Conduct a management analysis of a technology company Essay Example

  • Category:
    Marketing
  • Document type:
    Assignment
  • Level:
    Masters
  • Page:
    5
  • Words:
    3167

Table of Contents

Introduction and company background 3

Role of organizational behavior 3

Structure 4

Technology 4

Environment 4

Human resource management practices at the company 5

Role of international business at the company 6

Role of technology management at the company 7

Analysis of entrepreneurship and innovation at the company 9

Future strategies management should engage in 10

Implementation of the hybrid strategy 11

Utilizing new competencies 11

Establishing relationship with NGOs and governments 11

Conclusion 12

References 13

Introduction and company background

Apple Inc is a multinational technology company specializing in computer hardware, software and business support systems. The company has been accredited with revolutionizing the computer industry through their innovation. In 2012, Apple Inc was the most valued company with a market value of 623Bn dollars (Bryan, 2012). The company had gained reputation in its management structure and its strategy especially under the past leadership of Steve Jobs. The company performance has been great with a management that is result oriented. Apple computer was formed by Steve Wozniak and Steve Job in Los Altos, California (David, 2009). Through strategic leadership and company commitment to unique and quality products, Apple computers are among the world leaders in PC technology. Steve jobs quit Apple at 1985 after a power struggle between him and the company. He later returned in 1985 and was named the interim CEO (Leander, 2012). This helped Apple to regain their market share especially after launching the iMac. At the moment, the company has expanded their operations into 8 segments which are; desktops, pad, portables, iPhone, iPod, other sales and software services (Tim, 2011). This report will conduct a management analysis of Apple Inc.

Role of organizational behavior

Organization behavior consists of three main elements. These elements are; people, technology and external elements. There is an interaction, that occurs between the people, structure and the technology. All these interactions are then influenced by the external environment in which the firm operates. In the case of Apple Inc, each element will be analyzed independently (Doole & Lowe, 2004).

People

The organization, social system is made up of people. This is the part of the organization that helps it to achieve its goals. The management has to deal with people appropriately in order to achieve their goals. At Apple, the employees are managed in the best way possible. This is through provision of a conducive working environment at the company (Bryan, 2012).

Structure

Structure is an area that Apple computers have been able to succeed well. This is the official relationship between different people in an organization (Hitt, Ireland & Hoskisson, 2012). For Apple, the structure consists of the CEO, Mangers, accountants, assemblers among other employee. For the organization to perform effectively, these employees are related in a structural way. The organization structure that is used at Apple is loose and flexible. Apple can be cited to use the organic form of organization. This is through the use of a decentralized system where the employees’ ideas are listened to and are allowed to make their own decisions.

Technology

This is the means used to transform the input into the output. Apple being a technology company utilizes that state of art technology in their work. The type of technology that is utilized at Apple is intensive with different experts being involved in the development of the final product. Apple has been able to utilize sustainable technology through their green initiative. This has made the company to be among the most admired in the technology sector (Leander, 2012).

Environment

According to Doole & Lowe (2004), organizations have to interact with the external environment. This is in form of raw material acquisition, hiring, and knowledge acquisition. Apple has managed to manage the environment by being vigilant, able to adopt changes and good decision making.

Apple has used human resource supportive approach in their organization behavior. This involves striving for the growth and development of the employees aimed at gaining high levels of competency and creativity (David, 2009).This has been seen in their product development which is always ahead of their competitors. This is a system that have helped the employees to be able to have self control and created a climate where employees are able to contribute. This is based on the understanding that when the employees are satisfied, they are able to fully contribute fully. This is due to the fact that when the employees are better, they will produce better results (Leander, 2012).

Human resource management practices at the company

Apple Inc computers are famous for utilization of strategic management. The company has been able to consistently adapt to changing market conditions by being able to redesign themselves. Human resource management at the company has been one of the best. According to Bryan (2012), Apple computers have been able to operate as a learning organization. This is where there is continuous improvement and learning. The management has worked in developing employees who are able to learn, train and develop themselves. The company being in a technology field, changes are fast than any other industry. The training and development that is required is enormous and the firm management had to make the employees to be self reliant. The human resource management contemplated that having a planned practice that have target competencies can lead to weakened employees in self reliance. The employees are encouraged to develop and learn by themselves (Leander, 2012).

Apple managers have high control over the management decisions and have absolute control on the firm affairs. This though have led to some of the managers micromanaging and abusing their roles. There were also claims that most of the good ideas could be ignored if the manager preconceptions did not favor them. This was the case of developing the 3.5 inch floppy that Jobs wanted stopped in favor of 5.25 inch floppy. Under the management of the former CEO, Apple had the best talent management. He was able to influence all the aspects of talent management at the company. This lead to him having a great impact in the company innovation, retention and recruiting. This led to development of a well cultured and focused employees group that was able to work towards the firm goals (Leander, 2012).

Role of international business at the company

Apple Inc. is one of the most successful international businesses. The company most recognized products are the iPod, iPad, iPhone and the Mackintosh computers. The company has been in operation for more than 30 years, making it well versed in the technology field (David, 2009). Since the company was started, it has flourished and become a leader in the computer industry. The company products are globally accepted with subsidiaries in Ireland among other countries. For example, the company activities at Ireland have provided more than 40000 jobs. This is in the manufacturing, sales and supply chain (Bryan, 2012).

Apple computer international is the company subsidiary in Ireland. The main task for the company is to distribute the company products throughout Europe. This has made the company to be registered in VAT throughout Europe and non European countries. This has helped the company to engage in legal business internationally (Peng, Wang & Jiang, 2008). The company has also complied with the EU agreements for the non-member countries. These agreements include the Zero rate to customers and to the purchaser.

Apple products are available worldwide through their retail and online stores. The company also uses wholesalers, third party and value added resellers (Bryan, 2012). The success story in the international business has been attributed to the company creativity, innovation and unique designs. In 1998, the company was able to make great sales internationally. This was after introduction of iMac which was a major breakthrough. The company has complied with all the requirements of international business in all its operations (Andersson, 2000).

Initially, Apple sales were made through its UK Company Xemplar (Tim, 2011). This is a company that was incorporated and registered under the United Kingdom VAT only. This led to Apple Inc charging its customers the VAT based on the UK rates. Apple Inc changed this mode of operation after the contract with the company expired. The company started using Apple Computer International (ACI) (Bryan, 2012).

Role of technology management at the company

Technology management includes the aspects of identifying, selecting, acquiring and exploiting the technology and the commercialization view (Gabrielsson & Gabrielsson, 2004). This involves managing the company knowledge. Managing the company knowledge involves managing what the company knows. This is through identifying, making, safe keeping and sharing for the purpose of the business. Having technology management implies that the company is using knowledge and skills for the requirements of the business (Doole & Lowe, 2004).

Technology management is a field that started in the 19th century and incorporated the research and development laboratories. Apple computers view technology, research and development as their long term competitive tools. This has made the company to engage in research management to make sure they safeguard their competitiveness. Apple computers have integrated their research management with their business strategy. This has been achieved through the company engagement with knowledge acquisition, diffusion, open innovation and utilizing a networked research and development. Apple computers are well known for innovations. The company has utilized knowledge management skills to manage the innovation of the entire company. The company products stems from being ideas to commercialization and the whole process is adequately managed and protected. The company has utilized forecasting in their technology management (Álvarez, Marin & Fonfría, 2008). This involves appreciating that the environment is changing and anticipating the technological changes that can occur. To adequately manage technology, the company utilizes the changing environment to predict and map the road for new technological development. This is evidenced by the company unique technology that in most cases is ahead of the competitors.

Strategic technology management has also been utilized at Apple computers. This has been done through combining the knowledge management with the business strategy. The company has used technology management as the starting point in their strategic business management. The human resource integration with the organization performance has been done in line with technology management (Leander, 2012).

Frameworks for technology management are used to enable the ideas to be communicated in a structured way. Technology at apple is managed through embedding it with other processes so that it can reach business objectives (David, 2009). This is through use of normative, strategic, and operative dimensions. Apple uses methods and tools framework approach in their technology management. This involves road mapping, using portfolio analysis, performance indicators and decision tree. Despite this, it’s important to understand that the frameworks are generic and are industry dependent. The company regards technology management as its own discipline in management. Through the use of strategic management, it has become beneficial for the company as it has been possible to integrate technology with other management’s functions of the company (Bryan, 2012).

Analysis of entrepreneurship and innovation at the company

In some cases, ideas which are started by small scale entrepreneurs grow into a business and even multinational firms (Kolvereid & Bullvag, 1996). This was the case of Apple which was started as an idea and later became one of the most successful companies. Most of the multinational firms were ideas developed from individual innovations. Apple status from the inception of the founders is a classic example of successful entrepreneurship. The founders had a vision to make something new and unique, the personal computer. This led to a revolution in the technology industry changing the market. The company changed the evolution of the computer industry by offering products that were unique with features that were not there before (David, 2009).

Under the leadership of Steve Jobs, the company, entrepreneurship aspect was fully established. Though not all innovation were Steve jobs ideas, their market success was through his efforts. All products that were released while he was the company CEO were a success. When he left the company, the subsequent innovations did not perform well in the market. This decreased the company performance (David, 2009). His comeback made Apple to make major breakthroughs in the market. This was through the release of products such as iMac, iPod, and the iTunes. This was through Job’s personality which empathized on making the company products distinguishable. He was involved in every design phase of the company products making changes where he perceived the products were flawed. Steve Jobs appeal for the company products and his efforts during their development are a true character of an entrepreneur. Steve job was perceived to be one of the most successful businessmen. This is due to his unique talent as the manager which led the company to come up with innovative products. He had all the entrepreneurs’ characteristics such as; innovativeness, persistent, tolerance and financial insecurity (Alberto, Gianluigi & Alessandro, 2008).

Apple has always been ahead in innovations. The company products have been unique since the company did not rely on the competitors designs. The research and development sectors of the company are always committed to excellence of their products. The company also invested in making their products compatible with the existing systems. This was a move that was realized after they started using the Intel processors. The company innovations which have been above the competitor’s technology have helped to maintain the market share. The company started with production of personal computers. Through research and development, the company have innovated more products and have a broader segment of products (Bryan, 2012).

Future strategies management should engage in

Despite apple computers having been implementing strategic management, there are areas where they need to improve on.

Implementation of the hybrid strategy

This is a process which involves using integrated cost leadership strategy, outsourcing, utilizing the economies of scale and using differentiation strategy (David, 2009). Apple market leadership has been greatly supported by their differentiation strategy. This has given them a niche since their products are unique from their competitors. Apple has not engaged in any activity that would lead to copying the competitors’ products. The company should continue in this trend through engaging in innovation and research and development which have been the core drivers for the company success (Doole & Lowe, 2004).

Utilizing new competencies

Though apple has been able to use their existing competencies in gaining an advantage of their customers, the company should focus on creating new competencies in the electronic market. This will help the company to maintain their dominance in the technology industry and also help the company in their self enhancement. The company should come up with new ways which will be able to enhance their competencies in the dynamic market. Technology market is dynamic and changes occur rapidly (Andersson & Wictor, 2003). To be able to retain their market share, there is need for more methods that can help them to acquire a unique position and enhance their brand.

Establishing relationship with NGOs and governments

Apple computers have a good reputation in the technology market. The company should leverage on their reputation and market capabilities to create relationship with the governments and NGOs. This can lead to a wide market base and a new source of profits for the company. The company at the moment has a core market for their PCs in the schools. Though the schools as the market are a profitable venture, it is a low budget and limited growth venture. There is need for the company to reevaluate its strategy in the personal computers market and invest more in the governments and nongovernmental organizations. This is a sector that has capabilities for more returns (Del Sol & Kogan, 2007).

Conclusion

In conclusion, apple management is admirable due to utilization of strategic management procedures. The company has integrated their management procedures to ensure that the company has provided a good working environment and a place where there is sustainability. Organization behavior at Apple has been directed through people, structure technology and environment. The company human resource management has been able to adopt measures that ensure that the employees’ welfare is catered for. Among the areas where Apple computers have excelled is employees training and development. This have been done to enable the employees are up to date with technology and also help the company in innovations. Apple is also involved in the international business through Apple Computers International (ACI). This has been done through complying with the governments requirements in their areas of operation. Technology management is also utilized to ensure that there is innovation through research and development. This enables an idea to be developed into an innovation. The company is a perfect example of entrepreneurship and innovation from its humble beginning to its multinational status. The company should implement hybrid strategy, utilize new competencies, and establish relationship with governments and NGOs. These strategies will enable the company to retain their market share in future.

References

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Andersson, S 2000, ‘Internationalization in different industrial contexts’, International Studies of Management & Organization, Vol. 30, PP. 63-92

Andersson, S & Wictor, I 2003, Innovative Internationalisation in New firms: Born Globals- the Swedish Case, Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Vol.1, no. 3, p. 249-276.

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Del Sol, P & Kogan, J 2007, ‘Regional Competitive Advantage Based on Pioneering Economic Reforms: the case of Chilean FDI’, Journal of International Business Studies, 38, pp. 901-927.

Doole, I & Lowe, R 2004, International Marketing Strategy, Thomson.

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Hitt, M., Ireland, R. and Hoskisson, R. 2012, Strategic management: competitiveness and globalization (concepts and cases), Thomson South-Western.

Kolvereid, L. & Bullvag, E 1996, ‘Growth intentions and Actual growth: the impact of Entrepreneurial Choice’, Journal of Enterprising Culture, Vol.1, no.2, pp.1-17.

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