Type: Discussion Board
Unit: Research Design and Analysis
Due Date: Tue, 6/12/17
Length: 2-3 Parargraphs
Course Comprehensive Project
Collaboration in a business environment is a best practice that leverages the collective knowledge of the team assembled. Peer evaluation and support, provided in the spirit of continuous improvement and organizational success, result in higher quality deliverables than generally possible by the efforts of an individual. Please describe the process you plan to use to conduct research, identify findings, and develop the Comprehensive Project due in Unit 5 and present a preliminary outline indicating how you intend to organize the project deliverable.
Unit 5 project located below:
Comprehensive Analysis of Ford Motor Company
American InterContinental University
Since its beginning in 1903, the Ford Motor company has gone through some phases to enable it to reach its current market position. The Ford Motor Company possesses a good supply chain management status that enables it to receive raw materials and sell its products to the domestic and international market. Its possession of 90 plants and more than 213,000 employees in three major regions of the world makes it manufacture $5 million vehicles yearly, generating approximately $100 billion. The market is highly demanding and possesses dynamic changes that affect automobile companies such as Ford Motor. The market also comprises of some challenging factors such as fluctuating prices of oil and petroleum, competition, and political instability among others that affect the operations of Ford Motor Company. The SWOT Analysis of Ford Motor Company influences the company to adapt effective strategies that save it from falling in the market. Developing the right approaches in the company’s operations makes it easy for the company to beat the competition and remain relevant.
Comprehensive Analysis of Ford Motor Company
The paper discusses the Ford Motor Company through an extensive and conclusive research. It uses the available public information about the company and its operations. It carries out an analysis of its products and services, and how it relates to the market. The paper discusses the relationship between Ford’s operations and the stakeholders found in its market (external and internal stakeholders). The stakeholders have a significant status in its operations as they affect the business operations launched by the company on them. Ford Motor Company is also affected by both its internal and external operational environment. The paper discusses the external and internal factors that affect its performance through SWOT (Strength, weakness, opportunities, and threats) Analysis.
The paper also has a key focuses on the corporate strategy provided by Ford Motor Company to survive in the market. Ford Motor Company has come through a period of financial challenges to reach where it is today. The company has employed some strategies that have influenced continuous survival in the market about the competitors. The paper focuses on the corporate strategies that the managers employ to beat the competition and remain relevant in the market. The conclusion session develops a summary of the content of study and gives recommendations to create a clear understanding of the topic of study.
Background Information on Ford Motor Company
Henry Ford, a prolific engineer, born by immigrant farmers, established Ford Motor Company in 1993 after working for five years at the Edison Illuminating Company. He acquired much of the knowledge in gasoline engines through the Edison Illuminating Company. The acquired knowledge and skills led to the development of the Ford Quadricycle that possessed self-propelled status. The above situation influenced him to establish a motor firm known as Ford Motor Company. Henry lacked enough funds to run and sustain the operations of its new established firm. The company went into bankruptcy in 1900 as it only produced 25 vehicles. Three years down the line saw Henry reestablishing the Ford Motor Company which became a major success. The company built its first automobile under the Ford Brand. It invented and developed the Model T vehicle that was shipped into the European market.
The vehicle experienced huge success in its new European market with high purchases made on it. Ford Motor Company has its operations controlled from its headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan. Ford Motor Company has its operations found in the manufacturing of automobiles and commercial vehicles. It has its operations under the Ford and Lincoln Brand. The company has generated over $ 100 billion due to the production of more than 5 million cars on an annual basis. The Ford Motor Company possesses more than 90 plants with more than 213,000 (Bayou & De Korvin, 2008).
The Mission and Vision Statement of Ford Motor Company
One Team. One Plan. One Goal refers to the vision statement of the company. According to the management, the Ford Motor Company refers to it as One Ford Mission. The vision statement was established and launched in 2008 with Allan Mullay (Chief Executive Officer). The vision statement has a focus on the performance of the employees found in Ford Motor Company. It states that the employees should perform and operate as a team when it comes to the development of services and products. The One Team statement shows the role played by the employees in satisfying the needs of the stakeholders such as customers, investors, dealers, and suppliers. The One Plan statement focuses on the products and services restructuring to influence a profitability status. Ford Motor Company works with the One Goal Statement to define its profitability as a factor shared by all stakeholders and also for the general growth and development of Ford Motor Company.
The mission statement of Ford Motor Company possesses a guidance status and serves as a response for the firm when it comes to dealing with old challenges with a relation to market risks. Some of the risks experienced in the past include financial crisis such as the economic recession. The company employs its mission statement when it comes to developing its innovative products with high-quality status (Stock & Lambert, 2001). The mission statement enhances the togetherness spirit and influences teamwork when it comes realizing Ford’s key objectives. The company uses the One Goal and One Plan statement in its Mission to improve the performance of its business in the domestic and international markets. It also enhances a spirit of market dominance to the operations of the company.
Nature of the Automobile Industry
The automobile industry has gone through many stages such as craft production, mass production, and lean production to become what it is today. The lean and mass production have acted as the last critical stages that have revolutionized the management process found in the production and product-development phase. The industry has experienced auto production mechanization which has been a major transformation. It has reduced the cost of production and enabled faster development of vehicles. The production process has and continues to serve the demands of the customers in the market. The above status makes the automobile industry to become one of the most concentrated sectors in the international market. Many companies compete to offer quality and innovative products and beat their competitors in their game. Ford Motor Company, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Volkswagen, Google, and Apple are some of the automobile and technology companies that focus on creating vehicles that meet demands of the market (Poczter & Jankovic, 2014).
The competitive status of the market influences it to have few but active players with products that meet the satisfaction of the customers. The top five players have acquired approximately 50% of the shares in the international automobile market. The share has depleted by almost 5% in the period between 1998 and 2013. The shares have been taken by smaller companies that are also trying to offer a competitive edge to the operations of the large companies. The top five players in the automobile industry include Volkswagen, Toyota, General Motors, and Ford. Due to the high competition, the industry comprises barriers of entry and exit (Kothandaraman & Wilson, 2001). The above factor makes it hard for new players to get into the market. The customers also possess brand preferences of the existing companies.
The brand influences the decisive nature of the customers when it comes to purchasing value. Heavy sunk costs related to exits tend to exist. When Ford shut its plants in Genk, Belgium, it had to undergo payments of approximately $ 570 million as severance costs (Lobov, 2015). The industry also experiences severe union and government pressure related to the closure of unprofitable units. The automobile industry demands a lot from the major players and factors such as capital, technology, and resources’ access act as a key factor for success.
Analysis of the Organizational Structure and Internal, and External Stakeholders
Ford’s organizational structure organizes the internal stakeholders in a way that it influences a sustainable environment for good business in its respective markets. It ensures the configuration of Ford’s key components about market adaptation. The organizational structure provides Ford with high competitive status regarding its performance in the market. The organizational structure comprises of internal stakeholders arranged in the following manner: corporate hierarchy, regional geographic divisions, and global function groups. The corporate hierarchy has a relation to the organization of the top-most positions in the company.
The two key stakeholders in the structure include the Chief Executive Officer and the Vice Presidents who work as the overall head and second in command respectively (Bayou & De Korvin, 2008). The regional geographic divisions work in a dozen of regions found in the international markets. The regions include Middle East & Europe; Asia Pacific; and the Americas. The Vice Presidents act as the key directors for the regions, and they report to the Chief Executive Officers. The Vice Presidents and the company’s Chief Executive Officer works with several employees from different departments found in the company.
Figure 1: Depicting Ford Operations Organizational Culture.
Some of the key departments functioning in the structures include Human Resource; Marketing, Sales, and Services; Global Labor and Manufacturing Issues; Accounting & Legal; Community Relations & Government; and Finance & Communications. Ford Motor Company comprises of the board of directors and shareholders, with controlling shares belonging to the Ford family. They make important decisions regarding the financial, administrative, and logistical operations of the company. They also influence the board when it comes to handling the various deals and expansion of Ford.
Ford Motor Company comprises of several external stakeholders that either affects the company directly or indirectly. Some of the few stakeholders include the government, the customers, the international agencies, and the non-governmental organizations. The customers are the key individuals involved in the purchase of the vehicles manufactured and sold by Ford Motor Company. The customers influence the revenues raised by the Ford Motor Company at any given time as it depends on their purchasing power. Low purchasing rate of the vehicles results in decreased revenues for the company. The competitors such as Google, Apple, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, and General Motors among others. The competitors stated above manufacture high innovative products that fit the demands of the market, and also have an affordable status. They also compete with Ford regarding the acquisition of the shares found both in the international and domestic markets.
The government formulates regulations that may affect the operations of Ford in its respective markets. Regulations on taxes and corporate social responsibilities among other areas may affect the financial operations found in the business portfolio of Ford (Bieler, Higgott, & Underhill, 2004). The international agencies and other non-governmental organizations depend on companies such as Ford to lease vehicles for them when it comes to their operations in different parts of the world. Ford leases vehicles to organizations with operations in several parts of the world such as in the developed nations. The other stakeholders include the vendors who supply the company with raw materials for its manufacturing process.
Ford Motor Company comprises of several vendors from different parts of the world who provide different raw materials for the different parts of the vehicles manufactured by the company. Ford also has a policy of working with the communities found in its operations to alleviate poverty and other negative effects found in the community such as environmental pollution. The company works with school programs to improve education and also focuses on improving standards of living in the developing nations.
SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats)
Strengths and Opportunities
Ford Motor Company possesses several advantages related to its global operations and brand. The management carries out research to influence the development of quality products in the market. Ford employs its strengths and weakness to guide its operations both in the international and domestic markets. The strong brand image has a high competitive aspect that makes it unique as compared to its competitors. The Ford Motor Company occupies the fifth position in the international automobile industry. Ford Motor Company possesses a global supply chain that influences the acquisition of raw materials. It comprises of a vast customers and dealership network for the sales of its products/services. Another key strength focuses on its high innovative products that adapt to the changing market nature. The above-stated factors influence Ford Motor Company acquire an increasing number of customers which facilitates increased revenues originating from high sales.
The Ford Motor Company experiences growth and development as a result of the various market opportunities. The company possesses several advantages that influence it to expand and reach other international markets. It needs to improve its diversified and quality products to influence high demand from the market. The products’ improvement influences it to improve its ratings in the market (Kothandaraman & Wilson, 2001). Ford needs to take advantage of its market share to bring improvement to its financial ratings through an effective global supply chain. It also can boost its revenues through the reduction of the cost of production.
Weaknesses and Threats
The company possesses a limitation status due to its uncertain status of its networked production facilities, unlike its competitors. Toyota has a good global network that influences it to offer a competitive market to the Ford Motor Company. Ford closed most of its production facilities which acted as risks to the operations of its business. Ford possess high prices regarding its vehicle products as compared to General Motors and Toyota. It possesses decreased status of production processes that fit the dynamic market trends. The weaknesses reduce its market share as compared to companies such as Mercedes-Benz.
Ford Motor Company receives a threat from General Motors, Toyota, and Mercedes-Benz because they possess competitive marketing strategies and high-quality products. Apple and Google have also manufactured driverless vehicles with high innovative status. The driverless vehicles offer a competitive advantage to the vehicles manufactured by Ford Motor Company. The fluctuating prices threaten the products of Ford.
Strategies employed in Improving Ford Motor Company Operating Process
Based on the analysis of the company, Ford Motor needs to remain competitive and ahead of time in its operations to enable it to survive the dynamic market.
As stated above, technological improvement enhances quality performance. The company needs to formulate a good technological platform via a sophisticated data analysis to enable it to produce products that fit the changing needs of the market. Regarding technological appliances and equipment in its manufacturing process, Ford needs to employ the right leadership possessing skills and technological know-how to improve its operations. The management needs to combine personal excellence and experience which influences a strong analytical capability, leading to a cross-function process of decision making. Team management plays an important role in determining success and eliminating risks.
It enables the company to identify current opportunities and offers a collaborative platform for developing decisions for the company. Technological improvement influences the company to make better decisions and manufacture vehicles faster. Ford Motor Company failed in the past due to its lack of interest in employing a diversified technological sector. Survival of the company originated from its employment of virtual operations aligned to its business objectives.
Formulating a Performance Standard for its Operations
The Ford Motor Company should possess a performance-related schedule in all its business portfolios. The departments should operate in a specific way to influence value based services and products to the market and protecting the company from market risks. The management should employ existing traditional metrics related to cost, service, and capital (Stock & Lambert, 2001). The performance standards should align the company’s needs and the satisfaction status of the customers found in the market. The alignment of the above factors should have a relation to the launch of new products, and the aspect of reacting to volatile market through analyzing critical and fluctuating demands.
The performance standards influence the acquisition of huge market shares in comparison with the competitors. It also identifies the needed skills for the management of the company’s operations. It enables the management to identify input price volatility status and manage it without a problem. It also influences Ford Motor Company to produce and launch products within a specified time frame.
Corporate Strategy Differentiation in the Operations of Ford Motor Company
The company needs to differentiate its supply chain to improve its corporate strategies. Cost leadership, superior services, business status, and product have an application to satisfy the needs of the customers. Ford needs to align the leadership in its production and sales departments in its different regions of operations for successful business outcomes. Availability of data in the portfolios of the business ensures constant research made on the market and the internal environment of the company. The departments need to work with the senior management concerning the needs of the customers. They should also differentiate the operations of the company and their competition status with other competitors. The differentiation status also allows the management prioritize the important activities and implementing them first ahead of the rest.
Based on the research paper, Ford Motor Company has a stable market position due to the several strategies that have enabled it to remain competitive both in its domestic and international markets. However, the company has also experienced a number of challenges due to external and internal forces. Poor planning, changing political sector, fluctuating fuel prices, and high competition status are some of the few forces that have initiated the challenges experienced by Ford Motor Company. The above-stated factors and others should influence Ford to develop strategies that improve the company’s components to influence its business development.
Ford Motor Company needs to possess an alternative metaphor to enable it to acquire a dynamic and competitive status regarding its products and services. The alternative metaphor aligns its business structure with the needs and interests of the market, influencing it to acquire a huge market share. It also influences the company’s market penetration in different regions of the world. The management may acquire enough data concerning the customers and the general market status to influence Ford Motor Company to occupy the top most level of the automobile industry.
Bayou, M., & De Korvin, A. (2008). Measuring the leanness of manufacturing systems—a case study of Ford Motor Company and General Motors. Journal of Engineering and Technology Management, 25(4), 287-304.
Bieler, A., Higgott, R., & Underhill, G. (2004). Non-state actors and authority in the global system. London: Routledge.
Kothandaraman, P., & Wilson, D. (2001). The future of competition: value-creating networks. Industrial marketing management, 30(4), 379-389.
Lobov, V. (2015). Method for research of parametric control schemes by asynchronous motor. Metallurgical and Mining Industry, 6, 102-108.
Poczter, S., & Jankovic, L. (2014). The Google Car: driving toward a better future? Journal of Business Case Studies (Online), 10(1), 7-15.
Stock, J., & Lambert, D. (2001). Strategic logistics management (Vol. 4). Boston, MA: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
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