ACCA Strategic Business Leadership (SBL)
Strategic Business Leadership (SBL) is the tenth exam of your ACCA journey and the first exam of the ACCA professional level. This examination aims to mirror the real-world workplace challenges and problems thus allowing the students to exhibit their problem solving and technical skills which they have acquired in the course of their studies. NCFM Academy Hyderabad is one of the excellent ACCA Coaching Institutes in Hyderabad, offering ACCA Strategic Business Leadership (SBL) paper in its Ameerpet center.
Introduction to SBL
SBL is a recently introduced exam which aims to test the strategic leadership and management skills of students along with their technical knowledge in a real-world scenario. SBL is going to be different from the exams you have taken in the course of your ACCA journey. It is a four-hour long exam, which focuses heavily on the technical proficiency and professional application and presentation of knowledge.
The exam will focus more on the ability of the students to address the challenges given in the questions and for this, it is essential for the students to develop good reading, analytical, technical and presentation skills.
Exam Format of ACCA Strategic Business Leadership
The examination is based on an integrated case study containing a number of assignments that will vary at each examination. These assignments or tasks may require the candidate to take on different roles, depending on the situation. The number of marks allocated to all these assignments or the sub-parts of these will add up to 100 in total. Within the total marks available, there are 20 Professional Skills marks. Usually, each task will contain some professional skills marks which may vary by examination, depending on the requirements. All tasks must be completed. The examination is of 4 hours duration, but this includes Reading, Planning and Reflection time (RPRT). This time can be used flexibly at any time during the exam.
The syllabus is divided into nine sections with further sub-sections.
This is the first section of this course and it will cover the concept of leadership and how it applies at the SBL level. Students will learn about the qualities of good leadership, this section will build upon the knowledge they gained in their earlier studies. Students will learn about the importance and different types of leadership in organizational culture and the importance of professionalism, ethical codes and keeping the wider public interest in mind while formulating organizational policies.
This is the second section of this course and it will cover the concept of governance in an organization. Students will learn about the agency and the impact of stakeholders on organizational policies. This section will also build upon knowledge gained in earlier studies and will further develop the concept of stakeholder relations so that students understand how the influence of an organization expands into the society and the social responsibility which the leaders and managers have to be aware of.
This section will cover core areas of governance like the scope of governance and the rules and principles-based approach to governance. Students will learn further about reporting to stakeholders and the usage and importance of corporate social reporting and integrated reports.
Students will learn and understand the responsibilities, duties and the process of hiring and dismissal of directors in detail. This section will also cover public sector governance.
This is the third section of this course and it covers the concepts of business strategy. Students will learn the methods to analyze the internal and external environment of a business in order to better understand the environment in which a business is operating. This section will also introduce core competencies and critical success factors and strategies like value chain analysis to allow the students to formulate strategies for growth and improvement.
Students will learn about different strategies for business growth. Building upon earlier studies this section will reintroduce the students to the concepts of organic and inorganic growth strategies, the Boston matrix, Ansoff matrix, Ashridge portfolio model and other strategies to plan and formulate business growth.
This is the fourth section of this course and it covers the concept of risk in an organization. Students will learn the importance and methodology of risk identification, assessment, and measurement. This will allow them to formulate policies to manage, monitor and mitigate risks.
E-Technology and data analytics
This is the fifth section of this course and it focuses on the usage of technology in an organization and the impact of data analytics on the decision making the process. Students will be introduced to the concept of cloud and mobile technology and the impact this new technology is having on businesses. This section will also cover big data, its nature and the prospects of data analysis for modern businesses.
This section will cover E-business in detail and allow the students to understand the value chain of business in this regard. This section will also cover IT systems security and control, students will need to learn the risks being faced by business because of the usage and heavy dependence on technology.
F- Organizational control and audit
This is the sixth section of this syllabus and it will focus on organizational control and audit. This section will build upon your earlier studies in Audit and Assurance. Students will revisit the concepts of management and internal control systems, audit and compliance with laws and regulations and the internal control and reporting to management and stakeholders.
G- Finance in planning and decision-making
This is the seventh section of this course and it covers the role of finance and financial analysis in planning and decision making. Students will revisit the concepts they studied in financial management. This section will go over the importance of finance function in the overall decision-making process for an organization. The exam will test the ability of the students to perform financial analysis of the given case study and present financing and other related solutions.
H- Innovation, performance excellence, and change management
This is the eighth section of this course and it will introduce the students to the concepts of innovation in an organization, the need for performance excellence and change management. Models will be introduced which will help students in their exams. The students will need to understand the role of proper organization, disruptive technology and talent management in a business.
Students will also need to understand strategic change and its importance. This section will also cover the importance of leading and managing projects and dealing with problems and challenges which arise during the course of a project.
I- Professional skills
This is the ninth section of the course but this is not a separate section on its own. The SBL exam is of 100 marks and 20 marks are for professional skills. Students will be judged on the quality of their communication, analysis, professional skepticism, and evaluation skills and their display of commercial acumen in addressing the challenges presented in the case study.
These professional skills will need to be integrated into the answers in order to score the professional marks allocated with each question.
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