HI6006 Competitive Strategy Essay: Key Strategy Development Tools Assessment Answer

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Question :

Assessment Details and Submission Guidelines
TrimesterT1 2019
Unit CodeHI6006
Unit TitleCompetitive Strategy
Assessment TypeIndividual Assignment
Assessment TitleEssay – Key Strategy Development Tools
Purpose of the assessment (with ULO Mapping)Students are required to write a Comprehensive discussion of any four of the strategy models, with practical application to current business examples
Weight20% of the total assessments
Total Marks20
Word limitNot more than 1200 words
Submission Guidelines
  • All work must be submitted on Blackboard by the due date along with a completed Assignment Cover Page.
  • The assignment must be in MS Word format, no spacing, 12-pt Arial font and 2 cm margins on all four sides of your page with appropriate section headings and page numbers.
  • Reference sources must be cited in the text of the report, and listed appropriately at the end in a reference list using Harvard referencing style.


Assignment 1 Specifications

This assignment aims at ensuring that students have familiarised themselves with the foundational strategy development models and are able to relate them to current practical business examples.


Write an essay explaining what the main strategy development tools are and how they are used in business. Your essay must contain a comprehensive discussion of 4 of the following: PESTEL, Five Forces, Resource-Based View, PROFIT, Input/Output, SWOT Analysis (you may include Cross Impact Analysis), Generic Strategies, Ansoff, Ghemawat, with reference to academic journals and practical examples from industry.

In this essay, sub-headings are permitted. Be sure to use paragraphing.

Be sure to reference your sources in-text and provide a list of references at the end in Harvard style.

Your final submission is due Friday of week 5 at midnight.

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Answer :

HI6006 - Competitive Strategy

Essay – Key Strategy Development Tools


As discussed by Phadermrod, Crowder and Wills (2019), organizational goal achievement in the competitive business environment largely depends on effective business strategies. This assignment is purposed at developing an analysis of five strategy development tools which are majorly used by the marketers and business strategy developers to build effective strategies for the business. For this assignment, the researcher has selected four strategy development tools, including SWOT, PESTEL, Porter Five Forces and Ansoff Matrix. In relation to the practical business instances, these four marketing tools have been investigated in this essay. 


Tool 1 – PESTEL analysis

In order to develop an in-depth understanding of how external business environmental factors influence the organizational performance, PESTEL framework is utilized. This particular marketing tool possesses six dimensions, including political, economic, socio-cultural, technological, ecological and legal (Anton 2015). PESTEL framework provides more effective outcomes than SWOT analysis in the context of analyzing opportunities and threats of business. 

Advantage and disadvantage:

One of the major benefits of the PESTEL framework is that it identifies the opportunities and threats of a business in the current market context. Since the use of this model is time-saving and cost-effective, most business strategy developers prefer using it. A key limitation of this model is that it does not shed light on the business issues in the long run (Iacovidou et al. 2017). Political, economic, and social impact on business changes continuously.

Practical example:

PESTLE analysis of the Coles supermarket 

  • The stable political environment creates a positive impact on the business. 
  • A high level of tax can affect the profitability of the Coles supermarket.
  • Australian regulations for minimum wage affect the profitability of the business. 
  • The high exchange rate is a major concern for the company
  • Increased rate of inflation and unemployment also affect business profitability.
  • The high cost of labour creates difficulties for the Coles to maximize its revenue. 
  • The increasing demand for staple food is a positive sign for the business.
  • The changing needs and preferences of consumers in a continuous manner could affect product development 
  • Consumers prefer one-stop buying to save time. 
  • The cost of emerging and advanced technology is very high.
  • The impact of advanced technology on the cost structure of the business. 
  • A huge investment needs to be done in adapting advanced technology to gain competitive advantage. 
  • Australian environment law needs to be followed 
  • Coles should focus on reducing the carbon footprint
  • As a retail food company, Coles need to abide by the regulations related to air and water pollution. 
  • Some significant legal frameworks that the Coles follows include Health and Safety law, consumer protection law, Fair competition law, Data Privacy Law, etc. 

Tool 2 – SWOT analysis

This tool is majorly used for determining the impact of internal as well as the external business environment on organizational performance. Four quadrants of the framework include strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. While strengths and weaknesses denote the internal business environment, opportunities and threats signify external environmental factors. 

Advantage and disadvantage:

SWOT framework is one of the most popular marketing tools marketers use to determine how internal and external forces influence the performance of a business. By using this cost-effective tool, weaknesses of a company can easily be identified (Bull et al. 2016). The limitation of this tool is that it does not provide a detailed analysis of complex business issues. 

Practical example:

SWOT analysis of Nestle

  • Strong product portfolio
  • Unmatched research and development competence 
  • Strong efforts towards environment sustainability
  • A strong presence on the global market
  • Nestle encounters criticism for its high water usage, conducting unethical business practice, using child labour and selling contaminated food. 
  • Strong competitive forces from other brands offering the same line of products
  • Nestle has focused on producing healthy food to target health-conscious people.
  • Expansion of business across the global platform
  • It tries to capture the rural markets
  • Acquisition of small ventures to grow business
  • Due to the economic downturn and political instability in the foreign markets, Nestle often encounters a low-profit issue.
  • The high costs of raw materials can also affect the profit margin of the business. 
  • High competition in the market is another major concern for Nestle. 

Tool 3 – Porter’s Five forces analysis

Organizational managers utilize this particular marketing model to determine the threats of business strategies by analyzing diverse microenvironmental factors, such as suppliers’ power, buyers’ power, threats of substitutes, threats of new entrants and competitive rivalry (Schawel and Billing 2018). 

Advantage and Disadvantage:

Through the application of this marketing tool, the management can easily identify the position of the organization in the competitive business environment. Porter’s five force analyses enable marketers to investigate the bargaining power of customer and suppliers to devise effective business strategies (O'Hara et al. 2017). On the contrary, the outcomes of the five-force analysis are limited since the variables of the model change frequently. 

Practical example:

Porter’s five force analysis of KFC

Bargaining power of customers: Consumers possess a high bargaining power, as they are exposed to a similar range of products offered by other companies, including McDonald’s, Pizza Hut and Burger King.

Bargaining power of suppliers: Suppliers have moderate power since they always want to work with large-scale global brands like KFC. 

Threats of substitutes: The availability of a similar range of products is very high, due to which customers can easily their brands.  

Threats of new entrants: Threats of new entrants is low due to the requirement of high investment, and existing competitive forces in the market. 

Competitive rivalry: KFC encounters a high level of competitive threats from its rivals, including McDonald’s, Pizza Hut and Burger King. 

Tool 4 – Ansoff Matrix

Ansoff matrix is one of the significant marketing tools that help managers in determining the product and marketing growth strategy (Takata 2016).  Ansoff Matrix discusses four growth strategies, including market penetration, market development, product development and diversification. 

Advantage and disadvantage:

Business strategy developers utilize this marketing model to analyze the potential risks linked to business strategies. Based on this model, organizational managers can develop growth strategies for the business. One key limitation of this model is that it fails to determine the possible areas of change in the diversification stage (Dawes 2018). It also fails to investigate the practices of external competitors. 

Practical example:

Apple Ansoff Matrix

Market penetration: Apple’s existing markets consist of 22 countries divided into five major operating segments, including Europe, Americas, Japan, Greater China and Rest of Asian Pacific. 

Product development: One of the key growth strategies of Apple is to develop new products integrating advanced and emerging technologies. The company provides updates to the existing products and launches new products in a continuous manner. 

Market development: Apple, one of the largest IT companies in the world by revenue, has focused on expanding business in the Asian markets to enhance its profitability to a great extent.  

Diversification: Diversification involves developing new products for new markets. Apple does not use diversification business strategy extensively. 


Based on the analysis conducted throughout this assessment, it can be assessed that the marketing tools, including SWOT, PESTEL, Ansoff Matrix, and Porter’s Five force, play a significant role in identifying internal and external business environmental factors influencing organizational performance, and developing effective business strategies.