Beginning a new business venture sounds like a easy task. All you need is a great idea, opportunity to select your team so you can begin to make some moves and find a few investors to invest in to this dream you have. Before you know it you are making a profit and moving onto a new location. Sounds easy but there is much more that goes into starting a new business than most people may know. To accomplish this, the business has to satisfy several objectives that exclusively add to the business. This paper will narrate some of the particulars of previous works from week two, three, and four with information such as the business and strategic plan and the balanced scorecard, all three essential in the success of the transition center. Strategic Objectives, Measures, and Targets
Profitability is the most important strategic objective for a business to be long lasting and successful. If the business is not competitive enough to make a profit, there is no reason in continuing the business venture. For that reason, there is a need to put into place financial objectives. When it comes to the idea of decreasing and maintaining a maximum gain or profit changes will need to happen. One thing the center can do is look into finding other avenues to assist clients in being properly prepared for their interviews. To accomplish this, requirement of ensure clients are properly attired will need to change. Originally the idea was to have a clothing bank for clients to have for their interviews. The clothing bank would be supplied by donations of clothing from employees to start. Unfortunately, to keep the clothing bank supplied, the company will have fund raisers to supply attire to clothing bank. However, it is not necessary to purchase new items, they can be purchased from the local Salvation Army store. Methods to Monitor and Control the Proposed Strategic Plan
Customer satisfaction is based greatly on the service provided by employees, there is no place for complacent employees in a successful business. To generate a pleasing experience for all clients at the center, employees must display warm, friendly, and impressionable service to clients this will play a big part into the strategic plan. As a business owner there are four strategic controls to help monitor the plan they are premise control, strategic surveillance, special alert control and implementation control. For example, not often will managers be the people interacting with customers, it is vital that the service provided by the employees speak managerial service. Clearly this displays the center’s growth in the knowledge and development operations area.
One of the best methods to discourage employees from becoming self-satisfied and content with their effort put into the job. To accomplish this, employees can be assigned different duties each day. Additionally, managers can implement an incentive program. This program will be gagged by having client fill out surveys and employee with the best rating will receive a yearly bonus. This will encourage employees to work harder and be more dedicated to giving the service expected by management. And in return for their hard work and job well done, the company’s revenue will increase, thus meaning a larger bonus at the end of each year. Overall, the superb client service will encourage clients to return if need be as well as tell others of our company. Marketing and Information Technology Strategies and Tactics
As with any company marketing is of the utmost importance to its survival. Throughout time businesses have made the one mistake that causes the business to fold, placing marketing tactics without having in place a strong marketing strategy. For example, Vargo and Lusch’s (2004a) recent article, published in the Journal of Marketing, argues in favor of an emerging new dominant logic for marketing. In order for Next Level Transition Center to be long lasting there are steps that need to be taken. When starting a new business one must take the time to understand the clientele they will be providing a service or product to. Having knowledge of your consumer and them of you verse having them have knowledge of your business will draw them to the front door of your business. In the world of business, information technology strategy has been overlooked by owners for they are so focused on marketing strategies. Keeping up with the use of information technology is in just about all types of industrial process and just as important.
It has been a proven fact that it contributes to the development of strategies and tactics when developing a product or service. During the twentieth century the accelerated progress in information technology has developed a large variety of technologies for the collecting and storage of information such as the Internet, software companies, and personal computers. Next Level Transition Center will be in tune with the changes of worldwide industries when it comes to information technology. Developments in digitization of information and advances in computing and telecommunications have created higher levels of mobilization and unbundling of intelligence, which in turn have altered how valued is created in the economy (Sawhney and Parikh 2001). As Sawhney and Parikh (2001, p.80) summarized, economic value is now linked to improving the utility of information: “where intelligence resides, so too does value.”
To measure business and advertisement the use of technology will keep the company’s internal and external operational processes consistent. For example, using our business website to provide new information such as upcoming job fairs and new job listings will improve our advertising and marketing. The use of our website can also assist with ways we can improve on the service we provide. As with any business you will receive bad and good ratings. This method of monitoring will be a great way to deal with the bad rating so the business can make the proper corrections to ensure longevity.
Actions Needed to Address Ethical, Legal, and Regulatory Issues Ethical, legal, and regulatory issues that can be faced by the transition center could be issues regarding potential privacy act violations. With the clients having to provide their personal information to our staff for different reasons, it will only benefit the company to ensure employees are properly trained as to the Privacy Act of 1974. In today’s business world computers or databases are the number one way to gather and store individual’s personal information. With the utilization of these databases individual’s personal privacy is at an all time risk. The Privacy Act of 1974 was created to protect against violations and privacy rights through procedural and substantive rules. With these rules the sharing of personal information between government agencies are regulated. And establishes the practices accepted in order to gather personal information also giving individuals privy to his or her records for review. Thus, giving individuals the right to sue a government agency that violates their rights. Week Two- Strategic Plan, Part I: Conceptualizing a Business Mission Statement
Separating yourself from the competition is what every new business strives for. Here at Next Level our mission is to provide outstanding service in a warm and friendly atmosphere. Instability of the United States economy and the loss of many jobs have forced individuals to live off of savings, governmental assistance and unemployment. In order for any new organization to stand out among the masses and competition, they must define themselves. Next Level is the name of the business I will be introducing into my community it is an employment transition center. However, there is a population that has lived off of governmental assistance due to various reasons and never been in the workforce.
This is a transition center that will specializes exclusively in providing proper training and skills to people in the community who are currently receiving governmental assistance and or unemployment in preparation for that major transition to the work force. The Transition Center has several departments that provide various services and certifications that are critical to the success of this transformation. Our staff is highly trained and experienced in all aspects of GED education, computer literacy, reading literacy, resume building, and job interview techniques and etiquette. As a small company with fewer than fourteen full-time and four part-time employees it is faced with little to no competition within the category of transitional support service centers within a forty mile radius. Establishing my transition center will be a great task; below I have outlined how I will go about accomplishing this significant milestone. Visions for the Future
Growth is the largest vision for the future, in order to do that we must be profitable. To be profitable we have to stand out from the other eateries available. “A vision statement presents the firm’s strategic intent that focuses the energies and resources of the company on achieving a desirable future” (Pearce & Robinson, 2009). The company vision that I see for the transition center is to acquire clientele in the local area of Sumter County, Sumter, South Carolina for the employment business sector. Under the five-year plan, the organization will liaison with the Department of Labor and the employment sector, to have the privilege of providing local representation here in Sumter to improve economic employment rates via a top-notch multi-functional facility. The potential opportunities for Second Chances to assist with decreasing the unemployment rate, assist with an increase of employment, and provide essential computer literacy skills to the community.
Advances in the way employers look for employees especially in South Carolina is very tech savvy. The Work keys application will be used as a tool to assist with finding employment for our clients and also what skills are required in order to establish training curriculums effectively. It is imperative to maintain an excellent superior in-house database to maintain all client information and employers’ information. Guiding Principles and Values
The guiding principles or values would be to stay open-minded and humble, realizing tough times will come and go, but this is part of starting a new business. And if the business does become successful, never to change who I am and continue to strive for nothing less than excellence. The culture of the business reflects my culture and what I attained from being in the military and having to go through the process of retiring. One of the most important cultural traits employees will have to posse will be the ability to display respect to each person who walks through the doors of New Level. I will not hesitate to take the opportunity to make things right and apologize on behalf of the business, always treat others the way I want to be treated, and with respect. It has been determined that within a forty-mile radius there aren’t any transitional centers that provide the same services in one location. Although there aren’t any transitional centers that provide these same services, there are 6 transitional centers in a 40 mile radius.
The competition inside the forty mile radius isn’t extremely competitive due to the fact they only offer services to those that have been in the job market before. We not only offer services to that demographic of people but also to the demographic that has never been in the job market. In addition, the initial appearance in today’s society demands competent, properly dressed, and confident clients when interviewing for a job. Next Level will provide clients with potentially competitive advantage by supplying clothing for those who can’t afford business attire, excellent computer, reading and math literacy training, resume building and job interview skills. In addition upon completion, the program clients will feel more confident when attending an interview.
Addressing Customer Needs and Achieving a Competitive Advantage Success of the business will be based on the ability to uphold and follow the company’s mission and vision statement. The vision is to have a business grow and develop into a competitive and successful company. This comes from the continuous display of respect to clients. Keeping one’s word or promise to provide the best service is a must. To ensure any business is success employees that conduct everyday business must ensure promises are followed up on all promises made. In order to continue to remain competitive and have an advantage over other transitions center in the area, is to keep the promises made in our mission statement, and continue to be attentive to the needs of our clients. Week Three – Strategic Plan, Part II: SWOTT Analysis
As a new business owner one must understand that when starting out there is great potential to succeed as well as fail. External and internal factors are two of the greatest factors to the success or failure of a business. The purpose for this paper is to define some of these external and internal factors for Next Level Transition Center and see how well they are able to adapt to them. Also an analysis will be conducted to identify major issues or opportunities the company may face from any forces and trends. External Forces and Trends
As with any company, as for external forces and trends, the impact on my business can be attributed to several forces. New environmental, competition, economic legal and regulatory, social, and technological architecture throughout the last decades have stimulated changes in the delivery of career services. Recent economic conditions have transformed the employment market, causing near insurmountable challenges and issues for new employees looking to start a new career in the workforce. Environmental Forces and Trends
Next Level Transition Center, Inc. is a small, independently owned start-up company founded in 2014 with operations to begin July 1,2015; the ribbon cutting of the facility. Of the fourteen full-time employees, four key employees will be instrumental in carrying out this marketing plan. The key players include: Charles L. Cowan, President and CEO; Melissa Cowan, CFO; Charles L. Cowan Jr., Marketing Manager; and Jasmine and Jalene Cowan, Facility Coordinator. Competitive Forces and Trends
It has been determined that there are not any transitional centers within a forty-mile radius that provides the same services in one location. Although there are not any transitional centers that provide these same services there are 6 transitional centers in a forty mile radius. The competition inside the forty radiuses is not extremely competitive due to the fact they only offer services to those that have been in the job market before. We not only offer services to that demographic of people but also to the demographic that has never been in the job market. This makes available a benefit as the transitional center has something different, and new to offer. In addition, the transitional center is located downtown in a centralized area which gives advantages over other transitional centers. Economic Forces and Trends
Economic forces can be a serious external force and trend to businesses either never starting or lasting. Instability of the United States economy and the loss of many jobs have forced individuals to live off of savings, governmental assistance and unemployment. However, there is a population that has lived off of governmental assistance due to various reasons and never been in the workforce. Legal and Regulatory Forces and Trends
In regards to legal and regulatory forces and trends that would affect this business would be the building inspection. All businesses all facilities must comply with EPA, OSHA, State and local governmental safety guidelines. There are no other regulatory or legal forces impacting Next Level Transition Center, Inc., operations at this time; however, caution must be taken to protect the company from frivolous lawsuits as well as legitimate suits. Technological Forces and Trends
Advances in the way employers look for employees especially in South Carolina is very tech savvy. The Workkeys application will be used as a tool to assist with finding employment for our clients and also what skills are required in order to effectively establish training curriculums. It is imperative to maintain an excellent superior in-house database to maintain all client information and employers’ information Social Forces and Trends
A potential competitive advantage for Next Level Transition Center is their clothing bank that allows clients who can’t afford business attire the opportunity to select clothing for a job interview. In addition to completing the program this will allow the clients to feel more confident when attending an interview. In addition, initial appearance in today’s society demands competent, properly dressed, and confident clients when interviewing for a job.
Next Level Transition Center, Inc.’s target market is unemployed and personnel on governmental assistance who seek job employment in Sumter County, Sumter, South Carolina. By focusing service operations solely on two groups, Next Level is implementing a different distinct focused strategy composed of providing necessary training, education opportunities, and job skills the only multi-functional transitional center within a forty mile radius. The unemployment rate is Sumter County, Sumter, South Carolina as of May 2012 is 10.5%. The average median household income is $33,267 and there is a 19.4% below poverty level rate. This strategy relies heavily on promoting Next Level Transition Center opportunities and key initiatives in the local area of the only multifunctional transition center to provide not only key skill training but also provide a service of clothing for those who can’t afford proper attire when scheduled for a job interview. Processes and Systems
Next Level is a start-up service organization. Consequently, expenditures will include the negotiation to acquire certification licenses from the State of South Carolina, purchase and remodeling of the transition facility located on Broad Street, Sumter, South Carolina, the special equipment necessary to perform computer literacy training, audio visual equipment for classroom training, lending closet and clothing drop off points, solicitation and employment of personnel to operate the facility, advertisement and promotional efforts for the attainment of partnerships with business owners across the state. As a result, the requirement for cash to fund start-up expenditures necessitates an initial investment from each key management official of $1 million. Also, we will apply for grants from the state for providing this service to the local community. Furthermore, the organization will require cash for daily operations which will result in substantial lines of credit until Next Level Transition Center achieve positive cash flows.
Week Four – Strategic Plan, Part III: Balanced Scorecard
It is a known fact profit is the main reason individuals start their own business but overall is to be successful. My intention for Next Level is to become the one stop shop for the less privileged to show their penitential. My vision is for every man, woman, and child one day will be afforded the opportunity to attain their fullest potential to be part of the workforce. My mission is to provide educational services to individuals and families in the poorest communities preparing them for the workplace and life. In addition, I want my transition center to be seen as a highly respected business and not just another business trying to get ahead off of the less fortunate. Becoming more just a job service center but a part of the community, a place that makes people feel loved and cared for. Getting to know the people on a more personal basis and proved warm service that is appreciated leaving them with a sense of family that keeps them coming back. Financial Perspective
With the location being in an area where public transportation is available, this will give us a considerable advance over the other transition centers in the local area. This will enhance the financial perspectives, by increasing the number of clients who will choose my transition center over the others. This will have a great influence on the market shares of the business and allow for enrichment of return and competitive positioning. Furthermore this will in turn help in the reduction in cost of spending for improvements also increasing profit. The mission values are to provide a warm environment and great service to the less fortunate. In order to obtain such a goal, it is of the utmost importance to put into place some of the objectives for customer service and employee satisfaction. Customer Perspective
To provide an high quality of service as well as customer satisfaction is one of the objectives that must be maintained over the long haul. To measure our customer satisfaction on how well our service was, we would need to continue our relationship with our clients even after they have obtained their success. By sending customer surveys and monthly letters informing clients of upcoming events such as job fairs or new business opening in the local community. This is a way to measure the frequency the clients utilized the tools offered to our clients. One of the centers most important strategic objectives will be to ensure the company is well respected throughout the community. This will be achieved by continuing to provide friendly service. Process of Internal Operations
For the transition center to attain this goal, the center will need to sustain trustworthy and dependable service. To ensure this achieved, the company has to plan properly, making certain employees perform all task efficiently producing a product wanted and liked by customers. By accomplishing this both employee and customer service perspective is encompassed. Local transition centers have methods in which they assist customers in achieving their goals in the most resourceful manner. This is usually made available by providing different avenues to assist customers in achieving their goals.
One avenue would be the use of a one stop online service, by being organized and readily available this will allow for business to run more efficiently. This will help in reducing the work done by the employee allowing for the clients to freely choose what they desire. But at the same time allow for employees who have a free moment to provide one-on-one assistance to clients. Additionally, I feel that this will be beneficial as other transition centers are not set up to give personal attention to their clients. Therefore, giving my business a upper hand on the competition. Employee Perspective
Obviously, the amount of satisfaction that the employees will have determines how good of a service they provide to customers. Therefore, increasing employee satisfaction is a must for the transition center. Stimulating the employees is a great way to keep them productive. A method of stimulating the employees would be to rotate the duties. A rotation of duties ensures that all of the employees understand the functions of the different stations but they also understand all the processes as well. In turn this increases their knowledge level, ability to deal with different situations and how to interact with customers. Customer satisfaction will in turn help in enhancing customer’s value perspective in the areas of customer value and retention. Providing warm, family-like service is a valuable asset the transition center will provide, setting it apart from other transition centers in the area. Conclusion
Any business owner can put into perspective each aspect of his or her business by having a strategic objective in the format of a balanced scorecard. Knowledge of the one’s business standing in the marketplace is of the essence when it comes to growth and how to go about surpassing competition. Time to time changes within the internal operations of one’s business will occur, but only after the proper development of strategic objectives can a business guarantee future growth. Clientele and employees are two of the most important factors when it comes to the life of a business. With the creation of a scorecard which includes all the items mentioned and balanced will a business be able to see where one’s business stands amongst their competition, can balance be achieved. SWOT ANALYSIS
1. Next Level represents a highly needed service in Sumter County, Sumter, South Carolina. Their reputation ultimately will reflect upon the
commitment to improve the economy. 2. Personnel, including computer skills instructor, GED trainers and testers, resume trainers and job interview skills coaches, of Next Level are highly knowledgeable representatives of these skilled areas. The organization is dedicated to continuous education and certifications in order to provide top notch services to the community. 3. Next Level expects nothing less than complete loyalty from its employees and prides itself on its loyalty to its clientele. Staying abreast of key technology, local, state , and federal regulations will ensure an outstanding level of standards in the service provided. 4. Next Level, as a small family-owned corporation, is able to communicate individually with clients to meet and exceed their expectations before, during, and after the training experience. 5. Client testimonials are the basis for the acquisition of new clientele. 6. Current location of facility allows for expansion.
1. Next Level is a start-up company.
2. The organization relies on positive word-of- mouth communication to generate business.
3. The organization depends on referrals for potential customers.
4. The exclusive service operations to only unemployed and those on government assistance limits to a select targeted market.
1. The potential opportunities for Next Level to assist with decreasing the unemployment rate, assist with the increase of employment, and provide essential computer literacy skills to the community.
1. There are currently no known threats to Next Level Transition Center.
E. Matching Strengths to Opportunities / Converting Weaknesses and Threats 1. Negotiate with the state agencies, Department of Labor, and Employment agencies, for training materials, licensing, and access to essential job searching databases. 2. Expand the facilities operations to include a computer training and certification testing center.
Earn a profit
Changes in profit
Drops in hits on website
To increase profit with intention to open another center
To provide high quality service
Being aware of customer complaints
Increase customer satisfaction
Internal Business Process
Sustain trustworthy and dependable service
Keep employees pleased and motivated
Utilize website reviews and comments to address negative responses To provide the most effective and efficient service
Provide warm and friendly work environment
Provide employee incentive program
Allow for job rotation
Open door policy, ask don’t assume.
Observe job performance
Listen to customers complaints
Reason for Communication
Presentation of company mission, vision, and values.
To guide company’s efforts. Inspire, motivate, and align employees with business strategy. Upper management
Power Point presentation.
Owner/Board of Directors
Definition of company long term goals.
Provide direction. Enable creation of short term goals and objectives. Improve company efficiency.
Power Point presentation.
Owner/Board of Directors
Definition of company short term goals.
Foster achievement of company goals.
Management and employees
Owner/Board of Directors
Definition of company objectives.
Provide direction, measurable tasks, and ensure achievement of company goals. Management
Owner/Board of Directors
Company core values
Drive social responsibility.
Ensure compliance with the law.
Serve as a guide for company behavior.
Owner and Human Resources Department
Definition of company financial goals
See where the company stands
Owner/Chief Financial Officer
Quarterly Financial Updates Meeting
Present the state of the company
Quarterly Goals Updates Meeting
Status Reports on all projects
Review services, products and customer care
Upper Management, Middle Management, and Team Members
Review surveys and other forms of feedback
Upper Management, Middle Management, and Team Members
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for Marketing,” Journal of Marketing, 68 (January), 1-17. Sawhney, Mohanbir and Deval Parikh (2001), “ Where Value Lives in a Networked World,” Harvard Business Review, 79 (1), 79-86. Thompson, Arthur A. , Gamble, John E. , & Strickland, A. J. (2006). Strategy: winning in the marketplace: core concepts, analytical tools, cases. United States: McGraw-Hill Companies. MacDonald, Denise. (2008, October 15). Mcdonald’s marketing strategy. Retrieved from http://www.macdonaldconsultingservices.com/post/2008/10/McDonalds-Marketing-Strategy.aspx Balance Scorecard Institute., (2011 June 20). What is the balanced scorecard? Retrieved from http://www.balancedscorecard.org/BSCResources/AbouttheBalancedScorecard/tabid/55/Default.aspx