In Mirage, companies operate within a fairly difficult environment (textile industry with destabilizing imports). They can launch 3 products on 2 channels (traditional retailers and superstores) for a total of 6 product-market sets differing in price, quality, production... The products are made of 2 raw materials (natural and synthetic), experiencing quotation fluctuations according to different cycles. Supplies can be purchased on hedging contracts. Companies can make use of designer bureaus. They can also subcontract their production by negotiating with their competitors as they wish.
The level of management functions is fairly advanced. (i.e. the human resources function has calculated absenteeism taking many factors into consideration, including seasonal ones such as winter flu outbreaks, paid vacation time depending on trimester, variations in buying power between firms... Company shares are listed on the stock exchange with a quotation for each period which depends on results, dividends, stock movements by competitors if any, eventual new stock offerings... The finance function also allows for tender offers for competitors's control and all classical means of corporate financing. The simulation includes inflation, value-added tax, union strikes if wages differential become unacceptable and others). There are many possibilities to change scenari and participants are advised by telexes and other means. The macro-economic environment plays a major part (including regulatory changes and international commercial agreements).
Mirage is an excellent simulation for synthesis, as it enhances strategy (diversifications, alliances, innovation and cost competition...). It necessitates a good knowledge of all management functions. The participants's manual is exhaustive, yet easy to use thanks to a systematic index. Besides a number of decision making tools are available as a help.
- Initial training: Synthesis of management training at the end of a cycle (experienced with thousands of students, for entire classes of several hundreds working on parallel simulations, in several management and engineering schools).
- Specialized training and management education: Synthesis for Executive MBAs or general management programs or executive development in corporate universities teaching advanced skills. (various references)
Possible decisons exceed a total of 70 per period., besides indications of forecasted results. Each product / market set accounts for 5 to 6 decisions. 7 decisions are made for human resources mnagement, about 12 for production, supplies and machinery, about 10 for finances and marketing...
- Possibilities to translate in various languages, especially English (the program is built on a "dictionary" structure, with technical terms called at an "address")