Key Economic Indicators
A. Industry Analysis Begin the industry analysis by providing a brief history of the industry, employment figures, growth forecast, major industry suppliers, competitors, and customers. Following this introduction, address the following items: 1. Management – Identify industry leaders that set industry standards. 2. Economics – Explain the impact of key economic indicators (unemployment, interest rates, consumer spending, etc.) on the industry. 3. Finance – Provide performance related information about the industry (average market capitalization, revenue, gross profit, income/loss, etc.) Discuss the degree to which firms are leveraged; evaluate the normal ratios of the firms in the industry; identify salient changes taking place in the financial environment. 4. Model – Apply Porter’s five forces model to the industry. B. Competitor Analysis A competitor analysis yields crucial information that helps a firm to develop or modify its strategy. The analysis should contain the following critical information. 1. Identification – Identify who the main competitors are and their market position. 2. Assessment- Discuss the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of two main competitors. Next, conduct a competitive strength assessment of the selected firm and the competitors. 3. Analysis – Discuss the financial, physical, human, technical, and reputational, resources of main competitors. Elaborate on the impact of these resources. C. Firm Analysis The firm analysis provides an opportunity to critically evaluate the current strategy and operations of the firm. Discuss the following salient information. 1. Assessment – Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the firm and identify opportunities and threats the firm should be aware of; conduct a value chain analysis for primary components and discuss how the value chain relates to rivals. 2. Analysis – Discuss the financial, physical, human, technical, and reputational, resources of the firm. Elaborate on the impact of these resources. How are they similar/different to those of primary competitors? 3. Synthesis -In this section of the paper provide the “big reveal”. Use the information garnered in the previous sections to identify salient issues facing the firm. Next, given the results of the analyses, describe how the firm can create and sustain competitive advantage. Also, discuss how the firm will create and dominate emerging opportunities. Last, provide recommendations that articulate the agenda for strategic action. Be sure to provide solid recommendations for the future and explain them thoroughly.