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Environmental Scanning & Analysis
A Hospital  Scanning Study 
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Environmental Scanning & Analysis

We use environmental scanning to monitor the external business environment, by continually reviewing industry related publications. We also talk with industry experts about issues and developments associated with the industry. We analyze the resulting information to uncover early signs of future opportunities and threats to help an organization better manage its business strategy. Francis Joseph Aguilar is probably the first author to gain broad recognition for his work on environmental scanning. His book, Scanning the Business Environment, published in 1967, is probably the best-known book on the subject.

Environmental scanning is useful in detecting environmental issues, and environmental scanning results are essential in looking at an organization's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The combination of these activities is called SWOT analysis.

To do our environmental scanning and analysis, we break the environment up into categories we call forces. We analyze information associated with these forces to arrive at strategic implications. Here is a brief outline of some of the key components of our environmental scanning and analysis process:

We scan or monitor the business environment.

  • We establish business scenarios
  • We analyze the results of our scanning or monitoring activities.
  • We use visualization techniques to aid in analyzing the results.
  • We document our findings.
          To get an idea of how an environmental scanning analysis is done, please see
          "A Hospital Scanning Study."