Botanical Paper Works is a family business, which develops fast. The main specialization of the firm is producing paper products, such as cards, invitations, reminders etc. It employs around 12 people and has a linear organizational structure, when the major departments report strictly to GM. It is interesting that only 15% of business is local. It means that the firm has good perspectives for future and thus it should be put on Multistream continuum, as it is heading forward.
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The mission of the company might sound the in the following way: “BPW aspires to make any event unforgettable and bright with our good quality stylish paper products”. Another version of mission is “BPW presents sweet memories reflected on our bright paperwork”. The main idea of the mission is that the firm actually doesn’t just produce paperwork, but it helps the customers to make the event memorable and bright. As for vision, here it is possible to formulate like this: “BPW intends to create safe workplace and contribute to the community, while producing good quality stylish paper products”. It means that the main goal of the company is not just producing the product it sells, but also taking care about the environment the company operates in.
It is important to analyze internal and external environment of the firm. The main strength of the company is the mail to order system, which means that the company is sure that the products will be purchased, and the customer gets the product on the just-in-time basis. Another strength is cross-trained employees, which means that they can substitute each other in case somebody is absent, so the entire work process will not suffer.
The weakness of BPW, however, is substantial turnover of staff, since the company hires students during their vacation. Moreover, the company is not able to pay competitive salaries, since its revenues are not big enough. The second weakness is linear organizational structure, which means that if Heidi leaves the will be nobody to actually replace her, cause she controls major processes herself.
The main opportunity BPW has comes from the chances that Internet brings. Due to the web, it is possible to expand BPW’s business substantially.
The main threat, in turn, is the nature of competition that the company faces. Specifically, the competitors come from offshore, which means that their costs are lower, so they can impose so-called price-wars, in which there is a great possibility of BPW’s loss.
As for company’s strategy, it is obvious that BPW takes its own niche, offering a range of product from hand-made to manufactured of undoubted quality on the just-in-time basis primarily. Thus, the main competitive advantage, on which this strategy is based, is quality control and customer care.
In such a way, BPW is developing. Yet, the company has certain weakness that might prevent it from further fast development, enhanced by growing threat from offshore companies.
Considering the weaknesses inherent in the company, it is important to work out a clear human resource development plan, which will allow BPW to decrease the turnover of employees and be confident in tomorrow, since the hired employees will not leave when the summer is over. Moreover, such a plan will allow to invest in people with almost hundred percent return on these investment. It is important to notice, that non-material motivation can be achieved by teaching people and guarantying them the permanent workplace, i.e. the loyalty of the company and different promotional schemes. This human resources development plan should include the following issues:
The term it is designed (for instance, 3 years)
The overall number of employees necessary over this term
The qualifications of employees hired
Promotional scheme for each position
The next step that Heidi has to take is to write the responsibilities of all managers that report to her. Having all this in written form it is easier to restructure the duties. Moreover, it is very important for Heidi to delegate them more authority, so the can work more independently and perform their functions even without Heidi’s strict control. Anyhow, the restructuring of the organization is necessary in order to ensure BPW’s future continuing success. In order to do the restructuring, Heidi needs to gather first main managers and explain them the necessity, trying to work out the most efficient scheme. Then, it is important to meet with all the employees and explain the changes. It is more effective, if each manager explains the changes and the duties to subordinates within the department.
Another priority task is to improve the Internet system, so it has more capacity, since Internet sales present great opportunity. It is important to ensure that all the range of product BPW can sell is represented on the web. Moreover, it is crucial to make them appealing, i.e. it is necessary to make the E-shop colorful, bright, and informative. The customers should be also sure that the payment system is secure and they will not have any troubles. Having everything checked and fixed, Internet sales can increase the overall volume of sales substantially.
Over the next 6 months, Heidi needs to write a clear marketing plan, in which the important issue is making sure that potential customers know about efficient made-to-order system, when customers get their products on just-in-time basis. Such information can be provided in special articles written on behalf of Heidi in specialized journals, or this can be advertised via Sunday supplements. The full information about the company and its offers should be certainly provided on the web. In addition, the marketing plan should include specific target segments, so that it is possible to develop specific offer directly for those segments and thus ensure even stronger customer satisfaction.
In conclusion, it is crucial to say that BPW has a good potential to grow. This is ensured by the range of products it sells, the quality and design of the product and special customer care system. Moreover, the Internet sales present great opportunity. However, to be able to further take advantage of the opportunity and use own inherent strengths, it is important for BPW to make organizational restructuring, to work out human resources development plan, and to work out marketing plan, making emphasis on made-to-order system informational campaign and appropriate segmentation.
Drummond, Helga(2000). “Introduction to Organizational Behavior”, Oxford University Press, Oxford
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