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Describe the benefits of an organisation having a product portfolio


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Explain the importance of having an effective marketing mixDescribe the benefits of an organisation having a product portfolio

This task should be completed under open-book conditions.  Your lecturer will advise when the submission of the written assignment will be.  Each section is worth 10 marks.

Read the following case study and answer the questions and produce the required documents.  Your work should be broken down into sections and presented as a portfolio.

Case Study

Martin and his wife Emelia have opened a bakery in Central London.  The bakery has a shop and café attached to a small factory where bread and cakes are made.  At present all baking is carried out by Martin and three employees but Martin is keen to purchase some machinery to automate the making of bread.  As bread is a top seller in the shop, he wants to be able to produce more.  Emelia is also considering adding patisseries and cupcakes to what they sell, but is unsure if customers would want these.  If they did add additional products and the demand was high they would need additional help in the shop and café, as at the moment it is only Emelia and a part-time worker that helps at the weekend.

Martin and Emelia are also keen to organise a Human Resources function, particularly payroll and a pension scheme and they are also worried that they are not keeping up to date with current employment legislation.

Martin is keen to start marketing on-line and via social media but not sure what would be best suited to their small business.

Within the local area the bakery has a good reputation and both Martin and Emelia want to maintain this and are concerned that any rapid growth would jeopardise this.

SECTION 1 – Outcome 1

Please include all of the following in the portfolio:

  1. The Human Resource Function includes many areas, and is extremely important to an organisation.  Describe the following:
    1. Recruitment
    1. Training and Development
  2. Identify at least four areas of legislation which relate to employment law and briefly explain each.

SECTION 2 – Outcome 2

Please include all of the following in the portfolio

  1. Explain the importance of having an effective marketing mix
  2. Describe the benefits of an organisation having a product portfolio

SECTION 3 – Outcome 3

Please include all of the following in the portfolio:

  1. Describe the features and purpose of an inventory (stock) management control system.
  2. Explain the benefits of different production methods used by organisations.

SECTION 4 – Outcomes 4 & 5

Please include all of the following in the portfolio:

  1. Describe the features of large organisations from the following sectors:
    1. Private
    1. Public
    1. Voluntary
  2. Describe at least two internal structures of an organisation and why an organisation would choose those structures.

Section 1

Human resource function

Recruitment refers to the process that involves the identification of a gap in an organization followed by attraction, evaluation, and hiring qualified employees to fill the identified gap. This is one of the most important responsibilities of the human resources department as it involves the selection of a candidate who is right for a particular job. Employee contribution plays a role that is critical in the growth and sustenance of every business. The overall performance of a business can be gravely affected by a single bad hire (Richardson,2012). Hiring a candidate who is wrong for a particular role can have a great negative impact than not having to hire anyone at all. With the expansion of their business, it would be advisable for Martin and Emilia to employ more staff to maintain efficiency. They will need to start by establishing a human resource function that will ensure smooth and competent recruitment process. However, they should engage new employees gradually as the business expands to avoid hiring wrong candidates who could impact their business negatively.

Training and development

Training involves human resources development intending to ensure they maintain their competitiveness in the market. Development involves the preparation of employees to equip them with skills and abilities for future responsibilities and roles. The difference between the two is that the focus on training is on activities done today aimed at developing employees’ abilities in performing their current jobs (Mohrman & Lawler,1997). On the other hand, development looks at the preparation of employees focusing on future responsibilities and roles. Having an effective human resource function in place for Martin and Emilia will ensure that training and development of human resources which is key to their business is done in a proper and professional manner which has a positive impact for their bakery business.

Legislation areas that relate to employment law

One of the areas is the anti-discrimination law which expresses the desire and focusses on ending any kind of discrimination in the workplace. This law prohibits discrimination in the workplace on grounds of national origin. color, race, religion, and sex. The second area focusses on sexual harassment which deals with physical contact that is wanted, socialization, date requests, sexual propositions, and use of offensive language in the workplace. Employers are required to establish a policy that is written on how they deal with sexual harassment. They should also ensure that employees are trained and understands sexual harassment legal definition and have guidelines that should be followed in investigations while maintaining the confidentiality of the employees. Also, there are laws on safety laws which impose detailed and complex standards on health administration and occupational safety of employees. The law provides specific safety standards that are a requirement in certain industries and how complaints from employees are responded to in case of unsafe conditions (Curran & Quinn,2012). Another area deals with disability and it focusses on prohibiting discrimination against disabled employees who are qualified employees or applicants in any decision that is made in employment. This also requires reasonable accommodation by employers on employees’ and applicants’ disabilities. Disabilities that are covered in this area include mental and physical impairments. Martin and Emelia should research more and understand the areas of legislation that are related to the laws of employment in the country in which they are operating their business. It is also advisable to register in various avenues or websites to be able to receive updates when new employment laws emerge or when the existing ones are altered to avoid being caught on the wrong side.

Section 2

Importance of an effective marketing mix

A marketing mix is a tool that is critical in the creation of the right and effective marketing strategy and the implementation of the strategy using effective tactics. Decisions involved in the marketing mix assist greatly in segmentation, targeting, and positioning decisions(Išoraitė,2016). Social media and online marketing that Martin is considering will both be very effective in creating awareness of their business to potential customers. However, due to the small size of his business the most efficient would be social media due to the low cost involved and its wide coverage.

Benefits of a product portfolio in an organization

Having a range of products helps an organization in spreading the risk whereby the sale of one product may offset the sales of another in case of a decline. It also helps the business in generating returns that are enough which may not be the case while dealing with a single product (Edmondson & Nembhard,2009). The addition of cupcakes and patisseries by Emilia will help ensure the survival of their business in case the sales volume of bread goes down.

Section 3

Features and purpose of an inventory management control system

One of the features is the system should be easy to use. The functions should be easily understood and straight forward. The control system should be scalable such that it can adapt to the needs of the company and have the ability to change as the business changes with no major upgrade requirements (Schwartz & Rivera,2010). The system should have the capability to update in real-time. Scaling-up in production and diversification will require Martin and Emilia to install a control system for managing inventory that has suitable features to ensure smooth and effective control of their business. The automation of their business may also bring in complications in inventory management which would require an effective control system for the bakery.

Benefits of Organizations production methods

The benefit of using the job production method is that the final product is of higher quality and the customer needs of individuals are usually met. Batch production makes the cost of production to be cheaper and reduces the concentration risk thus allowing flexibility. The benefit of flow production is the low cost of production incurred due to huge product numbers rolling off the assembly lines (Gunasekaran et al.,1994). In case Martin and Emelia automate their bread production they will be able to reduce their production costs significantly and be able to produce better quality bread. The automation will mean that they will translate from job production to batch production method.

Section 4

Features of large organizations from the private sector

Organizations in the private sector are owned, controlled, and managed by individuals with no government involvement and their main motive is making profits.

Features of large organizations from the public sector

Organizations in the public sector are directly controlled by the government and the establishment of some of these organizations is done under companies’ acts and statutes.

Features of large organizations from the voluntary sector

Voluntary organizations are independent of the control of the government and do not have private shareholders. They are run by a board that is independent and that decides on the organization’s priorities and strategies (Batsleer,1995).

Internal structures of an organization and their importance

There is a functional structure that focusses on the creation of divisions which consist of smaller groups in the organization with each group being given specific roles or tasks. One benefit of this structure is that the grouping of the employees is done based on their skill set which enables them to collectively focus their energies on particular roles. The second is the matrix structure which is a hybrid structure used by organizations as a blend of projectized structure and functional structure. This structure involves employing reporting to more than one boss depending on projects and situations (Child,1997). This structure is beneficial as knowledge is shared across different divisions and there are better understanding and communication on different functional roles. This significantly enables employee broadening of knowledge and skills which promotes professional growth. The best structure for Martin and Emilia’s bakery would be the functional structure given the size of their business and the roles that are involved in baking which require specific skill sets to ensure quality products and maintaining their good reputation in the market. This will also make it easy for Martin and Emilia to still have a hold on the control of their business and keep the quality of their product and the reputation of the bakery business.


Batsleer, J. (1995). Management and organization. An introduction to the voluntary sector, 224-248.

Child, J. (1997). Strategic choice in the analysis of action, structure, organizations and environment: Retrospect and prospect. Organization studies, 18(1), 43-76.

Curran, D., & Quinn, M. (2012). Attitudes to employment law and the consequent impact of legislation on employment relations practice. Employee Relations.

Edmondson, A. C., & Nembhard, I. M. (2009). Product development and learning in project teams: The challenges are the benefits. Journal of product innovation management, 26(2), 123-138.

Gunasekaran, A., Korukonda, A. R., Virtanen, I., & Yli-Olli, P. (1994). Improving productivity and quality in manufacturing organizations. International journal of production economics, 36(2), 169-183.

Išoraitė, M. (2016). Marketing mix theoretical aspects. International journal of research granthaalayah, 4(6), 25-37.

Mohrman, S. A., & Lawler III, E. E. (1997). Transforming the human resource function. Human Resource Management (1986-1998), 36(1), 157.

Richardson, M. A. (2012). Recruitment strategies. Managing/Effecting the Recruitment Process. Pridobljeno, 15(09), 2014.

Schwartz, J. D., & Rivera, D. E. (2010). A process control approach to tactical inventory management in production-inventory systems. International Journal of Production Economics, 125(1), 111-124.

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