Jft2 Task 3 Essay

5709 words - 23 pages

JFT2 Task 2
Introduction:

In this task, you will analyze the “Utah Symphony and Utah Opera: A Merger Proposal” case study. You will develop a proposed action plan for the new leader, Anne Ewers, to help her in the development of a new strategy to measure the success of the ongoing merger process. The strategic goals for the first year of the merger include the following:
• Integrate the business processes of the two companies
• Reduce overall expenses as a percentage to profit
• Retain key employees
• Maintain audience base for both the Utah Opera and the Utah Symphony
• Identify and pursue synergistic opportunities between the two companies

Task:
A. Develop an action plan for ...view middle of the document...

These expenses are under contract as negotiated through representation of the musicians by the United Federation of Musicians and have to be honored. This expense makes up 85% of the expense budget.

Steps to address this financial weakness:
Ann can address the weakness of the program expense by first reducing the Symphony’s payroll tax obligation. The Symphony can offer musicians benefits that are not subject to FICA, the portion of payroll the employer has to pay. For example, employees can be offered fringe benefits such as employer paid insurance premiums and a Cafeteria 125 plan to pay for health benefits. Also, for those salaries not under contract, the Symphony can legitimately reclassify a few positions as independent contractors or hire an outside company to complete certain jobs such as IT and human resources. (Poretsky, 2013)

Another weakness of the Symphony is that even though it operated on a 52-week schedule, the performance and contribution revenues of $8.3M equate to only 66.9% of its total income. Although total income was expected to increase by 1%, total expenses were expected to increase by 2.5%. The majority of income relied upon by arts organizations in the U.S. typically come from the aforementioned revenue streams with a national average of 82%. However, the Symphony’s revenue and contribution budget is down 15.1% compared to the national average. Also, the Symphony’s business model would not allow it to adjust the size of the Symphony or eliminate non productive projects.

Steps to address this financial weakness:
Ann can address this weakness by adding more performances annually and
raising ticket prices. Once a performance has been rehearsed, there is little
incremental cost to presenting an additional show. The increased attendance to
the shows will also bring more awareness and appreciation to the merged
organization. Anne would have to increase the fund raising goals and heavily
engage the marketing department to increase contributions from individuals and
corporations. She could hire grant writers to submit additional RFPs (request for
proposals) to foundations, increasing the chance of receiving more grant awards.

The Opera and Symphony boards believed that both the musicians and the Symphony
would be critical to the future success of the merger. The musicians in turn, believed
that one of the essential guiding principles for the future of the Symphony would be
effective fundraising. The 35.9% income attributable to fundraising is significantly
lower compared to the national average of 94% and is a definite weakness.
Especially since part of that debt ($100,000) is due to non-payment of pledges.

Steps to address this financial weakness:
Ann can address this weakness by using her successful fundraising talent at
soliciting funds outside of the state. The musicians can also go on a national
tour. Ann is known for her...

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