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Driving change - Assignment Example

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retail discount industry. Krafft & Mantrala (2010) explores six factors, which drive change within the U.S retail discount industry, including store factors, service factors, merchandise, price, supply chain and technology…
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Driving Change Driving Change Wal-Mart Corporation is the leading company in the U.S. retail discount industry. Krafft & Mantrala (2010) explores six factors, which drive change within the U.S retail discount industry, including store factors, service factors, merchandise, price, supply chain and technology. Store factors relates to creating a unique retail experience through store design and ambience. Service factors entails provision of convenience to shoppers, including customer service, directing and assisting customers to locate products, and effective checkout systems (Krafft & Mantrala, 2010). Merchandise factors entails stocking the merchandise that appeals to retail shoppers and locating it in strategic areas for customer access. Effective merchandising has the potential of matching demand and supply, thus reducing unnecessary inventory, while ensuring that customers get the products they want when they need them (Krafft & Mantrala, 2010). Pricing is an important driver for change because it determines the revenue of a retail store, while influencing customers’ perceptions of quality. Wal-Mart has been on the forefront in implementing low-cost leadership strategy in its management and operations, with the goal of managing price for competitive advantage (Krafft & Mantrala, 2010). Supply chain management is another key driver for change in the retail industry because it has the potential of increasing customer value. Management of the supply chain system reduces inventory costs, while generating value for the retail customers, thus improving competitiveness of a store. Wal-Mart has been on the forefront in streamlining its supply chain thus enabling it to respond to customer demands in a timely manner. Finally, technology is another driver for change, where Wal-Mart has been on the forefront in implementing technologies such as radio frequency identification and CRM. The impact of these factors includes increased competition, shrinking market share and profit margins, and increased consolidation of retail stores (Krafft & Mantrala, 2010). To address these challenges, Wal-Mart has been selective in its growth strategies. However, there need for Wal-Mart to focus on retail innovation, creating centers for excellence and customer value and implementing cost control and management strategies. Wal-Mart may also focus on emerging markets such as China and India where consumers are prices sensitive.
Reference
Krafft, M. & Mantrala, M.K. (2010). Retailing in the 21st Century: Current and Future Trends. ` New York: Springer. Read More
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