Microsoft is a very large American business that sells all sorts of computer software, consumer electronics and computer services worldwide in countries such as Australia, USA and the UK. They sell computers, phones, pads and other small technological devices. Its main headquarters is set in Redmond Washington and has been there since 1986. Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen in 1975 on the 4th of April and Gates has handed the CEO role as Allen was hired into MITS, the company they approached with about Microsoft. Gates then eventually became the richest man on the planet for 18 years out of the past 23 years and is still one of the richest people on the planet. Microsoft makes a profit by selling their computer software. Their products are used in almost every computer ever made.
Bill Gates Paul Allen
Macro Environment Factors
Technological issues are when a business has to keep up to date with new technology in order to stay relevant and to be innovative.Technological issues are a common problem for a big computer software business such as Microsoft. In an online blog about their ‘Top 10 Tech Issues for 2018’, Microsoft stated that their number one issue is cybersecurity. Hackers and viruses play a big role in Microsoft’s cybersecurity war. 2017 was one of the worse years for cybersecurity and the worse day was May 12th when North Korea released the WannaCry cyberstrike which affected more that 300,000 computers in 150 different countries which was the biggest attack in history that affected people worldwide. There were plenty of other threats and hacks that also affected Microsoft’s computers so their goal for 2018 is to prevent these major and minor hacks that affects their computers. Microsoft, Facebook and other companies have come together and are doing their best to create a cybersecurity network so these issues don't happen again to their computers.
Legal and government Regulations:
Legal and government regulations refers to the business related legislation passed by local, state or federal governments as well as courts. Microsoft want their customers to understand their policies on responding to government law. Their core policies include;
Microsoft does not provide any government with direct and unfettered access to our customers’ data, and we do not provide any government with our encryption keys or the ability to break our encryption.
If a government wants customer data, it must follow applicable legal process. It must serve us with a warrant or court order for content, or a subpoena for subscriber information or other non content data.
All requests must target specific accounts and identifiers.
Microsoft’s legal compliance team reviews all requests to ensure they are valid, rejects those that are not valid, and only provides the data specified.
Microsoft update their law enforcement request report every six months so that their staff and customers are up to date with the law when creating/purchasing their product. It is important for when starting a business to know the law and state it just like Microsoft have.
Societal trend, belief or values:
Societal attitudes and behaviours refers to what people think and their behaviours to what they do and includes external and internal customers, values, beliefs and customer trends. It is important for businesses to monitor what people think about their business so that needs can be responded to. Example is work/life balance or increased focus on health and wellbeing. Microsoft employees have reviewed the company and there are all different varieties of reviews. Some love it there and some believe there is room for improvement but provide a great work/life balance which is when workers receive fair work hours and a good wage so that they can use it to get some ‘wants’ in their life. The importance of what people think is very valuable to big companies like Microsoft because it gives them an idea of how they should be operating.
Economic conditions are all things financial. Microsoft’s competitor’s are developing new devices that Microsoft then have to match or improve quality of their new device. For example, their Windows computer has to always have evolve and adapt to their competitors devices so that Microsoft are still number one in the market revolving around computers and other electronic devices. Microsoft prioritise their investments among the highest long-term growth opportunities. These investments require significant resources and are multi-year in nature. The products and services they bring to market may be developed internally, as part of a partnership or alliance, or through acquisition. The demand for computerised software, services and hardware is very high and consistent at Microsoft so they are then forced to create new software to meet demands of customers who possibly request for a new function in a new computer or an improvement to an exisiting one so they send out updates. And then of course they have to be reading to fix problems that customers experience with their computer or other software devices.
CSR, or Corporate Social Responsibility is social objectives and making business decisions with community or environment in mind and not have a negative impact on the environment. Microsoft are working to apply the power of technology to ensure CSR and protect the planet. CSR improves company profitability and value. The introduction of energy efficiencies and waste recycling cuts operational costs and benefits the environment. The main disadvantage of CSR is that its costs fall disproportionally on small businesses. Major corporations can afford to allocate a budget to CSR reporting, but this is not always open to smaller businesses with between 10 and 200 employees. Microsoft would be given a little bonus in profit for their good use of CSR due to that CSR increases company accountability and its transparency with investment analysts and the media, shareholders and local communities. This in turn enhances its reputation among investors such as mutual funds that integrate CSR into their stock selection. However, it also does cost a lot for Microsoft. Monitoring exchanges involving CSR is some times very hard to afford. Although Microsoft is one of the biggest companies in the world and is projected to be a trillion dollar company by 2020, having spare money to focus on CSR would be quite difficult as they have so much more on their hands also such as creating all of their devices that CSR would have to be a high priority if Microsoft want it to have an affect.
One customer expectation or need
Customers are an important part to every business around the world, small or large. Most businesses would like to focus on customer and consumer needs and customer expectations in order to satisfy them. This can be done by creating new products or adding improvements to an existing one. Today’s market is constantly changing and Microsoft continuously have to adapt to that in order to meet their customers needs and expectations. Microsoft is one of the biggest companies in the world, so they wouldn’t have to worry about getting customers to come into their store. However, being one of the biggest companies in the world would have a small backlash of customers needs and expectations that are requested. For example, the Windows 7 which came out in 2009 had a few issues lying around that Microsoft weren’t aware of. Customers came in with requests on fixing bug issues and adding additional features so Microsoft would update the Windows 7 constantly until the demand for new features or updates would get more common, Microsoft would then create the Windows 8 if addition to all new features requested by costumers. This is the case with all of Microsoft’s products and since they create technological devices, the demand for improvement is much higher than what some other companies like Nike would receive.
One action or decision by a competitor
Businesses should constantly monitor products or services of their competitors. It is important for businesses to know when their competitors have created a new product or service, changed its prices for certain items or improved online services. Microsoft is a business that has a great amount of competitors. Their two biggest would be Apple and Sony. Apple are a business that also creates computerised software and are arguably the biggest business in the world. They rival with Microsoft due to that they both sell high quality computers, phone, pads and other electronic devices. Sony on the other hand are the creators of Playstation whilst Microsoft are the creators of XBOX. These two gaming consoles have been in the debate for at least a decade now on which one is better than the other. Microsoft’s XBOX would have to constantly match or improve on what Sony’s Playstation are doing. Microsoft would have to constantly monitor what their two biggest rivals are doing so that they do not fall behind in the modern day market where the demand for new and improved technology is at it’s highest.
One action or decision by a special interest group
Special interest groups are groups that can attempt to influence the actions of a business if the community does not like the way a business is operating. In 2000, Microsoft was accused of unfair trade practices by the Monopolies & Restrictive Trade Practices Commission, Indian anti-trust regulator. The regulators have committed an investigation and requested that action be taken against Microsoft.
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