SWOT Analysis

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SWOT Analysis is a tool to find out the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats that are to be expected in a project or in a business venture or in something similar. It means that the marketing environment (internal and external to the organization or individual) is looked at. It is one of the best tools to conduct the internal and external analysis for any company. The technique was developed by Albert Humphrey, who led a research project at Stanford University in the 1960s and 1970s using data from the Fortune 500 companies.

Performing the SWOT Analysis[change | change source]

SWOT analysis is part of the Harvard Policy Model, which has been developed as part of the business policy courses taught at the Harvard Business School since the 1920s.

Internal and external factors[change | change source]

Internal factors may include employment, finance, manufacturing opportunities, and all of the marketing mix's 4Ps.

External factors include macroeconomics, technological change, legislation, and sociocultural changes, as well as changes in the marketplace.

Use[change | change source]

SWOT analysis can be used in any decision-making situation. SWOT analysis can be used:

  • to build organizational or personal strategy;
  • for matching and converting;
  • allow organizations to achieve their goals;
  • as a basis for the analysis of business and environmental factors;
  • in marketing — analyzing competitors.

In community organizations[change | change source]

The SWOT analysis has been used in community work as a tool to identify positive and negative factors within organizations.

Although SWOT analysis is a part of the planning, it will not provide a strategic plan if used by itself, but a SWOT list can becomes a series of recommendations.[1]

Strengths and weaknesses (internal factors within an organization):

  • Human resources — staff, volunteers, board members, target population;
  • Physical resources — your location, building, equipment;
  • Financial — grants, funding agencies, other sources of income;
  • Activities and processes — programs you run, systems you employ;
  • Past experiences — building blocks for learning and success, your reputation in the community.

Opportunities and threats (external factors from community or societal forces):[2]

  • Future trends in your field or the culture;
  • The economy — local, national, or international;
  • Funding sources — foundations, donors, legislatures;
  • Demographics — changes in the age, race, gender, culture of those you serve or in your area;
  • The physical environment — is your building in a growing part of town? Is the bus company cutting routes?;
  • Legislation — do new federal requirements make your job harder...or easier?;
  • Local, national, or international events.

Related pages[change | change source]

Other websites[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. "Our Community". Retrieved 16 March 2014.
  2. "Community Toolbox: Section 14. SWOT analysis". Retrieved 2014-02-22.