Apple and its Contemporary Business Management

Topics: Apple Inc., Steve Jobs, IPhone Pages: 41 (13434 words) Published: June 26, 2014
Apple Inc. is an American multinational corporation headquartered in California, that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software and personal computers. Its best-known hardware products are the Mac line of computers, the iPod media player, the iPhone smartphone, and the iPad tablet computer. Its consumer software includes theOS X and iOS operating systems, the iTunes media browser, the Safari web browser, and the iLife and iWork creativity and productivity suites. Apple was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne on April 1, 1976 to develop and sell personal computers. It was incorporated as Apple Computer, Inc. on January 3, 1977, and was renamed as Apple Inc. on January 9, 2007 to reflect its shifted focus towards consumer electronics, so as to include a more diverse line of products to the market than just computers, as the former name suggested. Apple is the world's second-largest information technology company by revenue and the world's third-largest mobile phone maker. Fortune magazine named Apple the most admired company in the United States in 2008, and in the world from 2008 to 2012. On September 30, 2013, Apple surpassed Coca-Cola to become the world's most valuable brand in the Omnicom Group's "Best Global Brands" report. As of May 2013, Apple maintains 408 retail stores in fourteen countries as well as the online Apple Store and iTunes Store, the latter of which is the world's largest music retailer. Apple is the largest publicly traded corporation in the world by market capitalization, with an estimated market capitalization of $446 billion by January, 2014. As of September 29, 2012, the company had 72,800 permanent full-time employees and 3,300 temporary full-time employees worldwide. Its worldwide annual revenue in 2013 totalled $170 billion. As of Q1 2014, Apple's five-year growth average is 39% for top line growth and 45% for bottom line growth. In May 2013, Apple entered the top ten of the Fortune 500 list of companies for the first time, rising 11 places above its 2012 ranking to take the sixth position.

Organisational Structures

When Steve Jobs was in charge, everything flowed through him. Now that he's dead, the company is taking on a more collaborative approach, according to various reports. The latest, from Adam Satarino at Bloomberg, says Jony Ive is encouraging Apple's software and hardware teams to collaborate, something that never happened under Jobs. Ive was given control over Apple's software look and feel in November. Previously, he was only in charge of the look of the hardware. This new collaborative approach is causing Apple to be more deliberate (carefully thought/ conscious) than in the past, says Satarino. This could lead to delays, he says. Because this is Ive's first crack at Apple's software, it's understandable that there are going to be delays. He's spent six months on a project that normally takes a year. In the long run it will be interesting to see how this collaborative approach works. As the org chart above demonstrates, Apple was always a company with one guy making all the calls. This made product decisions easier. But it also made them slower at times. We heard from a source that Apple often faced bottlenecks because everything had to flow through Jobs. And Jobs was the kind of person who would get intensely focused on one thing, leading to him ignoring other products at the company. Former Apple employee David Sobotta told us, "If we saw Steve Jobs come into a briefing, he couldn't talk about anything else, other than the thing he was working on ... He came into an enterprise sales briefing, and at the time he was working on iMovie. So, we'd be talking about home movies in the enterprise briefing." In theory, the new organizational structure should help certain divisions make decisions more quickly. But, collaboration has its downside. If everyone is trying to reach consensus on a decision it could lead to...
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