3CO01 Business, Culture and Change in Context, New Assessment Brief

Introduction to 3CO01 New Assessment Brief

3CO01 is the first unit in Level 3 Foundation Certificate in People Practice. The new brief examines the internal influences shaping the business and the culture it operates. The unit examines people professionals’ behaviours in managing change. The new brief requires students to provide answers to the following questions, with an estimate of 2500 words. Students base the answers to their own organisation or an organisation that is familiar to them. In this guideline, I will refer to McDonald’s Company.

Assessment questions

1.1 An examination of the key external influences impacting or likely to impact the organisation’s activities


Students will explain three external factors and their impact (either positive or negative) to the organisation. Students may use the PESTLE analysis tool to identify the factors (Political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental), and discuss how these factors affects business operations at McDonald’s. For example:

Political factor: Brexit.

Economic factor: Covid-19 pandemic

Legal Factor: Changing employment regulations laws

Students will explain how the above-mentioned factors provide insight to understanding the business market environment.


1.2 A discussion of the organisation’s business goals and why it is important for organisations to plan for how they will achieve these


A business goal is a target that the business intend to achieve within a specified period. McDonald’s business goal is to provide a friendly environment for the consumers and good healthy foods. Students explain in detail the other organisational goals, and the objectives that support business within the external environment.

Students will then explain why it is vital for professionals to plan on how they will achieve the business goals. The reasons should be discussed effectively to ensure that HR aligns to the organisation goals and objectives.


1.3 A discussion of the organisation’s products and/or services and main customers


The students will explain the core products, actual products, and augmented products.

Further, students will explain the customer characteristics and their demographics, as well as the efforts that the company makes to ensure that they meet customers’ needs.

The main McDonald’s products are fast foods, drinks and dessert. The services include providing improved dining experiences and positive focus on customer service.

McDonald’s targets customers in the low and middle-income level, most of whom are students, employees and parents with young children.


1.4 A short review of different technologies available to people professionals and how these can be, or are, used to improve working practices and collaboration. You might consider for example, technologies relating to communications, information sharing, record keeping, learning, wellbeing, productivity, or security


Students provide three examples of technology that people professionals use in the workplace. Examples include:

  • Social media technology
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Cloud automation

Students further explain how each of the technologies improve work practices and collaboration. For example, social media technology improves communication, artificial intelligence improves service, enhance learning and productivity, and automation enhance automation of manual processes to speed up functions, especially on record keeping.

Finally, students explain the advantages and disadvantages of the discussed technologies.


2.1 What is meant by organisational culture and why it is important to foster an appropriate and effective workplace culture


Students explain the meaning of workplace culture as the concept that explains how things are done in the organisation. Culture refers to the underlying beliefs, values, patterns and principles that form an organisation’s system of work.

Students may refer to the Charles Handy’s model of organisation culture that describes the elements of;-

  • Power
  • Task culture
  • Person culture
  • Role culture

Students explain why it is important to foster a positive culture. Some of the reasons include:

  • Enhance employee involvement
  • Embrace diversity and inclusion
  • Enhance internal consistency

Finally, students will give one example of workplace culture that has positive impact, and one example that has negative impact. Examples include:

  • A culture that fosters employee learning to enhance growth and career development
  • Unhealthy employee competition that has negative effect to the employees


2.2 How organisations are whole systems, in which different areas and aspects such as structure, systems and culture, are all inter-related, and how people professionals work and actions could impact elsewhere in the organisation


Students explain the different types of organisation structures, such as the flat or tail structure. Further, students may include an organisational chart to illustrate the roles of different professionals in different lines of work.

Students explain how different areas in the organisation inter-relate to achieve holistic systems. For example, a discussion on how the innovative development sector connect with the government and in the international market to create a holistic organisation.

Finally, students provide one example of a good people practice such as providing safe and healthy working conditions for the employees, and an example of a bad people practice such as failure to comply with employment laws.


3.1 Why it is important that organisational change is planned, and effectively managed


Change is vital for organisations. People professionals should plan and manage change to positively impact the organisation. Triggers of change at work include:

  • Structural change
  • Technology improvement
  • Introduction of new learning programmes
  • Chaos
  • Change in organisation processes

Students further explain why it is important to plan and manage change, while putting reference to project planning. Explain the role and purpose of planning to achieve project goals and objectives.

Organisations predict change by analysing the PESTLE and SWOT tools.


3.2 The nature and importance of different roles that can be played by people practice professionals, in relation to change agendas. You might consider roles such as: gatekeeper, champion, facilitator, critical friend or record-keeper


Example: people professionals play the role of an advocate in following change agendas to support employee rights.

Students focus on explaining the support that people professionals give to managers when implementing change agendas.


3.3 How organisational change can impact people in different ways, such as changing their role or status or financial situation, and the different ways people may respond to change


Examples of change:

  • Financial upgrade, regrade, downgrade
  • Job loss
  • Family change
  • Relationships with competitors

Students use a model/theory to explain how people respond to change. Examples are:

  • Kubler-Ross model
  • Fisher curve


Further reading:

BATTISTA, M. (2021) PESTLE Analysis. Available at https://www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/strategy/organisational-development/pestle-analysis-factsheet

GEORGE, S. (2021) Change Management. Available at https://www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/strategy/change/management-factsheet

MOHDZAINI, H. (2021) Technology and the future of work. Available at https://www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/work/technology/emerging-future-work-factsheet

YOUNG, J. (2020) Organisational culture and cultural change. Available at https://www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/culture/working-environment/organisation-culture-change-factsheet

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