Business communications In this assignment I will be talking about the types of information used in Tesco. A I will start by defining information. Information is defined as the knowledge of specific events or situations that have been gathered or received by communication, intelligence or news. The first type of information I will talk about is verbal. Verbal communication is part of the day to day activities of Tesco. VERBAL: verbal communication entails the face to face expression of views and ideas or sometimes across the telephone.
In Tesco verbal information is obtained from both managers and employees as they both work together and need to be aware of certain pieces of information that are related to either their business or job role as a whole. An example of verbal information is a store manager giving instruction to a grocery staff as to how to arrange promotion stocks on the shelves. This is a practical example of verbal information because the staff initially did not know how to go about the arrangement but he obtained it from the face to face interaction with the store manager.
Verbal information is internal because it is obtained from employees and other staff inside the business. In Tesco verbal information is used to invite support for activities because the support must come from the employees in the business. For example, if Tesco need more staff for their night shift, they speak to couple of staff who work in the day to seek for their help. The purpose of verbal information is to elaborate more on key issues which are vital to the business because for example, issues like getting staff to do overtime needs to be verbal as the company is trying to persuade staff to do extra work for them.
WRITTEN: Written communication involves any type of interaction that makes use of the written word. It is one of the two main types of communication, along with oral or spoken communication. Written communication is very common in Tesco, so it is will be the interest of the business for managers to develop effective written communication skills. Some of the various forms of written communication that are used internally for business operations include memos, reports, bulletins, job descriptions, employee manuals, and electronic mail. Written information also sometimes the form of diagrams, graphs and charts.
For example Tesco always gives out pay slips to employees every month which contains their monthly salary and other deductions. This is written information which gives both managers and employees in Tesco the gist about how much they were paid. Written information can be said to be an internal source of information in Tesco because the Human Resource department comes out with written internal job vacancies as well as the job description to get interested applicants. Tesco uses written information for the purpose of informing the management and the staff about future developments.
For example if they want to expand, they will write to workers and tell them what they expect from them to help the business expansion. ON SCREEN: This is where information may be produced on-screen. This can be seen in multimedia TVs and CD-ROM’s that combine text, graphics, animation, audio and video. Tesco uses on screen information during induction of new recruits into the business. The new recruits watch video of how to use equipment such as flat tops, cages etc. as well as to stay safe in case of fire outbreak etc. also the information used by the Checkout Assistants in Tesco are also on screen . n screen information used by Tesco is internal because the on screen information used by the Checkout Assistants are provided by the Price Integrity department to inform the workers about current prices of stock and the video they show in the induction is also acted and recorded by the Tesco employees. The purpose of the on screen information is to invite support for activities because Tesco have set their own standards in the business and through onscreen information; they are able to show it to other people who are not aware of these standards in relation to price, health and safety etc.
MULTIMEDIA: multimedia means multiple forms of media. Media can be text, graphics, video, data etc. Tesco always do their advertisement on the Television and also in the newspaper and that is a form of multimedia information. This type of information is external because the Tesco advertisement ids designed and presented by someone who is not part of the organisation. The purpose of using multimedia information is to communicate sales promotions. Tesco uses variety of information to communicate their sales promotion to customers.
For example they place information about their Groceries, food and other products on offer in the newspaper or on the television to target a lot of customers. WEB BASED: web based are basically information found on a website. Tesco as a business have a business website to supplement the stores they have. Customers can also buy products and services from the website. The web based information is internal because it is a provided database by the company. The purpose of Tesco web base information is to update knowledge of their own market such as the performance of the business in recent and previous years.
Also in the case of recruiting staff, Tesco upload the person specification and job description of the related vacancy on their website so that applicants can update themselves with the information on the website before applying. Task 2 Businesses use different kinds of information for their day to day activities. The information they use gives them a lot of merit as it contributes to effective communication and the smooth running of the business. In this part of the assignment I will analyse the different types of information used by Tesco and the reason why they use such information as well as their related drawbacks.
Verbal In Tesco, verbal information is via the mouth. It includes managers and employees conversing with each other. In other words it also entails a telephone conversation between Customer Service staff and customers who wants to make an enquiry or at times customers who want to locate certain products at the shop floor. Tesco uses verbal information because it is from a reliable sourcing which from either the management or the employees and hence they can rely on it. There is high level of understanding and transparency.
Tesco as a business embark on a lot of discussions as they have to deal with catalogue of duties in the shop and also work together as a team. Teamwork will enable them get the job done and this cannot be possible without verbal information. For example if the Stock Control Department of Tesco wants to embark on stock counts, the manager of the department will have to speak to the staffs of that department to give them all the necessary gist about the job and how it can be done.
In this case there is flexibility and that is another benefit that is why Tesco use verbal information because the staff of the stock control department will also give the manager feedback about what they think and this will help the department and the entire Tesco team to get their job done. Tesco also use verbal information in problem resolution. Sometimes there are certain disputes, disagreements and conflicts between staffs, staff and customers etc. and this can be put to an end by talking over them.
For example Tesco has an administrative team known as Listen and Fix; they resolve problems amicably through verbal information. It’s easier to communicate verbally than any other way because you get to understand every detail that is being spoken by the other person. In Tesco customers communicate with the staff members this is an advantage because they get to ask questions if they don’t understand the instructions clearly. As discussed above, there are a lot of benefits associated with verbal communication that is why Tesco use it to enable them solve problems and to achieve their stated aims and objects.
Verbal communication is time saving for Tesco as far as daily interaction is concerned, in contrast, in case Tesco have a management meeting or an annual meeting, it consumes a lot of time and that is a drawback of verbal communication as it entails a lot of speeches. Also under this meeting, there are sometimes misunderstanding as they embark on a lot of debates making it difficult to arrive at a conclusion and sometimes information from the management in the course are not clear as they do not follow any formal procedure but just talking over them.
Besides, verbal information has a short period of longevity making it difficult for receivers to recollect what was discussed. For example, if a customer comes up to a customer assistant in the shop floor to address a complain, the customer assistant will promise the customer to forward the issue to the management but it can occur that he might not recollect the information and hence the complaint will not be dealt with. Written Written communication has great significance in Tesco business.
It is an innovative activity of the mind. Effective written communication is essential for preparing worthy promotional materials for Tesco’s development. Written information is more unique and formal. Effective writing involves careful choice of words, their organization in correct order in sentences formation as well as cohesive composition of sentences. Written information helps in laying down apparent principles, policies and rules for the running of Tesco business.
Tesco as the number one retailer in the UK always set high principles and policies to enable them be on top, and all these principles are passed on through the entire staff through written information because it is more formal and precise. For example, last Tesco came up with a policy to enable them control the amount of stock lose in their various shops by doing an unannounced staff search. Tesco got their message across to the staff in the store through written information because that was formal and it breaks down every detail of the policy to the staffs.
Also in the case of recruitment, Tesco written information to delegate responsibilities to new employees into the business because talking through responsibilities is not adequate and both Personnel manager and the employee might forget what is said but written information in the form of employment contract is proper for record keeping. Written information adds up to Tesco cost of production as written information entails purchasing huge sums of stationary talk less of the manpower employed in writing and delivering letters.
The feedback of written information is not spontaneous making it hard for communication in Tesco to be effective. Communication needs quick and effective responds to be effective and further helps in the decision making process of Tesco. For example, Tesco relies heavily on their suppliers because they bring in their stock on daily basis. If Tesco runs out of stock, they quickly scan the information of the products and send them quickly via email to their suppliers. In this case the suppliers are meant to respond quickly to the email.
The suppliers sometimes take time to respond to the email thereby making the written communication ineffective. Tesco usually sends out emails and letters to their valued customers to inform them about their already existing special offers or impending ones. This information can easily be read and understood by most customers but sometimes customers from other countries who do not understand the English language may not understand the information and may regard it as useless.
When this happens, Tesco marketing strategies will not achieve maximum results because some customers do not get the whole point of the written sales promotion send to them. On screen On screen is an advantage to Tesco because a large number of people can watch the presentation for example electronic paying tills they can get information if the tills are not working or if there is any discounts or and new system introduced by the organisation. Another advantage of onscreen information is that a large number of people can access information from it to help them upgrade their knowledge in an organisation.
The government has influenced a lot of businesses to keep up with health and safety at their workplace to ensure the wellbeing of their workers and customers. Tesco usually show health and safety videos on screen to their workers. The video covers issues like how to react in case of fire outbreak, how to use Tesco equipment like cages, flat tops etc. the idea behind this video is to educate the workers on how to stay positive in the work place.
The video is shown onscreen to a large number of workers at a go making it easier to educate mass group of people in less time. Also the managers of Tesco do a monthly conference meeting with the Managing Director of the entire Tesco Company via the screen which really relieves the company the cost of arranging meetings because they can have a discussion with the manager without inviting him over. However the disadvantage of this type of communication is that people with disabilities like blind people won’t be able to communicate using this method.
I made mentioned that Tesco’s cost is reduced because they can have a meeting with their Managing Director without inviting him over. However the disadvantage towards the onscreen meeting is that in case of technical failures like inability to connect equipment, the meeting will be affected or might not come on at all. In other words, the Managing Director can monopolize the decisions to be made under the meeting because it is not a face to face meeting to enhance free social interaction and influence of certain decisions under the meeting.
Tesco self-service is onscreen which gives information to customers on better ways to pay for the items they have purchased in store without joining the long queues at the checkout however there is a disadvantage towards this form of communication because the information is written in English Language and customers who do not understand the language cannot follow the steps listed on the self-service machine. Multimedia Tesco fancy multimedia as it is able to help them target their target audience with their special offers . ultimedia can be television, audio, video, newspapers, billboards etc. for example billboards are good for communicating because they are situated in busy places. Tesco normally show their best selling items on their billboards to attract or inform passing drivers and other customers about their special offers in store. Besides, Tesco’s advertisement are mostly done on the television because most customers watch television at their work places, homes etc. so the advertisement can be seen by customers to know what is going on in the business.
To Tesco, multimedia is more appealing over traditional advertising methods. For example in the olden days, businesses use word of mouth as an effective advertising tool to tell customers about their businesses and the products or services. That was really time consuming and in other words targeted few audiences. Tesco by using multimedia like Television, Newspapers and Radio stations are able to inform the customers and the entire public about their recent or impending sales promotions. However competitive businesses in the retail sector such as ASDA, Sainsbury etc. ses multimedia in their operations hence it makes it difficult for customers to understand the positioning of Tesco’s products. Tesco incur a lot of costs by advertising through the media such as radio stations and television channels, besides advertising through the media to win the target audience attention requires strategic planning to make it effective. For example if Tesco is advertising a product to target students on the television, they will have to have to do it in the evening as students are most of the time available in the evening.
Another disadvantage of multimedia information is that it is not only expensive but also advertisement through some media formats has short life. For example, Tesco advert will only be current in a newspaper throughout a day or two and afterwards becomes history. This makes multimedia information less effective. Web based The internet is used to allow people to shop from home at any time on their computers using Tesco online. They simply connect to the internet and then send the order. Websites are used to store lots of information for customers, for example, latest CDs sold in Tesco.
Wines, information on a baby and toddler club etc. Club-cards are a form of internal communication because Tesco stores every item that you have bought when your card is swiped; this means that they know what have been selling the most and the least in the store. Besides, the most obvious advantage of web based information is the potential for reaching a wider audience. The internet is used by literally millions of people; all of them are looking for something to buy. Tesco having a website enables them to operate over a wider area meaning they can now get in touch with their unreachable customers.
With web based information customers can easily access information about Tesco. They can see what products or services they sell, their prices, location and much more. The advantage here is that whatever Tesco decides to tell customers, they can find it with a few clicks of a mouse. Frequent system breakdown makes Tesco web based information inaccessible for both customers and Tesco. Customers will be frustrated if they cannot access Tesco website or find it difficult to find other information and they will resort to other business website.
This will really bring down Tesco’s reputation and sales as well. The security issue on Business web can be a disadvantage because it can be vulnerable to hackers who can use deviant means to shop online or in other words use someone’s credit card to purchase stuff online which can create customers and business problems. Task 3 In this final task, I will be evaluating the appropriateness of business information used to make strategic decisions in Tesco. I will write this in relation to two functional areas in Tesco namely Finance Department and Marketing Department.
Strategic decision is defined as the grand direction of the business. That is to say they are decisions which the business makes in relation to where they want to be in the future. The finance department of Tesco generates a variety of financial information that is helpful in decision making, including: Profit and Loss accounts providing details of whether Tesco is making efficient use of financial resources. Sales and purchases information setting out particular types of trading and accounts with particular customers and suppliers. A budget serves as a plan for the future development of Tesco.
Managers are able to monitor budgets in order to spot variances and make on going adjustments to plans. Financial statements such as the profit and loss account and the balance sheet provide information about past performance of Tesco. Finance department are able to compare the performance of the business in one accounting period to the other. For example, on the 25 of February, Tesco were able to compare their profit and total fixed assets through the information in the profit and loss account as well as the balance sheet of the business.
In 2011, the annual turnover of Tesco was ? 60455. 0m and a profit of ? 2777. 0m the total fixed asset was 35167. 0. In 2012, the turnover is ? 64539. 0m and the profit is ? 2956. 0m. The total fixed asset is 379180. Tesco was able to track the business as successful through their balance and profit account because the turnover and total fixed assets in the year 2012 is greater than that of 2011. This was brought to their notice through the information they recorded in their accounts.
The finance department of Tesco can now make a basic forecast by following the trend of their turnover and profit/loss accounts to help them in the effective allocation of money. The balance sheet information helps Tesco’s strategic decision because the balance sheet summarizes Tesco’s assets, liabilities and shareholders’ equity at a specific point in time which can attract investors to invest in the business to increase the revenue of the business. Investors can analyse the performance of Tesco by looking at the balance sheet to see how much Tesco owes and owns.
In contrast the information used by the finance department of Tesco in the profit and loss account and balance sheet can be manipulated and this makes the information not accurate or reliable for making financial judgements. Tesco as a PLC prepare financial statements for their external stakeholders, like creditors and shareholders, and for external auditors. Unfortunately, it is simple enough for the company to manipulate the statements. The management of Tesco may choose to overinflate profits to lure prospective shareholders into investing in the company.
Also care must be taken when using financial documents such as profit and loss account. This is because the financial information is not current since it was prepared years back and Tesco cannot really rely on it to make decisions in terms of the success and failure of the company at present time. It is obvious that profit and loss as well as balance sheet of Tesco can be manipulated however it can be suggested that the profit and loss account really help Tesco to make strategic decisions such as investing in profitable ventures to boast the profit margin of the company.
For example, The Tesco website, in which it has invested heavily in during recent years, saw profits leap by 21 per cent to ? 48 million, on the back of an almost equal percentage sales rise. Online grocery orders lifted by 10 per cent to ? 7. 5 million. The marketing department of Tesco on the other hand uses information from the Tesco club card to make decisions such as positioning of certain products. It has been able to use the Club card very effectively in addressing different customer segments and in attracting and retaining customers of all types.
Club card is Tesco’s membership scheme which allows customers to save money on shopping by providing them price-off vouchers. Customers get a point on every pound they spend shopping at any stores of Tesco group of companies as well as at stores of their partner companies. Once a customer accumulates 150 points, these are then converted into Club card vouchers which enable the customer to save money on shopping. For getting a Tesco Club card customers have to register by filling in a form and sending it by post or they can also register online as well as over the phone.
Anytime customers shop at Tesco, their club card is swiped. This means that the Club card acts as a tool for Tesco’s marketing department for collecting useful marketing data related to the buying habits of individual customers. Once the marketing department have observed the buying habit of customers, they then apply the information in their marketing strategies. For example, if more customers in Barking purchase pet food, then the marketing department will send vouchers to these customers to enable them buy more to increase sales.
Besides as part of secondary research conducted by Tesco, then company makes use of government statistics to find information about the external environment. For example government statistics shows the current state of the economy such as inflation, recession etc. Tesco knowing what is going on in the economy can then make vital decisions on their pricing and other ways to promote their brands. For example, if the economy is in recession, Tesco will then embark on sales promotion to enable them sell more products to customers as well as reducing their prices to target more customers.
Looking at the above advantage, it would be easy to draw a conclusion that government statistics are in fact very useful as a source of data for the marketing department of Tesco; however there are also important disadvantages to official statistics so care must be taken when using information from government statistics because they are not always produced in a useful form, making them harder for a Tesco to analyse and draw any trends and patterns from it.
The information from the club card used by the Marketing department of Tesco can be described as unreliable because most customers have the view that the club card is a violation of rights and they do not comply. Besides, some customers who have registered for the club card do not even bring it along when they shop so it is sometimes difficult for the marketing department to make headway in determining which goods are selling and those which are not.
My personal opinion is that the club card information on the Tesco database has actually helped Tesco to track the buying habits of 13 million British families. these buying habits has also in turn boasted Tesco’s relationship marketing as well as promoting customer loyalty in the business.