Global Advanced Research Journal of Educational Research and Reviews (GARJERR) ISSN: 2315-5132

March 2013, 2(3): pp. 060-069

Copyright © 2013 Global Advanced Research Journals

 

Full Length Research Paper

Application of the value chain analysis framework to enhance understanding of competitive advantage at an Open and Distance Learning (ODL) Institution.

Ignatius Isaac Dambudzo

Zimbabwe Open University, PO Box MP1119, Mount Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe

Email: idambudzo@yahoo.co.uk

Accepted 21 February, 2013

Abstract

The study sought to investigate and develop an understanding of the competitive advantages at an Open Distance Learning (ODL) institution using the value chain analysis framework. Documents were the main sources of data. Literature has documented the utility of value chain analysis to help institutions determine the type of competitive advantage to pursue and how to pursue it. Two components of the value system were identified, namely, the industry value chain and the organisation’s internal value chain. The industry value chain comprised the value creating activities within an organization such as course development right through to the delivery of course offerings and related services to the learners. Five competitive forces were identified in every organization, including distance education as determining survival in the market. An analysis of such competitive forces was vital to reveal the organisation’s fundamental attractiveness, expose the underlying drivers of its profitability giving an insight into how profitability would evolve in future given the possible changes in technology, communication channels, emergence of substitutes and competitors. Organisations had cost differentiation, and also focused on competitive advantages to pursue in order to strengthen their position in the education market. It was against this background that a study of the Zimbabwe Open University (ZOU) as an ODL education provider was undertaken to identify its competitive advantage(s) in the market place as an education provider. The study revealed that ZOU enjoyed the advantage of being the only institution located in an education hungry country with state support that offered education through distance learning. However, competition from conventional colleges also offering parallel ODL programmes were threatening ZOU’s supremacy in the area hence the need to remain competitive. The study recommended that constant monitoring of the operations of the entire institution’s units, acting pro-actively to enable the institution to remain competitive by reducing operational costs, remain efficient and provide quality education to its customers. Further recommendations were made on what the institution could do to enhance its competitive advantage in ODL. The study concluded that value chain analysis framework could be used to understand the operations of an ODL organisation better when used as a monitoring instrument. Results from the study would inform strategic planners on the way forward to consolidate the university’s position as an ODL education provider and to look out for new opportunities in the market. 

Keywords: competitive advantage, value chain, organization, ODL, improvement, education, quality, monitoring.

 

 

Related Articles


Original Research Articles
Yuemin Zhao, Chunna Li, Haitao Suo, Yanping Wang, Chunliu Yang, Zhengyue Ma and Yuxin Liu
Cytotoxic effect of three novel thiochromanone derivatives on tumor cell in vitro and underlying mechanism
Glo. Adv. Res. J. Educ. Res. Rev. September 2014 Vol: 3(9): - [Abstract] [Full Text - PDF] (813 KB)
Ofonime Effiong Johnson and Emem Anietie Bassey
Work Habits and Health Problems of Automobile Technicians at Mechanic Village, Uyo, Nigeria
Glo. Adv. Res. J. Educ. Res. Rev. May 2016 Vol: 5(5): - [Abstract] [Full Text - PDF] (125 KB)
Review
Raheleh Qasem Ahangari and Ebrahim Hallajian
Survey on Effects of Organizational Intelligence on Organizational Trust is based on Albrecht Model (Case study on Ghaemshahr’s Municipal)
Glo. Adv. Res. J. Educ. Res. Rev. January 2015 Vol: 4(1): - [Abstract] [Full Text - PDF] (166 KB)
Original Research Articles
P. Anane-Acheampong.-Osisiadan, L. Darkwah and Godfred Owusu-Boateng
Mine water and the environment: a case study at Central African GOLD Bibiani Limited, Ghana
Glo. Adv. Res. J. Educ. Res. Rev. September 2013 Vol: 2(2): - [Abstract] [Full Text - PDF] (924 KB)
Kandil A. A, Sharief A.E and Sayed A.A.,
Maize Hybrids Seed Germination Characters as affected by Seed Storage Periods, Conditions and Materials
Glo. Adv. Res. J. Educ. Res. Rev. February 2019 Vol: 8(2): - [Abstract] [Full Text - PDF] (242 KB)
Johannes Peyavali Sheefeni Sheefeni
Examining the Bank Specific Determinants of Profitability among Commercial Banks in Namibia
Glo. Adv. Res. J. Educ. Res. Rev. June 2015 Vol: 4(6): - [Abstract] [Full Text - PDF] (169 KB)

Current Issue

Viewing Options

View Full Article - PDF
Download Full Article - PDF

Search for Articles

Ignatius Isaac Dambudzo on Google Scholar
Ignatius Isaac Dambudzo on Pubmed

Statistics

Viewed 1572
Printed 462
Downloaded 2883
Powered By iPortal Works