Assessment 3 – Business Report
Weighting: 30% Learning Outcomes: 3, 4, 6 Graduate Attributes: 1, 3, 4, 6 Length: 2500 words
Due date: Week 12
Read the case study below. Write a business report to the four Directors of OZAlpha, on planning, organising, leading and controlling this expansion of the business, choosing one of the team structure options. Findings are to be based on research and industry best practice with in-text referencing included.
OzAlpha is a private company founded in 2012 by four best friends who are still the Board of Directors. Over the last six years, the company has concentrated on financial planning for individuals and small business owners whose income is in the over $200,000 a year range. It is well known and respected in all Australian states, with Head Office in Sydney, large offices in Melbourne and Brisbane, and smaller offices in Adelaide, Hobart, Darwin and Canberra, and a staffing of 400 staff, 25% of them being part-time. OzAlpha also serves regional clients through informal local partnering arrangements.
OzAlpha’s services include a wide range of investment services through top-tier funds that invest in real estate, industrial, high-capital well established mining companies, and other sectors, worldwide. As well, the company provides one-on one advice to clients, as well as more generic information sessions on a wide range of financial services such as family trusts, superannuation, retirement, and small commercial and residential real estate ventures.
OzAlpha’s vision is to be “the premier financial planning service in Australia”. To achieve this, the four directors have decided to cancel the informal regional partnering and have OzAlpha handle the regional work. Additionally, the directors have seen opportunities to grow this regional market by taking on clients with an income from $100,000. This means setting up a new Regional Division to provide both face to face and technology-based advice through Skype. They plan to operate the Regional Division over extended hours, seven days per week, in order to attract farmers and other regional workers whose working hours vary considerably. They will initially employ 24 full-time staff including 16 planners, 2 team leaders, 6 administrative support staff, and 1 dedicated systems network specialist, with the ability to upscale staffing as business grows, without changing the Divisional structure.
For the first time since it’s 2012 beginings, the four directors cannot agree on how to achieve the Regional Division strategy. They have argued about concepts such as self-managed teams or a virtual team. They have now contracted you as an expert Management Consultant who is well known for providing well researched and well presented reports to advise them.
Your business report to the Board of Directors of OzAlpha should have the following format and content:
Summarise the importance of planning, organising, leading and controlling change and principal recommendations. Overview the scenario.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
PART A DIVISIONAL STRUCTURE
– Advantages and disadvantages of virtual and self-managed work teams – Recommend a preferred structure for the Regional Division based on academic research
PART B PLANNING, ORGANISING, LEADING AND CONTROLLING
Based on your recommendation for either a virtual or self-managed team, prepare recommendations for the directors of OzAlpha for the management of the Regional Division.
1.1 Regional Division goals
Write two long-term and three short-term goals for the operational and people aspects of the team.
1.2 Environmental scan
Prepare a PESTLE analysis researching the forces and conditions that could affect the financial services industry in Australia.
1.3 Operations / dividsional management
Identify strategies for building the effectiveness and cohesion of the Regional Division, aligned with your recommended preferred structure.
2.1 Divisional structure/design
Based on research, recommend the structure and design of the Regional Division staff in terms of:
– Specialisation: How will you divide up tasks? Specialists or generalists? – Centralisation: At what level will decisions be made? – Formalisation: What style of team will it be – to what extent will you be guided by rules,
policies and procedures? – Structure: Is the new division mechanistic or organic?
3.1 Leadership style
Recommend and justify a leadership style best suited for the Regional Division.
3.2 Reward, recognition and motivation
– Recommend and justify reward and recognition strategies for Regional Division staff. – Identify strategies for motivating the staff, supported by motivation theories.
– How important are communication and interpersonal skills for managers (discuss) and
identify strategies for management communication to and from the Regional Division staff – Recommend processes to facilitate consultation and negotiation between management
(directors and top managers in Head Office) and Regional Division – Recommend a process to include diversity in the Regional Division
What is the importance of the control function in Regional Division? What aspects of operations should be controlled and measure? How frequently should this be done?
Written submissions should be a maximum of 2500 words in length (excluding references) and professionally presented. 12 point, 1 1/2 spaced, Arial or Calibri font is preferred.
Your business report must include the following:
• Answers to sections 1-4
• List of References
• Research and in-text referencing
• Definitions and explanation of theory
This is an academic report and demands analysis and synthesis of academic literature found in refereed journals and academic books.
The report is to be written in an academic convention with proper citations and references. As a guide, 8-10 academic references are envisaged. Additional (optional) references may be cited from any source. These should be documented using Harvard reference style.
This assessment requires students to analyse the case study and research the questions asked. Responses in each section of the report should be based on research of academic theories and industry best practice.
Assessment 3 – Business Report