Finance

The value of decision making skills

The value placed on data by firms has grown rapidly. According to new research by Dynamic Markets, for example, one in five of the UK's largest companies now quantify the value of corporate data on their balance sheets. However, the research shows that significant challenges remain: 37% of respondents said...
Operations

Delivering quality service

Regular checks on doctors' skills will start from December 2012, heralding the biggest shake-up in medical regulation for more than 150 years.  The UK's 220,000 doctors will have annual appraisals, with a decision taken every five years on whether they are fit to continue working. (BBC, 19th October 2012) NHS...
People

Managing change

Newsweek, the 80-year-old US current affairs magazine, is to become an online-only publication. The last print edition will be on 31 December 2012.  (BBC, 18th October 2012) Much has changed in the publishing world, not least how consumers get their news.  The number of Newsweek subscribers has slumped from more...
Strategy

Strategy for growth

Business strategies to achieve growth may focus on different things – for example, new product development, cost reduction, competitive pricing or customer relationships. The global engineering group, IMI, uses the knowledge and expertise of its people to meet the needs of its B2B (business to business) customers, providing tailored products...
Marketing

Promoting through social media

Social media is increasingly being used for marketing and promotion purposes.  The National Trust, a registered charity which looks after historic properties and special places across the UK, has recognised the power of social media and is using new technologically-inspired marketing activities to increase the ‘shareability’ of its messages. This...
Strategy

Stakeholder influence

Shareholders are an important stakeholder group for any business.  Purchasing shares provides financial support for the company for which they expect a return. Their opinions and views can have a significant impact and need to be taken into account when making strategic decisions. Reed Elsevier, the leading publisher and provider...
Operations

Focusing on customers

In 2008, TNT, the market leader in business-to-business (B2B) express delivery services, recognised that it needed to change to reflect the increasing expectations of its customers.  Research showed that customer satisfaction depended not just on the process of delivering the service, but also on how the service was carried out....
Strategy

Growing a business

Facebook now has more than one billion people using it every month.  The milestone was announced by founder Mark Zuckerberg on US television. However, sustained growth is seen as crucial if Facebook is to maintain its value - the company has seen its share price drop to about $22 (£17)...
Strategy

Vision and values

Having a clear vision which embodies an organisation’s values is a key factor in helping to achieve its objectives.  For Syngenta, a world leader in producing seeds and crop protection, vision and values really matter and together are the foundations of its brand integrity.  They help to co-ordinate and motivate...
Finance

Managing budgets

The process of budgeting is important in providing a business with a realistic financial plan that it can fulfil.  At Zurich, the leading global provider of insurance services, departmental and senior management contribute data to build a budget that is stretching but achievable in order to meet the organisation’s short...
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