Established in Sept 2001, ‘Accenture’ is regarded as one of world’s most innovative and leading organization in Information Technology Enabled Services (ITES). Combining unparalleled experience, comprehensive capabilities across all industries and business functions, and extensive research on the world’s most successful companies, Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments. Accenture global expansion network delivers in Consulting, technology, and Outsourcing. Its current CEO is Pierre nanterme.
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Accenture originated as the business and consulting division of accounting firm Arthur Anderson. Anderson consulting adopted its current name ‘Accenture’ on 1st January 2001, which means ‘Accent on the future’. From 1st Sept 2009, the company has been incorporated in Ireland with its global headquarters located in New York. It is world’s 3rd largest consulting firm as well as being a global player within the technology consulting industry, with a tagline ‘High Performance. Delivered.’ Accenture is a Fortune Global 500 company, and a global brand of rank 53, with a brand value US$7.5 billion. As of 2010, the company had more than 200 locations in over 120 countries.
Accenture in India began its operations back in 1987. It was the first global management consulting organization to start an operation in India. Today, India is the home to the Accenture delivery centres for technology and BPO. It is also a Global leader in technology and system integration. It also provides services like technology R&D, enterprise solutions and Business Intelligence
Key Facts about Accenture Services India Pvt. Ltd. –
India is the largest geography for Accenture.
Accenture has 18 facilities across Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai and Delhi.
Accenture clients in India include seven of the top 10 companies listed in the Economic Times 500 rankings.
Accenture in India has a strong and growing pool of SAP, Microsoft, Oracle, and information management and Testing professionals.
Accenture Delivery Centres in India are SAS 70 Type II certified and Core IT Structure is BS 25999 certified.
Accenture operations in India are assessed at CMMi Level 5, PCMM ®version 2.0 Level 5, ISO 27001. (Scribd, 2007)
Mission Statement- To help our clients become high performance businesses and governments.
Vision Statement- To become one of the world’s leading companies bringing innovations to improve the way the world works and lives.
Core Values- Client value creation, One Global network, Respect for the individual, best people, Integrity and Stewardship.
The SWOT analysis is ubiquitous and forms a conventional even essential tool in any strategic planning approach SWOT has as its strength. It clearly distinguishes between where your organization is today, and where it could be in the future. The fact that it is so ubiquitous and so is very familiar, its purpose and categories are well known. Additionally it considers both internal and external factors and when well used, can effectively balance the both (Robson, 2004).
An assessment of opportunities and threats form part of an environment scan whilst an assessment of strength and weakness are part of capability auditing of the organization. SWOT analysis is extremely familiar to businesses of the core analyst. It’s virtually a conventional approach to the consideration of-
What are our weak or strong products, divisions; attitudes etc. Are there any gaps or opportunities we can go for anyway? Are there any danger/threats we really need protection from? (Peppard, 2002)
Strength could be organization’s specialist marketing expertise, a new and innovative product or service, location/geography of the business, quality processes and procedures and any other aspect which adds value to the product or services. On the other hand ‘Weakness’ can be a lack of expertise, undifferentiated product compared to its competitors, poor quality of goods and services, damaged reputation etc. (Bob de wit, 2004) Opportunities may include a developing market such as internet, mergers, and joint ventures or strategic alliances, moving into new market segments that offer improved profits, a new international market, or a market vacated by an ineffective operator. (Michael A Hitt, 2007)
Accenture has got consulting-driven expertise, particularly on strategic projects. Partner-driven market approach facilitates relationships with C-level decision makers. The Accenture business is structured around five focused operating groups (comprising of 17 industry groups). Horizontal platforms in management consulting and system integration feed innovation capabilities (Folo, 2006). It was formed with consulting arm of Anderson Worldwide, then broke from it in 2001 as it went public. It had revenues of $23.3 billion in 2010 and profit margins of 6.7%. It enhances its consulting capabilities with acquisition of the George Group in 2007 Referring to Appendix 1, this consulting driven expertise falls under PESTEL’s technological factor.
Accenture makes use of the re-usable data models, centralized data repositories, and standardized processes as per the industry group viz. Chemicals & Natural Resources, ISU, Health &Public Services. The strategy relies on global surveys are research that identify the best practices of other industries, the findings of which helps establish its thought leadership and inform it services.
Its partner-driven approach to sales that ensures the development of business relationship. Accenture has got strong marketing programs aimed at business customers. Its consulting base drives strength in its overall design and implementation strategy, its ‘High performance’. This strategy builds a powerful knowledge repository for Accenture to leverage. It can complement its technology expertise with quantitative data and use key findings in its go-to-market approach. It has a coherent strategy from strong thought leadership to consulting and delivery. The business models for the industries are referred to, whenever need arises. Client’s expectations are taken into account. The key areas are found out to focus on depending on the geography and past experiences.
Also Accenture believes in business focus, which brings a data-driven approach to identifying and implementing best practices. It has got a long history of focusing on intersection of technology and businesses. Accenture grew very strongly in 2008 despite the economic crisis without reducing the manpower much. Instead they implemented a strategy where the working hours were increased from 8 hours to 9hours. So ultimately the amount of work, which Accenture used to deliver on day-to-day basis, was increased rather than reducing the manpower (Cognizant, 2008).
The big plus for Accenture is its ‘continuous improvement process ‘. It has set up a unit called GPTW (Great Place To Work) which helps employees keep off the stress. Arranging fun games within and/or outside campus, health check-ups, and ergonomics sessions for employees is a normal routine.
Talk about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Accenture has also been doing great contribution to society, and all philanthropic in its cause. Many social activities are performed within Accenture to help the society, which includes blood donation camps, donating clothes to poor, visiting orphanages and distributing goodies, sweets etc. (Accenture internal Newsletters, Oct 2010).
One of the major weaknesses of Accenture is that, it relies heavily on consulting. Also, Accenture favours large-sized transformational projects, and not bite-sized service project capabilities. Its heavy partner-driven approach to sales does not scale easily to the mid-market. This has been a big-time weakness in many of the biggies in consulting and services industry. Accenture has always been targeting big projects and big clients. The diamond clients include DuPont, BHP Billiton, Vodafone, Barclays, and BofA etc. It brings on big profit margins for the organization. On the other hand, its other competitors like Tata Consulting Services Pvt. ltd, focus on small businesses too. So it takes out a chunk of clients from these mid-sized markets. These mid-sized markets may not provide big margin of profits, but it definitely helps branding the business and stabilize. They also help small firms improve their businesses. Also the size of Accenture can be a weakness. It might take slower to react to customer’s needs and wants as well as industry fluctuations. (Mendel, May 7, 2009) So Accenture should imply the strategy where the small scale businesses, especially in India, get services from it, imply innovative solutions to flourish these businesses to put themselves into the big shoes.
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Accenture has very well placed itself as a brand. It had moved to rank 53 as a global brand. So the brand value, reputation for business performance, and stability resonates with customers in weak economic conditions. Accenture holds a leadership position in North American market, and its consulting expertise sets it apart from smaller competitors. It continues to leverage its high-performance research to identify new opportunities in hot tech markets like SOA, SaaS, and cloud computing. Its strong brand and reputation for stability and thought leadership should serve it well in the weak economic environment (Chris Andrews, Jan 22, 2009). The strategy for opportunity can be targeting small-scale businesses and providing services to mid-sized market. In geography like India, where IT sector is booming, will be a great market for IT major.
Intense competition is the biggest threat, especially from IBM. Other competitors in most of its business arenas are Computer Sciences Corporation, Deloitte, Tata Consultancy Services, Wipro and Infosys. Premium offering may not resonate with mid-market customers, creating opportunity for mid-tier of service provider. It will compete always against the scale and geographic diversity of the larger IBM global Business Service (Bartels, January 12, 2009). The current cost-cutting environment does not lend itself to the company known for its premium services and pricing. This is because, generally many organizations react to recession by cutting discretionary spending, reducing strategy consulting work, and putting large transformational projects on hold. These market changes could affect Accenture more than its competitors, mainly because the company is less known for its ability to handle bite-sized projects. Some of these challenges could be mitigated by the fact that customers will revert to a strong brand like Accenture’s (Cognizant, 2008).
(Note: The story is based on Forrester report `SWOT: The Evolution Of IT Service Providers To Business Technology Competitors’. Methodology is, Forrester invited IT majors to participate in SWOT analysis to participate in the research by answering 21 questions on strength, weakness, opportunities, threats. Each vendor had the opportunity to discuss with Forrester and discuss the results with Forrester analysis before publication. )
Today Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company is now going to identify new business, technology trends and developing solutions to help clients around the world to enter in new markets, improve operational performance and deliver their products more effectively and efficiently. Accenture is trying to develop good work environment and huge brands across the world. Its framework for aligning a client’s people, process and technology in support of its overall strategy for client organization to work to enhance business performance. It is one of the largest consulting firms in the world as well as being a global player within the technology consulting industry. Accenture’s current clients include 96 of the Fortune Global 100 and more than three quarters of Fortune Global 500. With the continuous innovation and rapid transformation has been Accenture’s history.
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Bob de wit, R.M., 2004. Strategy- process, content, context-An international perspective. 3rd ed.
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Cognizant, 2008. Cognizant.com. [Online] Available at: http://www.cognizant.com/html/solutions/services/cbc/Forrester_SWOT_The_Evolution_of_IT_Service_Providers.pdf). [Accessed 27th January 2011].
Folo, 2006. Folo.com. [Online] Available at: http://www.folo.cn/user1/3124/archives/2006/12614.html [Accessed 2nd February 2011].
Mendel, T., May 7, 2009. Market Momentum: Tech-Enabled Business Services Market Activity. The Time Is Right For More Cost Transparency In IT.
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Peppard, J.w.a.J., 2002. Strategic planning for Information systems.
Robson, W., 2004. Strategic management information systems. 2nd ed. Prentice Hall.
Scribd, 2007. Scribd.com. [Online] Available at: (http://www.scribd.com/doc/45090566/ACCENTURE) [Accessed 25th January 2011].
Times Of India, 2008. Times Of India. [Online] Available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/tech/itslideshow/5773941.cms [Accessed 1st February 2011].
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