Produce a detailed report on a medium sized or large business.

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PRIYA PATEL                                                          UNIT 1:  BUSINESS AT WORK


The aim of this is assignment was to produce a detailed on a medium sized or large business. For the report the following had to be considered:

  • Ownership
  • Objectives
  • Structure
  • Culture
  • Communication channels

You had to also see how well the business was meeting these objectives. And what impacts ICT has had on the business.

Terms of Reference

This report is being produced to fulfil the criteria required for Unit 1 for the Advanced VCE course in business.



To create this report the main resource that I used was the company website. This contained a lot of information that was relevant to me to carry out this report. I also interviewed the store manager at the Pinner Marks and Spencer store. This was extremely helpful and all the information I was given was up to date and useful. I phoned up the Marks and Spencer head office asking for a student pack, but they did not have any.

E1 - Company’s Ownership

My report will be based on Marks and Spencer.

Marks and Spencer is a public limited company and is one of UK’s leading retailers of foods, clothing, home ware and financial services. As well as being a leading retailer Marks and Spencer have a turnover of 8 million, employ 60,000 people worldwide, operate more than 400 stores in 29 countries in which 300 of them are in the UK, and serve 10 million customers every week.

As Marks and Spencer is a plc it has its shares bought and sold on the stock exchange. Any member of the public can therefore become a member of this particular organisation. A company that is willing to buy and sell shares on the stock exchange must be registered, which means the term ‘plc’ must appear after its name.

There are many benefits as well as constraints of a public limited company.


  • A ‘plc’ will find it easier to raise finance by selling shares to people it knows like a Private Limited Company
  • A ‘plc’ is more likely to be offered better credit facilities because shares are bought and sold on the stock exchange.
  • Also a very large amount of capital can be raised very quickly.
  • Limited Liability-  the company can only loose what they put in and share holders are liable up to the extent of their holdings.


  • The cost of a business on the stock exchange is high.
  • Administrative costs are high because the company has to keep a wide number of people informed about its financial performance.
  • More sensitive data will be available to competitors and the public.
  • Original shareholders can loose control of a business, if a majority number of shares are sold as a take-over bid. 

E2 and C1-Business Aims and Objectives

Aims and objectives are the principles by which an organisation runs. These objectives govern the way a business functions/operates.

The eight main objectives that Marks and Spencer’s follow are:


Objective 1 – Making a profit  (or surplus)

Making a profit is the main objective of Marks and Spencer. All businesses need to make a profit in order to be successful. Making a profit is important because:

  • Allows Marks and Spencer to survive.
  • Provides a financial reward for the owners who put money in to the business.
  • It could also be source of finance for future investment.

If a Marks and Spencer did not make a profit it would not be able to keep its shareholders happy, and would not be able to give pay raises to its employees.

Last year Marks and Spencer had a turnover of  £8.2 billion, same as the year before. Last year for the U.K the annual turnover is £6,351 compared to last year’s £6,601.


Objective 2 – Increasing sales or market share

If a Marks and Spencer wants to gain a share of the market, then they have to sell a large amount of products and save costs by producing on a large scale. If a business is going to produce large amounts of products than they can save money buy buying materials and products at a discount price form suppliers, then advertising costs can also be saved on a larger output. An example of a market leader is coca- cola. Research has shown that companies with a large market share are more likely to make a profit.

Objective 3 – Surviving

Even if Marks and Spencer do not make a profit, survival is about continuing today, tomorrow and in the future.  Survival is one of the main objectives to Marks and Spencer. Even if a business does not make a profit today it will be there to compete in the future.

Objective 4 – Providing services to the community

Providing a service to the community is important for Marks and Spencer. If an organisation provides a service for the community as well as being helpful it will also give them a good reputation in the community.

Objective 5 – Offering charitable or non-profit services, such as caring for the environment.

One of the most important factors for ‘not for profit’ work is caring for the environment. Some organisations do not seek to make a profit but are there to solely raise money for a good cause or to help people in need. But other organisations that are profit making do help. Last year Marks and Spencer took part in the ‘Jeans for Jeans day’ to raise money and employees had to pay to wear jeans to work. This is an example of helping a charity.

Objective 6 – Developing staff skills.

Marks and Spencer have now developed training schemes, in order to create a more skilled workforce. Marks and Spencer have now also begun to set their own set of objectives on skill development and knowledge.

Objective 7 – Providing high quality products.

The term quality means to produce a good or product to the standard that the customer wants. A high quality product would be to give a customer a product that they expect or of an even higher quality.

Marks & Spencer is active across a wide range of Corporate Social Responsibility issues. Luc Vandevelde, Chairman and Chief of Marks & Spencer says:

“In August 2003 we were ranked as the top food retailer by Greenpeace for our performance on non-GM foods”.

Since 2003 Marks and Spencer have had three new principles:

Principle one- Take care and act responsibly in delivering high quality products and services.
Principle two- Create great places to work.
Principle three- Help make our communities good places in which to live and work

Objective 8 – Expansion

Another objective for Marks and Spencer could be expansion. By looking at the map we can already see that Marks and Spencer have stores located in Europe, The Middle East and Asia. They could expand by introducing stores in Africa and North America.

Below is a map showing the countries that have Marks and Spencer stores.

Marks and Spencer company aims and objectives 

Marks and Spencer have a vision, mission and values, these help the way in which the business functions.







Join now!


“To help make our society a healthier and safer place in which to live and work, and to provide equal opportunities for all.”

Being a good corporate citizen and investing in communities is an integral part of the way we have always done business. By actively supporting the community, and being socially responsible, we are bringing real benefits to our customers, employees, shareholders, business partners and voluntary and charity organisations.


Their vision shows what Marks and Spencer want as a company.

The main aim of Marks and Spencer is - TO KEEP ...

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