External influences on a business
My name is Yathursan Devabalan. I am a sixth-form student at Woolwich Polytechnic School. I am currently studying Maths, Business and Economics. In business I am currently in the process of doing the coursework on ‘External Influences on a Business’. This coursework requires me to investigate the external influence which affects my business. I have chosen to investigate Morrisons because I believe it is easier to get the information I need about them. They are very close to my school. Another reason why I chose to investigating Morrisons is that I know several people who work in Morrisons in various job roles so I can get some insight information regarding what sort of external influences affect them.
In this coursework I will be investigating how the business reacts to the external influences including legal, economical, technical and environmental and also analyse and evaluate the changes the business has made to its practices and activities in reaction to the external influences. Description of the business Morrison Supermarkets plc is the fourth largest chain of supermarkets in the United Kingdom. Morrisons employs 123,223 staff, in 373 superstores in the United Kingdom. Most Morrisons stores operate from large superstore formats selling a wide range of products including the core groceries. As of October 2006, Morrisons has 367 superstores in the United Kingdom, including those it has retained following its purchase of Safeway plc . Until 2004, Morrisons superstores were largely concentrated in the English Midlands and the north of England, but had expanded southwards, beginning with a store at Erith, Kent, which opened in 1998.
Most Morrisons stores operate from large superstore formats selling a wide range of products including the core groceries. Most Morrisons superstores are typically between 28,500 sq ft and 36,000 sq ft, with an increasing number above 36,000 sq ft, offering food, home wares, some essential clothing (i.e. socks, underwear), cafï¿½s and petrol stations. The Morrisons I am going to investigate is right next to my school, it has several facilities such as cafï¿½, salad bar, pharmacy, butchers, customer service desk and restaurant. Morrisons are in an oligopoly market but it is highly competitive among the major stores but the market is lead by Tesco.
These are the external constraints I will look at: Economic factors – relate to changes in the wider economy. A growing economy provides greater opportunities for businesses to make profits, so businesses welcome rising living standards. So for example, an increase in interest rates will make it more expensive to borrow money from bank for example for investment. It is not just interest rates which affect Morrisons but after economics factors as well such as inflation, business cycle, employment and it is not just trends in the national economy which affects Morrisons but also the trends in the global economy.
Legal factors – relate to changes in laws and regulations. Businesses must be careful to keep within the law and to anticipate ways in which changes in laws will affect the way they must behave. Morrison has to comply with all the regulations relating to retailers and to employers. Morrisons also may have to slightly change the way it runs the business. For example, change in the national minimum wage, so Morrisons may have to pay higher wages to workers, so Morrisons may decided to reduce the number of workers they have or find a way to increase they sales and profit in order to pay the high wages.
Technological factors – provide opportunities for businesses to adopt new breakthroughs, innovations, and inventions to cut costs and develop new products. New machine for example can package food for example; half the time it is used to package so keeping up with technology will help Morrisons. So by technology Morrisons could improve its productivity as a company and become even larger. Also if Morrisons has access to the latest technology which its competitors have not then Morrisons could exploit that, so that may lead to greater market share.
Environmental factors – relate to impact of business has on the environment. Environmental factors include things like the control of pollution, waste reduction and any environmental legislation. Morrisons must meet the public expectations for good environmental management as well as comply with current environmental regulations. So for example if there is severe pressure from pressure groups about Morrisons plastic bags, then morrisons may need to change their plastic bag system to a recyclable carrier bags, this is because Morrisons do not want to get in the bad side of pressure groups as that will lead to bad publicity.