Describe about the Performance Analysis and Simulations for Performances Decision Making.
Overview of Report
This report examines Erie, a sensor manufacturing company’s performance and decision-making. It includes the core objective of the company to become a market leader by applying cost effective production system and providing good quality products to its customers. This report also includes how well the company deals with its customers, competitors and market trends. The company deals with its customer on the buying criteria of different products. This shows that company deals with its customers in an effective way as it has divided product segments as per customer needs. Thus, the company offers seven products, namely, Eat, Ebb, Echo, Edge, Egg, Eqi, and Expres under five categories, viz. traditional, low-end, high-end, performance and size, respectively. On the other hand, Company also deals with its competitors in a successful way because the market share of Erie is highest among its competitors in all rounds. Erie is effective in dealing with market trends that helps to grab more opportunities for growth in the future. Moreover, this report includes identifying the degree of success that company had in achieving its stated goals. The degree of success depends on various factors including share holder’s value, sales, profit, and market share. These factors are effective indicators of better performance and prospects of the company. All the factors reflect the success of company in achieving its goals throughout all the rounds.
Furthermore, this report includes analysis about business-decisions that have been taken as manager for achieving the goals of company. If decisions are taken in an effective manner, then it leads to increase in productivity and profitability for the organization. Therefore, this report effectively highlights the performance of different departments which helps to identify that which decisions were good and which were poor. Effective customer awareness and customer accessibility of Erie as compared to its competitors shows that the marketing decisions of company were successful. This leads to increase in sales and profitability of the company. Moreover, the financing decisions of company were identified as poor because of ineffective utilization of shareholder’s money and assets of the company. But in respect of providing dividend to its shareholders, financial decisions play an effective role.
This report also includes effectiveness of company in taking production related decisions which are helpful in increasing profitability of the company which is reflected from reduction in direct costs throughout all the rounds. Apart from marketing, finance and production department, this report also highlights the importance of TQM and R&D. Both of these factors are important for increasing profitability and maintaining sustainability of the business by increasing quality and efficiency in availability of the products to its customers. In addition to this, Erie’s investment in R&D and TQM helps to create log-term benefits for the company which is reflected in all the rounds.
Analysis of Company’s Performance
Erie is a sensor manufacturing company that manufactures sensor devices for cameras, biometric devices and labs-on-a-chip. The goal of this company is to become a market leader. It wants to maximize the profit using cost effective production system and provide highest quality product to the customers. The company wants to create a strategy to analyze the market and to coordinate activities.
The company uses differentiation strategy, wherein it manufactures 7 different products to meet the requirements of different category of customers. Under this strategy, company differentiates its brand from others. It seeks to make the product more attractive by its unique qualities as compare to other products of the competitors (Ferrell &Hartline 2010). This strategy can provide some entry barriers to competitors as a result of the loyalty of customers. Successful product differentiation can provide a competitive advantage to the seller.
Customers: Throughout all rounds, overall performance of the company is good. Firstly, company analyzed the customers of the company based on different criteria like price, needs, performance, size, and many more. Company dealt with the customers according to the buying criteria of customer for different product.
Erie’s products have been divided according to the different segments such as traditional, low end, high end, performance and size. For example- each segment customers has different price expectation like low end segment customers try to find reasonably priced product. However, high end segment customers, who need best product, are willing to pay high price for product. Moreover, each segment has different age expectations, which is length of time. Traditional segment customers prefer technology that has been in the market for few years while high end customers want brand new technology.
MTBF (mean time before failure) of a product predicts number of hours that a product is expected to operated before it fails (Smith 2011). Performance segments customer are interested in better MTBF while low end customers are satisfied with low MTBF. In addition to this, combination of size and performance segment is called positioning.
From the above discussion, it has been analyzed that company deals with the customers in an effective way, because company divided its products according to the need of customers.
Competitors: Throughout the rounds, Erie’s competitors have been described according to the market share of the company. There were 6 companies in sensor market including Erie. Throughout the all rounds market share of the company was more as compared to its competitors. Company was always a market leader over the rounds. Hence, the company fulfilled its objective. Moreover, it can be said that company deal with its competitors in a successful way.
Market trend: To take decision that how well or not Erie dealt with the market trend, it can be decided through the analysis of dividend paid by company to the share holders. In the round 1 company paid divided of $1.00 that is lower than its competitors. But over the round 2 to round 8, dividend paid by Erie was $3.00 to $20.00 which more than its competitors (Appendices 4). Market trend analysis helped the company for the identification of opportunities.
Degree of success: Firstly, Erie had to determine its goals and objectives to determine its degree of success. Company wanted to become the market leader and maximized its profits. On the other hand, company was provided highest quality product to the customers with the effective production system. For achieving these goals different factors such as share holder’s value, sales, profit, and market share has been considered, which determined the degree of success of the company.
Sales: To determine the degree of success, sales of the company plays crucial role for achieving its goals. Company’s sales were directly affected by the demand of the product. Demand of the product depended upon the awareness and accessibility of the customer for different segment products. Over the rounds, accessibility and awareness for Erie’s product by the customer is effective. That means product was easily available to customer nearby their area so the sales between the round 1($165,269,201) to round 8 ($353,245,256) was increasing (Appendices 2).
Profit: Profit plays an important role to determine the success of the company. Throughout the rounds, company achieved maximum profit. Over the 6 rounds, profit of the company was continuously increasing but after the round 6, profit of the company was marginally reduced from $41,577,712 to $34,054,022, the reason behind this was direct cost (Appendices 3). Direct cost and profit directly related with each other. The cost of the company was increased in the round 7 and 8 so profit of the company has decreased. Although, profit of the company was reduced, the company was able to maintain its position as market leader. It can be said that company had successfully achieved its goal of profit maximization.
Market share: Market share of the company increased continuously that was helpful in achieving the goals of the company. Market share of the company has been determined according to sales and competitors. Generally, market share is calculated by measuring sales of the company. Over the round 1 to round 7, sales of the company were increasing so that market share was continuously increased from 23.37% to 25.06% (Appendices 1). Erie has good market share as compared to its competitors that means company became a market leader and it fulfilled its objective.
Shareholders value: Shareholders value is helpful in determining the success of the company. In this company there were different factors such as dividend, yield, and earnings per share that determine shareholders value. Dividend is known as total return of the investor on their investment. Dividend plays very important role in the creation of wealth. Over the round 1 to round 8, dividend paid by Erie was continuously increasing from $1.00 to $20.00 so that shareholder invested more in the company and it helped to maintain the market share (Appendices 4).
In addition to this, earnings per share for Erie’s shareholder were increasing throughout the rounds from ($0.10) to $4.04 (Appendices 4). Earnings per share are a useful measure of the profitability, when it is compared with its competitors. It shows the management performance that how much money company was making for its shareholders. Over the rounds, EPS of this company has been increasing, which means market price of share has increased. This was helpful to analyse the earning capacity of company. On the other hand, higher EPS is the indicator of better performance and prospects of the company. This has helped in achieving the goals of the company.
Furthermore, yield is another term to analysis the performance of company. High yield attracts the relative yield generating instrument so the investing habit of the shareholders will be increased. Over the round 1 to round 8, yield of the company’s shareholder increased from 10.2% to 26.3%. It indicates the effective performance of the company. Yield was depended upon the profit of the company, if yield was increased that means company fulfilled his goals of profit maximization.
Important Factors of Company Performance
TQM and R&D were the major factors that have contributed in the performance of the company. TQM strategy focuses on the customer satisfaction, which has a positive impact on the performance of company (Roberts 2010). It refers to the quality improvement approach for improving the performance of overall company in terms of quality, productivity and customer satisfaction. TQM was implemented from the 1st round and its benefits were reaped by the company until round 8. In addition to this, material costs were reduced up to 11.40% over the 8 round. Demand of the product was increased from 3.01% to 14.09% between round 2 to round 8. Furthermore, there were some other factors in the company, which was reduced due to the implementation of TQM such as labor cost, R&D cycle time and admin cost.
R&D refers to a tool for growing and improving the business. It involves the research of the customers and market need and new and improved technology products and services that fit the needs of these. In addition to this, if a company has the research and development strategy then it has a greater chance of success rather than its competitors (Shiu et al 2013). Erie was investing more in research and development strategy so the quality of product was increased throughout the all rounds. This research was helpful to find the needs of customers. The R&D department of the company re-invented existing products for better performance and reducing their costs. With the help of R&D strategy, the MTBF (mean time before failure) of the company’s products has increased and it is also affected by the cost of material and automation level of the company.
Evaluation of Decision-Making
During the rounds, the manager was required to take various decisions that can effectively lead to growth and profitability of that company. In addition to this, taking appropriate decisions can lead to enhancement of quality and productivity in the organization. Therefore, decisions related to marketing, finance, production, human resource, total quality management, and research and development were taken.
From the analysis of all rounds, it was identified that the marketing decisions that were taken for the company were appropriate as they effectively contributed for the success and growth of the company. It was analyzed that company was effective in creating customer awareness over the years and it was increasing from round 1 (2017) to round 8 (2024). On the other hand, customer accessibility was also increasing over the years (rounds) which help to maintain greater customer satisfaction and loyalty. This shows that, the marketing strategies, which were applied, proved successful for the company. Moreover, it was also identified that, the manager has made effective prediction of customer demand that is reflected from the customer survey data, which was far better than that of company’s competitors.
Apart from this, it was also identified that financial decisions of Erie were poor in context of ROE. ROE indicates that how a company generates more profits without utilizing outsiders’ funds. It also leads to value creation for the company (Pratt 2010). In the first round, the company’s ROE was -0.4%. However, initially the company was functioning better as it was generating good ROE from round 2 (11.8%) to round 5 (20.6%), but, from round 6 (17.3%) to round 8 (9.5%), the ROE of the company started to fall. This indicates that the company was unable to utilize its shareholders funds in an efficient way in some years, which led to decline in ROE. In addition to this, it was analyzed that the investment decision of company was weak because assets were not efficiently utilized to generate sales. This was reflected from the decreasing asset turnover of Erie from round 2 to round 8. Asset turnover reflects the decision-making efficiency of company’s management in utilizing its assets to generate sales.
The various decisions that were taken play a crucial role in long-term success of the company. The marketing decisions which were taken proved effective in creating greater customer awareness, accessibility and loyalty, which is necessary for any business organisation. On the other hand, financial decisions were not too appropriate due to ineffective use of shareholders capital. Moreover, great efforts have been made to improve production related decisions of company, which lead to creation of profitable position for the company.
Afterwards, it was identified that production related decisions of company has improved over the years, which was reflected from the company’s increased profits and highest market share among its competitors. The profit were affected due fluctuating direct cost over the years, which was a result of ineffective production related decision-making during initial rounds. However, after few rounds, this aspect of decision-making improved, thereby allowing reduction in cost that successfully increased the revenue of the company. This also shows that, company has made optimum utilization of resources effectively. In addition to this, effective financing decisions led to improved profitability of company as compared to its competitors. This in turn allowed company to make effective payment of dividend to shareholders and investors. Company has paid dividend on regular basis but the dividend that was paid in round 1 (2017) was comparatively less due to unavailability of sufficient profit but afterward the dividend payment rate was increased over all the rounds.
The most important learning from this activity was that effective management of activities is required in all departments to become an effective market leader. In addition to this, coordination between all departments is necessary for increasing productivity and profitability of the organization. It helped in understanding that all departments of organisation are equally important for achievement of organisational goals. Thus, effective management of production processes is necessary for effective utilization of resources that leads to decreased cost and increased profitability of the company. This further helps in increasing the efficiency of financial and human resource decisions of the company. Moreover, effective marketing department helps to create better customer awareness and customer accessibility, which ultimately leads to increased sales of company.
Individual learning after completion of this activity relates to creation and effective implementation of business strategy that leads to growth and profitability of the company. A sound strategic planning enables to hold a degree of control and supervision on the activities, which are necessary to become successful. It helped in application of theories and knowledge to effectively coordinate company’s activities, analyze market conditions and competitive products of company and those offered by competitors. It promoted an understanding of the fact that good strategic planning aid in taking right decisions and achieving desired goals. Moreover, in order to perform at higher levels, strategic planning process allows putting business challenges into perspectives along with minimizing risks.
Other important factors in decision-making
Apart from marketing, finance, production and HR department the R&D and TQM department were important factors that influenced decision-making. R&D plays an important role for the success of a business and it also effectively contributes to the sustainability of business. Erie has made investments in R&D that promotes creativity and innovation in the organization (Dachs et al 2014). Additionally, it also leads to creation of competitive edge of Erie over its competitors. Effective R&D decisions were helpful for Erie to develop products to meet technological needs of its customers. As a result, Erie was able to introduce two new products, namely Eqi in high segment in round 4 and Expres in performance segment in round 5.
Moreover, TQM is important management tool that is used to enhance quality and productivity that effectively leads to creation of profitability and competitiveness of organizations (Spenley 2012). Therefore, investment made in TQM proved fruitful for the company. This created various benefits for the company like increased demand as compared to its competitors, along with reduction in material cost, labour cost and administration cost. Additionally, TQM led to creation of long-term benefits for an organization. This was reflected through the company’s data that even if company had stopped investing in TQM from round 5, the benefits that Erie has attained were much higher than its competitors.
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