Swot Analysis on Marks and Spencer
“Marks and Spencer is a well-respected player in the UK as well as global retail industry (Babalac 2013, p. 67)”. “For instance, at the close of the 20th Century, its senior management failed to incorporate technological developments into the operational strategies leading to an unprecedented decline in the company’s overall performance(Beaver 1999, p. 187)”. After a successful transformation on its organisational structure, it has made an impressive turnaround to regain good profitability trends and a rise in consumer confidence for its diverse range of retail products. This essay seeks to present an analysis of the organisation’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats a (SWOT analysis) for the year 2016.
“Marks and Spencer’s a well-established brand and offers vast product range, from baby care products and clothing; women’s fashion and accessories as well as goods which appeal to different consumer age groups and genders(Babalac2013, p. 67; Beaver 1999, p. 188)”. It has one of the most progressive business and infrastructure features not only in the UK but also in different international markets. “Its efficient supply chain has also contributed a lot to its numerous achievement awards which keeps it customers and other stakeholders to remain loyal to the company (Babalac 2013, p. 67)”.
The decline in profitability that affected the company in 1999 resulted in a considerable loss of its market share to rival organisations. “Consumers have cited highly priced commodities as reasons why its revenue inflows have been declining since 2014 (Kedar, 2016)”.
“Marks and Spencer has realigned its short term strategies to focus on reaching out to younger consumers (Kedar, 2016)”. “According to analysts, focusing more on younger consumers may compel them to continue to be loyal to M&S products even at adulthood (Babalac 2013, p. 69)”. It has also invested in online marketing and sales to reach out to a greater global consumer market and the opportunities for growth in this particular segment remains promising.
“M&Scontinues considerable competition from other players in this industry such as Debenhams, Zara and Next (Beaver 1999, p. 189)”.“As much as consumer confidence continues to be positive, spending has decreased as the Eurozone experiences lower than expected economic growth (Kedar, 2016):.Some of its consumer segments also prefer to spend more of their income on holidays and evenings out. “Bad weather has also resulted in consumers opting for lighter clothing while grocers also cite low food prices for products offered (Kedar, 2016)”. “Another threat that continues to affect M&S and other companies in different industries is cybercrime (Kedar, 2016)”. As such, a good amount of investments by the company has been directed towards efforts to combat cybercrime.
The SWOT analysis for M&S for the year 2016 shows that the company internal operating environment will continue to remain strong in the short and longterm. Its strengths outweigh the weaknesses it faces. More so, its senior management is on a position to realign its strategies to counter the weaknesses it may or continues experience. It exterior environment, however, indicates that natural weather patterns associated with global warming will continue to unfavourably affect sales of clothing and related merchandise. The threat of cybercrime remains potent such that its opportunities do not appear to promising for 2016.
Babalac, CC, 2013,‘Objectives for a Competitive Market Advantage’, Business Excellence and Management, vol. 3No. 1, pp.65-70.
Beaver, G, 1999,‘Competitive advantage, corporate governance and reputation management: The case of Marks & Spencer’, Journal of Communication Management, vol. 4 no. 2, pp.185-196.
Kedar,G, 2016, ‘Moody’s forecast: Marks and Spencers, Next to see slow growth in clothing sales’, International Business Times. Online Article: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/moodys-forecast-marks-spencers-next-see-slow-growth-clothing-sales-1554389