?Hard-as-Nail? is currently a sole-trader business, supplying nails and screws to DIY
outlets in North Wales. Until now they have provided their products in bulk, usually by
the kilo, but many of its customers have asked the company to provide its wares in
smaller pre-packed quantities. The company has reluctantly complied with this request,
but has made few other changes to its existing structure or working practices.
The General Manager (GM) started the company five years ago, dealing directly from a
van. He built up the customer / outlet base and identified a good sole supplier. The
responsibility for purchasing bulk items and the pricing of goods to outlets rests with
him. The GM likes things to go on as they always have done but realises there must be
change if he wants to see the company become the main supplier of nails and screws to
North Wales and possibly branch out towards Newtown in Mid-Wales. He would like to
see his gross annual profits rise by at least 10% over the next year.
The Company Secretary (CS) handles all company administration. She communicates
with customers, the bank and government offices, keeps the company accounts and
deals with personnel matters. She is also the line manager for an administrative
assistant who handles the receipt and despatch of post and maintains the office filing
system. CS is the only employee who has access to a PC, which she uses for basic
word-processing and accounting spreadsheets. She would like greater use of modern
technology products throughout the company, particularly (in her case) for invoice
control over both suppliers and customers. She is not happy about the GM being the
only person to deal with their sole supplier and feels the company needs to investigate
the availability of other sources.
The Warehouse Manager (WM) is responsible for everything that goes on in the
warehouse. She manages the receipt and storage of bulk items, the pre-packing
operation and the processing and the filling customer orders. She is also the company
Health and Safety officer. She would like greater responsibility in the area of stock
control and feels the GM is now unfamiliar with the needs of customers and the levels
(and cost) of warehoused stock. She feels the company should find different ways of
marketing their products so turnover is increased and levels of dormant stock reduced.
The WM is the manager of the five other company employees:
? Delivery Driver – who delivers filled orders to existing customers, receives new
orders from them and brings them back to the warehouse (at the end of the
delivery round) for the WM to record and prioritise
? Packers (3) – who do the day-to-day work in the warehouse. Repacking bulk
items into pre-packed specified quantities, preparing customer orders for delivery
and keeping the warehouse tidy. Theirs is manual work and they would like to
see new ideas and equipment brought in to help with the assembling and
movement of bulk supplies and filled customer orders
? Cleaner – who spends 3 hours each weekday evening cleaning the office and
warehouse. She is quite happy with the way things are and does not ask for or
expect anything more than the basic tools to do her job.
The company is based in Llandudno, central for most of their customers. Currently it
has one supplier (based in the Midlands) and about 75 outlets located along the North
Wales coast. Outlets are visited at least once a month usually when Delivery Driver
delivers their order. Warehouse and office staffs generally work a five-day week
(Monday to Friday, 8 to 5.30) with occasional overtime if needed.
Page 3 of 9
QUESTION ONE (The Nature of Business Systems)
This question is looking at the first part of the syllabus by exploring the candidate?s
knowledge of organisational planning and the flow of information into, out of and
within the company
The mission statement should be fairly bold
2 marks are to be awarded for
and reflect the overall direction the
anything similar to the
organisation is to take ? where it wants to be.
suggested mission statement.
This is given in the second paragraph of the
The 10% profit rise is not part of
scenario and candidates should have
the mission statement and ?
mark should be deducted if it
has been included.
?To become the main supplier of nails and
screws in North and Mid Wales?
Maximum mark is 2
Again this is looking at company objectives
Up to 2? marks for each
rather than team or personal objectives.
Objectives should be SMART (Specific,
(Give ? mark for each