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SWOT Analysis

SWOT analysis

Fortune 500 Companies

Fortune 500 Companies

Top 500 U.S. corporations (public and private), ranked by gross revenue, compiled annually by Fortune magazine and listed at the CNNMoney website.

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What is SWOT?

SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunties, and Threats.  An SWOT analysis is an effective process companies use to assess themselves and their competitors and formulate their strategies.

Information in a SWOT analysis is organized into internal and external factors:

  1. An examination of the Strengths and Weaknesses of a company.  This is an internal look at company operations used to identify what the company does well and where it needs to improve. It focuses on the current situation.
  2. An examination of the external environment in which the company operates. This means identifying industry trends and outside forces that focus on the future.

Questions to Ask

A SWOT analysis will answer these questions:

What are the internal strengths and weakness of your company?

What are the external opportunities and threats in your industry and its environment?

Can any weaknesses be converted to strengths? Any threats into opportunities?

How can your company take advantage of strengths and opportunites?

What strategic changes can your company implement as a result of the SWOT analysis?

Using a published SWOT analysis

Databases subscribed by the library including Business Source Complete, and Business Insights: Essentials provide published SWOT analyses for public companies.  These reports offer perspectives and insights on a company that you may not be aware of, and could be helpful, especially when you are just learning to conduct a SWOT analysis of a company.  But like all research sources, they require evaluation. Some of the reports could be outdated or incomplete.  If you do use them in your report or presentation, you need to cite your sources.

Library Databases that provide company information or swot analysis

In Business Source Completetype the name of the company in one box, and swot in the other.  Here's an example:

In database Business Insights: Global, mouse over Companies, then select SWOT reports.