When researching a particular company for an assignment (or in preparation for an interview), there are a number of sources you can use. Companies produce a range of documents that can include annual reports, research documents and press releases. These are usually available from their website. You may also require key financial data and statistics, or perhaps are looking for independent research on a company's performance. It is also worth looking at the market report for the sector in which the company operates for analysis of external factors influencing the business. This information will help you analyse how organisations operate, and what makes them successful, their strategies and styles of management.
Company Reports. These are produced by research organisations such as Marketline, and include information such as products and services, top competitors, and SWOT Analysis. From Business Search Interface, click on Company Profiles and type the name of your company in the box - for example Apple. The reports include information on the products and services, top competitors, and a SWOT Analysis. IBISWorld also has some limited information. Find the relevant sector report and view the section on Major Companies. The report includes profiles for the main four or five companies in the industry.
For statistics, use Companies House. This is a government department, and all companies registered in the UK must register and deposit financial accounts with them. From here you can view their annual reports and financial statements in PDF format. You can also use IBISWorld for basic financial data to benchmark your company against an industry.
To find company information, you should start by searching our library databases. Organisations such as Marketline employ a team of analysts to research and write reports which are then provided online. The library pays to provide access to these to ensure that you have content which is of high quality. Once you get used to searching databases, you can save a lot of time because a lot of the work has been done for you.
Different databases provide access to different types of information.
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