Answered Essay: Question 1 (a). Develop a SWOT Analysis for any Insurance Company. A brief introduction/background of the company is required.

Question 1

(a). Develop a SWOT Analysis for any Insurance Company.

A brief introduction/background of the company is required. This will be instructive for the development of your SWOT Analysis.

Kindly note that the assignment is of a practical nature. We do not want to know what a SWOT means. Read the Question carefully. You are writing about your organization.

Your understanding of the theoretical aspects will be demonstrated regarding how you present your SWOT. For example, saying that Leadership is strength means nothing. It could be qualified, experienced and dedicated management team who provide astute leadership. In your further explanation – what has this brought to the organization?

Note that SW are internal to the organization, while OT are external. Do not mix them up.

Note the document titled SWOT Analysis posted in the Course Resources Section which lists what you should look for in identifying a company’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

(b). Indicate how each of the strengths listed can be used to gain and/or maintain the organization’s competitive advantage.

In your discussion for Question 1 (b), some of the theory will be highlighted.

Example: If insurance company has a weakness with marketing and capturing the market, you may want to indicate that it can embark on Market Penetration or Product Development as a strategy. A strategy may be Branding, if there is a weakness there. If so, then what may be the outcome(s) for the organization?

Example – If insurance company does not have the skills and competences to carry out a process/ function effectively, it may look at outsourcing, noting that there are advantages and disadvantages associated with outsourcing.

Although the organization may have certain strengths, there may still be ways to improve.

Strategies are developed mainly based on the WOT.

A brief conclusion at the end of the question is required

Expert Answer

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Swot analysis is a useful technique for understanding your strengths and weaknesses, and for indentifying both the opportunities open to you and the threats you face.

Business swot analysis :

The important thing about swot analysis is that with a little thought, it can help you uncover opportunities that you are well-placed to exploit. And by understanding the weaknesses of your business, you can manage and eliminate threats that would otherwise catch you unawareness.

Originated by Albert s Humphrey in the 1960s, the tool is as useful now as it was then.

Strengths and Weaknesses are often internal to your organization, while opportunities and threats generally relate to external factors . For this reason Swot is sometimes called Internal-External analysis and Swot matrix is sometimes called an IE matrix.

Strengths :

  • What advantages does your organization have?
  • What do you do better than anyone else ?
  • What unique or lowest-cost resources can you draw upon that others can’t?
  • What do people in your market see as your strengths?
  • What is your organization unique selling proposition (USP)?

When checking on your strengths, think about them in relation to you competitors. For example if all of your competitors provide high quality products, then a high quality production process is not a strength in your organization market. Its a necessity.

Weaknesses :

  • What could you improve?
  • What should you avoid ?
  • What are people in your market likely to see as weaknesses?
  • What factors lose you sales ?

Consider this from an internal and external perspectives: Do other people seem to percieve weaknesses that you do not see?. Are your competitors doing any better than you?

Opportunities :

  • What good opportunities can you spot?
  • What interesting trends are you aware of ?

Useful opportunities can come from such things as :

  • Changes in technology and markets on both a broad and narrow scale
  • Changes in government policy related to your field.
  • Changes in social patterns, population profiles,lifestyle changes and so on.
  • Local events

Tip : A useful approach when looking at opportunities is to look at our strengths and ask yourself whether these open up any opportunities. Alternatively look at your weaknesses and ask yourself whether you could open up opportunities by eliminating them.

Threats :

  • What obstacles do you face ?
  • What are your competitors doing ?
  • Are quality standard or specification for your job, products or services changing ?
  • Is changing technology threatening your position ?
  • Do you have bad debt or cash flows problems ?
  • Could any of your weaknesses seriously threaten your business ?

Swot analysis is a simple but useful framework for analyzing your organizations strengths and weaknesses, and the opportunities and threats that you face. It helps you focus on your strengths, minimize threats, and take the greatest possible advantage of opportunities available to you.

It can be used to “kick off” strategy formulation or in a more sophisticated way as a serious strategy tool. You can also use it to get an understanding of your competitors which can give you insights you need to craft a coherent and successful competitive position.

It is important when applying your analysis, be realistic and rigorous. Apply it at the right level, and supplement it with other option- generation tools where appropriate.

Ans 1) Lets consider an example of one of the insurance company :

Metlife :

Metlife that is metropolitan life insurance company is American based company, which is providing its diversified services and financial assistance to its clients. It offers its services in child plans, healthcare plans,life insurance plans, savings plans and retirement plans as well. Basically it provides services to the clients, who look for the financial advice and sevices. This diversified company can help the clients to manage their wealth in different phases of life. This company is providing its services to over 90 million in about 60 countries of the world. The people who want to invest their amount to gain profit, they need to check its financial status and its strong aspects, which can lead them to have success in life.

Strengths :

  • This company is an important and big company which is providing excellent work to the clients.
  • Metlife has strong brand name and has good financial position in the market.
  • Metlife has around 65000 employees, which are busy in different activities in the company.
  • The company has prepared diversified products and it offers its services to the clients.
  • This company is present in almost 60 countries and it serves its over 90 million people across the globe
  • This company has high market share in the industrial sector.
  • Metlife included in the fortune 500 companies and you can find it in top 50 companies across the world.

Weaknesses :

  • The company has less global recognition due to its acquisitions and mergers with other insurance companies in local areas.
  • The company has weak grip on the international market, so it has less global appearance
  • The company has to face the high operating cost
  • As this company is operating in US market strongly so it has over dependence of US market.

Opportunities :

  • The company required to expand its business in other part of the world as well.
  • The company should concentrate on the acquisitions and should involve in the joint venture with other brands to carry out their activities
  • The company should tap in the emerging markets. so that it can expand its business across the world
  • The brand should develop its diversified portfolios for the customers and try to bring them in the market.
  • The new products is require to be produced in the market for its business expansion.
  • The company offers new plan for its corporate and individual customers.

Threats :

  • US financial sector is proved the major threat for this company to carry out its business activities.
  • Various natural disasters and calamities can add its difficulties in meeting its financial challenges.
  • There are other insurance companies, which are busy in providing insurance benefits to the clients.
  • The economic recession in the US market can decrease the margin of profit over its product and services
  • When the tax increased, then the financial position of the company can be disturbed.
  • Sometimes thare are changes in government regulations and rules which can effect badly towards the marketing of the insurance products and services.

Important note :

As we know Metlife is the leading and well established insurance company, which is busy in carrying out different insurance activities and it also helps the clients to meet their financial requirements as well. This insurance company has also increased its working in different areas and tap in the international market to get good marging over its product and services. Hence although this company has to face various problems in the economic market and face the calamities or natural disasters, yet it earn or gain more profit over its working. The financial situation of the company is very strong it can help the company to meet several diversified plan and it also offers various insurance plans to the people to meet their challenges.

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