Monday, September 9, 2019

Marks & Spencer Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1500 words

Marks & Spencer - Essay Example Long after its competitors had started sourcing cheaper goods, M&S adhered to its ‘buy British’ policy (Mellahi, Jackson and Sparks, 2002). They believed that this was what its customers preferred. They also did not believe in any form of marketing. They only engaged in announcing new stores opening and never promoted the brand or its products. When a product range was not successful they merely sold it a discount. They did not accept credit cards for long time and launched its own in-house store card. They even did not venture into out-of-town retailing. Even when stuck with crisis, the management did not scan the environment and respond effectively to the environment. All their actions and decisions demonstrate that they wanted to remain isolated from the rest of the world, from the retail trends and from consumer expectations. M&S has also been criticized and faces legal issues for its attitude and behaviour towards its workers. The stores have a drab ambience and the ir product range has not been able to keep up with the trends. The retailer has not been able to keep to with the trends and hence competitors have very easily taken over this retailer (Ruddick, 2012). They have been stocking items that have been popular in the past without evaluating the current customer preferences. They have not been able to find the right formula that would appeal to its core customers as well as to the wider demographic in the UK. In addition, the retailer is experiencing stock management mistakes as a result of which the best items remain out of stock. All these have resulted in loss of market share in women’s wear. Its expenditure on marketing has also reduced. Another issue at M&S appears to be unclear organizational capability. A lot of new recruits have been taken in who have yet to familiarize themselves with what the M&S customers want. In addition, M&S has poor online and multichannel capability and a complex and inflexible supply chain (Ruddick, 2012). These factors suggest that M&S had become complacent and believed that customer loyalty that it enjoyed in the past would be sufficient to see them through tough times. However, it has been a lesson for other retailers as well, that with times retail trend has to change. The external environment has to be considered in all decisions to not merely survive but also to gain competitive advantage. Besides, the management must have the capability to evaluate situations and take corrective actions. What use does this organisation make of technology? Where do you think there may be a chance to improve in this area? M&S is making investments in technology to enhance its customer service delivery. For instance, it is investing ?100 million in in-store technology such as iPads for customer assistants and ?150 million on a new website (Ruddick, 2012), and ?2.4 billion on online offering (Ruddick, 2012a). The intention behind equipping the customer assistance with tablets is to improve its customer service, better integrate its customer service and also enable the customers to have access to a wider range of products (Baker, 2012). This would enable them to help customers buy products online that may not be available in-store. In addition, their free apps for iPads allows customers to shop for everything for home (M&S, 2013). M&S is also upgrading its RFID platform to include home good such as bedding, accessories and kitchenware (Violino, 2013). They will

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