Customer Satisfaction of Standard Hotels in Tagaytay City Essay

Customer Satisfaction of Standard Hotels in Tagaytay City Essay.


The hotel industry grew with travel, as people needed places for shelter and food along the routes they travelled, whether by land, water or air. The hotel industry is, therefore, one of the oldest endeavors in the world. (Andrews, 2009) Owners of the hotel realized that a customer has their own demand in services and facilities, that is why they developed what the hotels are offering before through what are the customer’s needs. The Hotel Proprietors Act 1956 provides a clear definition of a hotel: An establishment held out by the proprietor as offering food, drink and, if so, required, sleeping accommodation, without special contract, to any traveler presenting himself who appears able and willing to pay a reasonable sum for the services and facilities provided and who is in a fit state to be received.

Hotels can be classified into different types according to their target market, size, location, facilities or ownership. (Baker.,Huyton., Bradley., 2000)

Recently, the hotel industry trends towards separating the services sector between hotels.

Many hotels nowadays offer recreation for a particular group of tourists. Popular family hotels, hotels for the newlyweds and hotels for people with disabilities, each of them has its unique set of services. Among the services that are indirectly related to the customers, that means that they are not involved in direct care of guests, are marketing service and bookkeeping of the hotel. Reservation, once considered one of the main hotel services, today has become an anachronism. Nowadays, in order to book a hotel clients use the services of the major tour operators. Online booking through the numerous tourist online services is getting increasingly popular. says it offers 202,842 hotels globally. STR Global estimates that there are 187,000 hotels, offering 17.5 million guest rooms, around the globe.

The Priceline Group’s supply included 200,900 hotels through March 19, Susquehanna estimates, and during the first quarter it was adding about 1,541 properties (hotels, apartment hotels, motels, hotels, residence hotels, B&B’s and guest houses) per week. (, 2012) In the Philippines, hotels can be classified into four categories: De Luxe class, First class, Standard class, and Economy class. The higher the star rating of the hotel is, the higher its luxury level. De Luxe has 30, First class has 16, Standard has 83 and Economy has 43 as of September 2011. (, 2011) One of the famous tourist destinations is Tagaytay City. In order for the place to accommodate guests; they have nine hotels that were accredited by the Department of Tourism. Standard Hotels offer an affordable stay and provide all basic amenities to the tourists.

These hotels are considered as the best option for all those people who look out for affordable accommodations and don’t find it sensible wasting money over unnecessary facilities. ( Republic Act No. 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991Section 5. Requirements for a standard class hotel: Location, Bedroom facilities and furnishings, Front office/reception, Housekeeping, Food and Beverage, Engeering and Maintenance, General Facilities, Service and Staff, Special Facilities. (

Background of the Study

Tagaytay has a lots of business establishments that can affect ones operations. There are a lot of hotels and establishments in Tagaytay that offer different accommodations, amenities and services such as Bed and Breakfast, Inns, Apartment Hotels, Apartel and other establishments located in Tagaytay City. Hotel Dominique welcomes the guests into a charming European – style chalet in the cool countryside of Tagaytay. The guests can hole up in a Balinese suite or cabana with direct access to the pool. But they’re more than just one place to stay. Hotel Dominique imparts the feeling of “home” when they greet guests with the warmest of smiles and attend you your needs promptly. And whether the guests spend their days sampling their signature dishes or getting a massage, guests can always come back to a room that looks like the very first day they saw it. (,2011) Hotel Kimberly nestled close to Tagaytay City’s café district. It offers elegant accommodation, modern facilities, and genuine hospitality of its friendly and efficient staff.

All these set against the floral landscapes, breathtaking scenery, year-round cool climate, and wonderfully idyllic atmosphere of Tagaytay City. (, 2012) The Lake Hotel Tagaytay offers charming, unbelievably serene spaces. With each reasonably priced accommodation you’re sure to finally be in a place where everything becomes unforgettable. (,2010) Discovery Country Suites in Tagaytay focuses only on giving you these special moments that you simply will never simply forget. Whether being awed by breathtaking views of Taal Volcano and Lake or lounging away at our distinctively themed rooms, every second spent here should be savored.

For some, these uninhibited pleasures may seem trivial and even insignificant. But it is these little moments that inspire us the most. (,2012) One Tagaytay Place Hotel suites offers a refreshing vibe of Tagaytay, let our hotel’s cozy rooms and amenities tickle your senses. Stay in bed a little longer and enjoy the sumptuous comforts of a richly furnished guestroom. Indulge in local and international cuisine, Tagaytay delicacies, spa treatments, and other pleasurable choices. Go celebrate life’s most important events with friends and family at the Aurora Grand Ballroom.

Live that perfect day at One Tagaytay Place Hotel Suites. (,2012) Days Hotel Tagaytay is an affordable luxury. An ambiance of carefully cultured elegance.Architecture, appointments and amenities of distinction.Outstanding customer service.Awesome cuisines from all over the world.Addictive flavors and captivating tastes.Creature comforts without compromise.Dedication to enhancing everyday expectations.Pleasant surprises that ensure every guest leaves happy. It all comes together in the Best Value under the Sun. (, 2012)

Statement of the Problem

This study will determine the level of guests satisfaction experienced by the customers through the services they offer and help to improve their services on guests. Specifically, the study sought to answer the following questions:

1. What is the profile of the respondents in terms of:
a) Age
b) Gender
c) Educational Attainment
d) Monthly Income
e) Place of Origin
2. What are the levels of guest satisfaction of Standard Hotels in Tagaytay in terms of: a) Accommodation
b) Front Office Service
c) Facilities and amenities
d) Food and Beverage Service

3. Is there a significant difference between the ratings of the respondents based on the criteria set by the Department of Tourism on the different services provided to guests by standard hotels in Tagaytay City? 4. Is there significant relationship between the profile variable of the respondents to the ratings on there level og satisfaction? 5. What action plan can be proposed?

Significance of the Study
This study will be beneficial to the following:

Province of Cavite. This study will benefit by knowing the strategies on how to encourage tourists to visit Cavite by means of this, Cavite may attract more tourists because of the quality of the rendered services and accommodation by the hotels.

Tagaytay City. This study will benefit by improving or increasing the tourists arrival in Tagaytay City. Hotel Industry. This study will benefit by helping the hotel industry to improve their service and products to the better service and strategies of their competitive life. As well as the management and staff of the hotel, and also the customers.

Students. This study will benefit by helping the students to have an idea concerning the service of an establishment, which can make their study easier and realistic. Future Researchers. This study will benefitby using our study asreference or source of other studies to be conducted.

Scope and limitation

The researchers cover the guest and employees of standard hotels in Tagaytay city. The study is limited to six (6) standard hotels accredited by Department of Tourism in Tagaytay city. They are the respondents of the study. They will evaluate and analyze the whole production of standard hotel
in Tagaytay city.The researchers will conduct a survey to 120 respondents, 20 respondents per standard hotel.

Definition of Terms

Accommodation- is anything done to adjust with the expectations of others. It is equated so as to address needs and wishes or to reconcile contradictory interpretations of things. Accreditation – is a process in which certification of competency, authority, or credibility is presented. Amenities- Something that contributes to physical or material comfort. things that make you comfortable and at ease. Anachronism – an error in which a person, object, event, etc., is assigned a date or period other than the correct one.

Department of Tourism – is the executive department of the Philippine governmentresponsible for the regulation of the Philippine tourism industry and the promotion of the Philippines as a tourist destination. Facilities – something designed, built, installed, etc,. to serve a specific function affording a convenience or service. Food and Beverage – which is the sector/industry that specializes in the conceptualization, the making of, and delivery of foods. The largest are in restaurants and bars, including hotels, resorts, and casinos.

Front Office – welcomes guests to the accommodation section: meeting and greeting them, taking and organizing reservations, allocating check in and out of rooms, organizing porter service, issuing keys and other security arrangements, passing on messages to customers and settling the accounts. Guest – a person who receives the hospitality of a hotel, a city. A person who patronizes a hotel, restaurant, etc. for the lodging, food, or entertainment it provide. Guest Satisfaction – is a measure of how products and services supplied by a company meet or surpass customer expectation. Satisfaction – an act of satisfying; fulfillment; gratification. The state of being satisfied or contentment. .

The researchers cover the guest and employees of standard hotels in Tagaytay City. The study is limited to six (6) standard hotels accredited by Department of Tourism in Tagaytay City. They are the respondents of the study. They will evaluate and analyze the whole production of standard hotel in Tagaytay city. The researchers will conduct a survey to 120 respondents, 20 respondents per standard hotel.

Definition of Terms

Accreditation – is a process in which certification of competency, authority, or credibility is presented. Anachronism – an error in which a person, object, event, etc., is assigned a date or period other than the correct one. Department of Tourism – is the executive department of the government responsible for the regulation of the Philippine tourism industry and the promotion of the Philippines as a tourist destination. Guest – a person who receives the hospitality of a hotel, a city. A person who patronizes a hotel, restaurant, etc. for the lodging, food, or entertainment it provides. Guest Satisfaction – is a measure of how products and services supplied by a company meet or surpass customer expectation. Satisfaction – an act of satisfying; fulfillment; gratification. The state of being satisfied or contentment.

Customer Satisfaction of Standard Hotels in Tagaytay City Essay

The Seven Design Elements of Customer Interface Essay

The Seven Design Elements of Customer Interface Essay.

Our homepage is integrated of Aesthetically design and Functionally design. We emphasis on the look-and-feel of the site because hotel needs heavy visual element, so we use colorful and mostly green theme just like our hotel theme, it gives nature, warm, fun, and comfortable feelings like home (En Casa) and shows green hospitality that we practices. Moreover, our target market is more on leisure travelers, we showed pictures of our luxury resort. Beside the looks, we also emphasis the functionality, we use linking structure and navigation tools which facilitate the users moves through the sites.

Like when people go to our website and click on “Our Global Home”, it will take them to the list of all En Casa Hotel and Resorts properties around the world, so they can easily access to there and have a look.

Content The content of our homepage is offering mix dimension which means we include products, information, and services altogether. We show our rooms types, pictures and then we give information about the rates and facilities, we also put information about our restaurant outlets, spa facilities, meeting & event and all services that we offers into the homepage so people who interested can easily look for our details.

Community En Casa allows their customer to have a profile with them whereby they can put their information and their preferences when they stay at En Casa and to give a feeling of membership in our group. We also have Facebook and Twitter account whereby people can subscribe to us and have interaction between site users. Our homepage is following Non-interactive Communication type, our site presents static information and only allows unidirectional communication with them.

Customization En casa has the ability to customize itself to each user. It has two dimension of customization, one is personalization, it means when a person come to En Casa webpage, he/she can choose his/her preference language, and next time he/she go to our webpage using same device, it will automatically set the language, he/she no need to change it again. The second dimension is tailoring by site, our software dynamically publishes unique versions of the site to address specific user’s interests, habits and needs more appropriately based on past user behaviour. For example when last time our guest already booked a suite room with a pick-up limousine from airport, when he is booking another room with us, we will ask whether they want a pick-up limousine again.

Communication How our communication works is broadcast, which means one-way information exchange from organization to user. Broadcast communication can be in the form of mass mailing, FAQ, e-mail newsletters, content-update reminders and broadcast events. We applied One-to-Many, Non-Responding User, site messages are announcements that users receive without needing to respond. It is when we announce our upcoming events and promotions into our webpage. We also applied One-to-Many, Responding User, Site messages are invitations to users to submit their comments and responses. It is when our guests can give their feedbacks to our webpage or through TripAdvisor that linked to our webpage.

Connection En Casa connection dimension is Pathway of Connection, which refers to the links to access additional information. And the type is Pathway-out-links cause the user to completely exit our website to go to another website but the content is still talk about our hotel. We applied this to Facebook page, Twitter page and also Trip Advisor. They can look for our information there, for Trip Advisor, they can book our room too.

Commerce What we “sell” on our webpage is our En Casa Hotel & Resort’s rooms, our facilities like F&B outlets, spa, and also meeting rooms. For Commerce Archetypes, we applied Catalog Pricing, which means the price of goods and services are preset by us. Through our website, they can have reservation and do payment in advance because we provide payment facilities like credit card or debit card.

The Seven Design Elements of Customer Interface Essay

Starbucks: Delivering Customer Service Essay

Starbucks: Delivering Customer Service Essay.

Situational Analysis
Affluent, well-educated, white-collar patrons(skewed female) between the ages of 25 and 44 Most loyal customers visit Starbucks as often as 18 times a month, but typical customers visited just 5 times a month Context:

Stores located in high-traffic, high-visibility settings such as retail centers, office buildings and university campuses Along with whole-bean coffees, company-operated stores also sold rich-brewed coffees, Italian-style espresso drinks, cold-blended beverages, premium teas, pastries, sodas, juices, music CDs, games and seasonal novelty items Beverages accounted for the largest 77% of sales in stores.

This represented a change from 10 years earlier, when about half of store revenues had come from sales of whole-bean coffees. Company encouraged promotions within its own ranks. About 70% of the company’s store managers were ex-baristas, and about 60% of its district managers were ex-store managers

Not easy to strike up a conversation with customer as before because today every customers orders a handcrafted beverage Coffee consumption was on rise in the United States. More than 109 million populations drank coffee every day, and an additional 52 million drank it on occasion.

Consumption of specialty coffee was rising and it was estimated that about one-third coffee will be consumed outside of the home New product development process took 12-18 month cycle and its success mainly dependent on partner acceptance Starbucks’ customer base was evolving. Newer customers tended to be younger, less well-educated and in the lower income bracket.


Dominant specialty-coffee brand in North America

Starbucks owned close to one-third of America’s coffee bars, more than its next five biggest competitors combined Serving 20 million unique customers in well over 5000 stores around the globe and was opening on average 3 stores a day Starbucks operated over 300 company owned international stores and about 900 licensed stores across globe Marketing consisted primarily of point-of-sale materials and local-store marketing(Most fast-food chains had marketing budgets in the 3%-6% range) 11 consecutive years of 5% or higher comparable store sales growth Excellent product(coffee), awesome service and lounging environments were the three components of branding strategy Starbucks controlled as much of the supply chain as possible Lowest employee turnover rate(70%) compared to industry average of 300% Partner satisfaction rate consistently hovered in the range of 80% to 90% range


Starbucks worked directly with coffee growers to purchase green coffee beans JV with Pepsi-Cola to distribute bottled Frappuccino beverages in North America and partnership with Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream to develop and distribute a line of premium ice creams


Regionally concentrated small-scale specialty coffee chains differentiated itself on the basis of store environment and freshest coffee Starbucks also competed against thousands of independent specialty coffee shops which also sold beer, wine and liquor. Some of them offered satellite televisions, internet connected computers. Donut and Bagel chains like Dunkin Donuts with 3700 stores also competed with Starbucks. It has started offering flavored coffee and non-coffee alternatives

SWOT Analysis

Criteria examples

Starbucks was operational in retail centers, office buildings and university campuses.

Starbucks took care of its employees through Health Insurance and Stock options.

Starbucks introduced at least one new hot beverage every holiday season

Starbucks sales were increasing at a CAGR of 40%

Starbucks had company operated stores located in high-traffic, high-visibility settings. The employee turnover rate was lowest at Starbucks with only 70% turnover when compared to the industry average of 300%

Starbucks invested highly on innovations.

Strong financial foundations with since the company had gone public Weaknesses

Customer satisfaction is decreasing and Starbucks is losing the customer loyalty.

Self-cannibalization of at least one third of Starbucks stores everyday

Customer snapshot score not showing reality

Criteria examples

The perception of Starbucks Brand Image in the Recent Findings of people’s experiences: Starbucks cares primarily about making money – from 54% to 61%. Starbucks cares about building more stores – from 48% to 55% Starbucks strategy for expanding in retail business was to open stores in new markets while geographically clustering stores in existing markets. There is service gap between Starbucks scores on key attributes and customer expectation.

Criteria examples

More than 109 million people now drank coffee every day and an additional 52 million drank it on occasion. Company was only in 150 of the roughly 300 metropolitan statistical areas in the nation. In the southeast there was only one store for every 110000 people compared with one store for every 2000 people in the pacific northwest.


Coffee consumption was on the rise in United States.
Company has the opportunity to cover 150 metropolitan areas in the nation. It could open new stores in existing markets where saturation level was not high.


Increasing consumer perception that Starbucks only cared about the money. New customer perceived that Starbucks is not so high quality brand. Very little image differentiation between itself and smaller coffee chains.

Criteria examples

Number of respondents who strongly agreed with the statement that Starbucks cared only about the money increased from 53% to 61%. Only 34% of new customers believed it to be a high quality against the established customers whose 51% proportion believed it to be a high quality brand. There was very little image or product differentiation between Starbucks and the smaller coffee chains.

Problems Statement:

Customer satisfaction is decreasing and Starbucks is losing the customer loyalty. Data revealed that they are not meeting customers’ expectation in the area of customer satisfaction Complexity of job increased because of customized demand, which slow down the service for everyone else Starbucks lacked strategic marketing group. Organizational structure meant that market- and customer- related trends could sometimes be overlooked. Data were not used judiciously to take marketing decisions.

Little image or product differentiation between Starbucks and the smaller coffee chains in the minds of specialty coffeehouse customers Increased doubts over clearly communicating values

Newer evolving customers visited the stores less frequently than the established one and their perceptions regarding high-quality brand, tastes, quality were also on down swing Possible alternatives:

1. Invest additional 20 hours of labor, per week, per store, at a cost of an extra $40 million per year to improve speed-of-service and thereby increase customer satisfaction. 2. Focus on Product innovation & Retail expansion as growth strategy.

Evaluation of alternatives:

The company’s most frequent customers averaged 18 visits a month while the typical customer visited just five times a month. The following can be analyzed from the customer visit frequency data: 21 % of customers visits 8+ times/month and contribute 62 % of the Starbuck Transaction 37 % of customers visits 3-7 times/month and contribute 27 % of the Starbuck Transaction 42% of customers visits 1-2 times/month and contribute 11 % of the Starbuck Transaction

Average Weekly revenue per store = 15400
Average Annual revenue per store = 800800(15400*52)
Average No. of transactions per store = 208000(800800/3.85)
Average No. of transactions per customer per month = 5
Average No. of transactions per customer per year = 60
No. of Ideal Customer per year = 3467
No. of Highly Satisfied Customers = 728
No. of Satisfied Customers = 1282
No. of Un-satisfied Customers = 1456
Contribution of Highly satisfied customer per year = $381.88 Contribution of Satisfied customer per year = $209.4

Difference in contribution of highly satisfied customer & satisfied customer = $172.3 Investment per store(assuming it is done in 4574 stores) = $8745 No. of customers converted from satisfied to highly satisfied who will contribute the margin ~ 50( 4 % of the Satisfied Customers) We can see that the $40M investment on the stores ($8475 per store) can be recovered if we can convert 50 “satisfied” customers to “highly satisfied” customers from the 3467 customers that visit the store every year.

Proposition and our stand

Starbucks should make the $40 M investment to improve the speed of service which will increase the customer satisfaction. This will increase customer loyalty barring which there is a possibility that the ‘highly satisfied’ and ‘satisfied’ customers might become ‘Unsatisfied’ customer. They should create a strategic marketing group that would collaborate the efforts of market research group, category group and marketing group. They should improve the metrics to measure the service performance.

Starbucks: Delivering Customer Service Essay

Strategic tutorial Essay

Strategic tutorial Essay.

Discussion Questions

1. Outline the issues and problems involved in identifying a company’s desired future state.

a. Determine the need for change: need to determine the current state and recognise the “core competencies”; and practically characterise its desired future state. Determine whether the company needs reengineering or restructuring. b. Identify the obstacles: need to identify the obstacles to change at all level.

2. Under what circumstances might it be best to enter a new business area by acquisition? Under what circumstances might internal new venturing be the preferred mode of entry?

It would be better to enter a new business area by acquisition when a company is considering implementing horizontal integration or when they are pursuing vertical integration and the company is lacking the distinctive competencies to compete in an industry and uses capital to purchase a company that possesses those competencies to establish a quick presence and reputation.

Acquisition allows a company to purchase quicker than it takes to establish its own company that is similar.

Also, acquisitions are less risky because there is less commercial uncertainty and the company is able research the firm they are interested and they have an established reputation. Lastly, they are attractive because there are high barriers to entry.

It would be better to enter a new business area by internal new venturing when a company possesses one or more generic distinctive competencies in its core business model that can be leveraged or recombined to enter a new industry. Usually companies that focus on innovation and technological advancements to create new products favour this model. If the company has limited distinctive competencies it is beneficial because the company is entering the embryonic stage, where you do not have to be established to compete.

3. If IBM decides to diversify into the wireless telecommunications business, what entry strategy would you recommend that the company pursue? Why?

If IBM did decide to enter into the cellular telecommunication business, it would probably use a combination of entry strategies. It might try to gain access to some critical competencies by acquiring firms that possess those competencies or entering into strategic alliances by joint ventures with such firms. In addition, the company might well use its own digital know-how to build the businesses.

Closing case

1. In what ways is Oracle seeking to create value from its acquisitions? Oracle seeks to strengthen its product offerings, accelerate innovation, meet customer demand more rapidly, and expand partner opportunities. Consistent commitment to customer service and product support while achieving financial return objectives and creating value for our shareholders. Long term growth focused on growing global market share. Expanding into Asia and India markets. By acquiring new companies, Oracle has consolidated the industry and taken over some of its largest competition. All of the previous companies’ customers become Oracle’s potential customers Oracle can bundle the new software with its own, creating an integrated system that creates a one-stop shop for its customers Increases efficiency, quality, innovation, and customer responsiveness

2. Based upon the ways it is seeking to increase the value it creates, what is its corporate-level strategy? 1. Obtain a customer base that increases market share and revenue. Oracle’s purchases of PeopleSoft, Siebel and BEA Systems are illustrative of acquisitions driven by financial imperatives and intended to increase recurring revenues and profits. 2. Buy into a new product line that fills a market gap. SAP’s acquisition of Business Objects, IBM’s purchase of Cognos, and Oracle’s purchase of Hyperion exemplify acquisitions that help the acquiring vendor to push into new market segments. 3. Technology deals that improve a core capability. Deals in which a vendor acquires another vendor specifically for its technology, such as SAP’s Frictionless Commerce acquisition.

Strategic tutorial Essay

SWOT analysis of Shouldice Hospital Limited Essay

SWOT analysis of Shouldice Hospital Limited Essay.


Shouldice Hospital limited was started in 1940 by Dr. Earle Shouldice for treating Hernia. The method of surgery adopted by Shouldice Hospital was unique in a sense that it introduced the concept of flow shop in carrying out surgeries alongwith simplicity in surgery. Because of this uniqueness and simplicity, the demand for surgeries at Shouldice increased and Shouldice has reached a point where it has to increase its capacity to reduce the wait times being faced by the patients. Presently, the hospital performs, on an average, 30 to 36 operations per day.

The challenge is to devise a way of increasing the hospital capacity while maintaining the same quality standards, the role of government in the operations of the hospital and unauthorised use of Shouldice brand name by potential competitors.


We have assumed that at all times ratio of patients coming from outside and local patients remain at 70:30 and surgeries has to be carried out maintaining the ratio.Analysis:Shouldice is already evaluating some options to increase the capacity of the hospital.

Some of these are: 1. Increasing capacity of the hospital by increasing the number of beds and inculcating more staff.2. Operating on Saturdays and Sundays in order to increase the capacity by 20%.3. Expanding the capacity thereby entering in other specialist areas offering similar opportunities like eye surgery etc.4. Changing the scheduling of doctors.The way, the surgeries are carried out at Souldice, any patient needs to stay at hospital for at least 3 days. Appendix ‘B’ shows weekly maximum achievable throughput of 149 patients under the current operating cycle. Surgeon Capacity Analysis: In general, a typical first time surgery requires 45 minutes of surgeon time. Surgeon requi …

1. Executive Summary Shouldice hospital is a specialized hospital in the repair of external abdominal hernias in Canada. The hospital was established by Dr. Shouldice the founder of a new and superior surgical technique, now known as the Shouldice method, for repairing hernias which yields better medical results as well as a significantly shorter recovery time. The Shouldice Hospital is a successful organization and admired by most of the people who had relation with it or who have heard of it. Moreover, some of the hospitals and surgeons take benefit of the Shouldice method in their advertisement although they hardly perform it perfectly. This leads the hospital to become notorious. Shouldice is operating at its “best operating level” for a service company with limited flexibility in its plant, a specialized work force but are failing to meet all the demand for its chosen market niche. Adding additional capacity to meet the unmet market need may upset the existing work force and lower service quality. Failing to meet the market demand may invite competition that could eventually cause Shouldice to lose market share and end up with excess capacity.

2. Hospital Background: Dr. Edward Earle Shouldice graduated from the University of Toronto in 1916. By 1940, Dr. Shouldice was operating a private medical and surgical practice, lecturing at the University of Toronto, and pursuing research work in areas of advancing medical knowledge. During World War II, he was called to serve on the Medical Examining Board. Dr. Shouldice, a major in the army, found that many young men willing to serve their country had to be denied enlistment. These men needed surgical treatment to repair their hernias before they could be …

How does Shouldice offer a superior value proposition relative to its customers, remain successful, and balance low cost with high quality? Data Summary Benefits purchased by the consumer: Shouldice Value Proposition •Early ambulation following surgery oUse of local anesthetic oNature of procedure •Design of facility o130 acres o17,000 square feet o89 beds •Dr. Casim Degani, internationally recognized authority •Specialized procedure •Patients administered anesthetic in operating room •Upon completion of operation: patients are fully aware of what is going on •Counseling activities •Atmosphere •Experienced staff Shouldice way compared to other hospitals

•Recovery oPractically cut in half •Atmosphere oCarpeted floors oNo Bed Pans •Lower Costs •Administration of the anesthetic •Being aware of what is going on after surgery Target Group of Customers: Commonalities •Only external abdominal hernias •Recurring hernias repaired elsewhere •Roommates have similar jobs, backgrounds, or interests Service Delivery: Production Process •Thoughtfulness •Service Blueprint attached Five Dimensions of Service Quality •Reliability oSchedule oPricing oDelivery oProblem resolution •Responsiveness oAccessibility oWillingness to listen oImmediate attention •Assurance oTrust & Confidence oExperience oSkill oReputation •Empathy oSpecialization oLike family oSpecialized attention

•Tangibles oBrochure oAtmosphere Employment at Shouldice: Compared to Other Hospitals •Nurses oRatio 1:15 oOther Hospital 1:4 oCounseling Activities occupy a good portion of their time oWaiting list for employment •Doctors o”Watch kids grow up” oOn call o15% higher income ofew elect to leave •Administration & Staff oNon union oLow turnover oNo Fire Policy oCross Train Growth Alternatives •Saturday surgeries •Expand # of beds •Toronto expansion •United States…

TEN P’S OF MARKETING MARKETING MIX: 1. The marketing mix approach to marketing is a model of crafting and implementing marketing strategies. 2. It stresses the “mixing” or blending of various factors in such a way that both organizational and consumer objectives are attained. 3. When blending marketer(s) must consider their target market. 4. Marketing Mix is a term used to describe the combination of tactics used by a business to achieve its objectives by marketing its products or services effectively to a particular target customer group. ITS IMPORTANCE: Businesses need to make sure they are marketing: – The right product to – The right person at – The right price in – The right place and at – The right time

For example: If you manufacture pens, and have decided to target school children, it would be more appropriate to market: – Coloured ballpoint pens (product) – At a low price (price) – Selling them through newsagents and stationers (place) – And promoting them through point of sale material (promotion) Than it would be to market: – Gold fountain pens (product) – At a high price, including insurance against loss (price) – Selling them through specialist outlets and jewellery stores (place) – And promoting them in glossy magazines and Sunday Supplements (promotion)

P’s OF MARKETING: PRODUCT: Marketers need to be sure that your products and services continue to meet your Customers needs. 1. Carry out simple research by asking your customers: – What they think of each product/service – How satisfied are they with the quality – How satisfied are they with any support services you may provide – How effective it is in meeting their needs – How they see their needs changing in the short and long term future 2. Carry out step 1 for each product or service you offer 3. Have a system for collecting and analyzing feedback from your customers so that ideas are fed into a new product development process that is ongoing. 4. Ask yourself what stage of the product life cycle your products or services have reached. The product life cycle is one way of looking at how the marketing mix links together. Products are said to go through stages – an introductory stage, a growth stage, a mature stage and a decline stage.

At each stage a slightly different mix is appropriate. 5. Analyze the profitability of each product/service you offer. For more information on calculating this, there is a 80/20 Rule i.e. 20% of products contributing to 80% of the revenue PLACE: Place is the means of distribution you select depending on the type of product or service you are marketing. Your choice will impact on your pricing and your promotion decisions. 1. Are the customers for your products and services consumers or businesses? If they are consumers marketer will have three main options: – Selling to wholesalers who will sell to retail outlets who will sell on to the consumer – Selling direct to retail outlets – Selling direct to the customer – If your customers are businesses you will probably sell to them direct through your own sales force.

2. If you sell through wholesalers and retailers, remember when you price your products that they will each want their own mark-up to cover their overheads. You will also need to promote your products and services to all members of the channel. Wholesalers and retailers will have to be persuaded to stock your product and end customers to buy them. 3. If you are selling to businesses you will have to cover the cost of a sales-force. This can be an expensive overhead and will again impact on your pricing. PRICE: 1. Price is quite commonly the sole determinant for choice of product. The price of products or services will be derived from fixed overheads, indirect overheads, direct cost, profit margin, risks and uncertainties. 2. Price is the amount of money charged for a product or service or the value exchanged for the benefits of the product or service. 3. For a new product, marketer must understand your positioning before you set a price.

4. Firstly what is the firms cost of production. This will show you what marketer needs to charge and not what you could or should charge. Make sure it is not too low, or the product will not be taken seriously. If it is too high, the potential customer will not take the risk. Understand the competitor’s charges for the similar product. Pricing Strategies There are five general pricing strategies: Product Line: Setting price steps between product line items Eg: car wash,normal 2$,with wax 5$ Optional Product: Pricing optional or accessory products Eg: car accessories

Captive Product: Pricing products that must be used with the main product Eg: car batteries By-Product: Pricing low value by product to get rid of them Eg: molasses out of sugar sold to alcohol industry Product Bundle: Pricing bundles of products sold together Eg: combo pack of 5 kurkure individual packs in one big pack New Product Pricing There are four new product pricing strategies: Economical marketing: 1. This is for consumers who have low purchasing power. 2. Here the product has both low quality and price. Market-Skimming: Initially set high prices to “skim” revenue layer by layer from the market.

Works when:

1. Quality and image support the higher price 2. Enough buyers want the product at that price 3. Cost of producing a small volume cannot be high 4. Competitors should not be able to enter the market easily Premium market: 1. This market is normally for consumers who have high purchasing power 2. Here the products are are of very high quality with a high price tag. Market Penetration: Set a low initial price in order to penetrate the market quickly and deeply to win a large market share. Works when: 1. Market is highly price sensitive 2. Production and distribution costs fall as sales volume increases 3. Low price must help keep out the competition 4. Price Adjustment The following are price adjustments based on changing situations: 1. Discount & Allowance: reduced prices to reward customer responses such as paying early or promoting the product 2. Discriminatory: adjusting prices to allow for differences in customers, products, and locations 3. Psychological: adjusting prices for psychological effects. Ex: $299 vs. $300 4. Value: adjusting prices to offer the right combination of quality and service at a fair price

5. Promotional: temporarily reducing prices to increase short-run sales 6. Geographical: adjusting prices to account for geographic location of customer. 7. International: adjusting prices in international markets PROMOTION: 1. Promotion is any means of informing, persuading or reminding clients about the marketing mix of product, place and price. Promotion tends to create awareness among potential clients and improve their attitudes towards the product or firm. 2. Promotion is the specific mix of advertising, personal selling, sales promotion, and public relations a company uses to pursue its advertising and marketing objectives. Objectives The objectives that are met by promoting are to move the target market through the following phases: Unawareness -> Awareness -> Beliefs/Knowledge -> Attitude -> Purchase Intention -> Purchase It is believed that consumers cannot skip over a phase, but they need to move through them.

Promotion is used to move the target market from one phase to another to finally purchase. The Offer The offer needs to be identified before you begin any promoting. What are you offering the target customer? What do you want the target market to do? One mistake that can be made is to create a promotional advertisement and not tell the customer what to do. You should prompt the customer and tell them to “call this number to place an order” or “download this software from our web site”. Measuring Response 1. Testing different offers, advertisements, direct mail letters, lists, and promotion techniques can tell you what method is most effective. 2. Testing is expensive. 3. Tracking results takes time, but the information a marketer gathers could help him reduce wasteful, ineffective spending in the future. World Wide Web 1. Cheapest way of promoting the product. 2. It is a great tool because it allows the target customers to educate themselves about your product by reading about it, seeing a demo, and download a copy (and therefore serve as your distribution channel).

3. Web is very crowded and so the product is difficult to be noticed. Marketer has to register with the entire search engines, such as Yahoo and Alta Vista. Direct Mail 1. An average response rate for direct mail is about 1%. 2. This depends on the offer, the mailing list, the target audience, the creative (how the direct mail piece looks), and the timing of the mailing. Classified Advertisements 1. Although it may nice to be able to take out a full color, full page advertisement in an industry magazine, it is very expensive and will not reach your target market of the innovators and early adopters. 2. The key for classified advertisements is frequency. 3. Running an ad once will create awareness, but not necessarily action. Press Releases 1. A press release is an announcement of a new product release. This is a great way to get free publicity. 2. There can be a 3-4 month lead time before your press release is published. 3. Marketer has to include in his press release the product name, the price, a company contact name, the company name, address, phone number, fax number, and e-mail address

Product Reviews 1. Magazines have product review editors that review it in an article or column. 2. This can provide great exposure. 3. However, it can also be risky 4. Marketer chooses a magazine his target market is reading. Example – Promotion Your Music Shows, Direct Mail, Web Page, Posters, Event Listings, Reviews, Radio, Word of Mouth, Press Releases. PACKAGING: 1. The main thing to remember about your packaging is that it communicates to the person buying it right up until they make the decision to plunk down their money and take it home. 2. Product can’t just look nice, it has to scream its message out in order to get noticed. 3. Packaging should be noticeable within three seconds in a store-shelf situation. 4. People just might buy products again because they like their convenience. 5. According to Kotler (2000), packaging comprises the activities of designing and producing the container for product. The container is called the package, and might include up to three levels of material. 6. Well-designed packages can create convenience as well as provide added value.

For example: Old Spice aftershave lotion is in a bottle (primary package) that is in a cardboard box (secondary package) that is in a corrugated box (shipping package) containing six-dozen boxes of Old Spice. Factors which have led to packaging growing application as a marketing tool: 1. Self-service: An increasing number of products are sold on a self-service basis. The package must perform many of the sales tasks: attract attention, describe the product’s features, create consumer confidence, and make a favorable overall impression; 2. Consumer affluence: Increasing consumer affluence means consumers are willing to pay a little more for the convenience, appearance, dependability, and prestige of better packages; 3. Company and brand image: Packages lead to immediate recognition of the company or brand. 4. Innovation opportunity: Innovative packaging can bring great benefits to consumers and profits to producers.

10 Packaging Tips That Will Make Consumers Buy the Product: 1. Understand the customer. 2. Find out what package attributes appeal to the customer you are targeting. 3. Understand how the package will be used. 4. Know your customers current buying trends. 5. Keep abreast of new packaging technologies. 6. Watch where people shop. 7. Keep pace with “hot button” packaging issues. This includes legislation too. People do really care about the environment and the amount of excess packaging. 8. Security in packaging is becoming increasingly important. 9. Competition of various packaging materials is increasing so keep current on your chain of supply globalization. 10. Include the design and selection of your packaging materials to curtail external influence of power players

PUBLIC RELATIONS: According to Kotler (1984; 1986), when organisations attempt to enter markets abroad, they need to master the art of satisfying parties other than the target clients alone. These other parties include governments, trade unions and other interested groups who act as gatekeepers to their own market. Upon recognising the political nature of this new marketing environment, Kotler introduced two further Ps, public relations and political power, which in marketing terms are known as “megamarketing”. Kotler (1984) also advocated the importance of power to win the influential support of industrial officials, legislators and governments so as to enter and operate in the targeted market. To attain this objective, Kotler (1984) added that marketers should possess good negotiating skills with the relevant authorities. PEOPLE: The people employed in your organisation will determine the quality of service your customers receive. This is truer for services, but also impacts on businesses making tangible products. Happy, skilled and motivated staff make happy customers.

They are more likely to think about the customer and deliver good customer service if they are well trained and are recruited for their positive attitude to customers. You can achieve competitive advantage over your competitors through offering a high level of pre-sales and after-sales support and advice. Again, this can impact on the price you set, as customers are likely to be prepared to pay more for the service they receive but there may be a higher cost for you to take into account. Identify those staff who come into contact with customers, either face-to face or by phone. 1. Carry out a task analysis of what they do in terms of customer contact. 2. Involve your staff in setting standards for customer service. For more information on customer service, look at the 10-minute Customer Service Programme.

3. Prioritise training needs for these staff and provide appropriate training PROCESS: • Marketing primarily concerned with customer interface • Element of extended marketing mix or 7Ps • Best viewed as something that the customer participates in at different points in time. • Eg: going on a cruise, the customer is greeted with a smiling porter who takes his/her luggage, the ship has various forms of entertainment and luxury facilities, after the cruise, the luggage is brought back to the customer.

PERSONALISATION: • A goal of marketing is to build relationship • Company should identify individual customers and gather information about them. • Any form of customisation that occurs because of specific recognition of a given customer. • Can be integrated with any other function, as a result, others are overlapping and moderating in its effects.

PERFORMANCE WITH PACE: This is the bottom line! Unless it is delivered, marketers are wasting their time. This P addresses performance for the customer in terms of experience (personal/ online) and satisfaction; and performance for business in terms of service delivered and revenue and profit results. • Performance measurement systems (such as the Balanced Business Scorecard or the European Foundation for Quality Management model) are increasingly used to drive a business forward. • A good performance system can help you pinpoint problems and improve your business results • Improvement measures should be linked to goals, from organizational to individual • It is more important to collect the right information rather than that which is easiest to collect, i.e. it is better to be roughly right than precisely wrong! • Above all, the general approach is the same – clarifying objectives, developing indicators, initiating the system, data collection and analysis, initiating change

SWOT analysis of Shouldice Hospital Limited Essay

Customer Based Brand Equity Essay

Customer Based Brand Equity Essay.

Customer based brand equality is very important for both local and foreign businesses. Many local based brands have been facing increased competition and challenges from other foreign brands. Both foreign and local brands have been taking turns capitalizing on their competitive position within the Chinese mobile phone market. Because of this, there is a need for both local and foreign brands to gain a clear understanding of their customer’s preferences, in regards to mobile phone features and the perception of their competitive position from their customers.

Building a brand and properly managing it has become very important for all companies. Companies are now beginning to realize that brand equity is a most powerful tool and a valuable asset to them. The maintenance and enhancement of a company brand has become a very important part of the management tasks in companies. Brand knowledge structures in the minds of customers are the foundation of brand equity. Brand equity is widely perceived as consisting of brand loyalty, brand awareness, perceived quality and brand associations, among other things.

Building brand equity has specific rewards that are quite obvious. But there is a problem in that very few managers are able to objectively assess the strengths and weakness of their brands. Measuring brand equity is very important in assessing the value of the brand. Customer based brand equality helps companies to become aware of the likes and dislikes of their customers. This article shows that customers have three important attributes that they prefer; which are service, durability and brand image. Brand features uniqueness is the least important factor that affects consumers’ mobile phone preference.

Price, distinctiveness, place, promotion and advertisements are the second tier attributes of consideration for customers. Attention should be given to improving the brand equity within the Chinese market. All mobile brands should pay very close attention to the improvement of their services and the enhancement of their products durability and brand imager, rather than focusing on intense price competition. The foreign brands are consistent across the board, clearly outperforming their foreign competitors with regard to customer attitudes in the Chinese market.

The local foreign companies should begin to focus their attention on enhancing the quality of their product and building up their brand personality and their image. There is still room for the foreign brands to improve their brand equity. Strong brand equity means that customers have high brand awareness, maintain a favorable brand image, perceive high quality and are loyal towards the brand. Reference for the journal: Liaogang, Chongyan, Zian Source: International Management Review, Volume 3, Number 3, 1 April 2007, pp. 76-106

Customer Based Brand Equity Essay

Alliance Supermarket & Point-of-Sale (POS) Systems Essay

Alliance Supermarket & Point-of-Sale (POS) Systems Essay.


A universal product code (UPC) can be easily read by a laser system scanner, which then can be forecasted as a product as a point-of-sale (POS), thus then allowing for a better account of the businesses inventory. In this case, Alliance Supermarket using both these systems to be able to replenish their inventory when the system automatically detects whether a certain product item is in demand. A great plus that a Point-of-sale system can do is treat each store different, but then total their needed inventory for replenishment, then placing a one lump side order to fulfill all orders, then distributing them by stores demands.

In this paper, I will help the Chief information officer (CIO), which is in charge of Alliance to see what more can be done with the information that is compiled by the POS system. There will also be a comparison between the products being picked up by the POS system, the customer, and determining what other products, the customer potentially is being persuaded to buy.

In addition, looking into the customers, buying habits to analyze a pattern in the each product’s sales or weather patterns.

POS System Uses & Customer Service

Furthermore, now that we understand the pure functioning of the POS system, we can then identify that POS system current purpose in Alliance, and how it can be used differently introspectively speaking. In addition, when a customer buys a product at the Alliance Supermarket, the UPC barcode is scanned through a laser system, which then updates the entire Alliance Supermarkets inventory. This allows the Alliance base their product orders through a historical pattern for record of their products that are running low, and are in need of replenishing. Now, Alliance Supermarket does not quite understand that due to its different store locations, there are customers purchasing different products per location basis. Therefore, instead of Alliance grouping all its information per product, Alliance can benefit from allocating the individuals stores product history, thus identifying different behavioral purchases for seasonal items or on purchasing habits.

In the efforts of Alliance, continuing the use of using the UPC code will enable Alliance not to ever reach their minimal reorder point of product inventory, because there would be a minimal product level of inventory in place that will be tracked through historical product demand patterns. In addition, when a product gets to a minimum inventory product set, then this is when the product will be reordered, allowing for stress to be relieved from the reordering pressures. “One way it does this is by using computers to monitor sales data and to order (or stop ordering) as point-of-sale (POS) demand information indicates. This information is transmitted each day to the company’s headquarters (Vonderembse, & White, pp 10.2, 2013).

Moving forward, the POS system will allow for the Alliance seasonal items to be reordered in accordance to their last season’s product performances. This is in comparison to Alliance’s current system in place, which is basing their products inventory total by combining all its stores inventory sold. Now, this is where the origination of the current systems problems in place is affecting its customers at different store locations. Thus, customers who are being affecting become customers that are irate due to not having their product on hand at their disposal. The use of this system allows for the demand of customer products not to be overstocked, which will results in having happier customers, and keeping the costs low. The different Alliance store locations can allow for a promotional use of new products by adapting to their customers buying patterns. Creating Reduction in Costs & Increasing Customer Service

In an effort to create higher profits, every business goal should be to reduce its costs. One of the ways Alliance can help in costs reduction; it must first decrease its overhead by adding more self-checkouts, in addition to controlling its inventory. The correct analysis in inventory will also allow for a reduction in costs, as it will reorder what it has needed versus producing overstocking in merchandise. In accordance, the self-checkout aisle will allow more customers to be checked-out in a faster process, thus saving more means on less employees causing customers to be self-checkout through multiple machines, thus allowing for a huge reduction in Alliance’s cost and cause a positive ripple effect in increasing customer service. “Thinking short-term and cutting hinders costs long-term growth. Practical implications – Leaders need to evaluate their practice, asking questions of themselves and look at making more long-term plans. They need to involve and engage key personnel now and the in future” (Denton, p 3, 2013). New Approach Methods/Individual Customers

The first new approach that Alliance can implement is by using the information purchased by their customers on an individual basis by learning from their habits in purchases been made at Alliance’s different store locations. This will enable Alliance to identify what items are been sought out more than others through this separation of store locations, product preference, and customer demand. For example, I shop at CVS Pharmacy here in Houston, TX, and the why they attract us back in the store is through coupons that can be used for items, we normally but, in other words, Alliance needs to be able to weather different products to continue to drive them to the stores new promotional avenues.

Therefore, if Alliance uses the same method CVS Pharmacy uses in order to attract more walk-in customers, Alliance needs to know what products their customers are accustomed to buying, thus identifying new sell opportunities by the use of coupons. Nevertheless, the individual product information can also be used to determine, what purchases are in need of replenishing Alliance’s inventory by identifying their customers buying patterns or habits. “The rapid proliferation in the use of technology through Point of Sale (POS) data by supermarket retailers has resulted in delivering value to consumers” Pepe, & Pepe, pp 69, 2012). Privacy & Ethics

Alliance Supermarket needs to adhere to its privacy and ethical considerations in order to gather information based off the purchased items using the POS system. Alliance needs to make sure they have all their ducks in a row before they start to analyze their customer’s personal and private buying habits. Therefore, every business needs to keep in mind their customers privacy or ethical concerns due to violating these laws can hinder a business success and customers trust. A business ethics counts for a lot in a customer’s point of view by determining whether an organization is ethical or not will be the decision a customer will have to make before conducting business with them.

However, if and when Alliance starts to track its customers personal purchasing habits, Alliance needs to make sure they only analyze those customers that are aware of Alliance objectives, then Alliance can move forward with their mission. In addition, one important thing Alliance needs to remember, is that the information obtained should only be used for business purposes, and not for personal reasons, because this can lead to illegal activity, and breaking a customer’s trust. “Considering the Internet advertising industry’s current actions, computer users and government regulators would be well advised, both practically and ethically, to move to a user control model in electronic monitoring” (Charters, p 243, 2002).


In conclusion, the universal product code (UPC) can be easily read by a laser system scanner, which then can be forecasted as a product as a point-of-sale (POS), thus then allowing for a better account of the businesses inventory. In this case, Alliance Supermarket using both these systems to be able to replenish their inventory when the system automatically detects whether a certain product item is in demand. A great plus that a Point-of-sale system can do is treat each store different, but then total their needed inventory for replenishment, then placing a one lump side order to fulfill all orders, then distributing them by stores demands. My findings have resulting in suggesting to the Chief information officer (CIO) of Alliance, based on the information compiled by the UPS & POS systems, that the individual buying habits of their customers buying patterns can lead to a positive approach in each of their product’s sales or weather patterns.

In essence, the POS system will allow for better control of Alliance’s inventory, thus reducing costs from a strategic point of view by fine-tuning their inventory based on individual customers/individual stores, which will accurately determine the appropriate inventory needed replenishing. In addition, adapting a coupon-based system, which will personalize their products in need of marketing base on individual customers buying habits, thus resulting in an increase in customer service. Of course, let us do keep in mind Alliance’s customers privacy, while keeping Alliances Supermarkets Ethical behavioral at an all-time high.


Charters, D. (2002). Electronic monitoring and privacy issues in business marketing: The ethics of the DoubleClick experience. Journal of Business Ethics, 35(4), 243-254. Retrieved from Denton, A. (2013). Why is productivity falling in 2013? the role of leadership in creating growth during the recession. Strategic Direction, 29(7), 3-5. doi: Pepe, M. R., & Pepe, M. S. (2012). Using point of sale (POS) data to deliver customer value in the supermarket industry through category management practices. Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness, 6(1), 69-73. Retrieved from Vonderembse, M.A. & White, G.P. (2013). Operations Management . San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.

Alliance Supermarket & Point-of-Sale (POS) Systems Essay

Case- Harley-Davidson-Strength & Weaknesses Essay

Case- Harley-Davidson-Strength & Weaknesses Essay.


To complete Module 3 Case Assignment, please read the information in the background material, look for more information (from previous modules and library resources), and then write a 4- to 5-page report answering the following questions:

What are H-D’s top two or three strengths for moving forward in the competitive motorcycle manufacturing and sales environment?

Describe what you consider to be two or three of the weaknesses that are likely to have the greatest impact, and what H-D is doing (or should be doing) to overcome these weaknesses.

Wrap up by overviewing the more salient points of your entire SWOT analysis (from your Module 3 and 4 Case Assignments) and give your impressions in relation to whether you think the corporation will continue to be competitive and be able to continue to meet its mission.

An introduction stating the thesis, position, or central theme of your paper, a main body focusing on the key assignment specifications, and a conclusion concisely stating the main points of your analysis and the conclusions you reached.


Harley-Davidson, Inc. is a U.S. based motorcycle manufacturer which was founded in 1903 and still remain one of the best American companies. Over the years, Harley-Davidson has adopted different strategies to promote their products in order to maintain its profitability and presence in the U.S. and International market. This paper will include the internal analysis identifying the company strengths and weaknesses and my personal impression is the company will be able to continue to be competitive and able to fulfil its mission.


Harley-Davidson, Inc. is a recognized brand legend, not just in the United States but all over the world, representing value, great designs, strong performance, durability, exclusivity and great customer service. Harley-Davidson has been in business since 1903 and has endured the constant market changes and customers’ demands for new products. The President and CEO of Harley-Davidson, Mr. Jim Zeiner, in 2005 have expressed the main reason of the company success: “A strong emotional tug draws people to Harley-Davidson. Emotions play a huge role in every customer relationship”. Mr. Zeiner believed that “Our sense of purpose-in other words, our focus on growing demand by offering great products and unique experiences” have been one of the constants of company success (Harley-Davidson, Inc., 2005).

In order to maintain their business competitive in the motorcycle manufacturing and sales environment the company had to evolution along with these changes. One of the ways to accomplish the constant demand for new and innovative products, Harley-Davidson has created and maintained a strong research and development unit to create new innovative designs. Another feature available for Harley-Davidson customers is a webpage where customers can customize motorcycles appearance and performance, giving additional ideas to create new designs (models), attracting existing and new customers to buy Harley-Davidson bikes.

Harley-Davidson’s operational excellence allow the company to reduce waste, improving quality and increase customer satisfaction by reconfiguring layouts and processes to gain capacity, reduce work-in progress and handling 50 percent, and reduce three operating shifts to two (Harley-Davidson, Inc., 2005). Through all Harley-Davidson facilities the operational excellence strategy has facilitated the workflow which allowed the company to increase their capacity of production processes.

Harley-Davidson management is constantly finding ways to improve processes including standard financial software platforms that service all business units creating ways to improve forecasting for new performance accessories (Harley-Davidson, Inc., 2005). The company operational efficiency improvement has resulted in a revenue increase from $5.58 billion in 2012 to $5.9 billion in 2013 as well the operating margin of 17.92 percent in 2012 as compared to19.61 percent in 2013. The operating income has also increased 169 basis point (bps) indicating an improvement in profitability (

Harley-Davidson has two segments in which offer a variety of products and services. One of the segments is responsible for the development of designs, manufacturing motorcycles, sales of parts, accessories, general merchandise and related services through Motorcycles & Related Products. The other segment provides financial services to Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealers, in other words to finance Harley-Davidson franchises through Harley-Davidson Financial Services (GlobalData, 2012).


One of Harley-Davidson weaknesses, in the past and existing, is product recalls which has and still affecting company’s revenues. In September of this year, Harley-Davidson recalled more than 105,000 motorcycles from 2014 model year because their clutches may fail, causing stopped bikes to creep forward and potentially crash, not been the only recall for this year. Earlier this year the Milwaukee Company also is recalling 1,384 motorcycles made earlier this year to test for possible fuel tank leaks (Associate Press, 2014). Product recalls not only affect the financial stability of Harley-Davidson but also affect their brand and reputation as well.

Another Harley-Davidson weakness is their high dependency on Unites States market which increases its business risk. Based on Harley-Davidson financial statement for the fiscal year of 2012, the company sales depended on the 68.1 percent of the market which is an high percentage, if is any adverse event could adversely affect the company’s financial stability (GlobalData, 2012).

_Product Recalls_

Harley-Davidson’s Product Development Center (PDC) should improve the quality of their products to reduce recalls issues preventing any further damage to company’s reputation.

_U.S. Market Dependency_

There are some issues for Harley-Davidson to enter or grow in countries in the international market which includes an unstable economy, currency exchange, fuel prices. Harley-Davidson should take into consideration these issues and develop lighter and less costly motorcycles that will allow the company to increase their probability to create a new market niche. In order to reduce manufacturing costs Harley-Davidson have the option to open a manufacturing factory closer to these markets reducing cost and increasing revenue.


Harley-Davidson is a successful company composed by dedicated employees, most of them who have been working for many years and they are able to understand market changes and customer demands. Harley-Davidson has a strong brand image, diversity of products, customization, high operational efficiency, strong research center, and great customer service.

In my opinion, I think Harley-Davidson has many years to come. The new strategies they have developed includes, the manufacture of customer led motorcycle, seamless launch of surge production, flexibility to adjust to other markets dynamics, develop and manufacture designs to new demographics of clients which includes young adults from 18-34 years old, women, African Americans and Hispanics, and new financial and insurance programs (A. R. Harley-Davidson, 2013). Harley-Davidson have demonstrated with a successful track record that they have the capacity to maintain their position and reputation in the motorcycle market.


Harley-Davidson has encountered many problems since its creation and over the years and has adopted different strategies to promote their products and brand name not only in the United State but internationally, opening the doors to create business opportunities in other countries. No matter their high and low’s, their products have proved to be the best in the motorcycle industry and they are still designing better models to provide the best experience of motorcycling, including past learning experience to improve flaws. They have also been able to improve their operational excellence which has increased company’s revenue creating a financial stability.


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18, 2014, from


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Harley-Davidson, Inc. (2013). 2013 was a big year for Harley-Davidson. _2013 Annual Review._

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Case- Harley-Davidson-Strength & Weaknesses Essay

McDonald’s: Customer Driven Essay

McDonald’s: Customer Driven Essay.

What does it mean to be customer driven? One Fortune 500 Company that lives to please and satisfy their customers is, McDonald’s. According to the article The Ray Kroc Story (2012), McDonald’s passion for quality and customer service all began with a man named Ray Kroc (p.1). In 1954, Ray came across a restaurant in San Bernardino, California run by brothers Dick and Mac McDonald. He was immediately captivated by how effective their small operation was. Ray found that the restaurant only offered a limited menu, which consisted of burgers, fries, and beverages.

Due to the limited variety, the brothers were able to focus on what was really important, which was quality customer service.

Ray Kroc had formed a vision. The article The Ray Kroc Story (2012), he pitched his vision of McDonald’s restaurants all over the United States to the brothers (p. 2). In 1955, one year after discovering the small restaurant in California, Ray Kroc founded the McDonald’s Corporation. Five years later, Ray bought the exclusive rights to the McDonald’s name, and by 1958 McDonald’s has sold its 100 millionth burger.

According to the article The Ray Kroc Story (2012), Kroc’s unique philosophy was that he wanted to build a restaurant system that would be famous for its food consistency, its uniform methods of preparation, and that was customer driven (p. 3). He wanted to be able to serve burgers in Alaska that would taste the same in Alabama. To make this a reality he persuaded franchisees and suppliers to buy into his vision. This was that they were not working for McDonald’s, but rather for themselves, for McDonalds.

Ray Kroc never stopped working for McDonald’s. He worked there right up until he passed away on January 24, 1984 (p. 4). He worked out of his wheelchair in his office, nearly every day, in San Diego, California. Ray Kroc’s legacy and passion for quality, service, and efficiency continues to still be an integral part of McDonald’s today.

McDonald’s has more than 33,500 restaurants worldwide. It also has 1.7 million employees, throughout 119 countries. McDonald’s mission statement and list of values truly shows how they are customer driven and what they focus on, to continue being successful. The article McDonald’s Mission and Vision (2010-2012), their brand mission is to be their customers favorite place and way to eat (p. 1). They operate around seven core values every day. The first value is that they place the customer experience at the core of what they do. They say that their customers are the reason for their existence. They show their appreciation by providing every person that walks through their door, and drives through their drive thru with high quality food. Their goal is quality, service, cleanliness, and value for each and every customer.

Second, they are committed to their customers. McDonald’s provides ample opportunity, they nurture talent, and they develop leaders. This company believes that a team of well-trained individuals, coming from diverse backgrounds, working together fosters respect, and is key in their continued success.

The third value according to the article McDonald’s Mission and Vision (2010-2012) is that they believe in their system (p. 1). McDonald’s has a business model that Ray Kroc compared to a three legged stool. His philosophy was based on the simple principle of the three legged stool: one leg was McDonald’s, the second leg was the franchisees, and the third leg was McDonald’s suppliers.

Fourth, they operate their business ethically. This company believes that sound ethics is good business. They strive to hold themselves and to conduct their business to a high standard of fairness, honesty, and also integrity. McDonald’s believes that they are individually accountable and collectively responsible.

Fifth, they give back to their communities. McDonald’s is serious about the responsibilities that come along with being a leader. They try to make the world a better place by helping their customers build better communities, supporting the Ronald McDonald House Charities, and by leveraging their size, scope, and resources.

Sixth, they grow their business profitably. This company is a publicly traded company. Being that they are publicly traded, they work to provides sustained profitable growth for their shareholders. In order to do this they have to focus continually on their customers and the health of their system.

The last and final value that McDonald’s lives by is that want to continuously improve. They consider themselves a learning organization. One of the goals under this value is to anticipate and respond to changing customers, employees, and system needs through constant innovation and evolution.

Ray Kroc (2010-2012) once said, “McDonald’s is a people’s business” (p. 1). One major way this company shows that it cares about its customers, can be seen through the company’s involvement in their customers communities. McDonald’s is a part of a global network of local family restaurants, and they are proud to give back to the communities they serve. They demonstrate this by supporting local sports teams, helping talented young athletes, and taking steps to improve neighborhoods.

Two example of this can be seen through McDonald’s involvement in the McDonald’s All American High School Basketball Games, and Camp Mickey D’s. Every year the company brings the top high school basketball talent in the nation together to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House Charities. Camp Mickey D’s was created by Sybel Pici, owner of three McDonald’s franchise in Texas. This program helps students come to terms and grips with the challenges of the workplace, while making a connection between school and work.

One of the most widely recognized ways that McDonald’s shows it is customer driven is through its support of the Ronald McDonald House Charities. According to the article The Ronald McDonald House Charities (2010-2012), the Ronald McDonald House Charities was founded on the idea of strength through numbers (p. 1). Through this customers and families find strength from staff, donors, and each other. The Ronald McDonald House provides a home away from home for families whose children are in hospitals or need medical treatment. Since 2002, McDonalds has brought together its franchisees, suppliers, employees, and customers to take part in a worldwide annual fundraiser. This fundraiser has brought in nearly $170 million for the Ronald McDonald House Charities and other various charities.

McDonald’s has many strong suits. First, they rank high on the Fortune Magazine’s food service companies that are most admired. They have global operations all over the world. McDonald’s has cultural diversity in the foods that are provided based on the location. This company has great locations in theme parks, airports, Walmart stores, and along well traveled roads. They have efficient operating guidelines in the assembly line fashion.

One weakness is that they are failing the pizza test market therefore limiting the ability to compete with fast food pizza providers. Their training costs are high due to high turnover. They have minimal concentration on providing organic foods. McDonald’s has large fluctuations in the net and operating profits making impacts on investors. There are quality concerns due to franchised operations. Last, they focus on burgers and grease fried foods and not on healthier options for their customers.

One opportunity that McDonald’s has is they are opening more joint ventures with several different retailers. They have become more responsive to the social changes and healthier options. They are advertising the capabilities of WIFI. The company has been expanding on the advertising in regards to being more socially responsible in the environment. They have expanded in to newly developed parts of the world. They have opened products up to allergen free options such as peanut free and gluten free foods. Last they have ventured into more enticing beverage choices.

One threat is that their marketing strategies are enticing people all the way from small children to adults and they take criticism because of it. McDonald’s has lawsuits for offering unhealthy foods with addictive additives. They have contamination risks. One threat is that there are a large amount of other fast food places that are open and serve as competition. The competition is focusing on healthier dieting by consumers. Last there is a downturn in economy which limits people to going out to eat.

Through the vision of Ray Kroc, a Fortune 500 company was formed. Through McDonald’s mission statement and seven core values, this company has had continued success over the years. The success of this company is a direct result of being a truly customer driven company.


McDonald Mission and Corporate Values :: (n.d.)._” Official Global Corporate Website :: AboutMcDonalds.com_. Retrieved March 24, 2012, from

Ronald McDonald House Charities :: (n.d.). _Home :: McDonalds.com_. Retrieved March 23, 2012, from

The Ray Kroc Story :: (n.d.). _Home :: McDonalds.com_. Retrieved March 22, 2012, from

McDonald’s: Customer Driven Essay

Five forces for Zappos Essay

Five forces for Zappos Essay.

The threat of new entrants into the online shoe/apparel market is relatively small due to the fact that Zappos is such an established brand and has specialized their business model. It would be far too expensive for a new company to copy the characteristics of Zappos including their next day delivery and large overhead. The fact that Zappos was losing money initially illustrates this difficulty. Another issue that would create a high barrier to entry is Zappos commitment to the consumer through overnight shipping.

Zappos stated that the overnight shipping caused them to leave their warehouses open for the entire day. Any other company would be at a competitive disadvantage if they didn’t match this business practice. In all the way Zappos does business creates too high a barrier to entry for threats of new entry to be high; for that reason we would rate it 2 OF 5.


We would rate substitutes at 3 OF 5, being that the threat is somewhat average.

With the uniqueness of Zappos, not many stores can match such a shopping experience service as Zappos. The reason we ranked the threat of substitutes at 3 of 5 is because there are Brick and Mortar Stores that may be used as substitutes of Zappos. These specialty stores are not up to Zappos standards, but at the same time their specialization with certain products make them a threat to Zappos. The whole person-to-person contact can have a big advantage in terms of customer service. Zappos answers by extraordinary customer service, which really makes the average consumer feel as if they are special and are in contact with a real person.


The rivalry with existing firms for Zappos is fair, we gave it a rating of 3.5 OF 5. A main competitor for online retail is Amazon; however Amazon recently bought out Zappos. Since their largest competitor is now a sister company, the main competition Zappos faces are highly specialized online retailers – such as Karmaloop and EastBay. These competitors pose a threat to some of Zappos’ sections such as athletic shoes, sporting goods, accessories, and apparel.

Both of these sites offer free shipping as well, so that takes away one of Zappos’ main competitive advantages. Zappos still has the premier customer service. Currently their biggest rival is eBay, eBay offers everything that Zappos does, and sometimes at a lower price. However since eBay is an auction site, it cannot guarantee a set price or free shipping like Zappos can. Customer service is where Zappos sets itself apart from its competition, offering a 365 day return policy and 24/7 call center hours based in the US.


We rated the bargaining power of suppliers at a 5 OF 5 because Zappos has a lot of leverage. A reason behind this is Zappos couldn’t function effectively without a cooperative supplier since they are a distribution company. If the supplier decided that they wanted more money per shipment then Zappos most likely comply. Taking the resources to find new supplies can be very costly. Also, they may not be able to find a supplier that can offer them the same variety of brands and styles that the current supplier does. Another way the supplier has bargaining power is that there are other companies like Amazon or that they could choose to do business with if Zappos isn’t satisfying their needs. The supplier is possibly the most crucial link in the value chain for Zappos and for this reason they have a lot of bargaining power with Zappos.


There are two aspects we can look at the bargaining power of customers. (1) Zappos is customer service based and the customers know that. If the customers lose their power, Zappos may lose customers. (2) Customer’s do not have many direct substitutes. Shoes are a necessity and here are few options like Zappos for buying shoes online. In essence they lose a bit of their power by this fact. Chances are if the customer does not like brick and mortar stores (physical shopping) they will still need to purchase from Zappos but it opens up gap then of which a new entrant may try to take advantage. Keeping both those aspects in mind, the bargaining power of customers can be considered intermediate; thus a rating of 3 OF 5.


Zappos has created a very structural attractive company. There is a lot of room for growth with the recent purchase by Amazon.


First prepare a Five Force Analysis of how Zappos operates using Michael Porter’s framework. Provide a short, direct and to the point analysis of each of the five forces as well as a CONCLUSION about the overall structural attractiveness of the industry in which your company operates. Substantiate your analysis with DATA.

Secondly, present an overall SWOT analysis of Zappos, discuss the implications of the analysis for future strategic options the company might address. You may use a narrative style or diagram for each of the industry forces and your SWOT analysis. In all cases you must PROVIDE A SCALE of how you rate each force in terms of its effect on the industry’s competitiveness now and in the future, e.g. High/Medium/Low and Increasing/Decreasing/ Staying the Same. The objective of this case is for you to understand how the choices a company makes about its resources and capabilities will affect its strategic viability.

Five forces for Zappos Essay