Apple is an American-based multinational company that deals in the sale and design of personal computers, computer software plus a range of hand-held gadgets. Apple Inc. is best known for its hardware products branded as Macintosh. Started in 1976 by Steve Jobs, Apple has grown to become one of the current day’s iconic designers of consumer electronics. Although Apple deals in a wide range of products, the company treats every product line in a unique way. Each product of Apple is treated as a standalone business unit. This report singles out the Ipad product of Apple Company and analyses this business unit in terms of its strategic competitive position, its external environment and the value addition proponent of its strategic position. This report is based on the UK market.
LO1 Analyze the impact and influence which the macro environment has on an organization and its business strategies
Apple Inc Vision/Mission
The mission statement of an organization refers to business, its objectives and the ways of reaching those objectives. A vision statement explains the business’s desired position in the future (Kotler et al., 2014). A business’s mission and vision statement are combined to develop a statement focusing on business purpose, values and goals. However, these two terms can be used interchangeably sometimes (Palmer, 2012).
The vision of Apple Inc is to be the leading technology company in the world. The mission of Apple Inc is to gain improved market share with increased sales revenue and profit margin providing excellent customer services and quality products and services with value-added features (Apple Inc Annual Report, 2015).
Apple Inc Aims and objectives
Aims in the business refer to the future position or goals where the company wants to go (Kotler et al., 2015). The aim of Apple Inc is to be the leading global technology company with quality and integrity in its products and services and extending its business worldwide markets (Apple Inc, 2015).
Objectives in the business refer to the measurable and stated target of how to gain business aims (Kotler et al., 2014). According to Apple Inc (2015), the key objectives of Apple Inc for the fiscal 2016 first quarter are outlined in the following table:
|Financial||1. To improve market share from 39.1% in October 2015 to 42.5% by March 2016|
|2. To gain sales revenue between $75.5 billion and $77.5 billion by March 2016|
|3. To gain gross profit between 39% and 40% by March 2016|
|4. To achieve net profit between 12% and 15% by March 2016|
|Customer||5. To improve customer satisfaction level from 85% in October 2015 to 90% by March 2016|
|Economic||6. To control expenses between $6.3 billion and $6.4 billion by March 2016|
|Growth||7. To increase product range and maximize market by 31 March 2016.|
|Source: Palmer (2012)||Source: Apple Inc Annual Report (2015)|
Macro-environmental analysis of Apple iPad
Marshall (2016) disclosed that stakeholders are the persons who have an interest in businesses. A report published by Apple Annual Report (2016), employees, customers, investors, government, shareholders, partners and community are Apple’s main stakeholders. However, Apple tries to create better communication with its stakeholders including employees, customers, employees, shareholders, suppliers and other channels of communication. On the other hand, Apple tries to deal with the press release, reporting and press conference. It arranges for meeting regularly with its investors, employees, partners and shareholders. Business rules or regulations are strictly followed by Apple to achieve communities’ demands (Apple Annual Report, 2016).
According to Butcher (2015), analyzing the stakeholders of a business or a project plays important role in developing a significant engagement plan. One of the widely used stakeholder analysis methods is the stakeholder Importance and Influences matrix. This method focuses on two key variables, which are plotted leveling the ‘stake’ in the outcome of the project against the stakeholders’ influences. Although the ideas and concept are the same, the emphasizes are a bit different.
Diagram: Stakeholder matrix Source: Butcher (2015)
The above diagram discloses that boxes A, B, and C are the main stakeholders of a particular project, where the key implications of each box are outlined as follows:
This category of stakeholders has a high degree of influence on the defined projects. In addition, this category of stakeholders has high importance towards the success of the proposed project (Butcher, 2015). Apply on apple, please.
This category of stakeholders has very high importance towards the success of implementing organizations but has a low-level influence on the project’s success (Butcher 2015). Apply on apple, please.
This kind of stakeholder has a very high influence on the outcomes of the projects but has lower interest towards overalls goals and aims of the projects (Bucher, 2015). Apply on apple, please.
This kind of stakeholder has both low interest and low importance towards the project aims and objectives (Butcher, 2015). Apply on apple, please.
The key drivers of change are the likely factors that affect the normal business operations of an organization and which the organization has very limited control over (Hambrick and Fredrickson, 2004). These are basically the forces of politics, economics, socio-culture, technology, legalities and environment (Porter, 2006).
Political and legal drivers
According to Lei and Slocum (2010), politics have a great impact on the overall business practices within a country/nation. A political influence on any business operation could either result in the creation of a conducive business environment or it could jeopardize all business activities. The influences of politics on businesses within a nation are subject to the national government’s pre-stated business policies and regulations (Harrison and John, 2010). Government regulations on issues such as taxation have a great impact on business operations. Recently, the UK government imposed a 20% rise in VAT. This basically resulted in a tax burden on the UK populace who form the basis of this region’s consumer markets (BBC News Business, 2011). An increment in VAT reduces the consumers’ purchasing power and consequently discourages them from spending. Reduced spending by consumers is an unhealthy condition for a business organization .like Apple.
Problems in the global financial systems as a result of incidences such as the European credit crunch and the recent global financial meltdown have had adverse effects on all businesses within and out of the UK. The financial crises basically resulted in reduced purchasing powers. People resorted to the purchase of basic necessities and therefore, products that were perceived as “nonessential’ were avoided (Berglof, 2011). The price of Apple’s iPad relative to the prices of other hand-held gadgets such as Smartphones is considerably high. Therefore, this means that with the highly reduced purchasing power, consumers would definitely opt for substitutes with lower prices. As much as this could be the current global economic situation, an optimistic view holds that the global economy is gradually finding its footing and all business activities are set to go back to normal………………………………………