Choosing a Career? Company and Industry Research Plays an Imperative Role
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Eshna

Last updated February 12, 2015


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  • Gain an insight on the salaries and company reviews on sites such as Glassdoor.com, which provides reviews for over 21,000 companies.
  • Identify the best Internet-based resources for carrying out an all-inclusive company and industry research.
Finding a job and planning a career both require a thorough company and industry research. This gives you a realistic picture of a particular industry sector or the company in which you want to work. An in-depth market research provides you with detailed information on the following aspects:
  • Skill sets and training that is required for working in a particular industry
  • Values reflected by a certain organization
  • Chief players within the industry sector or within a firm
  • Demands, trends and opportunities associated with a particular industry
  • Challenges and changes in the industry
We all know that knowledge is power. Having a comprehensive knowledge about potential employers as well as the industry sectors of your interest gives you a competitive edge over the others. This relates to both, making an initial contact with the employer and before taking up an interview.
 
Furthermore, having a company’s information becomes invaluable while evaluating a job offer. Most of the employers these days expect candidates to know what their company is into, know who their competitors are and also be aware of all the current events that are impacting their organization. Not doing your homework or a far-reaching research about the company for which you are planning to apply might culminate in short and unsuccessful interview.
If you are applying for a responsible position in an organization, then it is necessary to collect all the recent news and developments in that company. These might include the following:
  • Last financial reports including the earning announcements and stock price
  • New product releases
  • Latest mergers and acquisitions, if any
  • Recent leadership change

Company Research

While carrying out a company research it is very important to evaluate the position of the company against its competitors. The market share of the business units held by the company or the key products of that organization should be determined. Various operational advantages of that company such as labor cost benefits, production efficiencies and other similar pros should also be assessed before making a decision.
 
Intellectual properties provide valuable competitive edges that boost the revenue-generating ability of an organization. Hence, the intellectual property owned by the company should also be unveiled and gaged. The financial advantages offered by the company such as high stock price and cash should also be estimated.
 
Company research should include:
  • The number of divisions within the company and their functions
  • Number of people in each division
  • Revenue generated by every division
  • Products and services catered by every division
  • Management structure of the divisions
Apart from the above listed aspects, key events that have taken place in the history of the company should also be analyzed. These might include product developments, mergers and acquisitions, management changes, litigations, key contracts and more.

Products and Services of the Organization

The most important products and services of the company and their market performances against their peers should be determined. Investigating the revenue breakdown of the company by product or by service as well as their major market brands is also essential.

Industry Research

A thorough industry research involves identifying the macro trends, new technologies and regulations that are currently affecting the industry. The impact of globalization on the industry sector in which your interest lays gives you an idea on its international presence and significance.
Company research should include:
  • The industry outlook for the next one to five years
  • Pricing changes that might occur
  • Available product substitutions
Evaluate the business fundamentals by determining the elements driving the profitability, revenue as well as the expense of the company. Carrying out a research on the major participants in the industry, their strengths and weaknesses and their client segments is also beneficial.

Identify the customers and clients of the industry and the manner in which they respond to products and services.

The type of businesses and the consumer types such as the income level and the age group can also be evaluated. Various needs that are being fulfilled by the industry for its customers and clients should also be considered.

Conclusion

Knowing the way in which industry players market their products and services to their clients and customers gives you a fair idea about the organizational milieu. In this volatile market of finance there could be sudden fluctuations in the product process. It is important to check the impact of such instabilities on the existing customers. Similarly, job-seekers should also learn about the mode by which products and services are being delivered to clients and customers.
 
References
  1. http://businesslibrary.uflib.ufl.edu/industryresearch
  2. http://careers.ucr.edu/ESSENTIALJOBSEARCH/Pages/research.aspx
  3. http://jobs.aol.com/articles/2013/10/28/job-hunting-how-to-network/
  4. http://alis.alberta.ca/ec/icr/lmi1.html
  5. http://www.marketingresearch.org/career-guide
  6. http://www.research-in-germany.de/dachportal/en/Jobs-and-Careers-in-Germany/Info-for-Postdocs-and-Junior-Researchers/Jobs-in-Industry.html

About the Author

Eshna is a writer at Simplilearn. She has done Masters in Journalism and Mass Communication and is a Gold Medalist in the same. A voracious reader, she has penned several articles in leading national newspapers like TOI, HT and The Telegraph. She loves traveling and photography.


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