Assessment Task Information (In-College & Remote delivery)
Assessment title: Written assignment (individual): Advisory Strategy Report
Module Name: Strategic Management
Module Code: PM607
Tutor’s Name: Michelle Aitken
Assessment will be set on:
Peer Feedback: Your tutor will arrange a suitable time for this
Assessment is due on: Monday 14th February 2023 at 12pm, UK time
In order to succeed in business, it is important to know how and why some companies succeed while others struggle to survive or fail; understanding this helps businesses to identify their own strengths and avoid problems. In the commercial world, it is common for management to commission reports that analyse the competition in order to generate recommendations for their own company strategy. You have been commissioned to research and write an analytical and advisory report for your senior management team.
Choose a company that is struggling or has failed, e.g. It has closed down, made staff redundant or downsized. With reference to relevant theories, critically analyse the company’s strategies and identify the reasons for its decline. Then compare the company’s methods and strategies to a successful company from the same industry. Finally, use your findings and knowledge of how the industry is evolving to explain what the company could or should have done differently.
Before you submit this assessment, you will have an opportunity to receive feedback from your peers and tutor. This is an individual assessment, and your peer-assessment group will choose different companies and industries.
Expected Word Count:
2,000 words (+/- 10%), following the specific structure outlined below. The word count does not include the title and contents pages, reference list or any appendices.
There are four main sections (use sub-sections where required) of the report to be completed. Note the word counts by section included are for guidance only:
Section 1: Introduction (approx. 250-300 words):
• Brief overview of the company and the industry the company operates in
• Brief justification for selected company in focus (main reason(s) for failure)
Section 2: Critical Analysis (approx. 350-500 words):
• Brief overview of external environment (apply PESTEL)
• Analyse and critically appraise the organisation’s own use of environmental analysis in the development of its strategy.
• What decisions/strategies led to its failure/decline? Consider this question at one or more levels of strategy, as applicable.
Section 3: Competitor Analysis & Comparison (approx. 750-1000 words):
• What effect competition had on the failure of the company. Give an overview of their main competitors (apply Game Theory and Porter’s 5 Forces).
• Analyse a successful competitor and compare and contrast their methods and strategies with the struggling/failed business (use a SWOT analysis on chosen company and include as an appendix – this will not be included in the overall word count).
Section 4: Conclusion & Recommendations (approx. 300-400 words):
• Consider how the market/industry will evolve and the likely impacts on the strategy of the organisations operating within it. (citing/briefly discussing relevant theories)
• Explain what the company could/should have done differently.
References (not included in word count)
Theory and/or task resources required for the assessment:
The assessment will cover the materials covered in the first 6 themes of the module.
You must conduct secondary research for this assessment finding relevant sources independently, in addition to the resources listed in your lesson resources.
Your analysis of the business must demonstrate your understanding of the theory of strategic management studied in Themes 2-6 of the module. Therefore, you should try to include reference to concepts and theories throughout, e.g. PESTLE, PORTER’S FIVE FORCES, ANSOFF MATRIX, PORTER’S GENERIC STRATEGIES.
You do NOT have to include ALL theories studied, however.
You should not use blogs, Wikipedia, social media or unattributed sources.
You should refer to a minimum of 10 relevant sources for your report. A minimum of 4 sources should be from academic journals. Please refer to your module handbook for a list of useful resources.
You must include a APA style reference list at the end of your report.
A full bibliography is NOT required.
Learning Outcomes Assessed:
MLO 3. Evaluate how certain factors influence an organisation’s strategy and explain and critically appraise how strategic decisions might impact various levels of an organisation
MLO 4. Explain and critically appraise the role of environmental analysis, innovation, entrepreneurship and business ethics in the development of strategy
MLO 5. Critically appraise the strategic choices of a range of different business organisations with reference to relevant sources
You must include the following paragraph on your title page:
I/we confirm that this assignment is my/our own work.
Where I/we have referred to academic sources, I/we have provided in-text citations and included the sources in the final reference list.
How to avoid academic misconduct
You should follow academic conventions and regulations when completing your assessed work. If there is evidence that you have done any of the following, whether intentionally or not, you risk getting a zero mark:
Plagiarism & poor scholarship
• stealing ideas or work from another person (experts or students)
• using quotations from sources without paraphrasing and using citations
• working together with someone else on an individual assessment, e.g., your work is corrected, rephrased or added to by another (both parties would be guilty)
Buying or commissioning work
• submitting work as your own that someone else produced (whether you paid for it or not)
• copying the work of another student
• using resources or aids that are not permitted for the assessment
• submitting work, e.g., laboratory work, which is partly or completely made up. This includes claiming that work was done by yourself alone when it was actually done by a group
• claiming to be another student and taking an assessment instead of them (both parties guilty)
Specific formatting instructions:
You must type your assessment in Arial font 12, with 1.5 spacing.
You must submit the assessment electronically via the VLE module page. Please ensure you submit it via Turnitin.
Assessments submitted after the submission deadline may incur penalties or may not be accepted.
Addition submission information – check you have done the following:
Formatting Consistent font, spacing, page numbers, formatting and subheadings
Citations Correct format and location throughout the report
Referencing Harvard referencing system used correctly in the reference list
Summarising Summarising the results of research
Paraphrasing Paraphrasing the contents of research findings
Spell check Spell check the report
Proof-reading Proof-reading completed
Grammar Grammarly has been used to check the report
How will this assessment be marked?
The assessment will be marked using the following areas and weightings:
Introduction & Purpose (10%)
• The environment in which the company operates within is well described
• Relevant justifications for the choice of company in focus are apparent
Knowledge & Understanding (20%)
• A wide breadth of knowledge and understanding is evident through a variety of valid points across themes covered on the course
• Numerous relevant theories and/or studies are referred to throughout and applied in context to support points made
Critical Analysis (35%)
• A wide variety of key strengths and weaknesses are identified across all companies analysed
• Relevant tools, theories and/or studies are used well to highlight these strengths & weaknesses
• A variety of different methods and strategies are compared; these make clear any unique advantages gained and/or errors of judgement
• The likely effects of competition are well covered and explained
Conclusion & Recommendations (15%)
• The critical analysis has been summarized well and well-considered strategic alternatives (i.e. what the company should have done differently) are recommended.
• The evolving industry/market in question has been considered and this is apparent in the recommendations.
Academic Skills (10%)
• Clear explanation of ideas.
• Report is well structured.
• Coherent organisation of ideas.
• Appropriate academic language.
Academic Integrity (10%)
• Information from sources is appropriately paraphrased / summarised rather than relying on quotes
• Any direct and indirect quotations are clearly marked and acknowledged with correct citations
• References match the citations and are correctly formatted
• Data/facts presented are genuine and accurate
How will you get feedback?
You will receive feedback from your peers and tutor before you submit the assessment.
You will receive feedback from your tutor once the assessment has been marked. This feedback will be directly related to the marking criteria detailed above and will highlight the general strengths and weaknesses of your submission.
This assessment task is for a written assignment in the module “Strategic Management” (PM607) with a tutor named Michelle Aitken. The assignment is due on Monday 14th February 2023 at 12pm UK time and is worth 50% of the total grade for the module. The assignment requires you to choose a struggling or failed company, critically analyze the company’s strategies and reasons for its decline, compare the company’s methods and strategies to a successful company from the same industry, and explain what the company could or should have done differently. The expected word count is 2,000 words (+/- 10%) and must follow the specific structure outlined in the assessment instructions.
The report should have four main sections: Introduction, Critical Analysis, Competitor Analysis & Comparison, and Conclusion & Recommendations. You must conduct secondary research for the assignment and reference a minimum of 10 relevant sources, with at least 4 being from academic journals. The referencing style required is APA and a reference list must be included at the end of the report.
The assessment is designed to assess the following learning outcomes:
MLO 3: Evaluate how certain factors influence an organization’s strategy and explain and critically appraise how strategic decisions might impact various levels of an organization
MLO 4: Explain and critically appraise the role of environmental analysis, innovation, entrepreneurship, and business ethics in the development of strategy
MLO 5: Critically appraise the strategic choices of a range of different business organizations with reference to relevant sources.
You must confirm that the assignment is your own work and include proper in-text citations and reference sources where necessary. You are also required to receive feedback from peers and the tutor before submitting the final version of the assignment.