Your task is to carry out a critical analysis and evaluation of the strategies adopted by global telecommunications providers, using the information provided and other materials researched. You will be expected to select and apply appropriate theories, techniques and models studied during the module whilst having regard to the practical aspects of strategy development.
Your assignment should be presented in a business report format and should be within the range 3,500 ± 10% words (excluding executive summary/abstract, references and relevant appendices). The report should include a title page and abstract and be fully and consistently referenced, using Harvard Referencing style. You must also submit a CD Rom or DVD containing an electronic version of the report. This should be clearly labelled with your name, your course and the name of the case study.
It is recommended that you research information additional to the case study to support your arguments. This may be obtained from a diverse range of sources and you are encouraged to research the issues in whichever way you deem appropriate.
In the event of failing this individual assignment, normal referral / deferral procedures will apply. This assignment carries a weighting of 100%. The assessment will focus on the level of ANALYSIS carried out. That is, the application of THEORETICAL CONCEPTS studied in the module to the ‘practical’ case study presented. In other words, you should proceed beyond a DESCRIPTION of the company and its actions. You should be analysing ‘why’ rather then describing ‘what’. The assignment will be assessed and moderated by two members of staff in accordance with the marks allocated to each of the questions detailed below. 10% of the marks are set aside for the ‘presentation’ criteria.
Evaluation of data
|The Global Telecommunications Industry:|
British Telecom (BT) Group is one of the world’s leading communications services companies, serving customers in more than 170 countries worldwide. BT’s main activities are the provision of fixed-line services, broadband, mobile and TV products and services as well as networked IT services. Globally, BT supplies managed networked IT services to multinational corporations, domestic businesses and national and local government organisations (http://www.btplc.com/ ; De Wit and Meyer, 2010).
Read the case study entitled “BT Group: Bringing external innovation inside” by Felipe Monteiro and Donald N. Sull, cited in De Wit and Meyer (2010:837-861) Strategy Process, Content, Context; and carry out appropriate analyses of the global corporate strategies adopted by BT and other world leading communications services companies such as AT&T, Cable & Wireless and Vodafone, answer the questions below. You are encouraged to use relevant data/information from company websites.
|Question One: External Innovation and Competitiveness|
Using information from the case study, relevant data/information from BT’s website (http://www.btplc.com/ ), and the Telecommunications Value Chain in Exhibit 9 (De Wit and Meyer, 2010, page 846), critically evaluate the impact of ‘regulation’, ‘convergence’ and the ‘intensity of competition’ on BT’s approach to innovation and share performance, since 2005 to date.
[30 % marks]
|Question Two: Vertical Integration and Competitiveness|
2(a) Critically assess the terms ‘strategic alliances’ (SAs) and ‘mergers and acquisitions’ (M&As) in the context of BT’s ambition to become the world’s truly integrated global telecommunications service firm. [15 marks]
2(b) Using information from the case study, discuss how BT’s global venture with AT&T in July 1998 and joint venture (also called Concert) launched in January 2000 helped BT to maximise its corporate profitability through low-cost leadership and/or product differentiation. [15 marks]
[30 % marks]
|Question Three: Organizational Structure and Strategy|
Using your understanding of organizational structure, disruptive innovation and culture, critically evaluate the ability of BTs senior management to bring in external technologies in areas that were crucial for BT’s future, e.g. Broadband, Mobility, Information Technology, Process Innovation, NG Customer Experience, and Network Technologies (see Exhibits 15, 17 and 18 in De Wit and Meyer, 2010, pages 855-857).