January 28, 2014
Environmental Scan Paper Plans are the map used to formulate all intended business ventures. The plans should take into consideration the internal and external environment that exists and could potentially affect the business. A business has to determine what affects its organization both from the inside and outside to prepare itself to set realistic goals (Wheelen & Hunger, (2010). This paper will discuss the internal and external environments of two real world companies using an environmental scan, determine their competitive advantages, and what strategies they are using. A business that establishes a strategic plan for their future increases its chances for success.
Ross Department Stores Ross has become a major force in the discount retail business. Ross is an off-price department store that has grown to be the third largest off price retailer in the United States. Ross started its business with one start in California and has grown to 1,100 stores throughout 33 states. Their sales have grown to over 9.7 billion dollars in annual sales.
Ross has developed a competitive advantage by creative marketing and targeting consumers that lead to increased sales, which lead to their expansion. Ross has increased its market share through strategic planning and marketing to its consumers and suppliers. They have researched the discount retail market and targeted vendors and manufacturers of brand name clothing and supplies to purchase these items at a competitive price. Their continued growth forces their suppliers to make their supply pricing more competitive because Ross’s supply orders are larger than before. The suppliers have to decrease their prices to gain the increase quantity of goods ordered or Ross may seek a different vendor to fulfill their supply needs.
Ross’s business strategy is to continue to make strategic investments in the buying organization by hiring experienced merchandise buyers to enhance the Company’s ability to deliver bargains to customers. Also, they are focusing on delivering competitive bargains by increasing the amount of close-out purchases of nationally-recognized name brands. Their expansion of the product line to include Home Accents, Bed & Bath and other non-apparel categories has grown their customer base, enhanced competitive positioning, and operating margins. Ross’s core strategies are the main reason they have growth in sales productivity and operating profits. Ross’s competitive advantage and business strategy are both vital components in their success but projecting a good sound image is vital also. Ross is very dedicated to being a responsible corporate citizen. Ross assists the community in sponsoring events to promote health through the American Heart Association. Giving back to the community and upholding good values and respect does a lot for their reputation in the community. Consumers are concerned with the integrity of the business where they conduct their business. Ross displays the idea qualities of conducting good business practices and meeting the expectations of the community that surrounds them.
Community Connections, Inc.
Community Connections, Inc. is a non-profit organization that provides high quality services to individuals with disabilities, enabling them to live as independently as possible in their community. Community Connections has been helping the community since 1985 and continues to re-invent itself every year, helping more and more people. They employ dedicated personnel, whose mission is to make life easier for all the people they assist in their sometimes difficult transition in live. Community Connections has developed a competitive advantage through personalized case management, the agency designs individualized programs that build on the strengths of the whole person ( www.communityconnectionsinc.org). The case managers used their expertise to set short term and long