The Methodology Of Balanced Scorecard Table Commerce Essay

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According to Jensen, the appropriate criterion for evaluating a business is whether it creates value. The existence many segments make the criterion of creating value ineffective. Furthermore, Jensen argues that the appropriate measure is determined by the strategy of each business and of the ways in which it applies. More specifically, Jensen suggests two ways of determining this measure:

The centralized way: Management determines the appropriate way for measuring the performance and the factors that affect each section, and

The decentralized way: Management determines the appropriate way for measuring the performance of the organization and the department is trying to achieve autonomous performance under this measure.

Jensen agreed with Kaplan and Norton that the table should reflect:

the organization's strategy,

the cause - effect relationship between the factors that affect performance

Jensen also believes that there is incorrect use of the word "balance". He proposed the avoidance of the word as it is not substitute for the dubious situations between positive and negative events, as a fulfillment of business objectives. He also suggested being conducted additional future research to determine the importance of the word "balance", in the context of operational conditions.

Mary A. Malina and Frank H. Selto in their article [37], referred to effectiveness the Table of Balanced Scorecard as a strategic communication and control tool for managers. Initially, they presented some reports on strategic communication and control tools in order to identify the characteristics of these two sectors. Then, the researchers suggest a model of communication and control in the adaptive Balanced Scorecard table. Then, they considered through interviews and data files, the use of the model of the BSC, and the effectiveness of data of communication and control that enriched the Table. The files of data used came from various departments of large multinational company and were created by those responsible for the creation and implementation of the table.

Finally, the researchers studied the problems and challenges in the design and implementation of the table, in terms of a large and profitable company. They argued that their findings can be generalized for other companies that are thinking about adopting the Table as a tool for strategic and administrative control.

By their research, Malina and Selto [37] conclude that the Table of Balanced Scorecard is an effective tool of the corporate control strategy. The survey results indicated that there is disagreement between senior and middle managers in terms of the efficiency in specific aspects of the table as a tool for measuring the efficiency, of communication and control. In some cases, the Table, improved and made changes in internal processes, while in other cases the disconnection between managers not allowed the use of Table effectively.

Stella Mooraj, Daniel Oyon and Didier Hostettler [38] in a relevant article in 1999, considered whether the Balanced Scorecard Table is a "necessary good" or "necessary evil" for a business. They stated that despite the fact that the table was created some years ago, the application is supported by both academic and professional circles.

However, few companies can understand the advantages of BSC therefore most of them do not spend time and money on outcomes that they don't know whether it will be positive or not.

Through critical in several other articles and publications, the Mooraj, Oyon and Hostettler [38] concluded that the table is an "essential good" for a business. It is a tool that increases the value by providing "balanced" information in a concise way for managers, creating an environment that makes it easier for someone to study the company.

It also reduces the need for managers to choose what kind of monitoring tool will use every time. However, the article concludes that in the application of the Table there are formal and informal rules and procedures must be taken into consideration for the successful implementation of the Table.


Davis and Albright in 2003 and Grojer and Johanson, in 1998 in its investigations demonstrated that the application of Table leads to higher financial performance. Also, investigations of Davis and Albright in 2004 and Aidemark in 2001 demonstrated that the key assumption upon which depends on the successful implementation of the Table is the interaction of four different aspects. The existence of the Table, however, is not automatically translated into increased financial results of companies. Success or failure depends on how BSC is utilized by each company.

The methodology of Balanced Scorecard Table is a powerful tool that can help organizations and businesses carry out the strategy they have adopted in conjunction with transformation this in measurable goals. The development of measurable objectives associated with the strategy at corporate level, allows continuous evaluation and adaptation of firm's strategy to the objectives and vision of it.

The methodology of Balanced Scorecard Table helps to identify cause and affect relationships that develop between objectives and evaluation systems. The innovation of the Table of Balanced Scorecard found that the company has the ability and the tools to describe its strategy, while not ignoring intangible assets as factors that create value and highlights the way in which the intangible elements are associated with the results that it seeks.

Strategic tools related with the Balanced Scorecard

Swot Analysis

The SWOT Analysis appeared in the decade of 1960 (Learned et al., 1965). It is a tool frequently used to develop a strategic plan. The main goal is to exploit the opportunities, to overcome the threats and to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of a business.

The SWOT Analysis is a snapshot and so it should be frequently renewed. The strengths can include high liquidity, high share of market, strong financial resources, innovative products, favorable reputation etc.

Weaknesses are considered to be the lack of managerial skills, small distribution network inadequate research and development, antiquated technology installations etc.

While the strengths and weaknesses are related to the internal environment of the business. The opportunities and threats are related to the external factors. So, opportunities are the local events, social changes, changes in the markets etc. Threats include, funding shortages, technological changes that may threaten the existing local economy, the movements of competitors, the innovative competitors etc. (Robert G. Dyson)

The main disadvantage of Swot Analysis is that it may not represent the real strengths and weaknesses opportunities and threats of the industry but expresses only the manager's worries. (Stevenson 1995).

Swot Matrix

The Swot Matrix is another tool of the Balanced Scorecard. Using the elements of Swot Analysis and making every possible combination of the elements, gives strategic direction that best fit to each organization.









Maxi-maxi (S/O)

This group shows the advantages and the capabilities of the company.

In fact, a company should try to develop its forces to the maximum in order to invest in new opportunities.

Maxi-mini (S/T)

This group shows the strengths of the company in relation to the threats.

In fact, a company should try to capitalize its powers in order to reduce the threats to a minimum level.

Mini-maxi (W/O)

This group shows the weaknesses of the company in exchange for Opportunities.

For a business, is an attempt to overcome the weaknesses by taking advantage of new opportunities.

Mini-mini (W/T)

This group shows the weaknesses of the company in relation to existing threats.

The aim is to reduce to the minimum the weaknesses inside the company and to escape from the external threats.

Analytical Hierarchy Process - AHP

Various businesses evolve or fail because of non-good-decision making which is a vital matter for a business. For this reason, have been developed several methods.

The most common of these methods is "The Analytical Hierarchy Process - AHP" which is a multicriteria decision-making process, developed by Thomas L. Saaty (1980), an American mathematician at University of Pittsburg, in the late 1970's.

"The method is based on performance of numerical values ​​to subjective judgments relating to the relevant importance of each variable, and the synthesis of such crises for determining variables that have the highest priority" (Saaty 1994).

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Implementation process of the AHP

The essence of the AHP is the construction of matrices that express the relative values a set of features. Thus in a comparison of 2 characteristics if A is completely important than B and estimated to be 9, then B is completely less important and valued as 1/9. Usually the pair that is being compared is not more than 7 and the matrix has been completed. The matrix has a well structured form that can support all calculations that will arise.

The next step is the calculation of the relevant eigenvector that are relevant with the problem. If for example, the cost is much more important than functionality with a simple interpretation we can conclude that the company has cheap equipment.

The final step is the calculation of a CR, to measure the consistency of decisions. If the CR is greater than "0.1", then the results are unreliable. (Geoff Coyle 2004)

Quality Function Deployment (QFD)

The QFD Analysis provides a structured way for service providers to ensure quality and customer satisfaction, maintaining a sustainable competitive advantage. The goal of QFD analysis is the increased customer satisfaction, which is achieved through organization based primarily on customer needs, thereby improving the profitability of each company.

The QFD analysis differs from the traditional quality systems designed to minimize poor quality, such as the insufficient service. It is focused on providing value by seeking both oral and implied customer requirements of, turning value, into functional service characteristics and satisfaction in an organization.

Therefore the QFD analysis is a systematic method whereby Voice of the Customer (VOC) can be developed at all stages of the product's life cycle. It is believed that the QFD analysis is an important approach to expand the capability for developing a new product in the company (Zhihang 1998).

Initially, the manager needs to understand exactly what are the precise customer requirements, which are usually collected through questionnaires and through discussions with customers, where they get the liberty to describe their needs and problems.

Furthermore, a discussion with customers is the best way to create stable products, including those that are in the planning stage.

The information that collected through discussions with customers helps managers to clarify their goals, their work and the kind of action. Most of times, managers believe that they have already set correctly their goals, but in reality are incomplete and need more information. So, in order managers, realize this, it is important to hear the Customer Voice and their needs and or problems.

Generally for the more comprehensive use of QFD analysis the company should select major strategic directions (AHP analysis), in order to be combined with the priorities concerning the needs of customers and thereby to set specific goals for that purpose (Lowe, 2000).

Methodology for applying the Balanced Scorecard

Definition of a Case Study

In the following application the research strategy that adopted is a case study for a Greek company operating in the dairy industry. In this manner, it is believed that the reader will be able to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of operations of the company and for the detection of possible defects in practices.

Saunders et al. (2003) defines a case study as an "empirical research" focused on a particular event of "real-life context" of an organization. According to Collis and Hussey (2003) has identified the four types of case study: exploratory, descriptive, indicative and illustrative. The approach chosen for this study is a descriptive case study in order to determine whether or not the existing theory complied in practice. (Saunders et al., 2003).

Yin (1993) argues that the case study is the appropriate strategy, when the researcher wants to establish a "relationship of cause." Moreover, as quoted by Feagin et al. (1991), someone, who adopt a case study is able to "study the social mysteries" of persons and of entities.

Furthermore, as mentioned by Hussey and Collis (2003), a case study facilitates the researcher to obtain a clearer picture of "dynamic in a cohesive environment." Lastly, using a case study, the researcher may collect crucial information to formulate a detailed "analysis of success factors" in order to evaluate the information. (Hussey and Hussy, 1997)

Qualitative Research Methods

As previously mentioned, this study in order to be effective were followed the principles of qualitative research. White (2000) noted that Qualitative research is used in science and in the business management in order to explore how organizations, groups and people behave and interact. Moreover, as suggested in conduction of qualitative research, the researcher has the ability to see the world as a band and not simple and uniform. Thus, Mason (2002) mentioned that qualitative research enhances flexibility practices that used in a project.

Thus, flexibility enables the researcher to use a variety of methods, to conduct a research more accurately. In this direction, for our case study, qualitative primary and secondary data were collected. That includes a conduction of interviews and questionnaires in order to gather valid and reliable data. (Saunders et al., 2003) All data collected in a short period, during my summer internship in the diary company.


According to White (2000), interviews are considered the most valuable and widely used in qualitative method of primary data collection and provide "a wide source of material".

Saunders et al. (2003) proposed the distinction of interviews in three categories: structured, semi-structured and unstructured. Structured are those conducted by a formal and standardized set of predefined questions. The semi-structured and unstructured interviews are conducted without following an restrictive form of questions, allowing a "flow of conversation" between two parties in order to serve the goals and objectives of the study. For the purposes of this study, the semi-structured interviews considered as appropriate.

The interviews were conducted to managers as well as to the heads of each department of the company. The task of the interviews was to formulate the vision, the environment, the challenges and processes of the firm, in order to be selected the appropriate steps, measurements and the correct areas of application the method of balanced scorecard.

Advantages and Disadvantages of semi-structured interviews

According to Ritchie and Lewis (2003), the advantage of semi-structured interview is the inter-active character. When a question is done, the respondent has the opportunity to answer in a more free way. However, there is a guideline that assists in the collection of the desired results. Furthermore, as mentioned by White (2000), the person to person contact can clarify any incomplete understanding of a matter.

Despite the obvious advantages of semi-structured interviews there are some disadvantages. According to Hussey and Hussey (1997), semi-structured interviews are take a lot of time and are expensive. Furthermore, as reported by Hussey and Collis (2003) ethics and confidentiality may influence the collection of results from this kind of interviews. When respondents set the context of the interview may be issues that will not be covered and the researcher may not be able to form a complete picture of the situation.

Profile of the Company

The implementation of the Balanced Scorecard (BSC) is done in a Public Limited Company, which is operating in the dairy industry.