’s easy to use and when finished looks good and presentable which makes it easy to access when you are looking for any data in the computer.
Now day’s technology has been developing and now you can get computers that are wireless and also you can get blue tooth where your phone or whatever does not require any physical contact and information can jus be passed on.
Other advantages maybe the following:
- Increase in the volume of information
- Increased speed of information processing
- Increased accuracy of information
- Increased productivity
- Great consistency
- In frees up the company, to undertake work requiring skill and judgement.
While processing information many errors can occur there are disadvantages of using ICT such as the first main big Problem which is viruses, computers can easily catch viruses and Also viruses can also be sent and if Tesco’s computer catches
These viruses then any important data can get deleted or may need organisation to call a technician to fix the computer Because of the virus; this can increase expenditures of Tesco or any organisation and may waste time of employees. Issues of
Access this may cause difficulties employees because you don’t Know who may access the computer. Risks of dependence you don’t know who you can depend on and you may have to take a risk when depending on someone, the system may be vulnerable and this will cause system to fail and vulnerability of Systems failure is a disadvantage of ICT. Computers intend to crash a lot and when work maybe unsaved and the computer
Crashes then this will waste a lot of time and this will de-motivate employees as they may not be bothered to re-type everything again and especially if computer keeps crashing over and over again. ICT can be a health hazard, if someone spends a lot of time on the computer without taking any breaks they may get an eye strain or may get a back ache and therefore this can be a health hazard and it is the company’s duty to make sure that all employees are working in a safe and healthy environment and also make sure that they take breaks every short period of time. Computers also intend to go slow when there is information Overload, when computers are slow they take to long to process
Information and takes a lot of time and this would be a waste of time.
Computers can also be a high cost because when a computer breaks down then you need to repair them this also wastes time and will cost the organisation in doing so. Some
people in the organisation may be illiterate so then the company may have to train their staff in order to doing so then this will also waste time and money of Tesco. Redundancy, when computers take over and does good quality work in a short period of time then there will loss of employees as not many employees will be needed like before so many employees will lose their jobs.
- Discouraging people with less technology advantages.
- Internet availability.
- Connection tariffs.
- Speed of technologies advance outsmart the users' possibilities.
- Technical disabilities need more acquired knowledge.
- Centres on one specialisation at a time.
- Learning a lot in a particular study field is not necesarilly useful.
- Non-availability of on-line reference material.
- Many institutions does not recognise a specific qualification.
- English knowledge must be satisfactory.
- Overestimation of time available.
- learners experience frustration going through all their mail messages.
Limitations of Computers
- Computer networks are costly to develop.
- Technology is changing rapidly.
- Wild spread computer illiteracy still exist.
- Students must be highly motivated and proficient in computer operation.
Disadvantages of Computer Conferencing
- Problems with reliable access to the Internet.
- Learning curve and time investments can be very steep.
- Software configurations do not necessarily communicate with each other.
- Students do not always have a good knowledge of telecommunications software.
- Students have to remember to log in frequently.
- Misunderstandings can arise quickly and be difficult and time-consuming to solve.
When complex information at sainsbury is being processed this will create challenges for Tesco’s like the following:
- It would take longer time
- Required more skilled staff
- Required appropriate hardware and software
Time may be a challenge for Tesco as when they are processing the information it will take in doing so specially when information is complex, and the longer they take to process information the slower the company operates productivity.
Another reason why time is a challenge for Tesco is because if they are competing with its competitors and have a certain amount of time to process this information but because the information is complex then therefore will take Tesco time to understand and process the information. This will also stress employees as there would be a lot of pressure on them.
Skills also is very important issue at Tesco because in order to process the complex information an employee with the appropriate skills is required to process the information correctly as well as understanding the information. At Tesco there may not be people with the skills that are required and may be doing job wrong specially after being put under a lot of pressure, so Tesco also need to find and ensure that the person who is employed to process complex information has the skills and ability to do so and has a good understanding in order to so.
Test the system
Before the system is full put in operation, all aspects of it must be tested, not only the software, which is been installed, but also the manual procedures involved.
The education and training of the users of a system is vital if it is to be operated correctly and the fully benefits are to be obtained. This training should involve every one who is connected with the system, so that they are aware of its factions and are confident in its use.
These stage procedures the details of how system will meet the requirements identified in the analysis stage. This stage identifies the input of the system and the output from the system such as the reports, invoices, bills and statements.
Implementing the new system
This is the 2nd final stage, where by the system designers install the system, putting new equipment into operation, installing and setting up software, creating data files and training people to use the system
The implication for managers in implementing a new ICT system,
Before an organisation embarks on a costly project involving the implementing of a new ICT system, it is necessary to determine whether the system is possible to achieve and if so whether there will be sufficient benefits in doing so.
Analysis of the project: managers have to analyse the situation very clear, they have to understand well the reasons as to why they need a new system in place, they must have clear picture of what the new system will be compared to the old one.
A project analysis is done so recognize the nuisance, inefficiencies and bottlenecks of the current systems. In this scrutiny it will be shown how the business is now dealing with more complex information. The information derived from the system analysis is then recorded on a dataflow diagrams and entity relationship diagrams.
The first feature that goes into contemplation in the systems design is the data design. This section deals with how the data in this new system will be premeditated. Then the process designed is looked at and lastly the physical design is worked on. Then the program specification is taken in to think and testing and implementation are planned. Functioning instructions or how to uses the new systems are also designed.
This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level ICT in Business section.
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