Analysis of the External Environment
The dimension of the external environment which interests me the most is the economic dimension. Economics can be described as the social science that deals with the production, allocation and distribution of scare resources in order to please the unlimited wants and needs that individuals boast. Economics is also research into aspects such as interest rates, inflation, gross national product and unemployment in order to predict the direction of the economy. There are different elements of the economic environment which have different importance. One of the most important elements of the economic environment is scarcity. The reality of scarcity is that the resources that we use and need to produce are limited but in fact the wants and desires of humans for goods and services are almost unlimited. This causes the production, allocation and distribution of the resources to be carefully thought about. Costs are another key element in economics. This is because incentives influence everyone. The costs of products will seemingly come done to the incentive of people; costs will rise if product sell, consumers however may discontinue to buy that product due to this increased price. People are influenced by changes in their personal costs and benefits (Gwartney and Stroup, 1998). Trade is also a key element to economics. Trading is essential as is it very productive for all involved. If trading between countries didn't occur then we would not have what we want, it is essential in order to gain what we value the most.
Economic development is continually occurring in conjunction with change this is because economic development occasionally depends on change. A major issue which is seriously able to hinder economic development is unemployment. It is essential for people of a certain age to work; if they do not then the economy will suffer. It is understandable that the goal of full employment' which the government strive for is virtually impossible, but mass unemployment causes the taxpayer to suffer and puts a strain on public services and on the Exchequer because tax yields will have to be spent on providing unemployed people with a Job Seekers Allowance. Also unemployed people are not being productive as they are not contributing to the advancement of the economy and as they are not receiving a wage then there will be a lack in demand and spending on goods and services, which will affect businesses and will slow economic growth. However statistics now show that unemployment is lowering and this will be due to the economy gradually developing. The government as also trying to cut unemployment by using a supply side policy of decreasing the disincentive to work, for example lowering the Job Seekers Allowance and making it a lot harder to qualify for it.
Technological change is extremely influential on economic development as it has greatly increased efficiency in businesses. A technological advancement which has benefited industry is information technology. Communication and production has because increasingly effective and communication can now nearly take place between two people who are thousands of miles away from each other. Fax machines, e-mail and video conferencing has all contributed to making it possible for people to work anywhere in the world. The design and production phase will shorten greatly with the use of computer-aided design (CAD). This will increase efficiency and shorten the life cycle of the product. Both of these technological improvements in industry will increase the development of the economy because if firms are more efficient and effective then it saves then a lot of money which may be invested into other areas which need improving or used in order to lower the overall price of the good or service, which will increase demand and then supply.
Within economics, economists distinguish between...