Business and Management
The portfolio paper covers the array of topics discussed and presented in the course and is due Saturday of
Unit 8. The paper will be evaluated using the Unit Assignments and Portfolio Paper rubric (Appendix
The course also seeks to integrate Biblical principles into the application of Operations Management and
Statistics tools/principles. Thus the Portfolio Paper should select one of the chapters covered in the course (ie. Operations and Supply Chain Strategy; Quality Control and Improvement; One or Two
Sample Hypothesis Testing; Regression Analysis; etc.) and make a list of at least seven ethical issues pertaining to information in that chapter. Next, these issues should be examined from a secular standard compared to a Biblical standard and the effect of each standard on the short run and long-run performance of the firm. The paper should include examples from real-world companies where possible and should enhance the importance of applying operations management and statistics principles properly.
Prepare the Portfolio Paper using the following guidelines:
2500 – 3750 words using APA formatting, including title and reference pages
Include Biblical Foundations application (500 – 750 words)
Minimum of 5 scholarly references
Business and Management
Quality refers to the differing degree of expectations that a certain group of consumers have on a given product or service. The quality of a product can therefore be defined by considering different characteristics possessed by quality itself. Quality characteristics fall under two major categories namely, variables and attributes. Variables are characteristics that can be measured numerically while attributes are those that cannot be measured on numerical scale. These characteristics can be categorized in the following groups: structural, time-oriented, ethical and sensory characteristics. Considering the satisfaction of the consumer, it is necessary to look into quality in terms of design, conformity and performance.
Quality control therefore refers to a system that keeps a desired level of quality obtained from information gathered from the consumers of that product and correctness of any reported issues that might compromise quality of the product. Quality control can be divided into three areas of concern namely; statistical process control, off-line quality control and acceptance sampling plans. Offline quality control refers to the selection of procedures aimed at ensuring that the gap between the quality of a product and the expected quality is minimized. Acceptance sampling plan simply entails carrying out an inspection on the products and determining whether the product meets the required standards. An acceptance number is used which is simply a set numerical value of the number of goods that should conform with the set level of standards. Statistical process control refers to the comparison of the product of a given process with a given set standard and correcting any factors that may lead to the process not meeting that standard. Quality assurance is a process that involves all the stakeholders responsible for the production of a product to ensure that they are responsible for the product’s quality.
Quality improvement refers to raising the standard s of a product to meet the required level of satisfaction as per the consumers of that product. There are personnel in charge of quality improvement known as the quality circle and the quality improvement teams. These groups of people are responsible for identifying causative factors of low quality products and coming up with strategies that can be adopted by the firm to improve the quality of that particular product. These groups generate new ideas of bettering the product and present the same to managers who determine the feasibility of the proposed ideas. When found viable, the team implements the ideas in attempt to improve quality of the product. There are several qualities associated with quality improvement. They include: top leaders in the organization are involved in councils that deal with improvement; personnel are involved in training programs, existence of policies that motivate staff, and application of techniques that make maximum use of technology.
Sample Hypothesis Testing
This is a process whereby a sample of a given parameter of study is taken and the data collected is analyzed to produce certain results. The results are then divided in two groups; null hypothesis and alternative hypothesis. The null hypothesis is assumed to be true while alternative hypothesis is untrue. Sample hypothesis testing is carried out in four steps. First, both null and alternative hypothesis are stated. Second, an analysis plan is then formulated. Third, physical analysis of the sample data is done. Finally, the results are analyzed and determination is made whether the null hypothesis is to be accepted or rejected.
This is a technique used to predict the possible outcomes of a certain variable with respect to an independent one. It is used too find out the reason for the occurrence of the dependant variable. For instance, a firm may want to establish the cause of amount of sales of a product with respect to packaging. There are various forms of regression analysis including linear, polynomial, logistic, lasso and ridge regression.
Ethics refers to the determination of whether certain actions are right or wrong. This determination is based on a given set of principles that influence decision making and can be used to judge if the decision reached or action taken is good or bad. Ethical issues therefore are factors that can be used to determine whether ethics are adhered to. Examples of ethical issues include: health and safety, technology, transparency, fair working conditions, compliance and governance, accounting practice ethics, discrimination, privacy, regard for intellectual property and social responsibility. These ethical issues are likely to reduce the productivity of a company and therefore should be taken care of. It is the mandate of the management to come up with strategies that will deal with ethical issues thus enabling quality control and improvement.
Regard For Intellectual Property
These are rights put in place to safeguard innovations and creations made by a certain entity from being used by third parties without the consent of the innovator or creator. Regard for intellectual property rights therefore refer to acknowledging other peoples work and requesting permission in case one wants to use the creations or innovations (Torremans, 2016). In an attempt to implement quality control and improvement, a firm is required to respect intellectual property by ensuring strategies formulated are original or at least permission for use of other people’s ideas is requested. Intellectual property may lead to a reduction in the quantity of a product consumed by the clients. This may be as result of decrease in the level of marketing of the product. On the other hand, intellectual property benefits consumers due to the reduction in non price competition. In the short run, a firm may enjoy some form of monopoly which allows it to set prices but in the long run the firm may face competition from other firms entering the market through production of substitute goods. Intellectual property rights may fall under patents and trade secret. Patents expire with time but on the other hand trade secrets can take a long time if they are not discovered. Intellectual property rights can be lost if trade secrets are discovered independently. Another example of intellectual property rights is trade names. Companies have trade names which they are identified with. For example, the coca cola company has a secret ingredient which is only known by the company. This has made coca cola products unique and protected its products from counterfeits
Health and Safety
The health and safety of human beings is an important aspect that should be accounted for. Health and safety of workers, clients and the society must be considered in the production process. Actions that pose minimal exposure to health risk should be taken into consideration. The firm or organization must determine that quality control measures do not compromise the health of workers, clients, society and also the environment (Lundgren & McMakin, 2013). It is important to implement health and safety policies which could have an impact both in the short and long run performance of the firm. Effecting of these policies may reduce productivity in the short run due to diversion of resources. However in the long run, health and safety could improve productivity. Healthy workers translate to more and quality production.
Transparency and Accountability
This refers to the act of a firm or organization being open and honest. It implies that the firm should not have hidden agendas and is open to public scrutiny. The firm is expected to be accountable and ready to take responsibility for its actions. Measures undertaken to facilitate quality control and improvement must be open and clearly defined. According to Gaventa & McGee (2013), the quality circle and the quality improvement teams must be answerable and ready to take responsibility in form of facing penalties in case they fail to be accountable. Although transparency and accountability is essential, there should be limitation on how much information is made to the public. The Omidyar Network has The Transparency and Accountability initiative which has greatly impacted development internationally. This initiative has brought together private foundations and various NGOs. It is meant to build the capacity of organizations. It intends to improve governance as well as involving citizens more.
Accounting Practice Ethics
There are Generally Acceptable Accounting Principles developed by Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) set aside that guide accountants on how to work ethically. The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) has a set of requirements for its auditors to ensure that they work within desirable stipulations. Firms or organizations are expected to allow external auditing to enhance transparency. External auditing ensures that firms are transparent and accountable. According to (Henderson et al. 2015) the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires companies to adhere to the Generally Acceptable Accounting Principles set by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to facilitate ethical consideration. Accounting ethics increases investors’ confidence in the company thereby leading to growth of the company. In the short run, ethical accounting is costly to a firm since it involves investing in accounting professional. Accounting however, brings profitability in the long run since it promotes accountability and proper allocation of resources is done. Accounting ethics ensure that integrity, objectivity, confidentiality and professionalism is adhered to. It requires that one abandons self- interest, advocacy, familiarity, self-review and fear of intimidation.
Ethically speaking, firms or organizations have an obligation to giving back to the community. This requires companies or businesses engage in activities that are not only profit oriented but also activities that are beneficial to the society. For businesses to operate efficiently, they should consider the well being of the environment and the society under which they are working. This is an ethical requirement by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). It is required of companies and business to make managerial decisions that consider the best interest of the society including the environment (Hahn, 2013). Coyuchi is a textile industry which recycles products. It uses cotton that is organic and also natural dyes. It prevents introduction of chemical materials in waterways. It also produces towel and sheets which are made of organic material.
According to the United States’ Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), discrimination can take place to an employee or even an applicant. It can be carried out on the basis of the following factors: race, sex, religion, age, pregnancy, retaliation, national origin, sexual harassment, compensation and disability. The EEOC is mandated with enforcing laws that prohibit any form of discrimination in places of work. Ethics require that everyone is treated equally and awarded equal opportunities regardless of the above mentioned factors. An example of discrimination in the workplace is exhibited by the law suit done by the US Supreme Court against Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart was accused of discriminating against women when it made decisions regarding the payroll and also during giving of promotions (Schlanger & Kim, 2013).
Fair Working Conditions
Ethics require that the employer provide conducive working conditions for the employees. These conditions may be in terms of reasonable wages, health and safety, working hours and remuneration. Reasonable wages ensure that the workers have can have standards of living that are descent. Ethical consideration requires that minimum wages be set. In the short run, setting of minimum wages may lead to a decrease in the productivity of the firm. This is due to increase in the cost of production. In the long run the wages will reduce the total output of the firm. Setting up of working hours will also affect the productivity of the firm. Working hours directly affect the total output of the firm. The more number of hours worked the larger the amount of output. If the working hours are less, it translates to less productivity.
Gaventa, J., & McGee, R. (2013). The impact of transparency and accountability initiatives. Development Policy Review, 31(s1).
Lundgren, R. E., & McMakin, A. H. (2013). Risk communication: A handbook for communicating environmental, safety, and health risks. John Wiley & Sons.
Torremans, P. (2016). Holyoak and torremans intellectual property law. Place of publication not identified: Oxford Univ Press
Hahn, R. (2013). ISO 26000 and the standardization of strategic management processes for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. Business Strategy and the Environment, 22(7), 442-455.
Henderson, S., Peirson, G., Herbohn, K., & Howieson, B. (2015). Issues in financial accounting. Pearson Higher Education AU.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Structural Reform of the American Workplace.