FINAL RESEARCH PROJECT SPRING 2016
Throughout the semester, you have acquired information, particularly through our lectures and discussions that will enable you to complete most of the writing tasks you may be assigned during your first years in business. This Project is designed to give you “real world” experience in tasks you may be assigned in the future. Choose one of the three case studies for your project.
The choices for the projects are authentic and have been assigned by senior executives in a variety of fields. You will see that the project options come from various departments and sectors ranging from small to large corporations.
Remember the crucial rules for business communication as your prepare your project.
• The purpose of business communication is to reach a decision and take action on an issue.
• Remember constraints of time (is money), costs, and, operational feasibility.
• Make sure that you examine each decision you make carefully, understand any possible difficulties, and are able to answer any questions superiors may have.
• Be brief. Be simple. Be clear. Be accurate.
• Although you do not have to submit your research (in the “real world” your boss would want all information streamlined), make sure your research is available in case I have any questions about your methodology.
• Sometimes work projects may involve some liability, for example, in terms of giving away proprietary information, so be very careful with what you write.
• You may find sources such as Investopedia and/or Motley Fool, as well as previous course work, quite helpful in defining some of the terminology used in these assignments.
Each project should have at least a one-page memo describing the issue and what path you intend to take. These projects require a Recommendation Memo, so be sure to check the format for that on the handout I sent to you.
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CASE STUDY ONE: FINANCE
At Large Corporation, Inc., you are a Junior Financial Analyst, a member of a small but highly qualified analytical staff at corporate headquarters. You report to the Assistant Treasurer of the company, who, in turn, reports to the Treasurer. This assignment was given to you verbally by the Treasurer himself this morning. The Treasurer is a good manager, so he has already discussed the project with your immediate supervisor. But since he likes to take part, personally, in the training of his junior managers, he called you in to discuss the assignment.
“I want you to do a comparative analysis of our top five competitors for the past five fiscal years.” He asked you to include information about:
• Sales and percentage increases/decreases (year-to-year)
• Net Income year-to-year percentage increases/decreases
• Net Income as percentage of sales
• Itemized Cash Flow and year-to-date percentage increases/decreases
• Capital Expenditures
• Return on Equity* *5-Year # on Factiva
*All this information should be available from the annual reports of the companies you choose. Most of that information can be found on FACTIVA. Choose an industry and five competitors in that industry. Make sure the information and data are presented for the same fiscal year, calculated in the same monetary standard, and computed on the same basis. Once the data are collected, you have to determine:
• How to present the information
• How to summarize your findings so the information is immediately useful to your Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer (You will need to write a Recommendation Memo and supply visuals~~charts and graphs).
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CASE STUDY THREE: ACCOUNTING
At Massive Enterprises, Inc. you work in the Controller’s Office; this is your
first real job. You are a Cost Accountant reporting to the Chief Cost
Massive is a large corporation with multiple divisions. Your supervisor wants you to prepare a Cost Trend Analysis (five-year trend analysis) in which you:
• Analyze Costs by Division
• Analyze Cost of Sales and Expenses as Percentage of Sales
• Compile data
• Prepare graphs comparing divisions by major cost elements
• Write a commentary (in the form of a Recommendation Memo) presenting your findings and any conclusions you reach.
NOTE: In choosing a company to be the model for Massive, be sure to select
one that reports its operating results by company division in its annual report.
Also, be sure that all data presented have been computed on the same monetary
CASE STUDY FOUR: SPORTS TEAM MARKETING
You have your dream job—you are the Assistant to the Publicity Director of your favorite team. It has been a difficult season for your team in many respects–strikes (or potential strikes), player injuries, difficult contract negotiations, and lower-than-expected fan attendance, among other things. (Note that your team is not alone in having such difficulties.) The Coach is extremely frustrated because of his team’s dreadful season. The Coach has asked your boss to prepare a comparative analysis of your team’s competitors so that he and your boss can figure out how to put a positive spin on promoting the upcoming season.
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It is up to you to choose the sport you would like to cover. You are to choose 5
teams (including yours) from that sport and provide your boss with information such as Wins/Losses/Ties, fan attendance, and specific team information that may have had an impact on each team—ownership issues, ineffective coaching,
for example. Be assured, other issues may arise from your research. Your choice of teams need not be limited to American sports teams.
You do not have to choose the best and worst teams as some in the middle may have been surprisingly good or bad for reasons not necessarily related to the team itself. You may or may not find that the economy, weather, local issues, etc. had some impact on these 5 teams. You are to:
• Conduct a five-year analysis of these 5 teams in which you examine them historically. Consult various media (magazines, websites–including the teams’ websites–local newspapers, radio/TV sports’ shows, etc.). This research will enable you to get a solid grip on what each team has been facing over those 5 years and the impact that outside influences may have had on each team.
• Prepare charts/graphs comparing the 5 teams and determine percentages from those comparisons (possibly including salaries, injuries, etc.) as well as charts with specific headings (Wins/Losses/Ties, etc.)
• With the data you have compiled, you will need to write a Recommendation Memo to your boss summarizing your detailed findings and your recommendations for your team’s upcoming season’s promotions.
NOTE: By comparing what works or does not work for other teams, you will be able to make solid suggestions to your boss as to how your team can be better promoted in order to make up for such a dreadful season. This will be accomplished through your observations, information, and analysis of your team’s competitors. Remember, too, your boss has asked you to compile this information, but it is going directly to your team’s Coach.
WE WILL BE USING FACTIVA AND MERGENT EXTENSIVELY FOR THIS ASSIGNMENT, AND THE DUE DATE WILL BE OUR LAST DAY OF CLASS,
NO LATE PAPERS WILL BE ACCEPTED.
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• Sales and Percentage Increase/Decrease : (this year/previous)-1
• Net Income Percentage Increase/Decrease: (this year/previous)-1
• Net Income as Percentage of Sales: Net Income/Sales
• Cash Flow Percentage Increase/Decrease: Operating, Investing, Financing, and Net Change in Cash: (this year/previous-1)
• Capital Expenditure(s): Find #’s on Factiva
• Return on Equity: Use the 5-year average
Choose one of the three cases. thanks.
Along with the graphs/charts, we ony need lone-page memo describing the issue and Recommendation Memo (1page).
NB: We do not resell papers. Upon ordering, we do an original paper exclusively for you.
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