With the affects of Covid 19 impacting many businesses in New Zealand many are reassessing themselves and using a SWOT analysis to do just that.

Businesses are currently looking at their Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats as a way to determine what they need to do quickly and the way forward.

The SWOT framework is credited to Albert Humphrey, who developed the approach at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI) back in the 1960s and early 1970s.

It is a valuable framework which could pictorially determine the internal and external factors affecting business, staff or process performance.

With New Zealand businesses having to maintain  their contribution to New Zealand’s cultural, economic and commercial health in terms of innovation, production and employment generation in a difficult time completing a regular SWOT analysis and using a tool created in the 60’s is as great way to see how well each business is doing.

The first two letters in SWOT, S (Strengths) and W (Weaknesses), refer to internal factors within your own business. It relates to the resources and industry experience already available to the business. The factors include:

  • Financial resources – funding and income sources and potential investment opportunities – many of which have been thrown a lifeline by recent government policy over our Covid lockdowns
  • Physical resources – business locality, facilities and industry equipment – the need for big facilities and large offices is being tested right now really
  • Human resources – staff base and target demographics – with online facilitation available the demographic needs of a business is having to adjust.

The final two letters in SWOT, O (Opportunities) and T (Threats), refer to external factors that could influence your business. Include here are:

  • Industry trends – technological developments, new product lines and shifting consumer demands – this doesn’t appear to have changed much over Covid; only towards more online shopping and promotion
  • Economic movements –trends on a local, national and global scale – with New Zealand being a scalable economy and primary producer we could be in a valuable position going forward.

For those students who understand SWOT here is your opportunity to encourage your business to follow suit.


This article was written by Tony Boyce – General Manager