PricewaterhouseCoopers, famously known as PwC, is a big multinational professional services network. According to 2014 revenues, PwC is the second-largest company in the world that provides professional services. Moreover, the company is one of the four largest auditors in the world, along with KPMG, EY, and Deloitte. The operations of PwC are global with Europe accounting for 40% of the total operations. The company has three main service lines upon which other services are offered. These are assurance, advisory, and tax with the revenue shares 45%, 29%, and 26% respectively, according to the 2014 revenue analysis.
Audit and Assurance
The main mission of PwC under this particular type of service is to constantly pioneer in order to provide their clients with resourceful, imaginative and intelligent services. Company experts analyze various activities of the client and provide real values to different businesses. In the end, the company manages to underpin the investors’ confidence. The main purpose of audit and assurance is to provide clients with unbiased information on the financial status of their companies.
This particular branch of services mainly focuses on international tax planning and compliance with various tax laws, human resource consulting, transfer pricing and legal services.
In PwC, consultancy is also under the category of advisory services. It deals mainly with consulting activities, which cover a wide scope or area. In the consultation area, PwC focuses on crisis and sustainability management, business valuation, corporate finance, business recovery services, transaction services, performance improvement, and strategies. This particular type of services is present under the actuarial and accounting advisory.
The types of services provided by this particular financial firm vary from country to country and are dependent upon a wide range of the company`s specializations, which include:
- Financial Services (FS)
- Private Company Services
- Consumer and Industrial Products and Service (CIPS)
- Infrastructure, Government, and Utilities (IGU)
- Technology, Information, Communication, and Entertainment
Regarding advisory, known as consultation, PwC has gone a mile ahead to develop various broad initiatives in the advisory sector. These initiatives are related to the ERM (Enterprise Risk Management) framework, including a global effort to assist corporations with outsourcing as well as a global political risk assessment through the partnership with Eurasia Group, which is a political risk advisory firm.
Advisory services offered by PwC include two actuarial consultancy departments: Actuarial and Insurance Management Solutions (AIMS) and Human Resource Services. The latter is a sub-branch charged with that particular responsibility. There are four main areas covered by these departments: Investments, non-life insurance, life insurance, and pensions. AIMS deals with non-life and life insurance and investments while HRS mainly focused on pensions. PwC serves the US Federal government through the Public Sector practice. The Washington Metro Corridor has more than 2000 PwC professionals.
Future developments, opportunities, and threats, existing market players and potential new entrants
There are specific fields that require the effective utilization of various marketing strategies to be able to stand out in line with the main global players. Part of the roles with which PwC is charged is to make an analysis of business competitors and advise accordingly in terms of sustainability on the market. According to research, there are six success priorities of a business, to the aim of which is to achieve a certain level of productivity and efficiency. These particular factors are:
- The development of a customer-centric model of business - this type of model will go a long way in ensuring that the market is customer-driven and this becomes a major challenge to other firms, which are seeking to enter an already flooded market.
- Distribution optimization - Through extensive promotion and distribution of particular types of products, various businesses are able to gain consistent and stable grounds in the market. The growth of a business venture is directly affected by the registration of high revenue growths and financial ability to sponsor projects.
- The simplification of operating and business models - the structure of the majority of businesses is complex, therefore, if various basic elements such as communication and information flow are simplified, it will be easy for the management to monitor various processes and offer a response in real-time. The cutting edge of a highly successful firm and player in a pool of various competitors is always attributable to the ease of access to top-level management. Other factors include time taken by these particular groups to respond to various issues that influence the trading and operation of that particular company.
- Information acquisition - is the ability of various industrial players to read and study the financial and capital markets. In addition, players are aware of those ventures which are appropriate for investment and which are not. Some companies incur losses because of wrong decisions made concerning investment. Some firms also fear to penetrate into a populated market full of industrial players because they haven’t managed to study the market and identify a gap that needs to be explored.
- Promotion of innovation and the required capabilities to sustain and foster it - the ability of a firm to produce new products that are first in line in a particular market will assure it of its existence and dominance in the market. Many companies and industries are channeling their effort and finances into research and development. According to research, this step is necessary, as they know that the creation of new products and services is going to provide them with a competitive advantage. It is also a way of forecasting future growth and revenues.
- The proactive management of risks, capital, and regulations - Risks are vital components of any business venture. It, therefore, makes it mandatory for various business players to have a risk management policy to deal with any anticipated or abrupt challenge that they may experience. Adequate use of capital resources is also a key aspect of ensuring that a company conducts its marketing and other operations effectively. Strict observation of ethics and various business rules that ensures a healthy environment for the relevant key players also guarantees a conducive environment for various new entrants to participate in various business schemes and processes.
“Blue-Ocean” strategies for the Client Partner
The performance of PwC is in accordance with the Blue Ocean strategy. The most fundamental principle of this strategy is that companies have to discover their future successes and wins. The Blue Ocean strategy, therefore, focuses on industrial players being able to form or spearhead the creation of a new market space dominated by lack of completion. The majority of the businesses established today operate within the red ocean domain. In their analysis, in the future, they will discover that an increase in their supply chain has no direct impact on the demand. More so, these factors contribute to a big player exiting the market and industry. On the contrary, if a business embraces the blue ocean strategy and introduces into the market services that are new, thus never offered, a completely new demand cycle may be created. The approach to various strategies embraced by firms is what clearly separates winners from losers in a certain market system. Value innovation, referred to as the building block, is a very fundamental principle of the blue ocean strategy. It implies turning away from the competition by making the competition highly irrelevant. It defies a very essential dogma of the competition-based strategy, which is the value-cost trade-off.
The advantages of the blue ocean strategy are profound and they include:
- It creates an uncontested market space
- It makes the competition irrelevant
- It contributes to the creation of new demand
- It breaks off the value-cost trade-off
- It also aligns the whole system of a firm’s activities with its strategic choice of low cost and differentiation.
Thus, the Blue Ocean Strategy is guided by six major principles that have always guaranteed dominance and excellence to firms that adopt it. These principles are as follows:
- Reconstruct market boundaries
- Focus on the bigger objective, which is the market, and not the numbers
- Reach beyond the existing demand
- Capture the strategic sequence in the correct way
- Overcome key organizational hurdles
- Build execution plans for the strategy.
There are six relevant paths on which the blue ocean strategy focuses and which can show that companies such as PwC have the edge over other companies.
The first path is that the company needs to look across various alternative industries. There are various industrial challenges that make various companies consider a range of alternatives and their impact on their financial budgets, convenience, and future operations. Before making a decision, many factors are always considered which may also guarantee the maximum returns and even new trade venues.
The second path is to view across strategic groups located within a specific industry. Strategic groups refer to particular groups of companies within a specified industry that pursue a similar strategy. They exist in two specified dimensions: performance and price. A considerable alteration in price also leads to a shift in the performance of a firm or player. The proper understanding of a specific customer’s vision ensures that a company will understand the differences between trading trends of various groups.
The third path is to focus on complementary services and products offered. It is almost impossible to find products and services that exist in a vacuum. The value of these products is always dependent on other products, which therefore makes the companies compete in the market. In order to implement this path, it is necessary to identify the complete package that the consumer requires when requesting for this particular type of product.
Players, which are able to conduct researches in order to explore all avenues and yield maximum returns, dominate the financial and advisory sectors. Many global firms need these firms in terms of business outsourcing to provide them with professional advice and help in various different fields. PwC must, therefore, deviate from the normal product line and indulge in various services in order to remain the preferred business partner. In this way, by implementing various blue ocean strategies, it will be able to dominate the market.