First work related learning report submitted by Mudavanhu Simon( M101799), who Is currently attached at Powertel,, to the faculty of commerce,department of economics in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a Bachelor of Commerce Honours Degree In Economics. [pic] CHAPTER 1 1. 0INTRODUCTION 1. 1Company background: PowerTel Communications (Pvt) Ltd. PowerTel Communications Private Limited was created in 1999 as a result of the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority unbundling program.
PowerTel Communications (Pvt) Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Zesa Holdings is a leading data communications service provider in Zimbabwe. PowerTel Communications is a licensed internet access provider with over 3000 kilometres of optical fibre cable in operation country wide. PowerTel communications has made great strides in bringing high speed, convenience and reliability in the use of information and communication technologies through its optic fibre and wireless network.
It was incorporated as a private company under the Companies Act Chapter (24:03) and it operated, as a division within the Transmission business of ZESA until 2001 when commercial operations started. In accordance with the postal regulations in this country PowerTel is fully licensed by the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) to provide it services in the country and globally. ZESA Holdings, having an extensive cable network in Zimbabwe, was in a better position to lay fibre optic cables hence the inception of PowerTel communication with the latter being he telecommunications arm of the parent. PowerTel offers Wide Area Network (WAN) connectivity and Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) services over its Virtual private Network (VPN) making use of last mile access links on optic fibre and broadband wireless [pic] Powertel Headquarter in Harare. 1. 2. 1PowerTel’s vision, mission statement, core values and strategic objectives. Powertel Motto Your information super highway PowerTel`s Vision To be the preferred ICT services provider in Zimbabwe and globally. PowerTel`s Mission
PowerTel is committed to providing world class ICT connectivity services and products that delight our customers whilst creating value for our stakeholders. From the above vision, Powertel is just a centimetre away from fulfilling its dream, looking at the rate at which Powertel is growing it will soon turn Zimbabwe into a global village. In 2004, Powertel started with only six base stations and up to date, Powertel owns over fifty base stations. This incites that in a few years to come, Zimbabwe will be wholely network fabricated. PowerTel’s Core Values Innovation. ? Teamwork. ? Integrity. ? Commitment. ? Passion for excellence. ? Purity. PowerTel Strategic Objectives PowerTel’s vision is to be the preferred ICT services provider in Zimbabwe and globally. This vision can only be realized through implementation of PowerTel’s numerous objectives, which consist of: ? Building infrastructure which is capable of providing all aspects of communication services including; a) Digital and audio transmission b) Circuit lease c) Voice relay and Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) ) Internet private line access and broadband private user access e) Virtual Private Network (VPN) access f) Video conferencing • To build a stronger reputation on product lines and services in terms of quality, reliability and responsiveness. This objective is the heart beat of all ICT companies and Powertel seems to be struggling to get the better of it. Information from the Marketing department suggests that out of fifteen thousand modems sold from January up to date, two thousand and twenty three were retained as defected modems, so the issue of quality is marginalised.
On reliability, it is a hard way to go since more than a thousand of modems were retained due to limited network access. • To gain in terms of network coverage, range of services and markets in which the company operates. As for network coverage, much is appreciated on this, Powertel managed to interconnect with almost every company in the ICT industry in the past one year and three hundred thousand kilometres of optical fibre was layed up to date across Zimbabwe. • To be in the forefront of innovative information and communication technology to add value to the customer services.
Powertel is striving to meet this objective since it lakes value addition. Since 1999, when powertel was formed only two services are offered on one subscriber line and with this alone it can be deduced that Powertel is failing to satisfy this objective. Taking Econet as our example, more than seven services are loaded on a single subscriber’s line. These services include voice calling, messaging, multi-media messaging, Ecocash service, Buddie beatz and internet service unlike Powertel’s subscriber lines that only provide data and voice services only. To achieve recognition as a leader in innovative application of information and communication technology for the benefit and convenience of the customer. Offering to the market affordable, high quality products. Partially, Powertel managed to attain recognition as the leader since it was the first Zimbabwean company and still the only to connect to the submarine cable system and again it is the first to offer the 3G Mobile internet. Almost ninety percent of Zimbabwean internet providers depends on internet and bandwidth from Powertel communication company.
So far so good on this objective, Powertel have managed to offer the cheapest internet in Zimbabwe compared to its rivals since it is offering unlimited internet to its customers compared to its competitors who are offering limited internet services Still on this objective powertel introduced the Powerfone VOIP telephony which delivers voice services at a cost close to nothing. ($4 per month). 1. 2. 3PowerTel’s products and services PowerTel has an extensive fiber optic cable network that runs from Harare to Botswana passing through Plumtree and another link that runs from Harare to Mozambique via Mutare.
PowerTel plans to install two other links: one linking Harare and Kariba and the other linking Harare to South Africa via Beitbridge. Fiber-optic cable is a medium that is used to transmit high speed data over long distances and it is more reliable, efficient and effective than wireless communication. PowerTel has various cutting-edge products and services that it offers to the general populace and the business fraternity and these products and services offer PowerTel a huge revenue base and they can be referred to as PowerTel’s key income streams. These products and services are explained in great detail in the coming paragraphs. )VPN A virtual private network (VPN) is a computer network that uses a public telecommunication infrastructure such as the Internet to provide remote offices or individual users secure access to their organization’s network. It aims to avoid an expensive system of owned or leased lines that can be used by only one organization. It includes data transfers using a secure cryptographic method between two or more networked devices which are not on the same private network so as to keep the transferred data private from other devices on one or more intervening local or wide area networks.
This service allows companies with branches spread country wide to network their ICT resources as if they are in the same building. This is achieved through PowerTel’s vast metropolitan fiber network. Services provided include Metro Ethernet links (64kbps to 10mbps bandwidth, intracity/town) and intercity links (from 64kbps to 2mbps) complemented by PowerTels SDH transmission backbone network. The main consumers who make use of this cutting-edge facility are manufacturing institutions, SMEs, financial Institutions and educational institutions and nongovernmental organizations. b)VoIP
Voice over Internet Protocol (Voice over IP, VoIP) is one of a family of internet technologies, communication protocols, and transmission technologies for delivery of voice communications and multimedia sessions over Internet Protocol (IP) networks, such as the Internet. Internet telephony refers to communications services, voice, fax SMS and/or voice-messaging applications that are transported via the Internet, rather than the public switched telephone network (PSTN). PowerTel’s new telephony service will deliver voice services and related value added service to the customer through internet protocol technology.
NGN is a convergent technology, combining wire line (PSTN), wireless (GSM, CDMA and 3G) and packet data networks together, for integrated voice, data and multimedia services. Because of the bandwidth efficiency and low costs that VoIP technology can provide, this will translate to low prices to the customer. The prices of extensions on VoIP are lower than for PBX and key systems c)Mobile internet Mobile internet services use wireless technology. With mobile internet one does not need a physical connection, such as a LAN cable, to connect to the internet.
PowerTel introduced the 3G Mobile Internet (Powerconnect) in 2007 to service the individual market. This product works off the CDMA technology. Customers require dongles or modems to enable a wireless connection to be established. This product comes with real convenience packaged in its mobility and speed. It has just become more appealing with the availability of more high quality bandwidth. Mobile internet is offered over a CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) platform. PowerTel has got a CDMA network which covers the following areas Harare, Bulawayo, Kadoma, Gweru, Kwekwe, Chinhoyi, Ruwa and Mutare.
The company has got CDMA base stations in these areas and is in the process of installing more base stations across the country. The mobile internet service is mainly consumed by the general public because it has very low start up costs. d)Carrier Business Carrier involves PowerTel providing the business fraternity with the means to transmit data, voice and videos through PowerTel’s comprehensive fiber optic cable. In simpler terms it is all about carrying customers large volumes of data on the PowerTel’s existing telecommunications infrastructure.
Historical Development Fibre Network Coverage [pic] P wertel Fibre Network from year 1999 to 2008 [pic] Powertel’s fibre network from year 2008 up-to-date Development interms of Network Powertel constructed a high capacity optical fibre telecommunication backbone network spanning the busiest telecommunication route from Harare to Plumtree via Bulawayo which has a capacity to carry all national traffic(data and voice) along its route in the period of year 1999 to year 2008 and this backbone is highlighted in red in Figure 1.
The route in blue was proposed for expansion of this backbone. In the period between 2008 – 2012, Powertel expanded the existing fibre backbone and managed to connect Harare and Mutare, Mutare and Beitbridge via Chipinge and Triangle as well as connecting Triangle and Gweru as shown in Figure 2. Expansion of existing network infrastructure on the route Beitbridge-Victoria Falls and Mutare – Pumtree provided all international interconnection points required to handover traffic to neighbouring countries. International Interconnection
Powertel communication company was the first Zimbabwean company to connect to the submarine cable(SEACOM cable) as well as connecting to Botswana telecommunication Company and these interconnections managed to convert Zimbabwe into a global village. By doing so, this did not help Zimbabwe alone but the rest of Southern Africa. The region was losing US$200 000 by routing traffic through Europe and USA to other regional countries, for example Zimbabwe to Botswana or South Africa a telephone was to go via USA.
Since registration, Powertel was focusing on data communication. The company went on to apply for a voice service licence which gave it a green light to offer both data and voice communication. Powertel again, was the first company to offer the third generation wireless network(3G) in Zimbabwe, based on the Code Division Multiple access(CDMA) technology. This enabled customers to connect to the internet anywhere. This enabled customers to access both fixed and mobile telephone services.
Technological Development Powertel company was offering only two services(carrier of carrier business and virtual private network) in the period of 1999 to 2004, from there up to date Powertel injected three more services into market stream and all to include mobile internet ,voice over internet protocol and bandwidth supply. Infrastructural development. PowerTel Communications Private Limited was created in 1999 as a result of the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority unbundling program.
From 1999 to 2001, Powertel was using ZESA buildings and graduated in 2002 when the company managed to rent its own premises. In 2004, Powertel managed to build its own building with six floors and also managed to expand across Zimbabwe. Development in terms of customer base |1999-2002 |2002-2008 |2008-2011 |2011-up-to-date | |Only three corporate companies |7 corporates |79 corporates and 900 000 |182 corporates and 1100004 | | |individual customers |individual customers | Powertel’s business was mainly whole selling in the period 1999 to 2008, with Econet and banks being its main customers. Powertel moved from whole selling to retailing in 2008 that’s why its customer base heightened as depicted above. Leadership Style As in some parastetals, Powetel uses the democratic leadership style. Information or communication radiates from the Board of directors down the hierarchy to the floor employees.
The managing director imparts information to the managers then the managers will do the same to employees in their respective departments. Managers will discuss those issues together with employees and come up with a consensus which is then sent back as feedback to the Managing director. This style has been so advantageous to Powertel because it engenders loyalty to the employees, leading to a lower labor turnover. Company logistics Powertel subcontracted two Chinese companies (Huawei and ZTE) to supply plant equipments and other accessories needed in its business.
The Procurement board raises an order and submit it to the 6. 0 EVALUATION OF THE APPLICABILITY OF THEORY TO PRACTICE Theory versus Practice at PowerTel The much hyped marriage of theory and practice that was supposed to appear in a happily ever caricature partly lived up to its expectations. The period of attachment was characterized by sheer endeavors and genuine motives to apply theory to practice . Somehow the supposed marriage was not easy as it was marked by stark contrast and different similarities between theory and practice.
Thus, to a considerable extent theory is applicable reality. It was during the student’s tenure at PowerTel Communications that he was to put to test the relevancy of theory through an in-depth analysis of the modules offered by the University in the field of finance. Selected courses in which duties involved applying theory to practice Introduction to computers and computer application The tasks carried out PowerTel were all carried out using computers and as such the student found the course very handy.
However, the theory learnt at school was so shallow that the student took time to adopt some basic computer concepts especially in the Microsoft excel section because some of the concepts were left uncovered. It is my recommendation to my beloved school to get much in to detail in this course and have more of practical than theory and also increase the student to computer ratio to 1 : 1 so that each and every student will have access to the computer. Financial Accounting Theory was applied on daily basis because many of the tasks that the student had to perform involved an aspect of financial accounting.
From ledger accounts and journal vouchers to posting items into the system, from coming up with Final Accounts to analyzing finance options of the company everything involved theoretical aspects of FAB being roped into practice. Econometrics and statistics. These two courses were the backbone of the student’s department and they gave an advantage to the student to an extent that managers were even astonished with the student’s performance especially when it comes to tarrifing and price modeling which requires the use of regression analysis.
The two courses availed the student to predict revenue, profits and costs using regression as well as evaluating and analyzing projects and business plans. The student highly appreciate the two courses because they gave a student a chopine to present business plans as well as pricing models before company managers during monthly, quarterly and semi-annually reports presentations. Business communication This course was so vital over my attachment period and was so much into practical than any other course. Powertel believes in team work and togetherness hence its team work motto, we believe in we can Not l can.
It was not going to be easy for the student to marry the group. Gratitude to this course because it availed the student to match the organizational requirements. The course was vital in report consolidating, taking for instance, organizational departments tends to blame each other over some issues, so the student will find a better way of expressing the situation rather than fueling the misunderstandings and come up with an intact company report ready for managing director’s perusal. Macro and Microeconomics These two courses were important especially in business plan development.
In business plan preparation, we accommodate the future economic conditions and this is where the student import micro and macroeconomic concepts. A sound business plan should accommodate the future economic environment, that is digging dip in interest rates, inflation, balance of payment, taxes, demand and income. A business plan should have an alternative that is the original accommodate the present environment, the second have to take into account volatile economic conditions highlighting how the company will adopt the economic downturn.
The student found the two courses being knowledge tributaries in business plan preparation. orporate Finance This is the area where so much thrust was supposed to be propagated in order for the student to apply theory into practice. The use of decision making models such as weighted average cost or the investment appraisal techniques were useful in the evaluation of the company’s short term or long-term fibre projects Management Numerous management theories were applied mostly A plethora of schools of thoughts was used since there was no school of thought that can be singled out as the one that was being used by management.
The various schools of thought were helpful in decision making especially on matters relating to relations with other workers and understanding organisational behavior. Treasury Management and Investments These courses were applicable especially on the preparation of cashflows, project evaluations determination of interest rates calculation of moving averages, loan armotisations and the debtors to creditor’s ratios Technologies Used Technologies used by PowerTel are classified into two broad categories namely, Voice and Data communications.
Voice Communication. • GSM (Global System for Mobile communication) is a digital mobile telephony system that is widely used in Europe and other parts of the world. GSM uses a variation of time division multiple access (TDMA) and is the most widely used of the three digital wireless telephony technologies (TDMA, GSM, and CDMA). GSM digitizes and compresses data, then sends it down a channel with two other streams of user data, each in its own time slot. It operates at either the 900 MHz or 1800 MHz frequency band. Data Communication
This communication technology is in two parts: physical and wireless. Wireless 3G UMTS will be the commercial convergence of fixed line telephone, mobile, Internet and computer technology. Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) is one of the third-generation (3G) mobile telecommunications technologies, which is also being developed into a 4G technology. 3G EVDO is the abbreviation for 3rd Generation Evolution-Date Optimized. It refers to high-speed Internet access via a wireless network. It offers totally wireless, always-present Internet service to its users.
CDMA Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) is a digital air interface standard, claiming eight to fifteen times the capacity of traditional analog cellular systems. It uses advanced mathematical techniques to allow multiple wireless devices to transmit simultaneously on the same frequency. Every device, such as a cell phone, is assigned a unique mathematical signature. It applies this signature to the original signal and transmits the modified signal. A receiver applies the inverse of the mathematical operation to recover the original signal.
Physical VPN (Virtual Private Network) is a technology that overlays communications networks and gives them the security and manageability required by business. Through VPN technology, network managers can set up secure relationships, automated connections, authorizations, and encryption, while still enjoying the low cost and availability of the Internet. VPNs protect data while in transit across the Internet, or within a company’s enclave. The VPN has many capabilities yet the primary functions are: ? Keep data confidential (encryption) Ensure the identities of two parties communicating (authentication) ? Safeguard the identities of communicating parties (tunneling) ? Ensure data is accurate and in its original form (non repudiation) ? Guard against packets being sent over and over (replay prevention) 1. 4The Clients of PowerTel The PowerTel does have a wide base of clientele covering an array of corporate entities of different sizes and complexity be they in the commercial, industrial and/ or financial sector quoted on the local stock exchange or not, to general individuals.
Below is a sample of PowerTel’s customers: |No. |Customer Name |Type of product/service | |1. |Impost |VOIP and VPN | |2. |World Vision |Carrier lease | |3. |NetOne |Carrier lease and bandwidth | |4. IwayAfrica |Broadband, VOIP and VPN | |5. |Harare Institute of Technology |VOIP and VPN | |6. |ZETDC Harare Region |Broadband, VOIP and VPN | |7. |SIRDC |VOIP and VPN | |8 |AFRICOM |Bandwidth 1. 5PowerTel’s Main Competitors PowerTel has no direct head to head competitors but every entity in the ITC sector in Zimbabwe is PowerTel’s competitor since PowerTel offers a wide range of products. The demarcation line between a customer and a competitor is murky because some of the customers for one product are also competitors for another product or service being offered by PowerTel. Africom is a good example; it purchases bandwidth from PowerTel hence it is a customer yet it also offers wireless internet (modems) making PowerTel’s competitor.
The main competitors of PowerTel cannot be categorized easily and logically thus it can suffice to just mention them sporadically without any criteria. The following are some of PowerTel competitors a) Econet – Offers internet services which Powetel offers. Econet provides VOIP, VPN and mobile internet, all these constitutes Powertel’s business epicentre. b) Africom –provides wireless internet, making it a challenge to Powertel c) MWEB – d) Africa Online- Offers wireless intenet. e) ZOL – provides wireless internet ) TelOne — Offers internet services which Powetel offers. Econet provides VOIP, VPN and mobile internet, all these constitutes Powertel’s core-business. ORGANISATIONAL STRUCTURE PowerTel has 5 departments namely; Human Resources, Marketing and Sales, Operations, Corporate Planning and Finance. These departments are moderately structured with the greatest number of employees in the Operations Department. At the helm of the organisation is the Managing Director (MD) who reports to the Board of Directors.
Corporate Planning Department is also known as the MD’s Department due to its role in the organisation. 2. 0 Broad Organisational Structure Diagram 1 2. 1 Corporate Planning Department Structure Diagram 2 1. 9Departments 3Corporate Planning Department The student was employed as an understudy Corporate planner in this Department. The Corporate Planning Department is a special department at PowerTel that defines the Corporate Goals of the organization and acts as mediator between the organization and Government and various agencies.
The department is also known as the MD’s department because of its goal formulation, evaluation and monitoring role in the organisation. It also ensures that the company complies or adheres with statutory requirements and regulatory standards of the country. The department is instrumental in planning for the organisation, giving the organisation direction and monitoring the progress on the path of goal-achievement. The department is headed by the Corporate Planning Manager.
Under him are the Business Analyst and the Quality Management Executive. I am employed as an understudy Corporate planner in this Department. 3. 1 Duties/tasks and responsibilities of the student in this department a)Business Plan Preparation The student is involved in the preparation of a business plan A Business Plan constantly involves the identification of new market opportunities, new technical breakthroughs, and it also help to avoid sinking time and money into starting a business that will not succeed. b)Pricing
The student is also entitled to come up with a number of pricing models and select the best model that provide the best package to the organisation as well as providing justification of why that model not others. All tariff proposals are supported by the results of a financial model based on realistic assumptions about the operating business environment and customer base. The pricing model is designed to cater for different needs of the different market segments with which Powertel deals: ? Service providers at the “wholesale” end ? End users that include corporate and individuals ) Evaluation of development of new products The student is responsible for new product evaluation. it is easy for a company to go under if it does not keep abreast with technology. With the assistance of pricing models, it is easy for us to evaluate new products to see whether they are economic to the organisation or not. So we must keep up to date with recent technology so that we can continually produce services of high quality. d)Business Reporting and report consolidation. In corporate planning, it is the duty of the student to prepare monthly and biweekly reports.
Biweekly reports are reports which are prepared after every two weeks and monthly reports are prepared at the end of every month. These reports are very important for a company since they give detailed activities of how the company is running to the managers and hence giving them a direction on how to plan for future activities. Biweekly reports are important because they come up with issues to be discussed by managers in the biweekly executive meetings. The biweekly reports clearly identify weather the company has met its targeted goals set for a period of time.
In report consolidation, the student compile reports from all departments to form a company report, that is the marketing department, operations department, finance department and information systems department, will all hand their reports to the corporate planning department. As corporate planners, we separate grains from soil, discarding unimportant information from all those reports to come up with a company report ready to be presented to the managing director. Chapter 3 SPECIAL OPPOTUNITIES This chapter gives a detail on personal and professional development that the student gained by being attached to the company.
Highlighted are the key skills developed by the student, his strength and weaknesses and an assessment on the work related learning. His stay with the company resulted in the student gaining a lot of skills, which include technical skills, communication skills, analytical skills, human relation skills and conflict handling skills. I. Technical skills Working at PowerTel Company helped the student in acquiring new skills. Prior to attachment little knowledge about Microsoft Excel was acquired. At first it was difficult to use the excel package. As more exposure was gained by inputting information and producing different reports.
II . Communication skills Communication skills were acquired especially when working at the clients. One of the duties on corporate planning was to talk to clients almost on a daily basis to inform them about their payments and any queries they needed to be attended to. As a result the attachee learnt to be polite, patient and tolerant with different characters. Good communication improves the company’s image to its outside world. With particular attention to verbal skills, the student noticed a big improvement. It was a frightening thing consulting the suppliers whose documents had not been completed.
They would ask a number of questions in a hostile manner. Such a situation helped the student on how to talk nicely so that they would understand. III. Analytical skills Analytical skills were acquired during the attachment period. Reports must not be analyzed just at the surface but right from the bottom up to the top. The student was able to analyze things in detail, that is what they brought them about and the consequences. The supervisor played a major role in instilling this skill in the student. During report analysis, the student gained a skill of critically examining the competitors environment in a broad spectrum.
Through such analysis the student realized that there are some blind spots, which people may exempt as if they do not affect them whilst they have significant impact on the organisation. IV. Human relation skills The attitude developed towards teamwork improved. In accounts department, it is essential to work as a team and it helped a lot. Teamwork made work easier if communication with workmates for better ideas was made regularly. Teamwork improves workers morale and aid in maintaining the organisational behaviour. V . Conflict handling skills Sometimes the attachee’s interests would conflict with those of the company.
For instance, just like any other employee one may need money to survive but sometimes the company may not have that money. Or the money may be there but for other purposes. Considering the fact that Work Related Learning is there to arm students with practical skills on what they have learned theoretically, the student had to concentrate on learning. The more he did the work the more he learn. VI. Interpersonal skills The student interacted with people of different backgrounds and personalities. This improved his interpersonal skills. The student had to meet the suppliers and deal with their problems.
He had to run around all departments looking for documents, information and sometimes disseminating the information. Due to these interpersonal skills I began to realize the relevance of teamwork and began to shun witch hunting. I was prepared to accept outcomes of my actions and admit where negative results had emerged. VII. Meeting skills There were a few meetings I attended and these were only in the department level. Though they wereformal meetings the manager tried to infomalise them so that students could be accommodated sincethey were unfamiliar with such meetings. The prominent skill I grasped was that the agenda should be followed.
Whenever one gets the platform to say something he or she should to stick to theagenda. Failure to do so would lead to stray discussions, which would not accomplish objectives of the meeting. Apart from that I learnt that for one to contribute meaningful suggestions he shouldlisten when others are passing their own opinions and it is a skill to abide by the chairperson ordersnot just uttering when its not called for. VIII. Self Confidence During the first I lacked this skill when talking to my supervisor or even to those who would want to be served. However, later on I became adapted to the working environment.
I could even completetasks from one department to another under the clear notion that I was doing the right thing. As I began to settle my confidence got built up and in meetings like those of reporting on marketingintelligence I became able to say out my findings, explain them in detail and defend them againstcriticism. IX. Self initiative I had a driving force in me that pushed me to execute my tasks. I would not wait for the supervisor tocoerce me carrying out my duties. In some trivial cases, which needed a quick decision to be made, Ihad to pass decisions to avoid curbing the process by consulting my assistant supervisor.
Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 40 [pic] [pic][pic] 3. 2 Personal Development The four A’s of Steve Pavlina, were part of the way taken in the personal development process. A ssessment of the working environment was done at arrival at Wattle. A dopting the way of life at the place was next, followed by a daptation to the environment in it. Necessary a djustments to personalcharacteristics were made to suit the people at Wattle and the ups and downs found in all workingenvironments. Mastering time usage for extreme productivity and overcoming procrastination of tasks were part of the learnt tips.
Setting of realistic goals, creations of action plans in case of crisis and achievement of results were not left out either. In times of crisis, there is need to confront and solve hard problemsfaced in working situation which is now done with confidence. It was also learnt that to succeed inany field, personal motivation and cultivating a burning desire to keep moving towards your goalswas vital. Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 41 [pic] [pic][pic] 3. 3 Strengths and weaknesses Strengths I. Adaptation
The environment in which the student was working was so complex with ever changing systems thatthe student had to be flexible and be able to adapt to some changes. He quickly familiarises himself with the systems to such an extend that some of the workers had to consult from him II. Pressure sustenance The most pressure was experienced at the end of a financial period when all documents had to beinputted in the system. During such a period the student had to stay at work till late to come back thefollowing day very early. All these he did willingly without experiencing any stress.
III. Proper communication skills The student has proved to have good communication skills through his ability to handle any conflictwith the creditors, ability to trace missing documents and communication with the management. Interaction with different people either over the phone or face to face called for the use of tacticslearnt at college. In most cases the situations called for politeness and cheerfulness in explaining andasking for certain things. IV. Punctuality Work started at 8. 00am and most of the time the student would get at work at 6:30am. his enabledhim to counter the pressure he would face if he had to start work at exact times. In that bid I becameso punctual almost every day. And 4. 30pm was the dismissal time but the student would go an extramile up to 5. 00pm. V. Accuracy Input of documents in the system need a great deal of accuracy any failure might cause informationdistortion. However the student had proved to be very accurate and his supervisors chose him as oneof the team members who helped in input. Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 42 [pic][pic] [pic] [pic][pic] Weaknesses . I. Unfamiliarity with some computer functions
The student had to cope with the computer functions such as excel. Excel is widely used in theaccounting department and the student’s little knowledge about excel affected the work progress. 3. 4 An assessment of the Work Related Learning The full year spent at Wattle was not just a formality so as to adhere to the Bachelor of commercedegree programme. Rather it was a productive learning process that exposed the student to the realworking environment. Practical business situations that are often presented at college were made real Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 3 [pic][pic] [pic] [pic][pic] through this process. The working environment was not modified so as to cater for students but itwas a real with clear operational structures. It gave the student the necessary practical experienceneeded in developing future managers. This was more than a mere academic process as the studentsmatured in their individuality improving interpersonal communication skills. Most of the objectives of the WRL were met significantly as the student has now mastered most of the listed areas in the outline. Some of the topics took longer to be mastered than others.
This was because other tasks were day-to-day happenings like the use of spreadsheets and some were one-off like data capturing in the system. The other flaw of the outline was that most of the topics weredrafted like they were to be covered in theory. In the end the student had to search the net before presenting the monthly report and claim that a certain topic was well covered. The supervisors were also pushed by the student’s drive to learn. Where the student showed nointerest, there was no need for the supervisor to force it on the student as they had lots of other work to do.
The same can be said for any other company with students on attachment. Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 44 [pic] [pic][pic] Conclusion At first the attachment period was not enjoyable since the student had to familiarize with bothworkmates and the working environment. As time went by it turned out to be fruitful. So muchexperience and skills was gained. There were a lot of things that could not be done before attachmentthat can be done now, for example using SMB (Small to Medium Business Accounting Software)system and working as a team.
The student also learnt to appreciate that theory without practice isdead, to be patient and being tolerant. The student is now a better person due to the attachmentexperience both at work and personally Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 45 [pic] [pic][pic] Chapter 4 Challenges and recommendations In this chapter challenges faced by the student during his Work Related Learning period areexplained and a highlight of how some of these challenges can be reduced.
As a matter of factstudents face so many challenges in their learning on which some are attributed to the company of placement, some to their learning institution and others to the students themselves. 4. 1 Challenges faced during attachment period I. Applying theory to practice .At college, theory staff was learnt. It proved to be difficult to put theory into practice since very fewthings learnt at college applied to the practical part. Theory is skeletal without any experience fromthe working environment. The student had to use that little information to tackle all the situations. II.
Slow adaptation to accounting information system packages .Accounting information system packages used like the SMB and later on ERP that are custom madeto meet Wattle Accounting System needs were a real challenge in the first days. The student was notfamiliar to it and did not know how to use it and was very slow in using at first. As time passed by,he managed to get used to the system and now using it faster with few or no errors at all. This hemanaged through observation whilst others did the data capturing and asking questions for clear understanding, taking down the procedures for future reference also eased the task III.
Dealing with other workers .Some of the workmates were very difficult to work with. Some were reluctant to offer assistance indetail and were rude. Difficulties were experienced in performing some jobs up to perfection at first. Some people at Wattle Company used to think that attachee students were a threat if they know or perform better than they do. They had a mindset that they can loose their jobs if that attacheehappens to be employed back after graduation since the student would have shown potential during Chapanda Kudakwashe G R0645087 Attachment Report HMAN 6 [pic][pic][pic][pic] [pic] [pic][pic]VII. Meeting skills There were a few meetings I attended and these were only in the department level. Though they were formal meetings the manager tried to infomalise them so that students could be accommodated since they were unfamiliar with such meetings. The prominent skill I grasped was that the agenda should be followed. Whenever one gets the platform to say something he or she should to stick to the agenda. Failure to do so would lead to stray discussions, which would not accomplish objectives of the meeting.
Apart from that I learnt that for one to contribute meaningful suggestions he should listen when others are passing their own opinions and it is a skill to abide by the chairperson orders not just uttering when its not called for. VIII. Self Confidence During the first days lacked this skill when talking to my supervisor or even to those who would want to be served. However, later on I became adapted to the working environment. I could even complete tasks from one department to another under the clear notion that I was doing the right thing.
As I began to settle, my confidence got built up, and in meetings like those of reporting on marketing intelligence I became able to say out my findings, explain them in detail and defend them against criticism. IX. Self initiative I had a driving force in me that pushed me to execute my tasks. I would not wait for the supervisor to coerce me carrying out my duties. In some trivial cases, which needed a quick decision to be made, I had to pass decisions to avoid curbing the process by consulting my assistant supervisor. 3. 3 Strengths and weaknesses Strengths I. Adaptation
The environment in which the student was working was so complex with ever changing systems that the student had to be flexible and be able to adapt to some changes. He quickly familiarises himself with the systems to such an extend that some of the workers had to consult from him II. Pressure sustenance The most pressure was experienced at the end of a month when all documents had to be inputted in the system. During such a period the student had to stay at work till late to come back the following day very early. All these he did willingly without experiencing any stress. III. Proper communication skills
The student has proved to have good communication skills through his ability to handle any conflict with the creditors, ability to trace missing documents and communication with the management. Interaction with different people either over the phone or face to face called for the use of tactics learnt at college. In most cases the situations called for politeness and cheerfulness in explaining and asking for certain things. IV. Punctuality Work started at 8. 00am and most of the time the student would get at work at 7:30am. this enabled him to counter the pressure he would face if he had to start work at exact times.
In that bid I became so punctual almost every day. And 4. 30pm was the dismissal time but the student would go an extra mile up to 5. 00pm. V. Accuracy Input of documents in the system need a great deal of accuracy any failure might cause information distortion. However the student had proved to be very accurate and his supervisors chose him as one of the team members who helped in input. Challenges and recommendations The student in his Work Related Learning period, faced the following challenges, and highlights of how he managed to deal with them.
As a matter of fact students face so many challenges in their learning on which some are attributed to the company of placement, some to their learning institution and others to the students themselves. 4. 1 Problems faced during attachment. I. Unfamiliarity with some computer functions The student had to cope with the computer functions such as excel. Excel is widely used in the planning department and the student’s little knowledge about excel affected the work progress. II. Applying theory to practice .At University, theory staff was learnt.
It proved to be difficult to put theory into practice since very few things learnt at univesity applied to the practical part. Theory is skeletal without any experience from the working environment. The student had to use that little information to tackle all the situations. III. Dealing with other workers .Some of the workmates were very difficult to work with. Some were reluctant to offer assistance in detail and were rude. Difficulties were experienced in performing some jobs up to perfection at first. Some people at PowerTel used to think that attachee students were a threat if they know or perform better than they do.
They had a mindset that they can loose their jobs if that attache happens to be employed back after graduation since the student would have shown potential during attachment. The student had to humble himself and show respect to the entire staff member regardless of their positions. IV. Changing of duties . Some new things were introduced very often. It took time to adapt to this rotation system. New people were met of every department the attachee worked in. It took time to get used to the people and the duties performed in each respective department.
The student had to grasp the concepts quickly and familiarize himself with the organization. V. Teamwork problem Teamwork was difficult to cope up with at first. Working with many people with different characters, attitudes, backgrounds and cultures was not an easy task to do. Some people were found to be very rude and difficult to work with especially at the end of an accounting period. It was characterized by long working hours almost everyday and working under pressure to meet deadlines. The student had to be flexible and easily adapt to the team works. VI. Multiple supervisors .
Since the student was to transfer from one section to the other, he faced a great challenge of being supervised by different supervisors some of whom were not that cooperative. The teaching techniques had to differ from one supervisor to the other because of that the student was to be flexible. VII. Slow feedback from other departments . When it comes to report consolidation, other departments delay to hand over their reports to the corporate planning department for consolidation. Since a company report is an output given by compiling reports from all departments. The required reports are usually delayed late.
The student had to regularly prompting the people to impart the information earlier by constantly reminding them and try to explain the importance of the information required. Powertel corporate culture I. Professionalism In all its operations, PowerTel believes in professionalism, integrity, discipline and honesty. Its actions, at all times will be ethical, legal and fair. The company’s principles remain fundamental in all it does and will be constantly applied. I I. Respect for the individual The Powertel Company believes in and has respect for the individual, be he or she an employee, a customer, a shareholder or any other stakeholder.
III. Teamwork The company believes that its goals will only be achieved through teamwork. “WE” and not “I” will forever guide its actions. IV. Quality The Powertel company’s success and dominance in the industry has resulted from the quality of its products and services through efficiency. It is committed to excellence of quality products and services. V. Continuous Improvement Powertel company believe in the principle of doing better and improving what it is already doing, and with this it embraces quality management, technology advancement and facility improvement.
It encourages ingenuity and promotes preservation of the environment. VI. Good Corporate Citizen The Powertel Company is fully aware of its responsibilities to participate and promote development in this nation. It is also fully cognizant of its responsibilities to society through its contribution, sponsorship and caring for the environment. All in all, Powertel Company has managed to out do the harsh economic environment and other limiting factors by continually living and practicing its set values. The values are not just documented statements can be noted as one moves around the company.
Recommendations to the PowerTel company After learning and observing from PowerTel, the student has some few recommendations which, if rightly implemented can be go a long in preserving and improving Powertel Communications. Product Branding and Packaging Powertel company should brand its products inorder to increase the market of its products. Taking a few Powertel competitors like Econet and Utande they have beautiful brands and packages and this earn them a an advantage in louring customers. Econet’s brands include Ecocash, Ecolife, Buddie zone, Buddie Beartz,and Econet broadband.
If one talks of Ecocash, what will click in the customer’s mind has something to do with sending, receiving and buying airtime via the cellphone. As for Buddie zone, one can easily deduce of calling on a discount. Buddie Beartz- has much to do with caller back ringtone and lastly Econet Broadband mirrors internet airtime. Below are Utande company’s brands and packages [pic] Collectively,the four packages are refered to as Umax which simply refers to internet broadband. The four packages are packed according to price and amount of data.
Customers have a room of choise dependind on the amount of money one has. As for individual customers mostly afford the mellomax with a $35 tag and medium corporates will go for either the mightyMax($60) or the megaMax($140) and large corporates will go for the monsterMax($240) since their internet needs are high. Powertel only provide $50 mounthly subscriptions to all customers of which most of its customers are in the individual customer bracket who are finding it difficult to raise a $50 monthly subscription.
Therefore it is ideal for Powertel unbundle its $50 monthly subscription into smaller packages affordable to individual customers hence an advantage of packaging. Asset exhaustion Powertel’s assets are not fully utilised to maximise the return on every asset. Taking Econet as our example, more than seven services are loaded on a single subscriber’s line. These services include voice calling, messaging, multi-media messaging, Ecocash service, Buddie beatz, Ecolife and internet service unlike Powertel’s subscriber lines that only provide data and voice services only.
Therefore it is credible for Powertel to apply for more licences which will enable the company to exhaust all its assets than leaving its assets lying idle. B[pic] ———————– Chief Operating Officer Chief Engineer Finance Manager Legal Officer Finance Director Sales and Marketing Manager Human Resources Manager Managing Director POWERTEL Board Corporate Planning Manager Corporate Planning Manager Managing Director POWERTEL (Board) Senior Salaries Officer Student Business Analyst Corporate Student Quality management office Business Analyst