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Case Study: Woolworths and Amazon

Introduction

The study aims to demonstrate the issues that Woolworths is facing due to the entrance of Amazon in supermarket chains. Woolworths and Amazon both firms are one of the best companies all over the world and have gained immense recognition and trust among customers. Woolworths is one of the leading Supermarket chains in Australia which is founded in the year 1924. The organisation has emerged as a leading company in the Australian domain which is owned by Woolworth’s group(Verma 2018).The organisation has owned 1024 stores across Australia. More than 1,00,000 employees are working in the organisation to accomplish the predefined goals of the organisation.

The organisation has made immense changes in strategies to meet the changes and demand of the customers. Recently, the organisation faces drastic change in the choices of the customers due to the emerging competition of Amazon in supermarket chains. Amazon is already one of the most recognised organisations and the trust among the audience already exists. Therefore it is easy for Amazon to grab the market of the supermarket chain. Also, there are various strategies adopted by the organisation to grab the market. Amazon sells the products at cheaper rates which adversely impact others brands. Supermarket giants are worried that brand owners are favouring Amazon as they can offer a lower price to the customer.

Issues faced by Woolworths

In the era of Globalisation, most of the organisation in the world keep their strategies as per the needs and demand of the trends. The organisation is not depending upon long term strategies as major changes need to be done from time to time. Due to immense competition in the market,Woolworths has already planned various strategies to compete with a competitor. However recent changes in the market due to the entry of Amazon in the supermarket chain have changed the entire scenario Amazon come up with different strategies which are unexpected for Woolworths. Amazon now undercutting most of the supermarket chains with almost 50% of household staples and actively capturing foothold in the present.

Amazon delivers most of the product at the lowest price which is disadvantages for the other organisations. However, there are various internal as well as external issues in the organisation which needs to be eliminated to compete with Amazon. Issues in organisations are comprised of social media ineptitude, decreasing reputation, insufficient training, the royalty of the customers etc. These issues impact the performance of the organisation(Head 2017). This study will focus on the two important issues that are poor online customer service and insufficient training of the staff.

This study will focus only on these issues and provide an innovative solution to the problem. This study will demonstrate the solution of the issues and provide a specific implementation plan to identify its solution(Sullivan and Gouldson2017). Digital business theories also explained such a system thinking in the study which helps to select the most appropriate solution for these issues. There are various changes needs to be done by the organisation to compete with Amazon and attain a high success rate.

First Issue

The first issue that the organisation is facing is the pooronline services. The online presence of the organisation is one of the key tools for the success and growth of the organisation. The online presence is not only a platform for the customers to get directly engage with the organisation but also aids customers to get updated with the information and products of the organisation. Ifonline customer services of the organisation are not up to the mark then it will lead to impact the organisation performance and imbalances the customer loyalty towards the organisation. Therefore the organisation needs to take proper steps to enhance the online customer services(Trumper2018).

The customers’ value drops by this issue and organisation can lose its best employees. All the issue impact the performance of the organisation and Woolworths will not be able to compete with Amazon and may face major losses. In the era of globalisation, every organisation needs to be very active and very responsible for online services as it is the only medium through which any organization can create or break the organisation image.

Objectives

The objective that will address the solution comprises of various points

  • To develop proper marketing and web development team to make relevant changes in online services.

  • To develop a team that thoroughly analyse each process and identify gaps in management.

Plan

To meet the objectives, the organisation implements a plan which comprises of various steps justification, control and the role. Firstly the organisation will check the gaps that exist between the interaction between the customers and management. To conduct this, the organisation will gather all the information by taking feedback from the customers such as where the organisation is lacking and what steps can be taken to eradicate these gaps (Wang 2016). To gather the information the organisationneeds to survey so that the gaps will be easily identified from the customer end. The survey will be conducted that is primary qualitative research. This will be conducted by the organisation. This survey will be conducted by the management team of the organisation which is particularly appointed to solve this issue.

The second step adopted by the organisation is the decision-making process that helps the organisation to attain all the predefined goals of the organisation. The organisation can use the consumer decision-making process by acknowledging there need requirement and modification in the organisation process. The organisation will collect data from the survey and then collect the data in order to find out the needs and requirement of the customers from the organisation. After acknowledging the needs and requirements of the customer's organisation will implement strategies in order to eradicate the issues that are rising due to poor customer service(Alvarez et al. 2018). Various processes need to be considered while taking any decision as per the consumer decision-making process

This survey will be conducted through online service platforms only and it will take two weeks to complete the survey. This survey will be conducted as a close-ended survey and customer needs to choose the best option among the four of them. The budget for this will be approved by upper management of the organisation and this will not cost much to the organisation as it is an online survey. The main aim of the organisation is to deliver the best services to the customer and if these issues arising in an organisation then it will surely impact the productivity of the organisation.

The poor quality services of the organisation eradicated by adopting enhanced digitalization techniques that help to manage data and also reduce the pressure of managing the operation in the organisation(Hepworth and Newman 2019). The organisation can also use digital business theories system thinking in order to implement a solution most effectively. System thinking aids the organisation to focus on the internal operation of the organisation which is the major issue in the organisation at present. Therefore, this strategy process and plan aids the organisation to eradicate this issue in a minimum amount of time and minimum budget.

Second Issue

The second issue faced by the organisation is the unprofessional and untrained staff at the workplace. The employees of the organisation are the key players in the success of the organisation.The performance of the organisation is directly proportional to the performance of employees. Woolworths is facing major problems with the staff members as they are not aware of the online grocery ordering system which is the major disadvantage for the organisation. The workforce of organisation does not adaptable with the technologies and it will not productively engage with the customers through online platforms(Flax et al. 2016).

The employees of the organisation should be well aware of the goals and objective of the organisation. Proper training should be provided by the organisation to keep their employees updated with the system of the organisation. The organisation needs to provide proper training to the employees so that they can be easily adaptable with the operating system of the organisation. If employees are not at all comfortable with ordering system then they were not able to complete the online ordering procedure and various barriers will be arises between customer and Organisation. This is very important for the organisation to take a crucial step towards training and induction at the time of recruitment.

Objective

  • Enhancing the training and recruitment system of the organisation.

  • Develop proper induction process that aids the employee to know the vision and goal of the organisation.

Plan

In order to accomplish these objectives, various steps will be taken to eradicate the issue of untrained employees in an organisation. The organisation first take a meeting with the employees and acknowledge their problems and implement strategies to resolve them. Employees of the organisation are not suitable with the online grocery system then proper training will be provided by the organisation which helps them to manage this system(Biyela2018). However, training is still provided by the organisation but certain improvisation needs to be done by the management of the organisation. The main motive of this interaction between the members and employees is to identify the issue that employees are facing.

The organisation will conduct a meeting with the development team in order to train the employees with an online system. This training will be conducted by the experts of the organisation within working hours. Feedback will also be taken from the employees after the training so that the gaps will be identified. The second step taken by the organisation is in the recruitment process of the organisation. The organisation will hire members that perfectly fit with the organisation without much training. However, the organisation will provide training but a large amount of time in training will not be considered. Even after giving training to the employees, if this issue is still there then the organisation will select the most appropriate candidates and fire the unfit ones.

The organisation will conduct a proper recruitment process that will hire the most appropriate candidates in the organisation which are capable to work in the organisation. The budget for this training is approximately around 500$ which is a reasonable amount for the organisation. The period for this training will be approximately two weeks or more than that. These two strategies will be added in the organisation in order to compete with the Amazon. Walmart is already one of the most recognised organisations and therefore no such changes need to be done in strategies(Conaway et al. 2018). The organisation needs to implement strategies that fit with the present market which is set up by Amazon right now. After improving the online presence, the organisation will automaticallymanage the orders of the firm product which will lead enhance productivity and performance of the organization. However, training employees will help to manage the working of the organisation.

Conclusion

It is concluded from the study that Woolworths and Amazon both firms are one of the best companies all over the world and have gained immense recognition and trust among customers.Recently, the organisation faces drastic change in the choices of the customers due to the emerging competition of Amazon in supermarket chains. Amazon is already one of the most recognised organisations and the trust among the audience already exists. This study focuses on the two important issues that are poor online customer service and insufficient training of the staff.

The online presence of the organisation is one of the key tools for the success and growth of the organisation. The online presence is not only a platform for the customers to get directly engage with the organisation. The second issue faced by the organisation is the unprofessional and untrained staff at the workplace. The employees of the organisation are the key players in the success of the organisation. This issue will be eradicated by developing a proper marketing and web development team in order to make relevant changes in online services. Also, developinga proper induction processaids the employees to know the vision and goal of the organisation.

References

Alvarez, J.B., Lane, D. And Coughlin, J., 2017. Amazon Buys Whole Foods.

Biyela, S.M., 2018. Marketing mix strategy adaptation in response to the global economic crisis at Woolworths in KwaZulu-Natal (Doctoral dissertation).

Conaway, R.N., Regester, K., Martin, S., Nixon, C. And Senior, B., 2018. Amazon-Whole Foods: When E-Commerce Met Brick-and-Mortar and Saved the Brand of Conscientious Capitalism. Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness, 12(3).

Flax, J., Bick, G. And Abratt, R., 2016. The perceptions of supplier-buyer relations and its effect on the corporate brand. Journal of Brand Management, 23(1), pp.22-37.

Head, B., 2017. The Amazon effect. Company Director, 33(10), p.22.

Hepworth, K. And Newman, F., 2019. Trade Unions v. Social Audits: Addressing Labour Exploitation in Woolworths Domestic Food Supply Chain. Hum. Its. Defender, 28, p.14.

Sullivan, R. And Gouldson, A., 2017. The governance of corporate responses to climate change: An international comparison. Business Strategy and the Environment, 26(4), pp.413-425.

Trumper, T., 2018. Data mining: Smoke signals. Company Director, 34(9), p.36.

Verma, A., 2018. The competitive dynamics of MNE market entry on host country incumbents: word/action responses to Amazon’s retail entry into the Australian retail sector (Doctoral dissertation, Auckland University of Technology).

Wang, S., 2016.Corporate Retailing. International Encyclopedia of Geography: People, the Earth, Environment and Technology: People, the Earth, Environment and Technology, pp.1-12.

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