SWOT Analysis Example

Following on from our article on the SWOT business tool we thought we should put theory into practice with an example swot analysis

For this example we we’ll take a look at a SWOT analysis from the perspective of a small manufacturing company.  Their looking to develop themselves and develop thier strategy to understand their issues and exploit their marketplace – well make some assumptions that it’s a niche provider and that it’s customers key drivers are cost and quality.

So jets get too it!

Brainstorming your SWOT Analysis


Firstly when brainstorming your SWOT it’s helpful to have some data around you – SWOT’s can sometimes be subjective which can lead to personal opinion getting in the way of fact.  But what should you consider?  We often like to think of four variables when building our SWOT.

People, processes, systems and Market

However you might want to also include key issues that affect your business (the above should give you a start!).


So let’s take a look at the SWOT

 

Strengths

 

  • Loyal staff with low turnover
  • Existing long term order book
  • Established high quality product line
  • Strong design ties with customer product

Weaknesses

 

  • Old inefficient capital equipment
  • High rate of yield
  • Bottlenecks in some production cells
  • Knowledge not shared evenly across workforce
  • Inefficiencies due to legacy IT system

Opportunities

  • Introduce effective IT system
  • Introduce new, more efficient, capital equipment
  • Expand customer base
  • Introduce training plan for all staff

 

Threats

·         Long term customer strategies to move to lower cost providers

·         Capabilities not aligned with market needs

·         Poor cash flow



 

What next

The SWOT should be seen as a planning tool and help in the strategic process and therefore the end result of your SWOT analysis should not be the SWOT by itself but coupled with an action plan that capitalizes on your strengths and mitigates your weaknesses and threats.

 

This last point is crucial without a plan to correct key issues your business could suffer as a consequence.

 

Finally consider the frequency you’ll review your SWOT this shouldn’t be a onetime only process regular SWOT assessments will help capture new issues and ensure appropriate action plans are delivering the changes required to keep our organization efficient and competitive.

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