Changes in Bega Cheese Limited

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BEGA CHEESE LIMITED
ORGANISATION’S CHANGES THROUGHOUT THE YEARS.

STRUCTURE, EMPLOYEES & CULTURE

Bega Cheese Limited is an organisation which through the years of its existence leads the way in structure change in an organisation. Bega Cheese had to change its oganisational framework because of external and internal agents, by changing the organisation has increased it long term sustainability and growth. Bega Cheese Limited had different perspectives of change but management adopted the biological and resources based perspective on the way to change, both had their strengths and weakness. The reason behind the changes in Bega Cheese Limited is because management drew on the nine indicators within the structure processes boundaries framework. After considering the framework management decided that change was necessary. Bega Cheese Limited has gone through many changes to its policies, structure and procedures but the thing that doesn’t change often are the employees. Bega Cheese Limited has a very low employee turnover the reason is management have developed policies that help employees learn new skills and knowledge. The culture, beliefs and values haven’t changed at Bega Cheese Limited since the beginning the company is focused on delivering ‘the best dairy product in Australia in the most hygienic matter, using state of the art equipment and craft of its heritage.’(Graetz et al. 2011 pp.299) Bega Cheese Limited was first known as Bega Co-operative Creamery Company the cooperative business was small and it was designed to bring about ‘self help, self responsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity’ (Graetz et al. 2011 pp.299). The organisation had to change its framework due to internal and external agents, if the organisation wanted long term sustainability and growth. External agents are forces that are outside of the business, which cannot be controlled, that affect the business internally. The external agents around Bega Cheese Limited were the emergences of new technology, increase in competitors and tax legislation. The emergence of technology was the driving factor behind the change the company had been experiencing success they were able to invest in the 1990’s the ‘Alfomatic cheddaring machine which included in line milk standardization and upgraded milk separator capacity’(Graetz et al. 2011 pp.302). These investments lead to the company increasing its production of high quality cheese. Bega Cheese was also able to take advantage of a ‘tax act section 120(i)(c) which allowed them to claim dividend payments as tax deduction ‘(Graetz et al. 2011 pp.302). The company was encouraged by this to grow even more. Bega Cheese was able to adopt these external agents and successfully change because of synchronizing efforts with external agents as stated that by Olson (et al. 2001 pp.60) ‘efforts to make changes must be synchronized with these external forces if the transformation efforts are to be successful’. The company also had internal agents pushing for change. The company over the years increased product lines, experienced dramatic growth, began to export overseas in new markets and was very profitable. With these internal agents affecting the cooperative it became clear that the ‘increase in complexity and renewed pressures for innovation of products to be competitive in complex markets‘(Graetz et al. 2011 pp.300) the cooperative structure didn’t have the speed and skill required to perform or provide the structure to adhere to the changes but even though ‘internal environments continue to encourage change resistance is a factor that can impede the demand for change’ (Singh et al. 2004 pp.76 ). Bega Cheese realized that resistance may become a major problem and that the need for change wouldn’t be met well with the company’s stakeholders but in January 2008 the shareholders voted and the change of structure was successful. Both the internal and external agents lead to Bega Co-operative Creamery...
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