This Assessment requires submission of one 8- to 10-page business solutions design document, excluding title page and references.
Part 1: Laying the Foundation for Innovation
In Part 1 of your design document:
- Synthesize the business problem. Specifically:
- Describe the company in question, including how many people work there, the industry the company is part of, and what types of products and/or services the business offers.
- Explain the business problem, including what impacts the global crisis is having on how the business operates and its ability to meet customer needs and deliver its product(s)/service(s).
- Identify the company’s present internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as external opportunities and threats that the current crisis is presenting to the company.
- Appraise the company’s readiness to innovate, including how well the organization is set up to tolerate risk.
Part 2: Considering Stakeholder Needs
In Part 2 of the design document:
- Identify the stakeholders whose needs you will have to consider when designing potential solutions.
- Create a prioritized list of stakeholder needs (based on your knowledge of the company or your imagining of the stakeholders you identified) you will have to take into consideration when developing potential solutions.
- Based on the identified business problem, what are the greatest points of need? What might be the leaders’ and employees’ most pressing concerns?
- What are other needs to consider that are a lower priority but still significant enough to note?
- Assess what, if any, considerations will need to be made to promote stakeholder buy-in.
- Are company leaders open or resistant to change? What is your prediction for any challenges you may encounter in the face of changes?
- What recommendations do you have for how to gain buy-in and minimize risk?
Part 3: Bringing It Together
In Part 3 of the design document:
- Based on the identified needs and the details provided about the company’s problem, brainstorm at least six to eight possible solutions to the problem. Remember that the point of brainstorming is to generate new and creative ideas. Do not spend your time evaluating the ideas or determining their feasibility in terms of costs, resources, time constraints, etc. You will do that next. Simply record the results of your brainstorming session as a section of your design document.
- After generating your list of ideas, identify the two you feel are most appropriate for the company given its current situation. For each of the potential solutions, do the following:
- Justify your selection of the solution and include specific details that demonstrate how you believe this solution will help the company change its business to address the problem.
- Identify the components of the solution, including innovations in process, technology, structure, or any other aspects of the business that will be part of the implementation.
- Summarize what steps the company can take to increase the chances of smooth execution of the proposed change, including any considerations that need to be made around resources (time, money, personnel, acquisition of materials, technologies, etc.) and the implications for the different stakeholders (i.e., consider multiple perspectives).