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GCSE: Case Studies

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What is SWOT analysis?

  1. 1 This is one of the commonest ways in which a business analyses its position. It will use a SWOT analysis as a basis for deciding on new strategies. It can also be used by business students to analyse a business as it methodically goes through the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats faced by a business.
  2. 2 Strengths relate to internal factors that make the business better than the competition. It might be a wider product range, lower costs, better established brand name or any other factor that the business thinks it is strong in. Once identified it will look for ways it can build on its strengths.
  3. 3 Weaknesses relate to internal factors that the business feels it is worse in than its competitors e.g. less well known, less well developed in certain products or markets, lack of expertise etc. It is important for a business to be honest in assessing the weaknesses. It will look to minimising the effects of weaknesses or developing them.
  4. 4 Opportunities are external factors which the business could develop. They might relate to a market the business could move in to, a weak competitor, a new product area with strong possibilities of growth or a change in the law which presents business opportunities.
  5. 5 Threats are external factors that threaten the success of the business. It usually relates to a competitor’s action e.g. a competitor that is ruthlessly cutting prices or a new piece of legislation that is threatening to reduce the market. A business will look for ways to reduce the threats once it is aware of it.

How can I find out more about a business?

  1. 1 A company web site is a good place to start but bear in mind that this is written by the company itself and should be treated with some suspicion as a business will use its web site to sell itself.
  2. 2 For more detailed financial analysis, the annual report is a good source. Public Limited Companies must publish details of their finances e.g. profit and loss account and balance sheet. These can be accessed through the web site. Try going to investor relations if you are struggling to find it. The pay of all directors must be stated.
  3. 3 Newspaper articles will give useful information. Go to the web site of a quality paper or the BBC and search on the name of the company.
  4. 4 Try putting the name of the company onto a search engine. You will find that there often there are web sites giving a different perspective e.g. criticising their customer service, ethical policy or products. Do not put too many words into a search engine.
  5. 5 Develop the important skill of skim reading so that you can quickly see if a page is likely to have useful information. Follow links and skim them quickly as well.

How to analyse the external factors that affect a business

  1. 1 PEST analysis is a systematic tool which can be used to analyse the external factors affecting a business. Businesses use it on themselves when doing this and it is effective to use it as a student as it categorises the broad areas of external factors affecting a business. The word PEST comes from the initials of Political, Economic, Social and Technological.
  2. 2 Political factors can have a big influence on the laws affecting business, the purchasing power of consumers and the attitude of government to businesses. A business should analyse how politically stable a country is and any laws that will affect its operation.
  3. 3 Economic factors can have a big effect on the success of a business. It needs to analyse the economic state of countries it is in and the influence this will have on the business. If a country is in recession, this will affect the products and the best approach to marketing.
  4. 4 Social factors can have a big effect on business. Is the population ageing or predominantly young, what do the population think about 'green' issues, what is their attitude towards women?
  5. 5 Technological factors can have a big impact on business. Is a break through in manufacture likely, is there an advance in design and function that affects demand for a product, do customers increasingly want to buy this on the internet in some markets?

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  1. Busines comparison between Tesco & Sainsburys

    Sainsburys is not competing as well against Tesco as Tesco is against Sainsburys, I personally believe that this may possibly be due to the fact that Sainsburys prices are higher than Tesco's. The following is the statistics of Sainsbury's turnover from 1999 - 2001: Sainsbury (J) PLC (SBRY.L) As of Wednesday December 19 Business Summary Food retailing and financial services Sector:Food & drug retailers Index:FTSE 100 Key Dates: Int - late Nov; Final - late May. Statistics at a Glance -- SBRY.L (in British Pounds) Income Statement 1999(13) 2000 2001 Turnover Mill. � 16,433.00 16,271.00 17,244.00 Pre tax profit Mill.

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  2. Human Resource Management at the Palms Hotel.

    head of his department in order to record and approve the extra time and work that is done by the employee, also employees that work over time get paid one and one-half times their regular rate. Based on the analysis through this chart above as well the online employee reviews, I have realized that employees were satisfied with the work schedule policies, which shows the success of the hotels work policy. Although Several employee stated that they are unsatisfied with the policy due to the fact that The Palms Hotel & Spa have a schedule that is not set which

    • Word count: 974
  3. Describe the features and facilities that attract visitors to three UK destinations

    The theme parks also have special offers to attract tourists so for example if you stay in the Big Blue hotel which is owned by Blackpool Pleasure Beach they give you free entry to the theme park and free wristband to get on all rides, other offer are that if you book your visit online the wristband are cheaper than they are at the gate.

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  4. Advantages and Disadvantages of Competition: Pizza Case Study

    This competition has led to inventions such as the stuffed crust pizza, which was introduced after market research suggested that this idea would be popular with consumers, and now most pizza firms offer this option. Due to the larger amount of variety, firms are also forced to lower their prices in order to attract as many customers as possible and deter them from going to another firm that offers a similar product instead. This also allows an increase in quality, as certain firms such as Pizza Hut also began to focus on quality of service, wanting to stand out from the other firms in the business.

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  5. Analysis of Amazon's Website

    However Amazon get loads of customer?s everyday purchasing item from their website, this is because their products are very low cost which customers be happy to buy from them. They also give offers to customers who buys their items regular from their website, by giving offers like vouchers or free delivery on next order this would keep the buyers happy so they could shop more often on their site Amazons website is very masculine this is because the website has been using black and white colours with the normal fonts, but few days ago it was Halloween therefore they have

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  6. Investigating a business and what business do - London Heathrow Marriott (LHM) and Tescos.

    would show two different systematic ways of how two PLC?s can run differently allowing me to see whether people in the business world have a preference to buy shares of LHM over shares of Tesco and how the companies have expanded their business. I chose Tesco?s because in comparison both the businesses have different aims and objectives which would illustrate different businesses being based around different products and services can be similar. I can also demonstrate the aims of the business and why those aims are going to be beneficial to their business and whether their aims and objectives are too high or too low for them.

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  7. Market Research at Marks and Spencers

    feedback about a newly introduced product. Primary research is Experiments, investigations, or tests carried out to acquire data first-hand, rather than being gathered from published sources. http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/primary-research.html Secondary research involves gathering existing data produced by government, agencies, businesses and trade associations through researching the internet, newspapers and company reports. Examples of primary and secondary research Primary research secondary research -Surveys and questionnaires (external) -intelligence reports (internal) - Sale records (internal) - books and newspaper (external) -Experimentation (internal) companies reports (external) -Interviews (external) - customers reviews (external) -Observation (external) -government data (external) -Mystery shopper (external) - articles (external) -Focus groups (external)

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  8. Business Communication. An informal report about different type of business information, their source and purpose used by Tesco.

    Business information using verbal methods When gather information within a business sometimes it has to be verbally. Verbal communication is one way of interacting with people e.g. talking face-to-face, meetings, to obtain information. Tesco uses meeting as a verbal communication to gain information. One way that Tesco is using verbal communication is by having meeting face to face with TRADERS to discuss the threat posed by Tesco plans for the former Shredded Wheat site in WGC. DR Dennis Lewis from the company of Welwyn Garden City traders has prepared a meeting to talk about the building of a new Tesco in the east side of town and how it will affect other smaller organisation.

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  9. Business Plan. This Coursework will enable me to know how to set up and establish a new school tuck shop and aims needed to get it started.

    Sample Chosen I have chosen this sample myself, due to the conditions of the school tuck shop and students complaining including myself. I?ve decided to produce a new tuck shop that would provide the students with satisfaction. Also, being a part of C.R.Walker High School, I knew what students would want and need. It was my decision to interview the first 15 students interested. Changes If I was to perform this coursework again there would be a few adjustments made.

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  10. SWOT analysis for Samia's Special Pizzas.

    Strength’s 1. A strength is something a company such as Samia’s Special Pizzas is to be good at doing or is a characteristic that gives Samia’s Special Pizzas an important capability over the other competitors in the same sector. The strength of the company is that Samia’s Special pizzas have substantially grown over the recent years the country. From 1985 they just had only their first pizza outlet opened in Manchester but by 2009 they had a chain of 600 franchise sites throughout the UK with an average price of £250,000.

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  11. Case Study of a Franchise Pizza Business

    We have invested to open an on-line ordering facility for all franchises. A franchisor is when a firm, which allows another person to use it?s tried and tested product, and trade under its name, for a fee. A franchisee is a person who pays an initial fee and royalty payments for the privilege of trading under another firm?s name. The benefit of being a franchise for Samia?s Special Pizzas is that the business grows without the risk of debts as the franchisee becomes responsible for the debts. The franchisor can use the money, time, talents, contracts, recourses and ideas of others to expand.

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  12. I am writing to offer you some advice on how customer service in BA can be improved

    As well as this staff should be trained in helping people with special needs such as elderly, disabled, or young children. It is important that they are treated the same as regular customers and treated with due care and attention. This will attract attention to your company as people will know that your company is customer focused and has high levels of customer service for all types of people. Moreover you could introduce policies such as the introduction of new rules that will set higher expectations from your staff.

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  13. Are consumers getting a fair deal from Fairtrade products?

    In particular, they are understandably concerned that other actors in the supply chain such as importers, manufacturers and retailers do not make excessive profits from consumers? ethical concerns. We work with dozens of product categories that are all traded, transported and processed in different ways, which makes it impossible to generalize about how the Fairtrade price guarantee to producers affects the retail price that consumers pay in their local shop. This paper briefly explains some of the many factors that consumers need to take into account when considering the price of Fairtrade products.

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  14. Case Study Qantas - Marketing and SWOT analysis

    The brand awareness was built up. Growth- Profitability increased by 14% in 2010 and routes were expanded. Profitability was achieved for the first time. Maturity- Sales levelled off and competition increased. Many changes were done to the lounge, planes and checking. Market research Information about customer needs, brand preferences and characteristics were identified. The data source was selected. (Surveys, mail based surveys, complaint monitoring, government statistics, magazines and interviews) Marketing objectives Qantas attempted to: Maintain the combined domestic market share Grow Jetstar in asia Increase customer service standards Match demand with capacity Reduces losses in international departments Market segmentation This is the processes of diving up the total market into small groups.

    • Word count: 815
  15. Primark and Blockbuster Describe the main aims and objectives of the business and the external factors which have affected the ability of the business to achieve them.

    For example, at the end of winter they place the winter products on half price sales which is a good strategy for a business to use because people will try to save money on products that they will be needing for the next winter and they want to be a step ahead and prepared for the arrival of the next winter. They objective here would be to make sure that they do not price their products at a higher cost rather than a reasonable and affordable price.

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  16. Arrow analysis

    Situation Analysis Internal Forces: 1. Products and suppliers The A/S line card comprised two chip categories: standardized and proprietary. Standardized chips were interchangeable and produced by multiple suppliers. Proprietary chips manufactured by a single supplier. A/S balanced the line card by selling a 75% and 25% mix of standardized and proprietary products. The ?big four? top suppliers of A/S are Altera -Proprietary programmable logic devices, Intel - Mostly Propriety, Texas Instruments and Motorala. 2. Customers The existing customers of A/S base of Small & Mid Sized original equipment manufacturers (OMEs)

    • Word count: 2720
  17. Describe the Hierarchy of the Civil Courts

    It hears cases of the greatest public or legal importance affecting the whole population. It hears cases of the greatest public or constitutional importance affecting the whole population. The Supreme Court hears appeals from across the United Kingdom. As its name suggests, it is the highest court in the UK: this means that it has an extremely important role in determining how the law should be interpreted and applied. Because of this not all cases can be appealed in the supreme courts.

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  18. The Influence of Stakeholders on Toyota and Sainsburys.

    They also want easy accessibility to the premises and hope to buy quality products at competitive prices. They are really important because they provide the money for the organisations to be successful. If Business like Toyota and Sainsbury?s meet the needs of their Customers, the Customers are going to buy their product therefor giving the companies more sales revenue. The Companies are also looking for what the Customers would desire for example if Customers would like Toyota to start selling more environmentally friendly Estate Cars. Toyota is likely to start selling environmentally friendly Cars because they know this will bring Toyota sales as people are interested in them.

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  19. Recruitment Case Study - Tesco

    These processes carefully identify whether somebody is good enough for the job that they are applying for. This helps Tesco to find someone and also help them to ensure that they are the right person for the job by looking through CV?s and applications with a fine tooth comb. 1. The job description and person specification shows what the job is and if and indeed how a candidate will fit into the advertised job. This will help any business, including Tesco, to recruit the right person for the job.

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  20. Describe the type of business, purpose and ownership of two contrasting businesses - ADIA Computers and British Gas.

    ADIA Computer store is a sole trader this means that is owned by one person (Wilson Brown) and he maintains full control of their business running it how he please without the interference of others. Also because there is no need to discuss with others about the decision makers, sole traders can make decisions quickly and act on them swiftly, providing for the needs of their customers. The disadvantage of the business being a sole trader is that sole traders are not seen as a separate entity by the law. Therefore, they are subject to unlimited liability.

    • Word count: 571
  21. Task 4: What is the most important factor for generating repeat purchase at the School Canteen?

    Of the total, all 15 of the people were students, 0 were teachers and 0 were others. 1. How old are you? This bar graph is showing us the ages of the people who took part in the survey. 1 was aged 11-12, 1 was aged 13-14, 3 was aged 14-15, 10 was aged 15-16 and 0 were aged 12-13, 16-17, 17-18 and other. The majority of people were aged 15-16. 1. How would you rate the price of the food and drinks in the school?s canteen?

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  22. BPs Financial loss During the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010

    BP has operations in over 80 countries and produces around 3.8 million barrels of oil. BP invested a lot of money into capping the well and cleaning up the spill. The total cost for BP for the whole disaster is estimated at $ 40bn. Before the accident the maximum cost for the polluting company was $ 75m. Now companies know they are directly responsible for the total cost.

    • Word count: 406

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