A discussion of factors affecting firms and their activities

A discussion of factors affecting firms and their activities




Working individually, your assignment is to research three different articles from the UK national press, that enable you to apply business and economic theory, in a discussion of current business issues, in the UK economy.

The aim of this assignment is to assess your knowledge and understanding of the theory, together with your ability to apply theoretical concepts to business situations, in a written report.



The assignment tasks

  • Produce a report 1500 to 2000 words long.

The word count does not include citations, references, bibliography or appendices.

You will be penalised if you stray outside of +/- 10% of this word count.


  • The report should consist of a discussion of three news items.

Each item must concern a specific firmor organisation. You should ensure that each news item illustrates a different firm/ organisation and a different business concept.





  • Article 1must identify a firm which has undergone changeg. managerial change, an increase / decrease in profitability, product or market differentiation, size or orientation of firm. This list is not exclusive.


  • Article 2 must identify a firm which has which has been affected by an external factor P, E, S, T or L. The effect may be positive or negative. (This excludes the ethical factor, E)


  • Article 3 must discuss an ethical issue affecting a company’s image and operations, positively or negatively.





  • These articles must come from daily newspapers (The Times, The Financial Times, The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Independent). An electronic version of each articlemust be filed in the appendix of the report. The newspapers can be dated anytime betweenAugust 1st 2014 andFeb 1stThe articles may be taken from any combination of newspapers. They can be from the same issue or completely different ones, the same newspaper.They must be from the date range and newspapers stated above.


  • The purpose of the report is to discuss three business issues, occurring in the UK economy between August 1st 2014 and February 1st 2015,


  • Produce your report in a clear structured way, follow this format:
  • A front cover to your report, with your name, Id number and the title
  • The contents pageshould identify each article by reference to its title, newspaper used, with date, reporter and page number.
  • The introductionoutlines the business environment in the UK and the theory contained in the report..


  • The findings of the report has three subsections, each starts with a clear heading, taken from the newspaper title of the article. This is followed by an explanation of the case,analysis of the main factors and evaluation of the issue. The higher marks are awarded for work which is analytical and evaluative.
  • The conclusion reviews the work and highlights the more important elements emerging from the research.
  • The reference list must match the citations given in the body of the report. References must be written using the Harvard Referencingsystem.
  • The appendix must contain only material which has direct relevance to and supports statements made in the body of the work. Copies of the three news items are filed, in order and numbered.





The BS 4103 text book by John Slomanetal and other publications such as The Business Environment, edited by Rob Watkins, are useful academic resources for this assignment.

Research for the articles will be from the designated newspapers. Other useful resources can be found via the LRC on-line business portal.




Your report will be marked with regard to the following:


  • Ability to produce a written report and to follow the assignment instructions.


  • Ability to communicate information and concepts in a clear way.
  • Ability to use appropriate terminology.
  • Ability to apply theory in the discussion of current issues in the UK market.
  • Knowledge with respect to the specific cases chosen and theory applied.
  • Understanding of the concepts displayed by applying them in a clear and relevant way. This high level marking criteria allows credit for evaluation and analysis.