SWOT is an acronym used to describe the
particular Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and
Threats that are strategic factors for a specific
company. A SWOT analysis should not only result in
the identification of a corporation’s core
competencies, but also in the identification of opportunities
that the firm is not currently able to take advantage of due
to a lack of appropriate resources. (Wheelen, Hunger pg 107).
The Internal Analysis of strengths
and weaknesses focuses on internal factors that give an
organization certain advantages and disadvantages in
meeting the needs of its target market.
The following area analyses are used to look at all internal factors effecting a company:
- Resources: Profitability, sales,
product quality brand associations, existing overall
brand, relative cost of this new product, employee
capability, product portfolio analysis
Goal: To identify internal strategic strengths, weaknesses, problems, constraints and uncertainties
The External Analysis examines
opportunities and threats that exist in the environment.
The following area analyses are used to look at all external factors effecting a company:
- Customer analysis: Segments, motivations, unmet needs
- Competitive analysis: Identify completely,
put in strategic groups, evaluate performance,
image, their objectives, strategies, culture, cost
structure, strengths, weakness
- Market analysis: Overall size, projected
growth, profitability, entry barriers, cost structure,
distribution system, trends, key success factors
- Environmental analysis: Technological,
governmental, economic, cultural, demographic,
scenarios, information-need areas
Goal: To identify external opportunities, threats, trends,
and strategic uncertainties.
Consult the following databases for ready-made SWOT Analyses:
- Marketline Business Information Center
- Business Source Premier
- Business & Company Resource Center (currently provides a small collection of SWOT analyses - approximately 200 U.S. and 300 non-U.S. companies)
- LexisNexis Academic
Under "Get Company Info" select Company Profiles link in the right column of the home page. 1. In the first box, type the name of your company. For Example, McDonalds. 2. Change the field designation to Company Name. 3. In the next box, type: swot 4. click Search. The results come fron global Markets Direct. Scroll down until you find the report that includes "SWOT Analysis" in the title.