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1). Identify 3 key strategic issues facing the organisation with a clear explanation of why they are “strategic”

Assessment: Strategic Analysis Report.

T

he module is assessed (100%) by an individual Strategic Report (maximum 3,000 words) involving an in-depth, strategic analysis of a large organisation. The subject of the report will be decided by the module convenor but students will be able to choose from a list of 6 varied examples. The task is briefed in Week 2 of the module and is due for submission in Week 12 by 2.00 pm on Monday 23th April 2018.

Instructions for assessment

The Strategic Report should strictly NOT exceed 3,000 words and demonstrate clear report style with relevant Harvard references.  It is to be a unified whole that answers three questions (see below) focused on the selected organisation. Formative work in weekly seminars will guide students through analytical techniques and processes required to complete the task.

For the selected organisation, assume you are an outside consultancy reporting to the Chief Executive.  The Strategic Report should:-

1). Identify 3 key strategic issues facing the organisation with a clear explanation of why they are “strategic” (20%).

2). Analyse fully the resources and key capabilities of the organisation plus key factors that give the company its competitive advantage. (40%)

3). Assess the extent to which the organisation’s competitive strategy

addresses its strategic issues, and suggest improvements where they

might be justified. (30%)

A further 10% is available for clarity, structure, grammar, correct Harvard referencing and overall professional presentation showing clear report style.      

Best answers will draw explicitly on strategic concepts and analysis from the module and apply them to the organisation.  Clear referencing (Harvard system), professional presentation with appropriate diagrams/tables are required.

Again note the report should not exceed 3,000 words.  Appendices are allowed outside this limit but NO MORE than 6 pages.

How will we support you with your assessment?

There will be weekly references to the assessment task in seminars and weekly activities in those seminars will be helpful in creating “scaffolding” for eventual submission.  An assessment worksheet will be provided in Wk4 to assist the development of ideas.

The formative mini-casework in seminars will be of direct help in the application of relevant strategic tools. There will be regular Q&A sessions linked to the assessment report and in the final weeks of teaching there will be an opportunity to review and reflect upon work from previous cohorts.

How will your work be assessed?

Your work will be assessed by a subject expert who will use the marking scheme indicated below.  Feedback will be given in the Turnitin/Grademark system with script comments plus overall points. When you access your marked work it is important that you reflect on the feedback so that you can use it to improve future assignments.

In this Strategic Report, high marks come from using strategic concepts and analysis from the module clearly applied to the organisation.  Harvard referencing, a professional report style plus appropriate diagrams/tables are also required. Outline marking expectations are as follows:-   

Q1: (20%) After a short introduction, we expect 3 key Strategic Issues with explanations and knowledge of why they are “strategic”. The 3 environments (PESTLE, 5 Forces & internal) should be used as a guide.

Q2: (40%) We expect strong course knowledge, clear industry CSFs plus the organisation’s resources & unique capabilities well analysed.  Also how unique capabilities link to advantage & CSFs, and their Porter generic strategy.

Q3: (30%) We expect an evaluation of how their strategy addresses their issues using the three SAFe tests – plus how it might be improved. A short overall conclusion completes the report. 

PRESENTATION: (10%) We expect a professional report with clear report style (not an essay) e.g. frontsheet, contents, clear sections, tables & diagrams and relevant Harvard referencing. The word count should not be exceeded by more than 10%.


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