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Research paper on Managerial Control Systems

Published under category: Writing Help Convenience | 2014-10-02 14:09:32 UTC

Context: Business management

1. Identify and explain the strategic direction of the organization: For a firm to achieve its goals, it has to develop a strategy for dealing with the various challenges in the business environment. The management draws this strategy, and it takes into consideration all players in the industry in which it is operating. In this regard, the company has to govern the behaviour of all resources such that there is optimum output in the company’s operations (Simmons & Graff 1998, p.52). This regulation of the resources depends on the accuracy of the assessment of the market by the management. In addition, the management of the company must allocate resources such that the long-term objectives of the company in question are achieved. These functions of the management define the strategic position of the company at any one time. For a company to adapt to the changing business environment, it has to develop a trajectory, which will direct it to the success it desire (Vinten, G 2004, p.35). The trajectory defines the policy and the activities that the company will undertake in order to realise the planned objectives. In business terms, the trajectory of the company is called the strategic direction. This paper will analyse among other things, the strategic direction of an American based retailer, Wal-Mart Stores (Loveless & Morter 2011, p.58). Wal-Mart Stores is the biggest retailer in the world and has retail outlets in many countries. The company has always enjoyed success, particularly in recent years. However, recently, competitors have devised ways to outdo Wal-Mart Stores, which has been primarily concerned with the traditional notion of a retail outlet in the past. The management at Wal-Mart Stores has decided to adopt a new approach to marketing of its products. In the past, the company maintained a high profile such that it stocked goods that were favoured by high-class people. For some time, this strategy has been working in the relatively stable world economy. However, the economic climate in the past few years has been so erratic that the company has decided to change its mode of operation to ensure that it survives the harsh economic times that arise often (Johnson & Gill 1993, p.52). The primary policy that the retailer has adopted to ensure that its expands its business and increases the chances of survival in harsh economic times is the focus on the low-income market. By lowering the prices of goods, the retailer has attracted many loyal customers. This is a strategy that Wal-Mart Stores says will help it to expand its market to the more stable low-income section. The increase in the number of customers has enabled Wal-Mart Stores open other outlets for its products, these outlets are not necessarily located in the high-income areas (Grant & Neupert 2003, p.65). Another strategy adopted by the retailer to aid the success of the work towards the strategic direction is the increased stocking of food products. Since food products have a universal demand, Wal-Mart has speculated that most low income customers will buy its cheap food. To facilitate the widening of the customer base, Wal-Mart Stores has advertised its products on the internet. On its website, the goods that can be seen are cheap retail products that low-income market can afford. In its strategy, Wal-Mart Stores has excluded the high-income earners from the picture. The increased customers require more attendants with high quality skills to handle the large number of people who purchase goods from Wal-Mart (Deru & Kozubal E 2010, p.85). In this regard, Wal-Mart has increased the number of attendants dealing directly with customers. In addition, the outlet attendants are required to be polite to customers, and should establish a personal relationship with them. Through the described strategic direction, Wal-Mart expects to establish as one of the major retailers in the world even in the future. 2. Explain how the strategic direction of the organization that you have chosen in the context of the organizational tensions that it confronts. Your answer should identify and explain at least 3 organizational tensions that are specific to the organization that you have chosen. There are several organizational tensions generated by the manner in which the company is organized. In the first place, the company’s strategy to sell cheap products seems to indicate that the quality of its services is getting low. In fact, this has been the speculation by rivals of the retailer. This publicity is negative and may have a negative impact on the sales of the company. On the other hand, the retailer has tried to campaign for a good image of the strategy that it is implementing. One of the measures that the company has taken to ensure that the image of the company remains positive is the creation of the Sam’s club. This club is intended for the customers of the retailer who wish to have a closer relationship with the company. Through this club, the employees of the company maintain a continuous record of purchases by the customers. This is because the members of the club are easily persuaded to purchase Wal-Mart Stores products more often. The other tension in the strategic direction is the emergence of other retailers other than the traditional ones like the Wal-Mart Stores. These retailers use the internet to market the products of the company. Some of the retailers include Amazon, which sells second hand goods to customers at a very low price. This has become difficult for the retailer to deal with. Due to the plan by the retailer to expand into regions it has never operated before, the operations of its subsidiaries have become bloated. The company’s plan includes expanding the business by stocking its stores with many low priced goods for the average income customers. The increased number of commodities and the large number of employees are causing organizational tension in the company. Managing the company’s affairs has become so difficult that it has pulled out its operations from some countries in Europe and South America. 3. Outline the organizational structure of the organization and explain how it seeks to focus the attention of the employees upon the strategic direction of the organization, with reference to the organization’s work units. Wal-Mart Stores’ management is organized into three major structures. One of the structures is the office of the chief executive officer and the board of directors. The CEO and the board of directors make the major decisions for the company. Under the board and the CEO, are the three major braches of the retailing company. The Wal-Mart Stores (US) operates in the United States of America and runs retailing business. It is the major section of the company in the country (Kipple & Kipple 2010, p.86). The second division is the Sam’s club. This club consists of employees of the organization and the loyal customers of the retailing company. Through this club, the customers engage in a personal relationship with the company. The club is intended to primarily increase customer loyalty. The International Stores are the third division of the retailer. This division handles retail business in other countries other than the United States of America. In that essence, the retailer has organized itself into several specialized divisions in order to operate effectively. Focussing on Wal-Mart Stores’ policy towards participation in realizing the strategic direction, the employees have been guided on the manner in which they relate to customers. In an effort to win over customers, the company has advised the employees to acknowledge the presence of customers by greeting them when the latter gets within a few meters close. This will help to win over hearts of the customers. In addition, each employee has been allocated a number of customers in the Sam’s club. The employee is supposed to win over the customer and ensure that a good number of customers purchase goods from Wal-Mart Stores regularly. The relationship between the customer and the employee helps to gather feedback information for the company. This feedback information is used respond to customer’s general requirements. This way the organization's large customer base can be maintained. In addition to the relationship between the employee and the customer, the management encourages the employees to have a close association with each other. The hierarchical organization of most institutions is not encouraged by Wal-Mart. In the first place, the company has advised its employees to have respect for one another at the work place. This respect will enable the retail outlets handle the flow of customers with ease. These relationships also help the company develop a comfortable working environment. 4. With reference to the organizational structure, identify and explain the reporting relationships of the individual managers within the organization taking into consideration the span of accountability. The management at Wal-Mart is divisional in nature. Executive officers head the three major divisions at Wal-Mart. The three report to the chief executive officer and the board of directors. The most senior manager, the chief executive officer reports to the board of directors. The CEO briefs the board on the performance of the company at all times. In addition, the CEO is responsible for reporting the situation in different divisions of the company. This way the managers of different divisions do not have to report directly to the board. Managers within one division have their control limited to that division because the divisions of the company have no direct relationship with each other. Each of the divisions has separate tasks and even operates in different geographical locations. Apart from the managers who oversee the operations in the three divisions of Wal-Mart, there are other managers who oversee other areas such as the human resource manager, the global eCommerce manager, the legal secretary, global customer insight manager and the corporate affairs manager (Mullins & Walker 2008, p.91). The legal secretary of the company oversees the legal issues regarding acquisition, hiring of staff, insurance covers, and all other activities that require legal expertise. The office of the legal secretary is independent and separate from the divisions of the company. The global eCommerce manager is the custodian of the office that deals with online trade. This office has the responsibility of ensuring the technical capability of the online enterprise is in proper condition and functioning. This manager also handles the issue of online advertisement for the company. For the company to maintain its profits, the affairs of the customers must be attended to with due diligence. The office of the global customer insight deals with the collection and analysis of data from the customers. This data is used to assess the position of the company for the purpose of improvement of services. In addition, this office determines the popularity of the company and the expected turnout of customers for planning. 5. With reference to the annual report, identify four performance measures used by the organization and explain how the information generated by the performance measures is used by the organization concerned. One of the performance measures used to evaluate the performance of the retailer if the balanced scorecard. In this strategy, the financial performance of the company, customer satisfaction, growth of the enterprise and the efficiency of the activities of the company were assessed. The growth of the company, financial performance and customer satisfactions were good. However, the efficiency of the internal systems, especially the management of the employees, was poor. The increased workload due to expansion and the rise of the number of customers was having a negative effect on the customer. The 2011 annual report showed that the retailer commanded seven percent of the world’s retail customers. This was a good figure for a single business enterprise. In addition to this, the enterprise served more than 10 billion customers in the year. The sales for the year were also over a trillion American dollars. The report also showed that the company had two million employees by the end of the fiscal year. This information is used to react to the departments of the organization that are under-performing. In the case of Wal-Mart, the department of human resource management needed special attention. It is important for any organization to assess the state of its human resource management. This enables the company to establish the problems that the employees are facing. A corrective measure to take care of the problems and difficulties that the employees are experiencing helps raise productivity and morale (Chan 2011. p.21). This is also a way of motivating the employees. Other information such as the gross turnover and the annual profit are the ultimate determinants of the success of the business in achieving its principal objective. The management can then institute corrective measures if the primary goals have not been achieved as expected. 6. Identify the key financial performance measures used by the organization concerned and explain how they relate to the strategic direction of the organization concerned Some of the key tools of financial measurement as highlighted by the report were profit and gross annual turnover. The annual gross turnover in particular indicated that the company was popular since it attracted many customers, and thus there were impressive sales. In addition, this turnover gave the company the assurance that it was worth investing in more outlets since there was a high chance of attracting customers (Donaldson & Lorsch 1983, p.45). The profit of the company showed how well the company could control its spending. For a company of the size of Wal-Mart stores, the overheads were impressive. The profit also helped determine the amount of spending for the succeeding fiscal year. An overall assessment of Wal-Mart stores indicates that the company has a good performance. The financial report showed that the speculation of the management over anticipated sales was accurate. On the other hand, the performance of the human resource welfare department was below average. Low morale among the employees indicated dissatisfaction with the manner in which they were being treated. However, with the accurate knowledge of the performance of the company and the state of employee welfare, the company can improve to realize more productivity among the employees. MANAGERIAL RESEARCH PAPER WRITING Managerial theories are a wide field. There are many research papers that can be written on this subject. A student needs only a topic to write a research paper. This is because these papers are intended to encourage research. However, where the professor wants to be specific about the topic of the research paper guidelines are issued. In addition, some research papers in high school and even college have guidelines that require specific set of questions to be answered. The essay above is one such research paper. Get academic writing help to complete research papers from ORDER PLAGIARISM FREE PAPER


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