Developing a total communication strategy in the uk market Analysis

Table of Content

1. Introduction

This study will critically analyze the external environment of the nomadic phone operators industry with the application of appropriate scheme tools including PESTEL and Michael Porter ‘s five forces theoretical accounts. An immediate consequence of this would be the designation of chances and menaces that may originate from alteration in environmental factors and appraisal of the attraction of the industry severally.

The study will besides analyze critically, the strategic capableness of Vodafone, besides using appropriate scheme tools ensuing in the designation of cardinal strengths and failings of the house. The purpose here will be to place and discourse the nucleus competences the house possesses.

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To help the analysis, the study will pull on information from assorted beginnings such as:

The Vodafone instance survey on page 557 in the chief text edition by Johnson, Scholes and Whittington, Exploring Strategy 9th Edition, Prentice Hall, 2011.

Other beginnings include Keynotes, Mintel and Magazines.



The PESTEL model is used for the analysis and harmonizing to Johnson, Scholes and Whittington ( 2011 ) , “it provides a comprehensive list of influences on the possible success or failure of peculiar strategies” . Discussed below are a few issues of PESTEL, delight see appendix for other issues.

Political/Legal factors

Government ‘s denationalization ( through Ofcom ) of the national telephone company, BT, obliging it to let entree to its web ( via Openreach ) for voice and broadband. This has helped to interrupt down BT ‘s monopoly thereby making an chance for Mobile operators to run and at competitory rates. ( instance analyze p.558 )

Economic factors

  1. The UK economic system has still non to the full recovered from the fiscal crisis of 2008, retrieving even slower than other states amidst immense authorities resuscitation attempts and even consumer disbursement is expected to worsen by 0.6 per capita in 2011 ( the Telegraph, May 2011 ) .This is a menace to the industry as, the slower the economic recovery, the slower the market growing for the nomadic operators industry.
  2. Though the instance survey ( p.558 ) says that personal disposal income growing as experienced between 2002 and 2007 was forecasted to restart in the hereafter, recent developments suggest otherwise. Now the hereafter is here, studies say household incomes are falling ( NewStatesman, May ­­­­­­­­­­­2011 and Mail Online, May 2011 ) . This is a menace to the nomadic industry as it means less income at the disposal of families, therefore less endorsers to its services.

Social factors

  1. Consumer demand for converged services, such as nomadic telephone, fixed line telephone, telecasting and broadband cyberspace, was increasing ( instance analyze p.558 ) . This means an chance for Mobile operators to spread out their market as more people are coming on board with this convergence demand which could be a consequence of the dip in disposable income so people want all services in one and pay a lower ball amount for all in a command to ration their income.
  2. A diminution in UK fixed line telephone market as families were going “mobile-only” users. This is an chance for Mobile operators to capture the market portion of fixed line telephone operators in a command to spread out theirs.
  3. Consumer perceived prestigiousness that comes with having smartphones is an industry chance. For illustration, everyone wants to hold an IPhone, HTC or Blackberry because they are ‘cool ‘ or for other grounds, so operators in the industry can capitalise on this and increase their market portion by offering inexpensive trades.
  4. Consumer ‘hype ‘ for new and modern engineerings as everyone wants to hold the latest ‘thing ‘ in engineering. This would make an chance for the industry to capitalise on and spread out their market portion.

Technological factors

  1. Development of new engineerings, IP ( Internet Protocol ) for voice, informations and picture transmittal ( instance analyze p.557 ) . The dynamic nature of engineering is presenting a menace as operators may be stuck with disused engineering thereby confronting a challenge to be pro-active in order to retain market portion and maintain churn rates at bay.
  2. Continued upgrading of velocities over nomadic webs poses a menace as operators have to maintain up with the upgrading of velocities because they might free clients to service suppliers who can offer better velocities.

Environmental factors

As a consequence of promotion in telecommunications engineering, Mobile operators have to replace web equipments and risky wastes ( masts, overseas telegrams, building waste etc ) often. Mobile operators are so faced with the challenge of happening energy efficient ways of recycling which may besides be capital intensive, wholly presenting a menace.

Legal factors

  1. Ofcom ‘s issue of licenses for extra Mobile web operators will present a menace to incumbent operators ( as their market portion is threatened ) and be an chance to possible operators as this will take down entry barriers for them.
  2. Elaborate legal contracts can besides be a menace to the industry as tonss of legal duties have to be satisfied anterior to and after entry. Pulling up different phone contracts for different nomadic bundles can turn out disputing for the operators.


Socio-cultural issue

Consumer demand for converged services: Consumer demands ( which has led Virgin Media to supply multiple services such as the ‘quad drama and others supplying the ternary drama ) alteration from clip to clip and even some houses will seek to make the demands for the consumers thereby forcing the industry towards happening ways to fulfill these demands as the market expands. This is one of the major drivers of alteration for the industry.

Technological issue:

Development of new Technologies: The dynamic nature of engineering will maintain operators findings ways to remain in front of rivals by developing new engineerings such as the IP, digitizing high-velocity distribution of voice, informations and picture over multiple webs.


a.Threat of entry: ( low )

The barrier of initial capital cost of entry may be dashing but the regulative alterations in the UK communications industry by Ofcom saw the issue of licenses to more nomadic operators and besides leting MVNOs to rent web capacity without the capital cost of constructing their ain hence cut downing barriers to entry. This has besides led to increase in the figure of rivals.

B. Menace of replacements: ( low/moderate )

Sing the advantages of nomadic connexions ( do calls, directing messages/data, music etc ) , replacements would be the fixed line connexions, skype ( or VOIP ) on broadband, wireless airwaves, phone booths or merely travel without. With the fixed line connexions, Ofcom reported that the figure of lines dropped from 34.9million in 2003 to 33million in 2009. Name proceedingss had besides decreased by 15 % from 167billion to 138billion over the same period with nomadic proceedingss expected to transcend fixed line proceedingss in 2010 ( Case study p.558 ) . A study on Broadband intelligence besides says that nomadic broadband will catch fixed line connexions in 2011. ( Broadband Choices 2009 ) . It is likely that the tendency will go on in this manner, sing the convenience offered by nomadic connexions, of being able to do a call on the move.

c. Competitive competition: ( high )

One of the purposes of Ofcom is to guarantee healthy competition among operators which saw a rapid growing in the figure of rivals. The major rivals in the industry are Vodafone, Telefonica O2, Orange, 3 UK and Tmobile plus tonss of MVNO ‘s. Harmonizing to the instance survey, radio operator borders in the UK were up because of strong competition ( p.559 ) .

d. Buyer power: ( chair )

The chief purchasers from the industry are families ( persons ) and concerns. Harmonizing to instance survey ( p.559 ) , mean churn ( client shift ) rates in the market was 20 % yearly due to the debut of figure portability in 2007 and competitory tactics such as subsidizing French telephones for endorsers. Customers would exchange operators for better offers or added value for their money. To counter this churn rate, most operators have found a manner to exchange post-paid clients to longer contracts of 18months or even 24months as at 2009. A recent 2011 study ( Sim-only trades, 2011 ) highlights other grounds for low exchanging rates including supplier ‘s trueness programme and value for money SIM merely deals which wholly gives them the power to do clients remain.

e.Supplier power: ( chair )

The chief providers to the industry would be the French telephone shapers and Ofcom. Major French telephone providers such as Nokia with 40 % of UK French telephone market and Samsung,21 % , supply French telephones to the industry under planetary contracts ( instance analyze p.559 ) . There are more providers today including Apple, which is another fast turning provider as their phones

are deemed voguish and a must-have because of its advanced characteristics. Sony-Ericsson, Samsung are among the tonss of others. The instance survey p.559 says nomadic French telephone gross revenues had experienced a diminution in 2009 as UK radio operators started to offer sim-only programs which allow consumers to retain their current French telephone and pay lower monthly duties. Ofcom on the other manus is the exclusive supplier of spectrum.

Attraction: Based on the groundss from the five forces, the study concludes that the industry is attractive. This being that, though competition is high, but other menaces and powers are low. Basically officeholders or new operators can so concentrate merely on competition and concern less about powers and other menaces.


Harmonizing to Johnson et Al. ( 2011 ) , Strategic capablenesss are capablenesss of an organisation that contribute to its long-run endurance or competitory advantage made up of two constituents: Resources, which are assets the company has or can name upon and Competenceswhich are ways in which those assets are used or deployed efficaciously.


Human Resources

Vodafone has had a history of experient CEOs including Arun Sarin ( resource ) , who was skilled in accomplishing growing in developing markets ( competence/strength ) . Besides, Gary Laurence ( resource ) , caput of Vodafone UK, appointed CEO in September 2008 was known for his ability to place strategic options ( competence/strength ) and the current CEO, Vittorio Colao ( resource ) who succeeded Arun in 2008 is known for strong repute as cost cutter. ( competence/strength ) . ( Case study page 563 )

Vodafone ‘s partnership with BT ( resource ) hosting BT ‘s MVNO, allowed it to supply services to corporations. ( competence/strength ) . It started a joint venture with O2 ( resources ) which enabled it to widen its fixed-line web. ( competence/strength ) .

Vodafone, in its mark of concern travellers with passport services ( resources ) , was able to offer place state voice rates while rolling in Europe and mobile informations services for ?10 a twenty-four hours ( competence/strength ) . ( instance survey page 563 )

Fiscal Resources

Fiscal Performance of Vodafone:

( a ) ROCE ( Return on Capital Employed ) : measures the returns made from all signifiers of resources or capital employed in the concern. Vodafone ‘s resources are the capital

employed and its competency is shown in the sum of returns generated from utilization these capital. Vodafone ‘s ROCE plunged by 3.73 % to give a ROCE in 2010 of 19.85. This may be somewhat better than industry norm but it shows a failing to expeditiously utilise resources to give maximal net incomes.









Beginning. Morning Star Stock Report.

( B ) Current ratio: measures a company ‘s efficiency at run intoing its short term duties. A good ratio would be for current liabilities to be covered at least one time but Vodafone ‘s current assets ( resources ) can hardly cover 50 % of its liabilities in 2010 though it improved from old twelvemonth. On the whole, this is a failing as the company is low on liquidness and incurring excessively much liabilities in footings of its short term adoptions.

Vodafone Plc




Current Ratio



Beginning: Morning Star Stock Report.

( degree Celsius ) Net Gearing: shows the proportion of debt within a company ‘s overall capital. The tabular array below shows that Vodafone ‘s cyberspace geartrain has declined from 40.67 % in 2009 to 37.76 % in 2010. Overall for the industry adoption is about 40 % of entire capital. The decrease therefore for Vodafone is good as its means a decrease in finance costs excessively.





Net Gearing ratio

37.76 %

40.67 %

39.40 %

Beginning: Morning Star Stock Report.

( vitamin D ) Interest screen: explains Vodafone ‘s ability to serve its debt. From the tabular array below, it appears Vodafone makes adequate net incomes to serve it finance costs as it has been able to increase its involvement screen to 7.51times in 2010 from 7.03times in 2009. This may non be a nucleus competency but it is a strength for Vodafone.




Interest screen

7.51 times

7.03 times

Beginning: Morning Star Stock Report.

Physical Resources

Vodafone makes heavy investings in the selling of its Product trade names ( competence/strength ) which includes, landline solutions and nomadic telephone, nomadic broadband and secure employee distant entree ( resources ) , doing them good known. ( Vodafone website ) . It invests besides in the selling ( competence/strength ) of 3G

dongles or cards ( resources ) for internet connexion giving it the largest portion of 3G endorsers. Vodafone used sweeping services to administer its fixed voice and broadband

( resources ) but its monetary values were excessively high giving it merely a few clients ( failing ) . Another of its merchandises is the Vodafone-at-home ( resources ) , with which it competed with fixed line suppliers by offering fixed line monetary values when clients call from within or near their place ( competence/strength ) .

Core Competences

For the interest of this study, the nucleus competencies identified are Vodafone ‘s CEO ‘s. They have been exceeding with what they bring to the tabular array and how their expertness has been able to transform the company. Vodafone UK CEO, Gary Laurence has been formidable in footings of placing strategic options available to the company such as successful confederations and joint venture with likes of BT and O2. Heavy investing in the selling of its merchandises giving it largest portion of 3G endorsers is another nucleus competency.


Primary Activities

Inbound logistics: Vodafone possesses its ain web equipments, anchors and substructure to supply assorted communicating services, and buying of French telephones ( Annual Reports 2010, p.21 ) . Now, its in a web sharing understanding ( sharing masts, sites and towers ) with O2 covering the UK and 4 European states, . ( instance survey page 559, Guardian March 2009 ) . , Another inbound logistic is the ownership of spectrum. Spectrum is of peculiar importance to the nomadic phone and nomadic broadband industry, which relies on it to transport information between clients ‘ French telephones and nomadic masts. Vodafone spectrum is 1800MHz. ( Ofcom study, Feb 2011 ) .

Operationss: All Vodafone operations are based on in-house substructure. Vodafone ‘s operations is dependent on its people, substructure and fiscal resources. Its logistics operations ( which provides a assortment of value-added services ) , evolves from a individual, purpose built site in West Midlands. ( )

Out-bound logistics: Vodafone has consumer online buying systems in topographic point that allow clients to buy its services straight ( Vodafone website ) . It besides has its ain charge system.

Selling and Gross saless: Vodafone has several ain branded and other retail ironss that it uses in distribution. Harmonizing to the instance survey ( page 563 ) , Vodafone invests a batch in selling in all markets whilst advancing its trade name and besides patrons Formula 1 and England cricket athleticss.

Servicess: Its all embracing website enables client online ordination and feedback monitoring. ( beginning ) .Vodafone has client services helpline that offer after gross revenues

services and it besides offers services to MVNO ‘s such as Lebara Mobile, Asda Mobile, Talk Mobile ( Carphone Warehouse ) and BT mobile ( hypertext transfer protocol: // ) ,

Support Activities

Infrastructure: Vodafone ‘s manner of enlargement was the formation of a joint venture with O2 ( instance analyze p.559 ) to pull off its nomadic web and portion web covering 4 European states and the UK. It besides leases BT ‘s fixed line services and hosts BT ‘s MVNO. ( instance analyze p.562 )

Human Resource Management: Vodafone depends on its employees for the quality of its services to clients. It ensures an inclusive working environment and encourages invention, aspiration and pro-activeness. Vodafone encourages enthusiasm, endowment and committedness in its employees in order to construct and keep its success and remain competitory. ( Vodafone, Our people ) .

Technology and Development: Vodafone owns cyberspace portals which enables online ordination. Besides, uninterrupted R & A ; D helps the company to incubate and present invention to the concern. ( Annual Report, 2010. p.20 )

Procurement: Vodafone, like other webs, purchases branded French telephones from providers. Vodafone holds several preparation classs for its procurance squad for efficient direction of provider public presentation.




1. Experienced CEO ‘s ( UK CEO, Gary Laurence ) .

2. Partnership with BT and O2.

3.Offering place state voice rates abroad.

4.Heavy investing in selling.

5.Vodafone at place

6. Good Interest Screen

7. Reduced adoption


1.Low degree of liquidness

2.Inability to increase ROCE

3.High monetary values and inefficient channel of distribution for fixed voice and broadband.


1. Government ‘s denationalization of Ofcom.

2. Consumer demand for converged services.

3. Decline in Fixed line telephone market

4. 2012 Olympics

5. Consumer demand for smart phones

6. Consumer ballyhoo for modern engineering

7. Ofcom issue of entry licence


1.Slow economic recovery from recession

2.Decline in disposable income

3.Immigration cap

4.Health issues in countries of nomadic masts.

5.Customer exchanging rates.

6.Development of new engineerings

7.Capital intensive recycling

8.Ofcom ‘s issue of entry licence

9.Elaborate legal contarcts

From all facts assessed in the study and besides information from the instance survey and Vodafone histories, it is so apparent that Vodafone is fighting to develop a entire communications scheme to enable it to procure leading in the quickly turning market for high velocity cyberspace services in its UK place market due to the fact that it really can non better its nucleus activities in order to derive competitory advantage.

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