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Use of Quantitative and Qualitative Tools for Business Evaluation print this article


The use of quantitative and qualitative methods in evaluating and planning business related functions is paramount to business success. Good ideas and hard work are often unreplacable, but proper application of pertinent analytical techniques can help assure that your company is successful by any measure. Both quantitative and qualitative tools are available to even the smallest of businesses, ranging from straightforward techniques such as break-even analysis (quantitative) and SWOT analysis (qualitative) to seemingly obscure tools such as the Altman-Z (quantitative) and the General Electric Matrix (qualitative). An excellent source of both quantitative and qualitative tools is the "Vest Pocket CEO", authored by Alexander Hiam and published by Prentice-Hall. This incredible book features over 100 useful, diverse evaluative techniques grouped into the following categories:

1) Financial Decisions
2) Leadership Skills and Methods
3) Manufacturing and Operations
4) Marketing Decisions
5) Organization and Human Resources
6) Product Development and Innovation
7) Sales Management Decisions
8) Strategic Planning Decisions
9) General Decision-Making Tools

After perusing this book, it is easy to see how one could "go overboard" in applying these tools, but selective application of pertinent techniques is a must for successful business operations. Obviously, depending upon the area being analyzed, the relevant tools and techniques will differ. Ten of the most common and useful techniques are presented below, with brief descriptions of their application following the list. Your instructor will guide you in terms of which tools to focus on in this final session, but exposure to each of these ten tools will prove beneficial to your future operations.

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