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Corporate Social Responsibility & Wal-Mart

An overview of Wal-Mart. In 2005, parts of Louisiana had the worst flooding on record. Thousands of people’s lives were in danger and millions of Americans watched in horror as thousands of Americans were lying in the street without the essentials of life, some were clinging to roof tops, and lying in the streets without food, clothing or shelter. Wal-Mart saw the need to step in and help and reach out. ” Inspired by its role in helping Katrina victims, Wal-Mart looked at the impact a company its size could have throughout the world on a daily basis if it embraced corporate social responsibility” (CSR). Ferdinand p. 1) Recently, Haiti and Chili were hit with devastating earthquakes. Who is responsible to help? Wal-Mart felt socially responsible to help. Each business is responsible for having a code of conduct and acting in accordance of its economics, commercial and social goals. Ethical standards should be a part of all businesses. The goal is to practice ethical behavior and always have an intention to being honest, fair and truthful. This is being socially responsible.

Social Responsibility is: “Obligation of an organization’s management towards the welfare and interests of the society which provides it the environment and resources to survive and flourish, and which is affected by the organization’s actions and policies” (Business dictionary). Walmart has accepted social responsibility as a part of its organization. It has worked very hard in the past several years to show how it is not just responsible for its employees, but it is also socially responsible to help a society that needs its products and services on many levels.

Jag will explain the policies and procedures of social responsibility. Wal-Mart’s mission statement: “Saving people money, so they can live better” speaks to the value that Walmart places in corporate social responsibility. Walmart has a philosophy of operating globally while giving back locally. According to Wal-Mart’s corporate website, Walmart provides “financial and volunteer support to more than 100,000 charitable and community-focused organizations”. The Walmart Foundation was developed to help support large and small organizations with programs that serve on state and national levels.

In addition to monetary giving and in-kind donations, Walmart has set responsible sourcing initiatives with its global suppliers to create meaningful and positive change, both environmentally and socially. For example, Walmart is requiring “all direct import suppliers to source 95 percent of their production from factories that receive one of two highest audit ratings for social and environmental practices. ” Furthermore, Walmart uses an approach called “Sustainability 360” which is a business strategy developed to minimize waste, increase efficiency and find ways to support communities and suppliers that make the business successful.

This approach involves redesigning its stores to be more energy efficient and produce lower greenhouse gas emissions, reducing its carbon footprint from its fleet of trucks, reducing plastic bag waste by offering reusable bags, encouraging suppliers to develop more environmentally friendly packaging of products to help reduce waste, and even training its Ethical Sourcing auditors to be tasked with supplier development, or special investigation functions. Furthermore, Walmart carries energy efficient products that are good for the environment, and ultimately help consumers save on energy bills.

These products are featured in weekly promotions to help create awareness and educate on energy efficiency. For a company the size of Walmart, the need to be socially responsible is vital is sustaining business. Work Referenced: Business Dictionary. (2010) Social Responsibility. Retrieved December 6, 2010, from http://www. businessdictionary. com/definition/social-responsibility. html Ferdinand, A. (2007) Wal-Mart determined to lead in Corporate responsibility. Retrieved December 6, 2010, http://www. mccombs. utexas. edu/news/pressreleases/Blackwell07. asp

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Wal-Mart Sex Discrimination

RUNNIG HEADER: WAL-MART SEX DICRIMINATION “Always low prices,” is the clever motto used by Wal-Mart to lure its customers into the supermarket. Wal-Mart serves customers and members more than 200 million times per week. They operate under 69 different banners in 27 countries (Frank, 2006). With fiscal year 2012 sales of approximately $444 billion, Wal-Mart employs 2. 2 million associates worldwide. Wal-Mart has created a facade declaring that their low prices have benefited all Americans.

However, under its disguise of generosity, Wal-Mart has become an unethical workplace from which the workers, the society, and Americans are suffering. Wal-Mart Sex Discrimination: Dukes vs. Wal-Mart Inc. History of Walmart In the late 1940’s, Sam Walton had a simple but momentous idea. Walton was always looking for deals from suppliers. He realized he could do better than other retailers by passing on the savings to his customers and earning his profits through volume (Frank, 2006). This formed a cornerstone of Walton’s business strategy when he launched Wal-Mart in 1962.

The decade that began from the 1970s was period of substantial economic growth, in the history of Wal-Mart. In 1971, it started off a huge expansion by opening a gigantic center and also a home office in Bentonville, Arkansas (“Sam Walton”). The 70s decade saw a substantial rise in the number of employees which amounted to about 1500 associates. 1975 the company had expanded to 7500 associated and had 125 operational stores. In 1977, in a massive takeover, Wal-Mart acquired the Hutcheson Shoe Company and also introduced a branch for pharmaceuticals by the name Wal-Mart pharmacy.

By the end of the decade, Wal-Mart had become a giant in the American retail industry with a turnover of more than 1. 248 billion dollars in sales and 276 stores managed massive yet efficient staff of 21, 000 associates. When Walton died in 1992, the adjustment to a post-Sam environment proved difficult (“Sam Walton”). Although Wal-Mart executives had emphasized for years that their company depended on a set of principles and habits more than it did on any one person, Walton’s death wound up marking a fateful shift in how the company was perceived.

Before his death, Walton witnessed the rise of Wal-Mart becoming the biggest corporation of this nation and the world. However, he was unable to see the steady path of its destruction. Throughout its path to success, Wal-Mart has turned into a selfish vendor who has forgotten morals, ethics, and mainly America (Frank, 2006). However, the dependency of customers on Wal-Mart is so high that it is impossible to challenge their ways. Walton’s Wal-Mart has turned into dominating supermarket by crushing the rights of their employees, by destroying the jobs of many Americans, and by changing of the quality of life in the American societies.

Sex Discrimination According to our book, surface-level diversity is the observable demographic and other overt differences in people, such as their race, ethnicity, gender, age, and physical capabilities (McShane ; Von Glinow, 2011, p. 21). Sex discrimination is part of surface- level diversity. Discrimination usually occurs when actions of an employer, supervisor or coworkers “deny to individuals or groups of people equality of treatment which they may wish. “( Stainback, Ratliff, ; Roscigno, 2011) Dukes vs. Wal-Mart Inc.

In 1986, Walton was sensing some pressure to appoint a woman to Wal-Mart’s all-male board (Frank, 2006). So he offered the job to Arkansas’ first lady, one Hillary Clinton, who accepted. She would later quote Walton’s pitch: “I think I need a woman; would you like to be her? ” Today, Wal-Mart’s challenges in the field of gender equality are not so easily addressed. The company keeps its payroll costs down by paying women less than their male counterparts for performing the same work. Evidence also exists that it fails to promote women at the same rate as men.

In 1995, Betty Dukes took a job at a Wal-Mart near San Francisco, working as a cashier and greeter for $5 an hour (Frank, 2006). A “greeter” represents the face of the company as consumers walk through the door. Little did Dukes and Wal-Mart know that Dukes would ultimately become a face of Wal-Mart nationally, under much different circumstances. In 2000, Dukes found herself denied promotions filed a sex-discrimination suit. “The suit alleges that Wal-Mart violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), is the biggest employment discrimination case in the history of the United States.

Furthermore, the suit hastens an eventual trial for women, who are seeking billions of dollars from Wal-Mart” (Hagen, 2011). The case now involves nearly two million women, and, in 2004, it was certified by Judge Martin J. Jenkins, of the United States District Court in San Francisco as a class action. Title VII prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. When the victim suffers a tangible economic detriment, such as termination or demotion, the employer is strictly liable under Title VII. (Lavin ; DiMichele, 2012).

Discrimination is a difficult thing to prove. According to numbers compiled in 2003 by the plaintiffs, female store managers average slightly under $90,000 in annual income, while their male counterparts average slightly over $100,000. And while women make up 79 percent of the store’s department heads (an hourly position), only 15. 5 percent are store managers. When the Supreme Court dismissed Dukes vs. Wal-Mart due to the complexity of proving such a large number of claims to be true, Wal-Mart likely believed that it could close the door on that decade-long (Levine, 2008) .

However, Dukes and her peers haven’t given up, almost 2,000 current and former female employees across the country have filed gender discrimination complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Of the 1,975 EEOC complaints, the largest number of complaints came from Florida, with 284 filings, followed by Alabama with 142 filings and Georgia with 119 filings. The EEOC complaints preserve the women’s right to sue Wal-Mart for gender discrimination in pay and promotions, despite the dismissal of the Dukes class.

Till this day, the women are still fighting this long battle and hoping it gets settled soon. Wal-Mart is Labeled as “Cheap” Wal-Mart is legendary for its cheapness across its operations. Wal-Mart forces its executives to share hotel rooms when they travel at their expense. The allegations do seem to whole some kind of truth to it. Wal-Mart single-minded devotion to lower prices, one might predict that they would only engage in employment discrimination to the extent that it serves efficiency goals. “A company that prioritizes low prices might lawfully provide limited benefits and pay low wages across the board.

Such a company might also commit widespread, nondiscriminatory labor violations if it thought that the benefits of such violations would outweigh the probability and costs of detection. Thus, the charges of overtime violations that led to Wal-Mart’s federal and state settlements are fairly unsurprising” (Wexler, 2011) A company desiring low labor costs might also engage in so-called rational discrimination by excluding or disfavoring workers who are accurately forecasted to raise costs for the company (Wexler, 2011). Some evidence suggests that Wal-Mart does in fact engage in such practices.

In particular, Wal-Mart settled several disability discrimination cases in which it was charged with using pre-employment questionnaires to screen out employees with medical or other disability-related issues. Even after the entry of a 2004 consent decree in a class action disability discrimination case, over one-hundred plaintiffs have filed new charges contending that Wal-Mart fails to provide reasonable accommodations, fires disabled employees, and uses a “leave of absence” bait-and-switch to force disabled employees out. Conclusion

Ethics plays a huge role in this decade long battle. One ethical principle that stands out to me is Distributive Justice. It’s a principle which suggests that people who are similar to each other should receive similar benefits and burdens; those who are dissimilar should receive different benefits and burdens in proportion to their dissimilarity (McShane ; Von Glinow, 2011, p. 53). The case, deals with distributive justice. I believe that everyone should be paid the same if doing the exact same job, regardless of gender.

Women works just as hard a man if not harder in the corporate world. References. Awards. (n. d. ). Retrieved from http://corporate. walmart. com/our-story/awards Hagen, W. (2011). Dissection and Analysis of the Recent Cases on Employment Discrimination Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Employee Responsibilities ; Rights Journal, 23(3), 171-186. doi:10. 1007/s10672-010-9163-x Frank, T. A. (2006, April). Everyday low vices. Retrieved from http://www. washingtonmonthly. com/features/2006/0604. frank. html McShane, S.

L. , and Von Glinow, M. A. (2010) Organizational Behavior, 5th Edition, McGraw-Hill/Irwin, New York. Lavin, H. S. , ; DiMichele, E. E. (2012). Are You My Supervisor? : The Scope of Supervisory Authority Under Title VII. Employee Relations Law Journal, 38(3), 89-94. Levine, D. (2008, September 21). Walmart gender discrimination lawsuit allowed to proceed, judge says. Retrieved from http://www. huffingtonpost. com/2012/09/22/walmart-gender-discrimination_n_1905204. html Sam walton. (n. d. ). Retrieved from http://corporate. almart. com/our-story/heritage/sam-walton Stainback, K. , Ratliff, T. N. , ; Roscigno, V. J. (2011). The Context of Workplace Sex Discrimination: Sex Composition, Workplace Culture and Relative Power. Social Forces, 89(4), 1165-1188 Wexler, L. (2011). WAL-MART MATTERS. Wake Forest Law Review, 46(1), 95-121. Appendix * In the past 5 years at Walmart stores in the U. S. : * Female co-managers have increased by 143% * Female store managers have increased by 46% * Female market managers have increased by 49%

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Wal-Mart and Nordstrom

Wal-Mart and Nordstrom are well known companies and established brands listed on Fortune 500 list. Wal-Mart caters almost all needs of its customers from grocery to clothing while Nordstrom operates in fashion retainging industry. It keeps collection of more than 500 brands in its store.

Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart is the largest retailer in America. These discount stores became part of American’s life in 1960s. At present it is operating in 15 countries, it employs more than 1.8 million associates worldwide. The number of stores is nearly 6,500 stores and serves more than 176 million customers per week.

The “most admired retailer” according to FORTUNE magazine has just completed one of the best years in its history: Wal-Mart generated more than $312.4 billion in global revenue in the fiscal year ended January 31, 2006, establishing a new record and an increase of 9.5 percent. The company earned almost $11.2 billion in net income in fiscal 2005.[1]

Wal-Mart has gone through considerable changes through the year 2003-04. Wal-Mart had increased its advertising budget by $434 million between 2003 and 2004.

The mission of Wal-Mart has been to provide good jobs, good works, and citizens and do good investments in 2004. The vision of Wal-Mart has always been to provide customer each and every product at the lowest price. Wal-Mart focused on cost cutting by its strategy on the merchandise mix and various operations. It utilized its database for consumer and requirement analysis. This helped it to understand the demand pattern of various products and helped in inventory management to make products available when customer wanted it most.

The marketing activities revolve around the equation

People+ Price+ Product=Value.

Company’s promotional strategies are not limited to a particular source. Company has utilized all the traditional and modern channels to reach its customer with its best offers. Wal-Mart adopts simple price promotion strategy in all its strategies. Its website is colorful attractive and displays various products and offers in each of its web page. Wal-Mart uses billboards and signboards which are placed at the public places and the places with high visibilities. The pamphlets and print materials are used for both in side the store promotion as well as outside the stores.

Nordstrom

Its one of the largest fashion retail stores in US. Its annual revenue is $7,722.9 million. It is ranked 8th in the general merchandiser group of fortune 500 companies.

“Today, Nordstrom has grown from one downtown Seattle shoe store into a nationwide fashion specialty chain with renowned services, generous size ranges and a selection of the finest apparel, shoes and accessories for the entire family. The company’s philosophy has remained unchanged for more than 100 years since its establishment by John W. Nordstrom in 1901: offer the customer the best possible service, selection, quality and value.”

This claims to provide branded clothes in the best minimum prizes. It adopts various promotional strategies for the promotion of its store. These strategies include electronic medium such as internet and computers, events and programs and printed materials. Events like designer clothes events, in store beauty events, sales events and many others. The web presence of the Nordstrom’s website is elegant. It also works as a platform for the promotional strategies.

Currently $ 5 shipping campaign is going on this website.  Its webpage has various attractive pictures creating interest about the products as well as self promotion of the company. It has its own e-catalogue which list all its product and accessories for the information and shopping purpose.

Each of the company uses almost all kind of promotional tools to reach their target consumers and other stake holders. The use of web pages in both the cases has been different with similar objective of attracting consumer and selling. However the e-catalogue of Nordstrom and images used in the website is more urban and attractive. Wal-mart tries to attract mass and it is evident from its website presentation. Nordstrom conducts various events as one of its most important promotional strategies.

Reference:

Kotler, Philip, Marketing Management, Prentice-Hall Inc. New Jersy, 10th Edition, 2000

Nankani, Economic Growth in the 1990s: Learning from a Decade of Reform retrieved on 22 January 2007  from http://www1.worldbank.org/prem/lessons1990s/chaps/01-Ch01.pdf

Serres, Chris Target vs. Wal-Mart, Is Target Corporation Any Better for Workers? May 22nd, 2005 retrieved on 22 January 2007   from http://www.reclaimdemocracy.org/walmart/2005/target_better.php

http://investors.target.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=65828;p=irol-newsArticle;ID=233786;highlight=accessed on 22 January 2007

http://www.sathguru.com/Note_on_Retail_Industry.pdf accessed on 22 January 2007

http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune500/snapshots/957.html accessed on 22 January 2007

http://about.nordstrom.com/aboutus/companyhist/companyhist.asp accessed on 22 January 2007
[1] http://walmartstores.com/GlobalWMStoresWeb/navigate.do?catg=5

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Is Wal-Mart Good for America

Wal-mart is the most powerful business in America because it sets standards for America as a whole. Wal-mart is one of America’s most leading discount stores making it more favorable to consumers. Wal-mart makes things convenient by having everything you need in one store at the cheapest price. Wal-mart has an amazing strategy of making things seem cheap; however, it’s an illusion. I believe the United States hasn’t benefitted from Wal-Mart in multiple ways.

Walmart has taken advantage of their opening price point. They’re strategy is bringing out the cheapest item in front of an aisle and pulling you towards it, however, as you are pulled towards it, you are led into higher priced items creating the illusion that the whole aisle is at a lower price as well. Consumers fall for it and buy it and that’s how Wal-mart makes a tremendous amount of profit. So does tricking consumers really make Wal-mart a good corporation for America?

Another reason why Wal-mart isn’t good for America is pay cuts and job losses. According to PBS Frontline, “over 1 million jobs have been lost to China.” Jobs that used to be easy to get in America are being lost to China, like steel workers and plastic workers, just for companies like Wal-mart. Wal-mart has too much power over smaller manufacturers. They buy cheap imports which hurt American blue-collar workers tremendously. This shows that Wal-mart is not good for America.

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China, India, and Wal-Mart: Issues of Price and Sourcing

Case 3: China, India, and Wal-Mart: Issues of Price, Quality, and Sourcing Introduction: Wal-Mart was the largest retailer in the United States and the largest corporation in the world because of the crusade, which meant all US products on the shelves by its creator, Sam Walton (Weiss, 2009, pp. 471). However, after he died in 1992, crusade evaporated, instead of US products, 98% of all of shelves throughout Wal-Mart (Weiss, 2009, pp. 471) are manufactured in China, Vietnam, South Korea, Taiwan and India. Too-cheap-to-beat Chinese products are killing the US manufactories, which cannot afford to make products anymore and still make a profit.

Someone said that the Wal-Mart’s goal is only get the lowest price without regarding the quality which means Wal-Mart’s products from global markets are taking an increasingly vigorous public trashing because of product safety and quality concerns. Nonetheless, Wal-Mart still expands its purchases of Chinese goods (Weiss, 2009, pp. 472). Ethical Issues: According to this case, Wal-Mart’s ethical business management is related to the global environment, which consists of financial markets, cultures, technologies and government policies (Weiss, 2009, pp. 18). As the case indicates, the market also consists of hypercompetition from different countries such as China and India and regional players in the global environment. China has low cost offshore labor in the “flat world”, so that Chinese imports are so inexpensive to enter in U. S. So many factors lead most US manufactories to close the doors and eventually jobs are lost accelerate. The United States’ economic outlooks vary with regard to the global economy (Weiss, 2009, pp. 420).

In my opinion, the labor force is one of technologies in a developing country and it supports the globalization process. China as a global manufacturer and U. S. partner is a great source of world-class offshore technology services. Wal-Mart has its own external and internal stakeholders. The largest benefit able external stakeholder is a customer. As Wal-Mart, it sacrifices product quality in order to offer customers low prices. It is hard to justify that Wal-Mart is unethical without further investigation of overall impacts that brings to the customers.

As its internal stakeholders, the employees have more job opportunities because of expending its business scope and shareholders can benefit more in the global trade. In my opinion, moreover, the government as its external stakeholder, it can control the quality when the products import to the U. S. The technological environment comprises factors related to the materials and machines used in manufacturing goods and services. Wal-Mart has no control over its international suppliers, which should be controlled by the U. S. overnments, although it has ability to control its threats in the global environment. In conclusion, globalization makes hypercompetition and challenges to new and continuing leaders and professionals in organizations (Weiss, 2009, pp. 423). As the case indicated, the critic asserts that U. S. must stop Wal-Mart to continue to grow. However, I think it is not practical in a “flat world”, it provides the lowest price of the products for the customers after all. References Weiss W. Joseph. Business Ethics: A Stakeholder & Issues Management Approach. 5e

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Wal-Mart Marketing Strategy

In the first class in Intensive in American Business, we discussed the reading assignment John D. Rockefeller and the Modern Corporation in Forbes. During the discussion, the professor mentioned Wal-Mart, a well-known retailer that owns large supply chain as The Standard Oil Company did to achieve its success. Being the largest retailer in the world, however, Wal-Mart may be relatively unfamiliar to students like me from Taiwan since it does not land here even though it planned to do so.

In fact, it was actually my trip to China several years ago that makes my first reach with Wal-Mart. And after the class, I started to wonder, with the outstanding supply chain system, how and why could Wal-Mart stop its step developing in Taiwan? Does this fact mean that a nearly wonderful supply chain doesn’t mean everything in market? So, does this also show that maybe under certain circumstances, Rockefeller and his company cannot accomplish such success? Save Money. Live Better.

Wal-Mart, the largest retailer in the world, owns a huge supply chain as The Standard Oil Company did, which enables Wal-Mart to provide the cheapest products to its customers and makes its success. As The Standard Oil Company broaden its supply chain by from setting up barrel-making operation to controlling transportation problems including terminal warehouses and pipeline networks, Wal-Mart combines the supply chain from transporting and delivering to ordering and purchasing, which largely reduce the logistics costs and allow Wal-Mart to supply customers with the best price.

To be more specific, for example, when linking up the suppliers, Wal-Mart provides them a system that can be directly entered by suppliers so as to realize the selling situation, predict the demanding amount of products, and decide the producing amount. In this supplying chain, Wal-Mart ought to make the whole supplying chain a very smooth, fluent, and steady one to save much money. Dedication to Charity However, like the resistances Rockefeller had encountered owing to the monopoly of the market, the protests against Wal-Mart are also occurring in not merely America but the world.

For instance, a documentary named WAL-MART: The High Cost of Low Price points out several disadvantages brought by this huge retailer such as cheap labors without insurance and welfare, bad working environment and, what may causes the most attentions of other similar industries, the opportunities being taken away by Wal-Mart from local small-scale industries. Probably because of this, in my personal opinion, Wal-Mart dedicate to charities to make the public think that it do carry out corporate social responsibility and to increase the reputation so that they can eliminate, or at least decrease, the protest against it. Both Rockefeller and Wal-Mart actually fail to entirely assuage public resentful though. ) Wal-Mart in Taiwan So, the problem that attracts my attention most is that in my home country Taiwan, we have certain wholesalers like Costco and Carrefour and retailers like Wellcome and PXmart. Nevertheless, Wal-Mart, the largest retailer in the world, has never landed here even though it had planned to develop from the southern part of Taiwan by merging. Why? To my personal viewpoint, there are two main reasons of this condition basing my observation and analysis.

First, the market for no matter retailing or wholesaling in Taiwan has already saturated. Even Carrefour, the market share champion in wholesaling in Taiwan, is having difficulties in its expansion. Not to mention the earlier comer Costco who has dominated the market of import goods. When most people in Taiwan, like my family, intend to buy plentiful imported goods, they would most likely opt to purchase at Costco. If Wal-Mart, a similar store to Costco, enter the market in Taiwan now, people are certain to compare both of them.

And it is likely that customers already have their loyalties and would tend to choose Costco, the store they are used to instead of Wal-Mart, the one that they are still unfamiliar with. Consequently, only when Wal-Mart supplies some exclusive businesses or comes out with other attractive strategies can it be competitive and able to compete with the wholesalers that are already in Taiwan now. In addition, because of the geographic reason in Taiwan, which is a comparably small island with crowded people, it seems that it is more suitable for small supermarkets to thrive here.

For one thing, the cost of the estate here would be expensive since Wal-Mart is undoubtedly required to own a vast place for it to be built. What’s more, it is not that necessary for people in this crowded island to drive far away to buy groceries. Instead, they can simply walk to the supermarket around the street corner near their homes. For example, popular retailers, especially PXmart, claims to provide the cheapest price to their customers and that by the VIP system, customers can become VIPs for free and save every dollars in each of their purchase.

Sometimes the prices are even lower than the ones in wholesale shops such as Costco. Moreover, they open like almost anytime and anywhere. That is to say, people in Taiwan do not actually have that much demand on the existence of such a large market place like Wal-Mart. Currently, Wal-Mart finally converts its concentration to the expansion of the relatively potential market in China. In sum, in my point of view, even though Wal-Mart owns a complete and beneficial supply chain system that operate well in the U. S. nd many part of the world, it is not an a-hundred-percent promise to guarantee that it will work no matter when and where. The conditions in the market, the consumption habits of customers, and the competitors of yours are significant considerations as well. In other words, it is always essential for businesses to evaluate the market circumstances before they invest their money in a new place. (WAL-MART: The High Cost of Low Price teaser trailer on YouTube: http://www. youtube. com/watch? feature=player_embedded&v=hiSmlmXp-aU)

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Sex Discrimination at Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart stores, the world’s biggest retailer, owns more than 4,000 stores, including 1,475discount stores 1750 Wal-Mart Supercenter combination discount and grocery stores and 540 Sam’s Club Warehouse stores. With close to two million employees worldwide, Wal-Mart is the biggest employment provider in the world. In this paper I am going to discuss; 1. What financial impact could the lawsuit potentially have on Wal-Mart? 2. What are the major moral complaints of the females suing Wal-Mart? Are these moral complaints are justified? Why? . What, if anything, should Wal-Mart do to correct these discrepancies? Should the company institute an “affirmative action” promotion program for female employees? If so, what should this program look like? 4. Do women deserve to win their lawsuit? Though Wal-Mart suffered lots of lawsuits which included child-labor, illegal immigrant workers, failure to pay over time charges the recent and major law suit they are facing now is the discrimination against female employees in promotions, pay, management training and job assignments.

It was, therefore, a noteworthy event in June 2004 when a federal judge expanded a lawsuit filed by six California women to a class action. The case has now mushroomed to cover 1. 6 million women Wal-Mart workers, employed nationwide since 1988, making it, by far, the largest class action in U. S. history. What financial impact do you think lawsuit could potentially have on Wal-Mart? We all know, Wal-Mart is the biggest or largest retail store in the world. Naturally, their earning and employees are also more compared to other corporate.

The lawsuit against the company was not the company needed when they were facing other legal issues such as the child labor and employment of illegal immigrants. The lawsuit was filed by six women who say women were treated lower than the male even if they acquired equal posts, qualification and experience. The news already reached every household, street and public place thus bringing the name of the company down. This could have a huge impact on the company’s earnings and here we are not saying in terms of hundreds or thousands of dollars we mean millions and billions of dollars. Some of the impact could occur in the following forms: ?

The six women who filed the case against Wal-Mart are not only asking the company pay for the unfair deed but also asking them to pay back and compensate for all 1. 6 female employees against whom Wal-Mart discriminated. This would cost the company a fortune because these 1. 6 female workers were entitled to promotions, salary increment, trainings and other such things. To compensate or reimburse that much amount for that much workers would surely have a huge and major impact on the company’s financial position. ?The other way how this lawsuit could affect the company’s financial position would be through the transaction or sales.

Since major part of the shoppers constitutes women, after hearing what Wal-Mart has done and how women are treated at Wal-Mart they would certainly feel insecure and ripped off. They would turn their backs and look for a better place to shop. This would lead to a fall in sales and increase in competition. ?Other thing is the reputation and goodwill of the company. The lawsuit already has brought the name of the company down and on top of that if the company fails to win the case, then the company would suffer a huge fall of share in the market.

They would even have to close most of the stores and start all over again which would be impossible looking at the current market situation and all the competition worldwide. ?And not to forget the turnover of workers or employees. Reaching this news of discrimination I personally believe that most of the women employees will quit their job, even those who did not experience the situation. So interviewing, selecting or recruiting those new employees would cost Wal-Mart another million. Moreover, those new employees would have no experience and would commit lots of errors.

Training them would again add to the cost. What are the major moral complaints of the females suing Wal-Mart? Do you believe these moral complaints are justified? Why? The major moral complaints of females suing Wal-Mart in the case basically cover the discrimination against female employees. To point out what constitutes those complaints: ? Difference in the promotion scheme between male and female employees ? The lower payment of wages and salaries to female employees even they were at same level with male employees ? Unequal distribution of management training among the male and female employees ?

Male allotted a better job assignment compared to women even they were equally qualified, ranked and experienced. Yes, I believe these complaints are justifiable because we can see from every point that women were not treated fairly and equally. It wasn’t that women lacked in anything or that they were unwilling to work, it was because they were woman. We can very well compete with men and in some cases may even prove better than them but it is act like this what is pulling the power of women down. The six women who sued Wal-Mart didn’t sue for nothing; they had physical proof and evidences of the discrimination laid upon them.

Some of the evidences were found in the employees’ records where by Richard Drogin, a statistical expert found out that employees atWal-Mart were divided into two main groups, hourly employees who occupied the lower levels and salaried managers who occupied the higher levels. Compensation increases from one level tithe next. In 2001, salaried managers made about $50,000 a year while hourly employees made$18,000. Drogin found out that not only 65% of hourly employees were women but also 33% of salaried managers constituted women.

So at both the point women earned less than man. When we also look upon the experience level, an average woman was far more experienced than an average man because women worked or stuck there for longer than men. Women despite having other responsibilities like raising a kid or managing the home, they dedicate more where they work that is why they have less turnover rates. So this adds up to another reason why the lawsuit was appropriate or justifiable. It is strange but true; the performance rating of an average woman was much higher than of an average man.

Drogin found out that be it in a cashier’s place, a manager’s place or a sales associate’s place women performed better than men. However women were paid about 5% to15% times less than men and on top of that fewer women got promoted to the next rank that too in a very long time whereas a man would get promoted within the speculated time or even less into the next post. Wal-Mart was fined $188,000 by the California Fair Employment and Housing Commission for violating California state law when it refused to reinstate a woman after she completed her maternity leave.

In addition, Wal-Mart also offers a pitifully small amount of paid sick time for working women, and requires employees to be available for shifts 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, making it extremely difficult for working mothers to schedule child care or take time off to care for a sick child. So the main point here is that at any angle or point we can see women were not treated fair and left to suffer. If women do not come together and fight for their rights when they have the opportunity then women will always remain a victim.

Then there is no use shouting at the store or ourselves that we deserve more or we have earned it, it would be too late then. Besides the moral complaints by the female workers at Wal-Mart there were major issues involving the employees which were not noted earlier, some of the issues were: ? Wal-Mart pays low wages and appears to aggressively seek to keep wages down. On average, Wal-Mart workers earn an estimated $8. 00/hour with a 32 hour work week. This equals $256 a week or $13,312 a year. The Federal poverty level for a family of threes $14,630. In contrast, union grocery workers earn on average 30% more. Charges have been made that older workers are laid off to bring in younger and cheaper employees. Some 40 lawsuits accuse Wal-Mart of a failure to pay overtime. ?It pulls wages and benefits down in other grocery stores. It lowers area standards. In some cases, it forces the closure of better paying firms. Business Week estimates for every Wal-Mart supercenter that opens, two other supermarkets will close. ?It pressures suppliers to make products more cheaply, putting pressure on wages, causing jobs to be moved overseas. Last year, it imported 12 billion in goods from China, 10% of US imports from that nation. Wal-Mart doesn’t produce new technology or innovations that improve the quality of life. It takes business from existing firms by offering the same merchandise cheaper. That’s all it does. So I believe it is not only justifiable but also rightful to file the lawsuit against such treatments. On top of that the evidences and statics are on the women’s side so therefore the lawsuit is 100% justifiable. What, if anything, do you think Wal-Mart should do to correct these discrepancies? Should the company institute an “affirmative action” promotion program for female employees?

If so, what should this program be like? The problem was caused by the company, Wal-Mart so definitely they have to find a solution and try to correct their mistakes. They have already started working on the problem. Some of the initiatives they have taken are: ? They had posted “anti-discrimination” posters all over ? Women were allotted more responsibilities and representation in areas they were evaluated ? Women could enter salaried management jobs without having to relocate their homes. But since such initiatives were not firmly implemented some of them were forgone with the passage of time.

Some of initiatives Wal-Mart could think of or adopt are: 1) Work Discrimination I am talking about the actual work or labor work. Women at Wal-Mart seem to be working at par with men but still they are not paid at par. To compensate for the women’s losses they could reduce their work time or they could allocate women to areas where minimum energy is required. For example they could work at displaying of items, as a cashier, and such places where not much of hard labor is required. 2) Facility such as Day Care Wal-Mart is one of the biggest retail all over the world and they have lots of property they own.

If they established some Day care center for their employees especially the female employees then those employees who have kids can drop their kids in those center and work care free in the store. The center could be near the store and they could also charge some amount as charge but this could not only benefit the workers but also the company for could avoid unnecessary absenteeism. An association called the Women’s Association can be formed in every retail store so that female employees can come together to discuss their issues and forward suggestions and feedback.

Such programs do not have to disturb their normal work time, it could be conducted once in every month or whenever major issues arise. 4) Equal Respect At Wal-Mart’s women were mostly looked down and not given the respect they deserve. Adwoman may be somebody’s mother, wife or sister. Men at Wal-Mart fail to see that and they criticized women of their looks, their past, future and their purpose in life. So therefore women should be given respect and treated equally. Yes definitely the company should institute an “affirmative action” in order to promote program for the female employees.

From my point of view, since the company is based in the United States they should associate their program with the Statue of Liberty. That statue denotes the power of women and it signifies the right to freedom for all the U. S citizens. The title or the main theme of such program could be “Liberty for Women” . Whereby they could stress the freedom to speak, advance and employment especially for the female workers. They could relate women to some famous figure such as the Mother Teresa or simply their own mom. On this particular day they could give all the female employees a one day holiday and let them embrace themselves.

The company should however grant monetary compensation for this day. This way women employee could proudly say they work at Wal-Mart and dedicate completely to their work and avoid complaining. Some of the points they could keep in mind while pursuing such program could be as follows: ? The right and responsibilities of women ?The importance of women ?The success of women till now ?The potential and ability of women ?The sacrifices women make in every aspect of life References Wal-Mart Class Action Gender Discrimination Case Holds,(2012), Myron Curry, retrieved from http://www. usiness-marketing. com/store/article-walmart. html Are Women Discriminated Against at Wal-Mart? , (2012), Dan Ackman, retrieved from http://www. forbes. com/2004/06/23/cx_da_0623topnews. html Wal-Mart, pay your fair share,(2006), Randy Joseph, retrieved from http://www. seattlepi. com/local/opinion/article/Wal-Mart-pay-your-fair-share-1194522. php Female Wal-Mart Employees File New Bias Case, (2011), Andrew Martin, retrieved from http://www. nytimes. com/2011/10/28/business/women-file-new-class-action-bias-case-against-wal-mart. html? _r=0

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Competitive Strategies for Wal-Mart

The emergence of Wal-Mart as a big box retailer has changed retail in the United States, according to a 2008 article on Wal-Mart and competition in AllBusiness. com. Big box retailers typically have stores exceeding 50,000 square feet. This type of store is standard, with large windowless single-story buildings. Several other big box retailers like Toys “R” Us, Best Buy, Target, Lowe’s and Home Depot have created competition for Wal-Mart. However, Wal-Mart has stood out as the perennial merchandise big box retailer, according to the AllBusiness. om article. Because of its big box status, Wal-Mart has exceeded small retailers in profits.

Annual revenues for 2004 were slightly over $288 billion. Revenues in 2006 exceeded $350 billion. Wal-Mart maintains its status as a big box retailer by seeking profits through a high volume of low-price items. Low-Cost Leadership Wal-Mart’s slogan is “Spend Less. Live Better. ” The giant retailer prides itself on providing customers with low-cost items that beat competitors. Wal-Mart reported a 3.6  percent increase in net income from cost cutting, according to an August 2010 Associated Press article.

Also read MGMT-QUIZ about types of competitive strategies

Customers are cautious about spending because of a slow economy, and Wal-Mart continues to be their low-cost option. Customers choose to shop at Super Wal-Mart centers for groceries, rather than the local grocery store because of discounted items. For example, Wal-Mart offers $1 ketchup bottles and $4 for a case of soda. The Associated Press article stated that Wal-Mart benefited during the recession as affluent shoppers were forced to downgrade to cheaper options.

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Wal-Mart: Penetrating Cities

Business opportunities do not necessarily come as fixed process transactions. Apparently, when an established company has already earned a good market reputation, the next step for it is to increase its business quality output in terms of maximizing its earning potential through various channels. The aspects of customer service, supplier partnership and logistics can greatly induce more earnings if delegated correctly. For Wal-Mart, the world’s largest retailer according to Fishman’s article, the best possible concept is penetrating into cities and establishes a ‘grass root’ foundation within segmented markets.

One of the main advantages of having this approach for Wal-Mart is that the company can easily manage its logistic procedures. In a compact city, it is much easier to transport merchandises within specified small locations. Good logistic systems can utilize the best resources inside and outside the company span (Brewer 12). This could easily save time and money resources for the business therefore improving inventory and tracking delivery transactions.

Another good benefit in this city-concentration approach is that if Wal-Mart can establish a mini counterpart of retail outlets within cities, it would be very difficult for the competitor to have a head-on collision with the company since the brand Wal-Mart speaks for itself in terms of advertising. Also people will have greater access to Wal-Mart’s services and may at least feel they have a customized branch outlet of the company since the stores will comply with the laws accepted within the city parameters, thus increasing the company’s sales. Just like what the company has done in Monona, Wisconsin, a customized super center was established as shoppers get great benefits in terms of convenience and huge savings (Wal-Mart Facts 1).

Just like any business approaches, penetrating cities can also pose some disadvantages. For one, the establishment of new satellite stores in cities requires great investment allocations. This could impose a certain degree of Wal-Mart’s capital calculation. Moreover, commodity allocation per store can become a problem since the company head administration will need to monitor each and every merchant units in all the cities it has established its branches.

Establishing a business presence in a local city can greatly increase customer satisfaction and convenience. However, there should always be a way to weigh the investment costs and profit accumulation before a company can initiate this kind of approach. For Wal-Mart, since it already has an established name with huge capitals, penetrating cities can be the best way to expand its specific market influence.

Works Cited

Brewer, Ann. “Handbook of Logistics and Supply-Chain Management.” Google Books. 2001. 10 Mar 2008 <http://books.google.com.ph/books?id=3Zfp8F0AOAUC&pg=PA12&lpg=PA12&dq=importance+of+good+logistics&source=web&ots=darvcNFR14&sig=NV7fY356nwEozHLV8ooQ418-jiQ&hl=en>.

Fishman, Charles. “The Wal-Mart You Don’t Know.” FastCompany. 2003. 10 Mar 2008 <http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/77/walmart.html>.

Wal-Mart, “New Super center Is Custom-Made for Monona .” Wal-Mart Facts. 2008. 10

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Examining Exclusivity in Mass Marketing

Explain why Sears or Wal-Mart cannot effectively create a trendy counterculture image. High volume and mass appeal are at the core of one-stop-shop retailers like Sears and Wal-Mart. These stores are the culture others are trying to counter. Wal-Mart relies on mass production of the products they sell to keep manufacturing and shipping costs down. This allows them to maximize profitability. Profitability is not at the core of counterculture; unique style and individualism are.

Counterculture is the alternate of culture, even a subculture. For an active member of the counterculture to shop at a store that sells toilet paper a few isles down from their jeans defies the very image they are set to create or maintain. This is the same reason Urban Outfitters cannot sell Craftsman power tools. This would counter the counterculture image Urban Outfitters is built upon. Could the big box stores sell merchandise identical to Urban Outfitters? Explain your answer.

Big box stores can sell merchandise identical to niche stores like Urban Outfitters to keep up with trends. Stores like Costco can produce, ship and stock merchandise on a large scale in hopes of increasing profitability. Seemingly exclusive products appeal to the masses that do not normally shop at, or cannot afford to shop at more exclusive retailers like Urban Outfitters. This in itself is a trend because once the product is no longer exclusive, it will eventually no longer sell as it did previously.

Also if the once exclusive product sells at all is a gamble in marketing and sales. Matching the appeal of the original product, timing of launch so as to miss out on the value while it exists and availability to the masses can impact how well a trendy product will sell at a big box store. If it does, what is the effect on the exclusivity once offered by Urban Outfitters? Identify at least three reasons why exclusivity is valuable.

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Walmart Facing Discrimination Lawsuit

American retail giant Walmart was going to face the largest class-action employment lawsuit in U.S history when a federal appeals court was ultimately allowed the combined multiparty litigation to move ahead to trial. After that, Walmart decided to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review the ruling of the federal appeals court. And the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the case.

The lawsuit was first filed by Betty Dukes, a store greeter in Pittsburg, California, along with five of her co-workers in 2001. In that case, Walmart is accused of paying women on salary and those hourly wages less than men for the same jobs and giving them fewer opportunities for promotion. The workers also said that women workers made up more than 70 percent of Walmart’s hourly work force, but made up less than one-third of its store management in the past decade. The plaintiffs wanted back pay and punitive damage.

Now the question for the U.S Supreme Court is not if there was discrimination but if the claims by the individual employees can be combined as a class action. If the previous ruling stood, the case would cover about 1.5 million-plus women including all current and former women workers, and their claims could amount to billions of dollars. And this case will become the biggest private gender-bias case in U.S. history.

This case is a very important business issue for Walmart, and any senior manager of the organization should care about this. Not only because of the billions of dollars Walmart might have to pay out, but also the impact and damage it would cost on the company’s image. The plaintiffs in this case was seeking back pay and punitive damage, and due to the fact that over 1.5 million walmart female workers could be involved, the claim could be up to billions of dollars. This would be a big loss to the company. Also, Walmart tried to project an improved image for the organization, and this case could be a big blow to the company’s image. Moreover, the case might also lead to drop in company’s stock price. And most importantly, if this case ultimately proceed to trial, it might lead to a lot more similar cases against the company.

In this issue, there are many stakeholders involved. First of all, Walmart’s shareholders are one of the key stakeholders. Because if the case get proceed, there is a very big chance in dropping in the company stock price. And if Walmart utimately lost the case, the company would need to pay billion of dollars. In both situations, the company’s shareholders would have direct financial loss. Although the shareholders might have no interest on company’s image, they would still hope the company can solve the issue as soon as possible and in an efficient way. Though they are the shareholders of the company, they had not much power regarding to this issue. There are not much they can do to help the company. They might sell their shares if they thought the future of the company is uncertain.

Another key stakeholder is the management of Walmart. They are one of the main reasons why Walmart is facing the discrimination issue. The female workers filed a lawsuit since they thought Walmart management treated them unfairly. If the case get proceed and Walmart ultimately lost the case, the Board of Directors might want to review and lay off part of the managment to prevent similar issues from happening again. Since the issue is now already in stage 4, there is not much the management could do.

Walmart’s Board of Directors are surely one of the key stakeholders. The issue directly affects the company’s revenue and earning, therefore it had direct impact on the Board of Directors. Also, since the company’s managment was responsible for this issue, and the managment was chosen by the Board of Directors, therefore, they were responsible for the issue too. The Board of Directors would try to solve the issue as soon as possible but in an efficient way. They would want to solve the issue soon in order to protect the company’s image and substain the customers’ confidence. However, they would not settle the issue easily since they need to act in the best interest of the company.

The last key stakeholders are the workers of the company, especially the female workers. Because this case had a big influence on the benefit of the company’s workers. No matter how the case go, Walmart’s managment would adjust the way they treat their workers. And if the ruling is favor of the workers, they would get back pay and claim for the punitive damage. And if that is the case, the company’s workers will have more power to them. This case could be seen as an example for any similar cases.

To solve this action, the company would want to protect and improve the company’s image as a good corporate. Also, Walmart would not mind pay some claim to settle the lawsuit, since they would like to settle the issue quickly in order to gain back customers’ confidence. However, they would only settle for some reasonable amount.

In my opinion, Walmart should face the lawsuit and wait for the result from the U.S Supreme Court. It is because this case could affect far more than this case. If the company settle for the issue, there is a big chance that more similar cases would come up in the future. And that is not good for the company future development. The key decision maker of Walmart should not settle easily in this particular case.

Other than this strategy, Walmart could try to settle with the workers with compromises. In order to aviod the lawsuit, the company could negotiate with the workers and try to settle by paying a significate amount of dollars. The amount could be a very huge number considering the case involved over 1.5 million female workers. However, this strategy might lead to more of the similar cases and more lawsuits against the company.

Therefore, I would recommend Walmart’s ket decision maker to take the first strategy. Walmart should wait for the result from the U.S. Supreme Court and let the court to determine the result, it is the best interest for the company’s future and development.

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Analyzing the Financial Statements of the World’s Retailer

The Wal-Mart case is intended for an introductory or main course on Financial Statement Analysis. It may also be useful within a Corporate Finance/Financial Management course. After a class on financial statements and liquidity, profitability and solvency ratios – and some brief examples discussed by the lecturer – students should be capable of making a financial analysis of Wal-Mart. Students can be asked to make this analysis in class, or to prepare the case outside the classroom, and to present it.

Ideally, the case work is conducted in groups of 4 to 6 students, and it typically takes between 1 to 1. 5 hours (for the analysis itself – obviously, drafting a written report or presentation is more time consuming). The Wal-Mart case is aimed at both undergraduate and graduate students, and for general management programmes/MBAs as well as finance students – obviously, for the latter group, a much more fine-grained analysis, extensive discussion and adequate linking among various financials and between the numbers and Wal-Mart’s business is required.

Evidently, the lecturer should highlight many more details in a class of finance students. In the teaching note, the authors first provide a detailed discussion of Wal-Mart’s balance sheet, profit and loss account and cash flow statement, mainly based upon common base and common size analysis. While the focus is on 2009 figures, conclusions for 2008 would be broadly similar.

Furthermore, they also provide an overview of some key financials’ evolution over the past 10 years. Next, they calculate and interpret liquidity, profitability and solvency ratios for 2008 and 2009 and link these to Wal-Mart’s business model and operating activities. They summarize the main findings in a concluding section. Finally, the authors include a slide show that can be used while teaching this case.

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Wal-Mart Negotiation Analysis

Although it was several years ago now, in 1988 a 24-year old man was injured at his local Wal-Mart store after tripping over several rocking chairs. The man claims that as he turned the corner of an aisle he tripped over three 1. 5 foot-high children’s rocking chairs, which caused several injuries, some of which were lacerated forehead, several strains and sprains, a jaw injury and even blackout spells (Laska, 2000). This example of a negotiation lawsuit would classify as a distributive negotiation because of several different reasons.

First, the only item of value being discussed is settlement money, and in order for the negotiation to be considered an integrative negotiation, the opposing parties typically have additional items of value to discuss for trade. Also, there is no personal relationship between the opposing sides of the negotiation, which in this particular case are the Wal-Mart Corporation and the injured man. Finally, a distributive negotiation is considered to be a win-lose scenario and clearly, either the man or the Wal-Mart Corporation would win the negotiation.

Originally, the injured man sued the company for $100,033. 57, and although the Louisiana Supreme Court ruled in his favor, the amount was lowered. The jury determined that although his injuries were worth compensation, $73,525. 18 was considered a more appropriate sum. In addition, the plaintiff’s wife was awarded $10,000 for loss of consortium. Even though some people may feel as though an injury due to tripping over a child’s toy is a case that does not hold much water, fortunately for the injured man his case was fairly cut and dry.

The store could have prevented the injury if the rocking chairs were properly displayed. Therefore the store was responsible and held liable. This type of negotiation is intended for the benefit of one party and is typically settled out of court because companies try to avoid court appearance when possible. Integrative Article: NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement Although the National Basketball Association will be facing changes to their Collective Bargaining Agreement within the next year, the most recent negotiation, which is held between players and teams, was held in 2005.

This negotiation is intended to discuss important terms in the players’ contracts, which include salary amounts, length of contracts, rookie salary terms, and salary caps. On the other end of the negotiation, the teams are interested in discussing factors such as trade rules, the escrow level, and the allowed tax on the teams (Morton, 2010). This article demonstrates an integrative negotiation because it is more of a win-win scenario for the opposing parties, which as previously mentioned, include the players and the teams.

Since both parties have much to gain from the agreement, they are willing to put more on the table. Also part of an integrative negotiation, both parties have not only their best interest in mind, but also the interest of the opposing side, primarily because of the relationship established between the two. The players and teams are interested in the well being of each other because both are affected by each other. This demonstrates why distributive negotiations are different from integrative, because there is no relationship between the two parties.

Although integrative negotiations are often successful, most negotiations are distributive because most opposing parties are not interested in the other. This type of negotiation technique is intended for a established pair of negotiators. Examples in the Workplace Considering that I work in a childcare center, negotiation strategies are not commonly used. However, a childcare director would have a few different scenarios in which negotiation techniques could be beneficial.

Although in society today, distributive negotiations are much more common, integrative negotiations are used more often in childcare, in fact, they are used more often in most workplaces. One example of how integrative negotiations are used is through a request for a pay raise. Just like the article examining the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement, I have used integrative negotiation techniques in the past when I asked for an hourly pay raise. Instead of demanding a raise, which would be more like a distributive negotiation, I discussed how both the center that I work for and myself would benefit from a raise.

I explained what I had to offer the company in exchange for the raise, while the benefit to myself is obviously of monetary value. It is similar to the saying, you will catch more bees with honey than vinegar, I will have more success in getting what I am asking for by being professional and polite than by having high expectations and demanding to get what I ask for. Although both types of negotiation techniques can be successful in the appropriate setting, integrative negotiations are more practical for my line of work.

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Wal-Mart Effects the Economy

Jim Lee Eng 101: Reames December 2, 2010 Wal-Mart Greatly Impacts the U. S. Economy Is Wal-Mart ruining the local businesses in America? Most professional business men can agree that Wal-Mart affects the United States economy in many different ways. Wal-Mart is an American public corporation that runs a chain of large, discount department stores. It is the world’s largest public corporation by revenue according to the 2008 Fortune Global 500. However this corporation has contraverisal issues about how they do their sales and the long term affects they put in the economy.

Professionals will agree that Wal-Mart has hurt many community businesses as Wal-Mart open in areas around them. There have been common statistics for when a Wal-Mart opens and the affect they have. This paper focuses on the affect Wal-Mart has in rural areas and the views of professionals intake on this topic. Also this paper will feature how Wal-Mart will affect our feature. The target audience for this paper is people who are interested in the learning of the affects of large corporations vs small businesses.

When analyzing the affects of Wal-Mart many researchers will agree with the fact that small businesses lose revenue when big corporation buy for low and sell also low to beat the competition. Stone (1997) states that “Studies in Iowa have shown that some small towns lose up to 47 percent of their retail trade after 10 years of Wal-Mart stores nearby” (Pg. 2). That is a big statistic to take in as the community will suffer from a high loss of the money for the community.

Also the small business helps keep the economy in flow and when small businesses start to fail, people start losing jobs and people will move out of communities which hurts the communities. Stone (1997) comments that “It is believed that this decline in sales happened because Wal-Mart placed its own stores too close together, causing a predatory effect” (Pg. 6). This statement is true because Wal-Mart uses the predatory effect to drive competitors out of business. The predatory effect is the practice of selling products and services at a very low price intending to drive competitors out of business.

That is how Wal-Mart has been dominant because of their ability to sell prices so low to attract consumers to continue to shop at Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart can do this because by attracting consumers to buy certain products at a lower price that other products are raised in value and consumers will shop throughout the store. The key is to get consumers to come to your business and Wal-Mart has almost perfected that. Overall Stone would agree with the idea of Wal-Mart is ruining the local businesses around America as Wal-Mart has become a fully national chain.

Understanding this topic would be important because it can tell what we will see in the future of the economy. Many would agree with Stone like Goetz and Swaminathan with the fact Wal-Mart has effects in local communities. Goetz and Swaminathan (2004) states that “We offer three possible explanations for this finding, including that Wal-Mart stores destroy civic capacity in the communities in which they locate by driving out local entrepreneurs and community leaders” (Pg. 2). This statement connects with Stone as well as my point of view of this topic.

Wal-Mart has downgrade the middle class economy with their style of retail sales and buying cheap products over seas. Goetz and Swaminathan (2004) quotes that “Local leaders and academic researchers are increasingly interested in the community-level effects of “big box” retailers and discount department stores” (Pg. 3). This has potential to have a positive outcome because America will realize that Wal-Mart has affected the United States so greatly that the government needs to step in and control how Wal-Mart conducts business.

Wal-Mart has received considerable and mostly negative recent public media and Congressional attention, in addition to spawning a number of hostile web-sites as Goetz and Swaminathan (2004) reports (Pg. 3). It is good that people are realizing this and speaking out about this effect on our economy. This will get this phenomenon brought up to the government level and will be talked about to high levels of authority. Goetz and Swaminathan are professionals that agree with my idea of local businesses being destroyed by Wal-Mart.

Common views of professionals will agree that our economy is partly affected by the Wal-Mart effect. Neumark, Zhang, and Ciccarella (2005) will agree with Stone, Goetz, and Swaminathan by saying that “We estimate the effects of Wal-Mart stores on county-level employment and earnings, accounting for endogeneity of the location and timing of Wal-Mart openings that most likely biases the evidence against finding adverse effects of Wal-Mart stores” (Pg. 1). This is another common aspect of all these professionals with the idea that there is a negative effect behind the openings of Wal-Mart.

All of the effects found are common as they reduce local businesses around new Wal-Marts. Neumark, Zhang, and Ciccarella (2005) quotes “ Yet two of the most commonly-heard criticisms are that Wal-Mart eliminates more jobs than it creates for a community and that Wal-Mart’s wage levels pull down standards for all workers—not simply creating low-wage jobs, but driving down wages” (Pg. 1). Not only is the Wal-Mart effect destroying the local businesses, Wal-Mart does not help create more jobs for the jobs it loses in the community.

Also Wal-Mart does not pay its workers a good wage. That can greatly affect a community because the citizens within that community will not have money to buy products, keeping the flow of the economy going. Neumark, Zhang, and Ciccarella (2005) also agrees on my idea of the topic of Wal-Mart by stating “There is also an academic literature on the impact of Wal-Mart stores, focusing on the effects of Wal-Mart openings on local employment, retail prices and sales, poverty rates, and the concentration of the retailing industry, as well as the impact on existing businesses” (Pg. ). They are basically stating that Wal-Mart impacts many aspects of the economy because of how Wal-Mart conducts business. Also that the impacts are not in positive ways in which they should be when new competition arises. The fact that Wal-Mart beats out its competitors really easy is a scary weapon that Wal-Mart can abuse. In which they have abuse their power to buy bulk supplies by demanding the prices of whom they buy from instead of negoicating. Neumark, Zhang, and Ciccarella can all agree that Wal-Mart is ruining the local businesses in America.

Furthermore into this topic, most professionals will all conform that Wal-Mart affects the economy in more negative ways then positive. Arindraji, William, and Barry (2007) states that “estimates that exploit the spatial diffusion of Wal-Mart stores find that a single Wal-Mart store opening reduces the average retail earnings in a county by 0. 5 – 0. 9 percent” (Pg. 4). This is not good for any economy that when a new business is open that the average retail earning is lowered instead of increased. This just means that when Wal-Mart opens it loses more of its competitor retailers then what Wal-Mart gains.

Ten new Wal-Mart stores in a state are found to reduce the average hourly wage of retail workers by around 2 percent as purpose by Arindraji, William, and Barry (Pg. 4). Wal-Mart should be able to pay their workers better if they are finacnically doing well as they are ranked number one in the Fortune 500 list. They are the number one ranked corporation and they do not pay their employers above the average. Wal-Mart has been making money other then the products and services they provide. As Wal-Mart can see that they can pay their workers the minimum wage and get away with it, while making billions of dollars world wide.

Arindraji, William, and Barry will confirm that Wal-Mart has been greatly impacting the economies in the where abouts they consult business. Wal-Mart has been overly competitive with the prices they put on the products and drive competition out of business. In the Lansing State Journal, Domsic reports that “The recent closings of three locally owned grocery stores reflect a traditional grocery sector struggling to compete with big-box stores and the growing number of pharmacies, convenience stores and other shops that have added more food to their lineups. The big box stores they are talking about are Wal-Mart, Meijers, and Kroger. Those stores have been competing with each other to cut prices really low, beating out the other local businesses. Competition is good but what happens when there is no competition? Then those who have beat out the other competition will have a garentee chance to always survive in the economy and basically take all the consumers in the area. Domsic also comments “bigger players have beefed up their food lines or cut prices as they vie for Lansing-area shoppers. The bigger players are the Wal-Mart, Meijer, and Kroger and they are competing fiercely for consumers. Even though competition is good, it is bad when some of the competition disappears from the market. Although there are many cons of Wal-Mart, Wal-Mart has many benefits as they provide low costs of products they sell. Irwin (2007) reports that “Wal-Mart’s food prices are estimated to be 8% to 27% lower than large supermarket chains for an identical market basket across different U. S. metro areas” (Pg. 1). This is a benefit for the lower and middle class to try and save money in these rough times in the United States.

That is why consumers are attracted to shop at Wal-Mart because you can save money and be able to buy other things. Irwin expresses this benefit as “This has generated tremendous savings for Wal-Mart consumers by offering lower priced goods in the community, and generating competition among retailers” (Pg. 1). Wal-Mart creates unbelievable savings for its consumers therefore keeps the competition alive for Wal-Mart’s competitors. Also that competition is very good for the economy in the United States. Those are some ways that Wal-Mart impacts the business industry in positive ways.

Those are not just the ways that Wal-Mart has benefited America. Wal-Mart has helped personal income and employment. Riper (2008) quotes “The study shows that between 1985 and 2003, personal income, overall employment and retail employment grew faster in counties with a Wal-Mart than in those without one. ” This means that the more Wal-Mart is built around the United States and other countries that it will benefit income of people and help raise employment in the area. That is a good because then people would have more money to help keep that economic flow in communities going.

Also the rise in employment will improve the surrounding unemployment of the location Wal-Mart is around. Nearly 90% of the U. S. population lives within 15 miles of a Wal-Mart store, and two-thirds of all retailers are located within five miles of one as Riper reports. That means a vast majority of America is surrounded by a Wal-Mart close by. This is good for Wal-Mart as they can be easily located and can be accessible to almost anyone. Wal-Mart is everywhere and that is a huge benefit Wal-Mart has over its competitors.

Wal-Mart has brought up some good positive impacts as there are aproximatly 3,600 Wal-Marts in the United States. One of the impacts is the amount of jobs each Wal-Mart creates as Wal-Mart’s site cites “Approximately 350 new positions will be needed at the store (a majority of those positions will be full time). An additional 100 construction jobs will be created. ” That means there are 1. 26 million jobs in America that are in the Wal-Mart industry. Also that 360,000 construction jobs was created for the building of Wal-Mart.

As long as Wal-Mart is doing well with profits, they will continue to expand new Wal-Marts. This will mean more jobs in America. Another good impact Wal-Mart has is how they provide savings to consumers as the Wal-Mart site reports “Studies have shown that Walmart stores save the average household $3,406. 00 a year. Customers can purchase over 300 generic pharmaceutical drugs for just $4. 00 or less. ” The amount you save at Wal-Mart builds up as you can see. That helps citizens save money if there income is sufficiently low or on certain budgets.

Not only do Wal-Mart provide savings for its consumers and employment, Wal-Mart has been involved in the environment by stating that “Wal-mart is leading a global sustainability effort to reduce energy consumption through a variety of initiatives that will also be used at this store. The store will purchase a number of grocery and garden products locally to save energy costs and support the local economy. ” That helps Wal-Mart with its community respect to be involve and not just a average corporation that does not care about the itself.

Also this tells that Wal-Mart cares about the environment and not just making profits. Overall, Wal-Mart is a benefit to the American economy. Wal-Mart has not been selfish at all in communities like Landover Hills. Wal-Mart has started up a program to help local businesses. Mui reports that “Wal-Mart said it would offer free advertising to local stores and seminars on how to do business and even compete with Wal-Mart. ” This is something that is rarely done in the business world. A competitor helping another competitor out.

This would help competition around the area and benefit the local stores into competing with Wal-Mart. Many people think having Wal-Mart around is a benefit. Mui quotes “Other store owners credit Wal-Mart for boosting their sales, through both its proximity and community outreach programs. ” Local businessmen are claiming that having a Wal-Mart around is a benefit. Somehow Wal-Mart has continue to benefit some people while some others do not believe so. Wal-Mart has brought up many views on how they affect the competition and how the employment is affect in several different ways.

My opinion on Wal-Mart is that Wal-Mart is destroying the American middle class slowly every year. Wal-Mart closes individual business owners and reduces competition in which an economy like America, competition keeps the economy in steady flow. Also that they are like a monopoly to me. Wal-Mart is not just a discount retail store. They provide all sorts of different services like eye examinations, haircuts, predacures, and they can provide and activate cell phones on the Wal-Mart plan. Wal-Mart is exploring all markets and providing them into their own stores.

That is not a good impact because Wal-Mart already dominates in the retail store and driving other retail stores and local businesses out of work, so providing these services just keeps Wal-Mart in benefits from those services. I believe that the government needs to take a bigger stand on what Wal-Mart can do because Wal-Mart has been changing so rapidly and dominating any corporation out there, that the government should regulate how they buy supplies. Wal-Mart buys most of their products for their shelves from China for low prices.

Thus, making a lot of job losses in America. How can an American corporation do this to America? Wal-Mart also does not have health benefits for its workers and Wal-Mart pays low wages for its workers. That does not help out the working class of the United States. Our economy is not doing so well right now as we are in debt from war. Wal-Mart should help stable the economy since they done some damage to the United States in ways the Founder of Wal-Mart should have knowledge about and try to find new ways to conduct business.

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Knowledge Management – Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart is one of the best known companies in the United States. The name of Wal-Mart is being heard even in many corners of the world. Despite the fact that the company doesn’t tend to expand its business abroad, it always considers the importance of knowledge management when developing business strategies. The article “No Stopping Wal-Mart In Its Quest for Uber-Efficiency” by W. P. Carey discusses the reasons of Wal-Mart’s success specifying development of information technologies and importance of innovations. The article is retrieved from online database through table research. The paper is credible as the author offers in-depth analysis of the company and cites analysts and experts to defend his position.

Carey argues that nowadays Wal-Mart can be defined as a juggernaut as its net sales exceed $300 billion. In perspective the company is able to get the profit of about $649 billion. The figures are really impressive. According official statistics, the company generates 2% of country’s gross domestic product. Moreover, the company’s revenues are continuing to rise and compared with 2004 they climbed up to 11.3%. Nevertheless, the company needs innovation to maintain its current positions.

The author recommends expanding overseas and capturing new customers in domestic markets by building new stores. Wal-Mart is legendary for supply-chain genius and, therefore, it has to pay more attention to refining processes. Carey cites Mark Barratt, assistant professor of supply chain management, who argues that “Wal-Mart must gain even greater control over its supply chain; increase visibility of the movement of product through its supply chain and become more effective in terms of product availability and promotional execution”. (Carey 2006)

Wal-Mart relies on knowledge management as it realizes the need to cut costs, to improve purchasing decisions and to increase efficiency. Nowadays the company is successful in negotiating bargain prices from suppliers and n moving products to the right places at the right time. Again, knowledge management is referred to as experts need to have knowledge of markets and products, suppliers and customers, how to sell products and at what prices. Therefore, knowledge is power that drives Wal-Mart to success.

The company incorporates information technologies to improve performance and to increase efficiency. For example, the company has the best information system within the industry – Retail Link – which allows sharing data and information on a nearly real-time basis. In 2005 Wal-Mart’s data warehouse was “larger than all of the fixed pages on the Internet”. (Carey 2006) Data and information are used to analyze supply and demand, as well as to set inventory targets for particular products. The company is argued to correlate purchasing power with “factors that contribute to increasing demand for a particular good”. (Carey 2006)

One more winning supply tactics of the company is customized pallets which are effective in work with vendors as they assist in achieving the right product mix on the pallets. The author cites Rabinovich, assistant professor of supply chain management, who argues that “instead of having Kellogg’s deliver a pallet of cornflakes, they put together different types of cereals, different SKUs, allowing Wal-Mart to move the pallet through the distribution centre directly to a particular store”. (Carey 2006)

Wal-Mart tends to present supply chain as its winning strategy. However, Carey says that food distribution centers are mechanized and they are generally smaller. Wal-Mart’s experts explain that merchandisers don’t need automation as they have simply to perform conveyor-belt actions to move full pallets around. Thus, the company prefers transferring quick-selling merchandise to food DC’s. In such a way, the company will make the high-volume performing more economically. Wal-Mart is, therefore, able to put better use mechanization.

Inventory tracking is also on mechanization and the company is known to test radio frequency identification technology (RFID).  It gives Wal-Mart an excellent opportunity to increase effectiveness and at the same time to cut overstock expense and out-of-stock sales losses. Nevertheless, the primary challenge of the company is that it doesn’t know “whether products sold through the checkouts have come from shelves, end-of-aisle displays or the front of store displays”. (Carey 2006)

Thus, RDI may be effective in providing knowledge where the necessary items come from. Wal-Mart would definitely increase overall effectiveness of in-store promotions as promotional effectiveness plays crucial role for overall performance of every company.  According to study performed by the University of Arkansas researchers, the company’s stores supplied with RFID “show 26 percent fewer stock-outs on the 4,554 RFID-tagged products that were tested”. (Carey 2006)

In conclusion it is necessary to underline that Wal-Mart is nowadays running more than $300 billion per every fiscal year and company’s improvements result in gain’s growth of $3 billion. Such news is definitely a challenge for smaller suppliers as the company expects them to tag products with RFDI. In food industry the products are low-priced and tags may result in significant increase in cost.

Every company depends on knowledge and innovations, and Wal-Mart is no exception. We see that the company considers the importance of innovations and the power of knowledge to remain successful and competitive in tough business environment. Therefore, the article is directly related with knowledge management field as it discusses Wal-Mart’s policies in the contexts of information technology (RFDI) which is known to be practice which affects development of knowledge management and innovation which is known to be the key component of knowledge. No successful company may operate without knowledge management.

Related article: Conveyor Belt Project

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Wal-Mart Ethics Case

Wal-Mart is the largest grocery chain in the world, second largest company on Fortune’s 500 2012 list, and the largest employer in North America. Wal-Mart is faced with many dilemmas and issues that can be expected of such a large and imposing organization. These problems include environmental issues, employee’s issues, leadership issues, supplier issues and creating an uncompetitive market. This is not an exhaustive list, and Wal-Mart has other dilemmas as well, but this paper will concentrate on the issues involving Wal-Mart interaction with employees and the problems Wal-Mart faces with them.

Wal-Mart employees’ relations have been a dilemma for various reasons. One reason is that Wal-Mart has been criticized for not paying a decent wage or providing enough benefits. Another issue that Wal-Mart has with employee relations is Wal-Mart’s stance as not allowing any unions in Wal-Mart stores. Wal-Mart has also faced problems with discrimination and the allowed hiring of illegal immigrants. All of these are a dilemma for Wal-Mart because it is such a large employer and is well respected by other employers.

This puts Wal-Mart in a corporate leadership position and the way in which Wal-Mart handles situations with employees is viewed by other corporations as potential solutions to their employee problems. This is also dilemma for Wal-Mart because it is such a large employer and its decisions affect a great number of people. Wal-Mart employs over 1. 4 million people in the United States alone, encompassing 1% of the U. S. work force. At the same time Wal-Mart wants to remain the low-cost leader in the grocery and box stores market.

The conflicting forces that Wal-Mart must try to balance are maintaining their leadership aspect while maintaining healthy relationships with employees and customers. There are many stakeholders involved in this dilemma. These stakeholders include Wal-Mart’s employees, Wal-Mart customers, Wal-Mart’s competitors, and the unions. All of these stakeholders have the ability to influence decision concerning employee welfare, within the organization, as well as being influenced by those decisions. The first stakeholder mentioned is the employees for Wal-Mart.

Employees are considered supportive stakeholder for the most part, although they can also be considered mixed. This stakeholder is important because Wal-Mart employees so many people, but it is also important because Wal-Mart wishes to stay competitive in the market place. One way to stay competitive is by recruiting good and hardworking employees who are invested and engaged in their work. Otherwise the employee retention will be low, and the work performed will be substandard. This stakeholder is important also because Wal-Mart’s reputation and commitment to low prices.

One way to maintain low prices is by maintaining costs that permit these low prices. One way to keep costs down is to keep wages down and provide lower costing benefits. At the same time, one significant way to retain employees and ensure they are invested in their work environment is by paying them fair wages and providing essential benefits. Wal-Mart employees are also an important stakeholder because Wal-Mart has developed a reputation as being discriminatory in their hiring practices and use of illegal workers.

This is important for Wal-Mart, because once again a negative reputation can make it hard to recruit and retain workers. It is also important because a negative reputation can spur litigation and lawsuits that can be initially somewhat costly and end up becoming a burdensome expense, as out of court settlements tend to large. These legal proceedings also garner new headlines and the negative publicity can negatively affect sales, and recruiting efforts. The publication of these problems can also embolden the unions who want to break into and unionize Wal-Mart’s employees.

The problem with illegal aliens being used in the work force is a dilemma not only because Wal-Mart can face the cost of fines for breaking the law, but also because Wal-Mart already has a reputation as being bad for the American worker. It has been shown that Wal-Mart is the reason that some companies that supply Wal-Mart with goods, have moved their manufacturing overseas to keep labor and production costs down, and to be better able to maintain their supplier relationship with Wal-Mart. This has caused the loss of jobs in the United States, with the perception that Wal-Mart has no concern about the American worker.

Wal-Mart using illegal workers could be perceive as Wal-Mart being only concerned about saving money, and once again denying American workers from jobs. This is also looked on negatively in the current political environment where illegal workers are such a hot topic and unemployment is high. Another stakeholder in these situations is the Wal-Mart customer. The Wal-Mart customer is considered supportive, and Wal-Mart tries to keep it this way. The customer is an important stakeholder because essentially they are the reason that Wal-Mart exists.

Wal-Mart basically provides the facility of easing customer access to goods and services. Customers have a choice in this very competitive market environment and can find the same goods and services elsewhere, as Wal-Mart offers few exclusives on either of these. Wal-Mart does provide a presumed lower cost marketplace, and will match cost of competitors which is viewed as desirable traits from consumers. Still consumers will not continue to patronize organizations they feel are mistreating their employees and are using discriminatory practices in hiring and advancement.

Wal-Mart has to maintain a reputation as being a good employer that has genuine concern about it employees and that is also dedicated in being fair in its labor practices. Otherwise customers will go elsewhere for their goods and services, even if they pay a little more. Consumers will no longer support companies that they feel are lacking in proper ethics, because the consumer feels that it will only be a matter of time before the company manages to treat them unfairly.

Current consumers are especially proficient at the decision between saving money with one company, and supporting a more sustainable company even if it means spending more. This proficiency comes from facing this decision on a daily basis, and the ease of accessing information. So far, even with some well publicized discriminatory cases, Wal-Mart has been able to retain a strong customer base. Consumers will tend to give companies some benefit of a doubt, especially when it comes to saving money, but this cannot be viewed as a reason to willfully negligent in employee hiring practices.

After all, a consumer boycott is only one corporate scandal away. Therefore, the customers can be considered the most important stakeholder, because without them Wal-Mart would cease operations. Another stakeholder involved in this case are Wal-Mart’s competitors, like Target, Kmart, Home Depot, etc. , who look at Wal-Mart as a leader in their market. Wal-Mart competitors are neutral because they are more concerned with their own operations than with Wal-Mart’s operations.

The decisions that Wal-Mart makes concerning their employees are seen as opportunities to exploit or as problems. These decisions could be opportunities because decisions made in a positive light could be reviewed and possibly adopted by the competition. Whereas decisions made that reflect Wal-Mart negatively can be criticized by the competition and as a recruiting tool. Wal-Mart decisions with employees can also be problematic to competition because their decisions can force unwanted changes into the competitor’s organization. For example, if Wal-Mart changed ts viewpoint about unions it could have great impact throughout the box chain world giving unions leverage to be able to break into other store brands. The final stakeholders in Wal-Mart’s employee welfare situation are unions. Unions are considered an unsupportive stakeholder. The unions have a stake in this situation because their existence is based on membership, their fees, and continued support. Wal-Mart is very opposed to ever accepting a union in their work environment. Wal-Mart feels that it treats it employees fairly enough and a union would only complicate things.

Unions see Wal-Mart as the great mountain to climb, and getting Wal-Mart workers to unionize would give the unions a large base of employees to their membership ranks, and leverage through the retail industry. Unionizing Wal-Mart would not necessary be all positive, as the unions would now be presented with a relationship with large market and an adversarial attitude towards them. The relationship between these stakeholders can be contentious. Consumers want to support organizations that treat workers fairly, but public support for unions is rather low (2010 Pew Poll places it at 41%).

Wal-Mart also does not view unions favorably. The relationship between Wal-Mart and employees can be difficult at times also, but the relationship is mostly mutually beneficial for the majority of employees. The stakeholder with the most power is the customers because they still hold purchasing power over Wal-Mart. Customers could easily find other places to go to and buy goods, and therefore customers hold the most leverage over Wal-Mart. The stakeholder with the most to win would be the unions, because breaking the Wal-Mart wall would greatly heighten the power of the unions.

The stakeholders with the greatest potential to lose are the employees because at this time and point Wal-Mart has the leverage of possible employment during such tough economic times. Employees may actually lose out on potential wage and benefit gains because of the economic downturn, and Wal-Mart has jobs and is one of the few companies with expansion plans in these times. To improve the situation with the employees and the public perception of Wal-Mart, the organization could attempt two corrective measures.

The first proposal would be for Wal-Mart to start an employee appreciation and welfare camps in their stores. This would be through employee only contests or having a shopping day where employees get extra markdowns. This would make Wal-Mart a more popular place to work at, and could be considered a cheaper alternative to raising wages and improved benefits. Some employees might see these as cheap ploys to improve employee morale, but it could be quite popular. Another corrective measure would be a public relations campaign in which Wal-Mart explains to the public the benefits of working at Wal-Mart.

This P. R. campaign would show Wal-Mart as an employer of choice, that people enjoy working for the company, and that Wal-Mart is a great place to work at. This campaign could help sway the public in favor of Wal-Mart and also convey the message that Wal-Mart doesn’t need unions and employee unrest is unfounded. The campaign could also show employees of differing backgrounds, gender, ages, ethnicities, capabilities and colors, thus displaying that Wal-Mart employs all types of people. My recommendation would be to go with the public relations campaign.

This could prove to be the most beneficial, because the customers are the most important stakeholders in this situation. Also good public relations could help the bottom line of the company, but also make employees feel good about working there. It would keep the union at bay, and keep competitors on their toes because they would now have to compete with a Wal-Mart that people actually liked. Bibliography Blodget, Henry. “Wal-Mart Employs 1% of America. Should it be Forced to Pay it Employees More. ” BusinessInsider. om. Business Insider, Inc. 10 Sep 2010. Web. Accessed 24 Nov 2012. http://articles. businessinsider. com/2010-09-20/news/30081785_1_minimum-wage-real-wages-employees Ferrell, O. C. et al. “Wal-Mart: The Future of Sustainability. ” Business Ethics: Ethical Decision Making and Cases. Carnegie Learning. South-Western:Mason, OH. 9th ed. 2011. Surowicki, James. “State of the Unions. ” New Yorker. Conde Nast. 17 Jan 2011. Web. Acessed 26 Nov 2012. http://www. newyorker. com/talk/financial/2011/01/17/110117ta_talk_surowiecki

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Executive summary about wal-mart CSR Policy

Wal-Mart is a large company that deals with almost all areas of shopping and there are situated in United States and other parts of the world. Wal-Mart is known to have about 100 million customers alone in the United States and earns billions in profits. In  a situation like this there are meant to reach out to those customers in one way or the other to prove to them that they are appreciated thereby nurturing and maintaining the relationship with customers and other people of the world,  these are the reasons why Wal-Mart rolled out their CSR policy to this effect.

As a consumer, going through this policy would encourage them and keep their heart to the store. Whenever they think of shopping, they think of Wal-Mart. There are many superstores around and the once a customer decides to go to, is based on choice. This choice is motivated by the attitude of the store to a particular customer. So this policy should be encouraged so as keep the customer coming back , because this is the only way to kept the business going and growing.

In addition, as an associate supplier, I would encourage this CSR policy in other to increase my sales and put money in my pocket and increase the gross income of Wal-Mart.

I am very much in support of their CSR policy going by the areas, which there go into to affect, change and better the life of people.

CSR PROJECTS OF WALMART

Environment: Wal-Mart is a company that manufactures thousands of junks everyday, and in their quest for a safe environment, for all, I think would go a long way in bringing the heart of people to them.

Community projects: It is also a wonderful idea for Wal-Mart to work with voluntary organizations like Red Cross, Unicef, United Way, Special Olympics. A good collaboration with this organization would be a speedy way to reaching millions of life all over the world and I know thee action is boosting their image worldwide.

People: For a quest to provide better service to customers worldwide, I believe their efforts on staffs and associates to make them effective would help a lot. Offering assistance such as training, scholarships, and many other programs to make them happy and comfortable.

Disaster Relief: Assisting disaster victims like that of flood, earthquake, fire, and disease would is also a good way of exhibiting a kind gesture.

THE MOST SIGNIFICANT COPERATE POLICY.

However, the most significant of all policy carried out by Wal-Mart is their policy on environment. I give kudos to that. Based on the speech made by their executive on their policy on cooperate policy on environment, I am made to understand that they are to begin the manufacturing of 100% recyclable goods and packs. There is also an attempt to reduce their packaging by 5%. This would go a long way in reducing millions of junks in the environment and would be encouraging a healthier one for that matter.

MY OPINION ON WALMART CSR POLICY AS A CUSTOMER

As a consumer who shops constantly with Wal-Mart, the CSR policy is a very lovely one. It makes me feel like I am not shopping in vain. I just have it in mind that any time I shop in Wal-Mart, I am indirectly rendering a help to someone else and it makes me feel good that I am touching the life of someone out there.

But sometimes I seem to wonder how this becomes so possible, after selling at a very cheap price, they still stretch out to lend a help hand, to me, this is heavenly and I will like Wal-Mart to keep up the good work. I also strongly believe that many other consumers out there are feeling the same way. Even as their aid is made public, it makes those that do not know about them to be informed.

Reaching out to customer and letting them know that their patronage is appreciated would make them come back always and working on all means to deliver a quality service just gives the customer the mind set that every thing about Wal-Mart has quality.

In summary, reaching out to customers in every means possible and making them feel and know that their money is worth it, keeps bringing them back.

SURVEY CARRIED OUT ON OTHER CUSTOMERS (BOTH REAL AND POTENTIAL)

Number of surveys carried out                                                   50

Percentage supporters of CSR policy                                        85%

Percentage non-supporters or CSR policy                                 10%

Percentage of undecided                                                              5%

Percentage effect per-customer shopping rate                            20% (increase)

Percentage (potential) increase in customer rate                         45%

DERSCRIPTION OF TABLE

The table shows that they is a positive effect of the CSR policy on both in the rate of shopping and has a very good potential of increasing customers. This is because everyone would like to shop where he/she would get their money’s worth and would also be appreciated.

MY OPINION ON WALMART CSR POLICY AS A SUPPLIER

I, as a supplier to Wal-Mart is supporting their CSR policy. Based on popular demand, I have seen that Wal-Mart is a brand on the heart of millions of people all over the world. In addition, as a successful business venture, there are taking upon themselves some responsibility of the government, putting in lots of money to better the lives of people. I believe this is making them a responsible citizen. With this form of responsibility is supposed to be commended because they are giving back to the people what was given to them. Whatever way used by Wal-Mart to improve their excellence and service to customers would favor me as a supplier. Therefore, I believe that engaging in charity works, eradication of poverty, and assisting disaster victim is a well-directed effort.

SURVEY CARRIED OUT ON OTHER ASSUMED ASSOCIATE SUPPLIERS

Number of surveys carried out                                                       50

Percentage supporters of CSR policy                                             78%

Percentage Non-supporters of CSR policy                                     22%

Percentage positive effects on marketing strategy                          64%

Percentage effect on sales                                                               35%

DESCRIPTION OF TABLE

With this table above, it is seen that with a personal surveys and questionnaires carried out on assumed suppliers, it is discovered that there would be a very positive effect on the total business outfit if the policy were enforced.

The views of about 39 supporters was based on better marketing strategy and the CSR policy would be the best so as to increase the income, reach out to 65% of customers worldwide, increase the awareness of Wal-Mart by 64% and the gross earning could be increased to between 20% to 35%; this I believe would increase dividend per share.

MY DECISION, EFFORTS, AND IDEAS.

As a supplier who is in support of the efforts taken by Wal-Mart, I would seek possible way to improve in the products I supply to them. I would support them also by seeking a better packaging to reduce environment hazard thereby aiding the environmental section of the CSR policy. I would also seek out possible ways to join in the voluntary section. To put in my energy where seems necessary.

Other ideas I would like to put in are by suggesting that Wal-Mart should also get involved with grass root talents. These can be done in the areas of entertainments and sports. Helping upcoming talents in the streets would also be one of the best and fastest way to reach the heart of the ordinary man. This idea is a very important one because in know that entertainment is a way of winning peoples heart.

Programs to this effects could be organizing talent hunt shows, reality TV programs and any other forms of entertainment that you can lay your hands on and you know people loves so much, for examples music, soccer, football, basketball and all the rest of them.

With additional efforts as these, we would be exercising a powerful marketing strategy.

IN SUMMARY: I believe that all these actions being taken by both Wal-Mart and me a as a supplier is all part of the effort to market the company and an increase in come on both their side and mine. This is because I feel that if they grow, I grow, if they lose, I lose, so it is all about teamwork and service to humanity.

EFFECT OF WALMART PRIVATE LABEL ON MY PRODCUT AS A SUPPLIER

I have come to understand that the uses of Walmart private label on my products are very okay and do not harm them at all. It a phenomenon that the Wal-Mart private label is seen as a brand of quality, affordable and certified by customers. Therefore, since I have noticed that according to study and experience that Wal-Mart label is always on the mind of customers, I allowed it and it goes a long way to increase sale.

Therefore, having the private label of Wal-Mart would put more money in the pocket of the supplier.

REFERENCES

(1)  Biesada, Alex. (2006, October 13). Hoover’s.  “Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.” Retrieved.

(2)  Frank, T.A. (2006). “A Brief History of Wal-Mart.” The Washington Monthly, Retrieved, July 24, 2006.

(3)  Staff Writer. (, 2006, April 17) “Fortune 500.” CNN/Fortune.. Retrieved on July 15, 2007.

(4)  Staff Writer. (2007, April 16) “Fortune 500.” CNN/Fortune. Retrieved on July 15, 2007.

(5)  Staff Writer. (2005, October 25) “Is Wal-Mart Going Green?” MSNBC, Retrieved on November 8, 2007.

(6)  Koenig, David. (2006, March 22) “Wal-Mart Targeting Upscale Shoppers.” ABC News.

(7)  Reyes, Sonia. (2006, August 23)”Study: Wal-Mart Private Brands Are Catching On.” Brandweek. August 21, 2006. Retrieved on August 30, 2006.

(8)  Ortiz, John. (2005, October 26) “Can Kroger Slow Wal-Mart?” Deseret Morning News. Retrieved on July 25, 2006.

(9)  The Rise of Wal-Mart. Frontline: Is Wal-Mart Good for America? (2004-11-16). Retrieved on 2007-09-19.

(10)                    •”Neighborhood Markets.” Wal-Mart (http://walmartstores.com/GlobalWMStoresWeb/navigate.do?catg=504;contId=47). Retrieved on April 19, 2007.

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Wal-Mart Scandal

New York Times reporter David Barstow uncovered a shocking story against retail giant, Wal-Mart. His investigation started after Wal-Mart shut down its internal investigation over the possible bribery of Mexican officials. Wal-Mart used these bribes to accelerate growth in their Mexican zoning areas. These allegations surfaced when a Hispanic lawyer contacted Wal-Mart headquarters in Bentonville Arkansas. This lawyer had inside information on Wal-Mart’s bribes, as he represented them in their acts. He was used as a middle man for Wal-Mart’s payoffs to these officials.

Wal-Mart took action in defending its image. In 2005 the company launched an internal investigation that dug into the operations of Wal-Mart de Mexico. The reports put together obvious signs that the company had, in fact been bribing the city officials to open up zoning areas and to swiftly create building permits. These bribes reported to total above $24 million. Wal-Mart’s lead investigator had this to say after the investigation was conducted, “There is reasonable suspicion to believe that Mexican and USA laws have been violated. When Wal-Mart’s leaders were faced with the decision to continue the investigation, they gave it to Wal-Mart de Mexico to investigate; it was shut down. Wal-Mart didn’t notify Mexican or American law enforcement with the information and none of these wrong doings were brought to the public eye until the publication of Barstow’s article. Wal-Mart would obviously face critical examination by the public if the allegations were true; reasoning behind closing the investigation. Wal-Mart told the justice department that the investigation was unnecessary and the cases were minor where they did occur.

The Time’s had a view in their investigation as they found substantial evidence supporting the bribes taking place. It’s believed that these bribes were the jump start Wal-Mart needed to gain its huge standing in Mexican society. 1 in 5 Wal-Mart’s are located in Mexico. The Times interviewed Sergio Cicero Zapata, who resigned from Wal-Mart de Mexico in 2004. Cicero told them of personal instances of him giving lawyers envelopes of money to pay off government officials. Cicero said that he had done these deals for years while working for Wal-Mart. Along with the information they received from Mr.

Cicero, the times also found government documents with evidence of payoffs. These documents showed that within days of the money being given to the lawyers the permits were granted. The Times have published new stories exposing the company further with deeper information that they have gained through their investigation. Some of the information includes: * Wal-Mart pays $341,000 to officials in Mexico City to build a Sam’s club. The building was put in a densely populated area, and was done without a construction license, or an environmental permit or and urban impact assessment, or a traffic permit. Wal-Mart bribes officials to build “a vast refrigerated distribution center in an environmentally fragile flood basin north of Mexico City in an area where electricity is so scarce that many smaller developers turned away. ” The bribe for this case was $765,000. * A zoning situation in Teotihuacan caused Wal-Mart to make a payment of $52,000 to enable them to build a store near a famous pyramid site. The citizens were enraged by the location of the store but the protests were ignored and the Wal-Mart was built.

The mayor of Teotihuacan spent $77,000 buying and renovating a ranch the next year. Unexpected on a $47,000 yearly salary. * There have also been reports of Wal-Mart building on ancient ruin sites. They have been obtaining the permits to do so illegally. Now that the statements have been made public, Wal-Mart de Mexico has been under investigation by the U. S. and Mexican governments. The leadership is questionable within both Wal-Mart and Wal-Mart de Mexico. The high members of Wal-Mart de Mexico made a choice to shut down the investigation to cover up their tracks.

The consequences of being discovered breaking the law to this extreme would put a huge chip on all of the Wal-Mart leaders’ shoulders. The growth of their business is also at stake. Apparently these bribes played a major role in the expansion of Wal-Marts across Mexico. The leaders located in Arkansas will more than likely be held accountable for irresponsible actions as well. If the allegations are true they could be found out for knowing about the illegal bribes. Ethical issues do not look good for leaders; it can dramatically impact the way the company is viewed.

The actions of Wal-Mart making deals in Mexico could greatly affect the way the company is viewed and its overall standing to the public. With the investigation still ongoing it has yet to be clear what leaders at Wal-Mart are tied to the bribes in Mexico but it is undoubted by the New York Times that there are several people accountable for the actions. It is also possible that Wal-Mart has been doing this in other countries as well, but will only be confirmed when and if the government can obtain the information they need to prove wrong doing against Wal-Mart. Works Cited City. David Barstow; Alejandra Xanic Von Bertrab And James C. Mckinley Jr. Contributed Reporting From Mexico. “Vast Mexico Bribery Case Hushed Up by Wal-Mart After Top-Level Struggle. ” The New York Times. 22 Apr. 2012. The New York Times. 04 Mar. 2013 <http://www. nytimes. com/2012/04/22/business/at-wal-mart-in-mexico-a-bribe-inquiry-silenced. html>. Radcliffe, Dana. “Leadership Lessons From Wal-Mart’s Bribery Scandal. ” The Huffington Post. 16 July 2012. TheHuffingtonPost. com. 04 Mar. 2013 <http://www. huffingtonpost. com/dana-radcliffe/leadership-lessons-from-w_b_1672032. html>.

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Wal-Mart Resources

Unit 2 Assignment 1 Introduction Wal-Mart uses a tremendous amount of information resources to build their marketing decision support systems and customer relationship management environment. Wal-Mar’s main objective is to provide their customers with the best value they can find anywhere while providing friendly and efficient customer service. Its strategies are based on reducing costs to quality products so they are able to achieve “everyday low prices” (Walmart. om, 2013). Wal-Mart has to be able to monitor and analyze all the processes and information possible in order for them to attain a competitive price advantage, lure in new customers, and retain faithful and loyal current customers. Information technology is essential today in helping companies to achieve these goals and Wal-Mart utilizes a great deal of the available information through systems and operations that the retail business encompasses (Walmart. om, 2013). Listed in this paper are the many ways Wal-Mart enlists its information from customers and how it is used by marketing managers to help make marketing decisions and enrich its customer relationship management environment. Information Collected Collected By Wal-Mart Wal-Mart collects information from its customers in a number of ways through the customer’s interaction, whether by in-store activity or website activity.

Wal-Mart discloses that it gathers information on customers whenever they create an account on one of their websites, make an online or in-store purchase, use a gift registry, create a mobile shopping list, or submit personal information to Wal-Mart along with any related content of the communication. In addition, they also collect information whenever the customer conducts a transaction where Wal-Mart collects information as required by law.

This could include hunting and fishing licenses, request customer service, contact Wal-Mart, submit a Wal-Mart related testimonial, review, story, rating, or any other user-generated content that may be generated on the website, or participate in a contest, sweepstake, promotion, or survey (Wal-Mart. com, 2013). Collected By Other Sources Wal-Mart may receive personal information from other entities that can help the correct or supplement their records, improve the quality or personalization of their services, and help prevent or defer fraud.

They may also collect information from consumer reporting agencies or other service providers if you attain certain other financial products (Wal-Mart. com, 2013). Automated Information Collection Wal-Mart also gathers technical information such as the customer’s internet protocol address, device operating system and browser type, the address of a referring website, and the path the customer takes through the Wal-Mart website.

Wal-Mart uses “cookies” to recognize you as you use or return to their website. Wal-Mart also uses web beacons that allows them to know if a certain page was visited, an email was opened, or if ad banners on their website and other websites were effective (Wal-Mart. com, 2013). Marketing Information Used Wal-Mart uses information for different purposes but for this paper we will discuss how they use information for marketing purposes. Fill requests for products and services and communicate with the customer about those requests * Administer surveys, sweepstakes, contests, and promotions * Provide customer service * Help improve and customize their service offerings, websites, and advertising * Send information about products, services, and promotions Information Systems Point of Service/Sale System Wal-Mart uses SUSE @ Linux Enterprise Point of Service/Sale system that is supplied by the Novell group vendor (Information, 2007).

This system is made up of three primary components: Administration Server, Branch Server, and Point of Service Client Images. The SUSE Linux Enterprise Point of Service Administration runs Wal-Mart’s main office in Bentonville, Arkansas. It records sales from all the stores but also contains a database of goods sold through other sales outlets such as Wal-Mart online shopping. This data also comprises of information like the number of items bought by a user and similar products purchased along with other online statistics.

The Branch Server boots the Point of Service clients from the local network, registers new client devices at the website, distributes operating system updates to the client devices, and also stores the sales information as a backup in real time simultaneously as the Administration Server. The Point of Service Client is the indirect interaction between customers when they make any purchases at Wal-Mart. These devices process and record purchases and allows real time coverage of sales and inventory information for all sales.

Having this type of information gives marketing managers the tools necessary to make informed decisions about what promotions to run and on what products in real time. Retail Link Retail Link was developed in 1992 by Wal-Mart’s very own Information Technology Department (Hays, 2004). Using this software Wal-Mart can look at the take up rate for sale items, changes in the number of customer purchases, and the amount the average customer spends during a promotion. Marketing managers will know what products were being bought and what items that the customer may have added on during that purchase.

Having that information may give the marketing department the idea to do a promotion with those two items paired up together. Retail Link software can also display to vendors various key information such as the repurchase cycle time of the product, purchase quantity per basket, and provide information such as sales history and sales performance. This allows vendors and Wal-Mart’s marketing managers the ability to simulate what-if situations that can help them make more informed marketing decisions (Hays, 2004).

The information gathered in these systems give marketing managers the intelligence needed to figure out which marketing initiatives have worked in the past, are currently working, or may work in the future in order to prevent wastage of money from ineffective promotions. Wal-Mart uses these systems in order to provide customer satisfaction, everyday low pricing, and to enhance the shopper’s experience (Walmart. com, 2013). Conclusion Wal-Mart collects information on its customers numerous ways. Some sources are transactions, customer service operations, surveys, and website registrations just to name a few.

They could, however, come from other sources such as outside companies that help Wal-Mart update its records. Wal-Mart wants to communicate to its customers for feedback through email newsletters, special offers, and new product announcements. Wal-Mart also participates in interest-based advertising, which means the customer may see advertising on its website tailored to how the customer browses or shops. This type of information is essential today in accomplishing the goals Wal-Mart has of everyday low pricing and its customer first approach. References Hays, C. L. (2004, November 14). What Wal-Mart Knows About Customers’ Habits.

Retrieved from NY Times: http://www. nytimes. com/2004/11/14/business/yourmoney/14wal. html? oref=login;oref=login Information, W. (2007, January 24). Wal-Mart Taps Microsoft, Novell For Linux Deployment. Retrieved from Information Week: http://business. highbeam. com/137376/article-1G1-158268344/walmart-taps-microsoft-novell-linux-deployment-walmart Walmart. com. (2013). Annual Reports. Retrieved February 11, 2013, from Walmart. com: http://stock. walmart. com/annual-reports Wal-Mart. com. (2013, March 3). Privacy Policy. Retrieved March 3, 2013, from Wal-Mart. com: http://corporate. walmart. com/privacy-security/walmart-privacy-policy