Strategic Management

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STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT 7

StrategicManagement

Abstract

In1982, two separate renowned business entities namely Blue shield andBlue Cross merged to form an association which specialized in theprovision of healthcare insurance. As time progressed, the Blue Crossand Blue Shield saw significant growth in terms of geographicalexpansion as well as the considerable increase in the number ofclients. However, this growth did not occur without setbacks whichincluded both internal and external factors that destabilized theongoing progress. Equipped by a good leadership and management team,the association had to find the causes underlying the lack ofconformity to business regulations as well as the financial losses.Further analysis indicated weaknesses within the management withrespect to the ability to adapt to the constantly changingregulations and possible evolution to new methods and techniques ofproduction. Recommendations regarding these issues were provided inorder to boost the Association back to optimum functionality.

Summary

BlueCross and Blue Shield is a U.S operating association which mainlydeals in the provision of insurance services. Over the years, therehas been the emergence of several issues including the issue ofviolating policies with regard to insurance. It is imperative forthis organization to derive working strategies to facilitateimprovement in the provision of services in terms of qualityhealthcare by assuring proper insurance schemes. The allegationsconcerning hoarding of finances in the reserves forms a seriouscontention that needs to be cleared beyond doubt. It is thereforecrucial for the organization to intensify the transparency of serviceprovision to indicate compliance to the policies as well as findingout appropriate means of improving the general management practices.

Throughoutthe years, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association has enjoyedconsiderable progress with an increase in the number of clientsserved and this has led to the growth and expansion of the companywhich can be depicted by the 36 independent firms as well as theselection by the U.S government to provide and manage Medicare.

Theallegations that surfaced against this organization provided aloophole that exposed the vulnerability to other competitorsincluding AETNA INC, CIGNA Corporation among others. In addition thisissue also provided a possibility of decline in the overall number ofindividual clients either current or future. This therefore meansthat the organization doesn’t provide services in a pellucid mannerin addition to the poor management practices surrounding the financesand policy adherence. In order to attain a competitive advantage,appropriate efforts must be implemented.

Recommendations

BCBSAis based on a foundation that is supported by good leadership whichensures employee satisfaction in almost all aspects of theorganization. However, this may not be enough. It could be ofimportance to identify any leadership weaknesses as well as provideother benefits to the staff that would be of help even in the longterm for example continuous staff education and training (Buj,2012).In addition to this, one of the issues also detected in theorganization include financial losses as well as the loss of controlwith regard to adherence to policies.

  • The issue of failure to adhere to the regulations and policies can be adequately resolved by the Management team through the implementation of standards of conduct which specifically handle the compliance risks that have been observed. In addition the organization should also develop its own policies and protocols which provide in detail, the approaches and guidelines which the employees must follow or avoid. Monitoring and evaluation is also key in the detection of criminal or improper conduct (Bockwoldt, 2013). This progress towards achieving compliance can also be facilitated by the provision of performance incentives while at the same time disciplinary measures meted out for the employees who deliberately fail to follow the set out guidelines. Other measures that may support the achievement of conformity to insurance policies include risk assessment related to improper conduct, automation of compliance measures to prevent human errors as well as proper management and documentation of information for improved transparency (Williford, 2013).

  • Regarding the weakness of poor production, the management should work together with the production team in order to put in place measures such as setting clear goals and objectives accompanied by the subsequent follow up to determine the progress made. The proper selection and utilization of technology can prove to be an effective way of improving productivity. Technology use can also be supported by collaborations with other organizations and stakeholders for more objective productions. In addition, employee motivation should also be included and supplemented by the provision of additional skills development as well as proper communication flow from the management to the employees. Accountability should also be part of the production scheme which will ensure quality outcomes (Jones, 2010).

  • The problem of poor financial activities need to be dealt with by the Management team working together with the finance department. The main recommendation to ensure efficient financial accountability is ensuring that all the financial resources have been adequately tracked. This can be done using automated and/or manual accounting systems. In addition, it is also important to ensure the maintenance of equilibrium in terms of how resources are used followed by proper documentation. The incorporation of financial auditors is also a dire aspect since it facilitates the analyses that provide information regarding the various financial aspects. Furthermore this information provided by the audits can be used to improve efficiency and effectiveness of resources as well as limiting wastage and misappropriation (Bentz, 1997).

Conclusion

Theoutcome of this analysis on BCBSA provides critical information whichcould be used for the benefit of the organization if implemented inthe best way. Currently, the organization is stable and favourableposition than other companies offering the same service. This meansthat the leadership as well as the employees are well equipped toperform well. It is also evident that the weaknesses would lead tofuture problems if not solved earlier enough hence this companyshould be able to review these recommendations and implement themwith the most suitable methods, taking note to monitor the progresstowards achieving its ultimate goals. The need to abide by laws andregulations should not be ignored and so is the need to adapt tochanges and improvements.

References

Bentz,R. (1997). Monitoringextension programmes and resources.Retrieved from FAO Corporate Document Repository:http://www.fao.org/docrep/w5830e/w5830e0j.htm#TopOfPage

Bockwoldt,T. (2013, April 9). SixTips to Improve Your Internal Controls Audit.Retrieved March 23, 2016, fromhttps://www.proformative.com/blogs/teresa-bockwoldt/2013/04/09/six-tips-improve-your-internal-controls-audit

Buj,M. (2012, December 10). TOPWAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR LEADERSHIP SKILLS.Retrieved March 23, 2016, fromhttp://careerrocketeer.com/2012/12/top-ways-to-improve-your-leadership-skills.html

Jones,N. (2010, October 7). 12Ways To Improve Productivity At The Workplace.Retrieved from Tweak Your Biz:http://tweakyourbiz.com/growth/2010/10/07/12-ways-to-improve-productivity-at-the-workplace/

Kokemuller,N. (2016). Whatare internal &amp External Environmental Factors that AffectBusiness.Retrieved March 23, 2016, fromhttp://smallbusiness.chron.com/internal-external-environmental-factors-affect-bussiness-69474.html

Whitehead,S. (2014, April 17). 5tips to improve your Revenue Management Strategy using 360˚ RevenueManagement.Retrieved March 23, 2016, fromhttp://www.hotelspeak.com/2014/04/5-tips-to-improve-your-revenue-management-strategy/

Williford,K. (2013, January 25). Establishingan Effective Compliance Program: An Overview to Protecting YourOrganization.Retrieved from Association of Corporate Counsel:http://www.acc.com/legalresources/quickcounsel/eaecp.cfm