essay/literature review


This assessment is designed to foster learning in relation to the first four unit learning outcomes.

Through undertaking this task it is expected that you will be able to:

1. Describe contemporary organisational structures.

2. Explain contemporary people management practices.

3. Outline marketing practices.

4. Explain financial practices.

Each student is expected to construct a capability portfolio made up of two essays (1,200 words per

essay). Through an analysis of an organisational case students are expected to address a range of key

theoretical perspectives on processes and practices that relate to organisational structures, people

management, marketing and finance. Students are expected to at least draw on the Essential and

Recommended Readings as set out in this Learning Guide.

Each essay should take the form of a literature review that demonstrates the student’s engagement

with both the case and the business studies/organisational studies literature. The literature review

should investigate and comment on the theoretical perspectives that relate to the design and

practices of each dimension: structure, people management, marketing and finance. The literature

review should not simply be a descriptive summary of the text book for each of these dimensions it

must also draw on other sources that reflect similar and/or differing theoretical explanations of the

organisational practices being discussed.


The assessment provides an overview of a current organisation, the name of which has been


Based on the detail provided in the overview and your interpretation of how theory informs your

understanding of all stages of the management of organisational processes and practices, you should

analyse this organisation and create your understanding of its current business model and its

organisational design.

Essay 1 – will start with a concise summary outline of your analysis of this organisation’s design and

how it currently operates. You will then present the findings of your literature review on structure and

people management to demonstrate how theory explains this design.

Essay 2 – focussing on the dimensions of marketing and finance, this essay will also use the literature

review to demonstrate how theory explains this organisation’s design.

Your conclusion is to synthesise your findings in your literature review for essays 1 and 2 to

demonstrate how each of these dimensions interrelate to explain the logic supporting this business

model and its organisational design.

Case Organisation ­ Australian Multinational Retail Company

Heytsbury Holdings Limited is a public company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, whose

principal activities comprise integrated franchising, retail and property portfolio management.

Heytsbury Holdings Limited’s retail operations consist of the sale of homewares, computers and

electrical goods. Marketing is predominantly done through television and the press although the

company is looking to expand this to online platforms as well.

The business model formula for success is due to the integration of the strength of the Heytsbury

brand and the strength of the Heytsbury retail property portfolio coupled with their unique

franchising formula.

In addition to the franchises in Australia, Heytsbury Holdings Limited’s retail operations are also

undertaken in wholly­owned ‘Heytsbury’ stores located in New Zealand and several countries in


The culture of the company is multi­faceted and difficult to define because of the nature of the

franchise system. … if you were to go from franchise to franchise you would find a different style of

management with each franchise operator and, therefore, a slight difference in culture.

As most of the franchise operators live close to their stores, they tend to develop close ties to their

local community. The very nature of the franchise system means a portion of the franchisee’s

earnings and turnover is spent in the local community. So for example when a customer purchases a

washing machine. the unit is delivered from the store to the customer, in most cases by a local

transport company, and is installed by a community­based installer.

The company operates in all states in Australia and has retail outlets in New Zealand and several

European countries. They are considering expanding operations in Australia and overseas. They are


extending the franchising model to their overseas operations;

Increasing their directly owned and controlled operations in Australia.

Number of franchised outlets – 174

Number of company owned outlets – 41

All retail outlets (franchised and company) are owned by Heytsbury and managed as an independent

property portfolio

Franchise sales revenue $3.96bn

Company owned sales revenue – 1.48bn

Employees in Australia only: Head Office has 470 employees and Franchisees employ 10,000 people.

Overall there has been an annual increase in sales of some 11% per year since 2000.

The essays are due as follows:


Also Business in Action

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