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Question Description
Balanced Scorecard Project

The balanced scorecard requires the firm to set goals and related measures for four critical aspects of performance. The balanced scorecard emphasizes performance measurements to enable strategy implementation. The four perspectives provided by the balanced scorecard are:

Financial – How do we look to shareholders if we succeed?
Customer – To achieve our vision how must we look to our customers?
Internal perspective – What processes must we excel at to satisfy our customers?
Learning and growth – To achieve our vision, how must the organization learn and improve?
Firm Case Study:

The balanced scorecard case assignment involves selecting a firm to study. The term “case” is used for this project because you will be focusing on the strategy implementation problem facing the firm. Your balanced scorecard is a recommendation for strategy implementation. A good case does not have a unique solution. Instead, you make a recommendation and provide convincing reasons why it will work. Gather information on a firm and gain insight into current strategic initiatives. Possible sources of information are annual reports, articles in the business press and materials on the firm’s website. The firm’s most recent 10K filed with the SEC is valuable source of information. Pay special attention to item 7 on the 10K, management’s discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations. Item 1A, risk factors, on the 10K is also very useful in identifying strategic issues. Since you will find most of the reference material on the internet and in our library data bases, you should save the reference material (or website links) to a file.

The case analysis should provide background on the firm’s strategy and business model, and current situation. You will prepare a strategy map and recommended balanced scorecard at the firm strategy level. This case project should provide insight into the difficulties in measuring performance and the possible consequences of performance measurement. You should be prepared to discuss the tradeoffs made in selecting measurements. Not only should the strengths of a measurement be defended, but you should be aware of the possible dysfunctional consequences.


You will make one presentation. The presentation should include two parts (see below) and should be from 10-15 minutes long.

1. A description of the case that provides an understanding of the industry and the firm’s business model, strategy, goals, critical success factors are the first deliverable. The firm’s business risk factors should be identified and explained. You should include some key financial ratios in this analysis.

2. The strategy map and related balanced scorecard with goals and measures is the key to your project. Include a discussion why you selected the balanced scorecard goals and measures, which includes identifying the measures as leading and lagging. For some measures, you may have enough information to suggest a target. For example, the measure might be the strategic skill coverage ratio and the target is 100 percent.

Firms using balanced scorecard have the option of using the measures for performance evaluation. Research has shown a bias toward using or giving more weight to common measures versus unique measures on the balanced scorecard. If the balanced scorecard measures were used for performance evaluation of your firm’s management, what weights would you assign to the measures? If the balanced scorecard measures were used for performance evaluation of your firm’s management, are there any possible dysfunctional consequences with any of the measures that the firm would have to monitor in the strategic learning loop?

The hypothesized cause and effect relationships should be shown on a strategy map. A balanced scorecard measurement form (Appendix A) must be prepared for each measure. This form is designed to guide your thinking about the measures and the cause and effect relationships. It requires that you explain the logic underlying the measure and explain the linkages to other balanced scorecard measures.

3. Presenters– Use a class handout summary copy of the strategy map and balanced scorecard, listing goals and related measures, for each member of the class. You should be able to fit this on one or two pages. You may want to use other handouts such as copies of key slides.

You should print a copy for the professor to follow during the presentation of:

a. their power point slides (pure black & white; 3 slides per page)

b. a copy of the class handout (balanced scorecard and strategy map)

c. a hard copy of the balanced scorecard measurement forms (Appendix A) for each measure. Thus, if your balanced scorecard has 8 measures, you will have 8 forms. However, you may be able to print two forms on one page.

Firm Case Study Guide

You have been hired as consultants to prepare a balanced scorecard that will be presented to top management. The team will prepare a description of the case (background information on the firm) that contains (as a minimum) the following:

Part A—Firm strategy and financial analysis:

1. Mission statement

2. Business model:

a. Strategy description: What is the customer value proposition?

b. Differentiation of products or services

c. Operations

3. Financial statement analysis

a. Focus on key areas—profitability, efficiency, ROI, financial leverage

b. Who is the firm’s auditor?

Part B—Firm strategy implementation and balanced scorecard:

4. Competitive and business factors

a. Describe the industry and trends and major competitors (include global business issues)

b. Critical success factors (CSF)—what the firm must do to implement strategy such as product quality, customer service, technology and increasing market share.

c. What are the firm’s strengths and weaknesses?

d. What arc the competitive threats?

e. What are the opportunities for competitive advantage?

f. What are the major ethical and social responsibility issues?

g. What are the major business risks?

5. Customer analysis (include global business issues)

a. What is the customer value proposition? (Related to CSF)

b. Who are the customers?

c. What arc the firm’s important market strategies and segments?

d. What is the size of the market and your firm’s approximate market share?

e. Describe recent new product introductions and the fin’s new product plans.

6. Key Value drivers (see below– related to CSF)

a. What are they?

b. Explain how they affect sales growth and profits?

7. Balanced scorecard and strategy map (firm strategy level)

Value drivers

You should answer the question what drives value for the firm? Your answer might be a list of several factors such as the firm’s ability to introduce a stream of innovative new products, quality products, superior service, etc. These will be related to the CSF. The firm’s balanced scorecard would have leading and lagging measures relating to the value drivers. There would be linkages between the value drivers and financial measures evident on the strategy map.

Financial statement analysis

Financial ratios and other analysis techniques should be used gain insight into the firm’s operations. You should also use benchmarks such as in industry provided by Yahoo finance — Enter a stock symbol or use company finder. Click on company links to get information. For example, see how a firm’s ratios compare to main competitors and the industry. More information about public companies is available on this site. The Bartley Business Information Center includes the Standard and Poor’s (S&P) Market Insight database. This database provides full text access to the S&P Industry Surveys, the Executive Compensation database, the Global Reports Library, which contains full-color, online international company source documents including annual reports, annual report summaries, financials, interims and IPO prospectuses for 13,000 companies around the world, and the GICS Sub-Industry Financial Highlights report which provides recent industry-level valuation, profitability, performance and financial risk data. There are also company reports searchable by name or ticker symbol.

Three to five key ratios may be enough for your presentation. Also, see the financial statement analysis links for ratios and benchmarks on the course website. It is recommended that the annual reports for at least two years or more be reviewed. This will provide a basis for you to gain an understanding of the firm’s strategy in a prior year so that the outcome of the strategy can be evaluated. You may use all available sources for ratios and are not required to calculate the ratios. You can use the EDGAR database at or the firm’s website as a source for obtaining annual reports, financial statements and related information. The 10K and proxy statements on contain considerable information. The Value Line Investment Survey (hard copy in the library) is another useful source of expert advice.

Balanced Scorecard measurement profile (Strategy level) — Example

Measurement Name: Percent of sales from new products introduced in the most recent 12 months

The BSC perspective that measurement is included in:

Internal perspective– innovation

The measurement is relevant to the firm’s strategy to:

Product leadership high performance. First to market in most attractive segments

Is this viewed as a leading (driver) or lagging (outcome) measure?


Explain the logic underlying the measure.

The goal for our innovation program is to develop a stream of new products for attractive market segments. This requires an understanding of the customers in those segments. If we are successful in targeting these segments, sales will be affected quickly.

Data source—how would the firm collect this measurement information?

Accounting information system

How often would the measurement be reported?


Strategic learning loop: What current or recommended strategic initiatives or themes are relevant to the measure?

1. Invincible initiative

2. Wireless integration strategy

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