Module 3, Week 1 – ERP
1) Brandon Gibby
Enterprise resource planning is a useful process to help streamline company operations. From financial accounting to shipping operations and reports, ERP can really enable companies the ability to minimize wasted time and energy. One organization who failed at implementing ERP was Lidl.
Lidl had its own internally developed solutions. Lidl utilized the SAP system to streamline their process. There was one big problem; the system was developed to utilize retail prices, but Lidl used purchase prices. When Lidl tried to adapt the program to their company instead of adapting their company to the program, the implementation failed, (Chohan, 2022). After seven years and $580 million, Lidl reverted to its original inventory management system, (Chohan, 2022).
Chohan, S. (2022, July 9). The real costs of ERP implementation failure (and how to avoid them!). Retrieved from lemonlearning.com:
Module 3 Week 2 Robotic Technology & Operations
2) Seneca Leiva
Vecna Technologies really spoke to me during my research for this assignment. I wish I had some help to make me cappuccinos during these long nights after work, but alas fridge coffee it is.
When I think of robotics, I think of Dexter's laboratory. Boy genius with a massive underground lab with all the help he could ever want. We might get there one day. I know that there are countless companies working with robots in healthcare. Coincidently, Vecna Technologies is one of them. They have two separate business entities. One for healthcare and one for robotics. Robotic offers business solutions for the complete automation of material handling. Big word for packing. Their selling point is the lack of labor. "From bottleneck to breakneck." I thought that was comical. But it seems that they are filling a need where the human touch is not needed. They offer the complete package, leveraging e-commerce, and cite labor costs as a sign as to why you should move with their product. As a result, all you need is to fill out a sheet and one of their representatives calls you. I even asked how they would get the robots over to me. Their response:
"Because we’ve done this more than a few times before, Vecna Robotics has an easy, five-step process to deploy full automation within your facility. Of course, the time may vary depending on the scale and complexity of the solution, but most of our deployments take less than 3- to 6-months after a thorough assessment is complete."
Neat! Like ordering from Amazon! As they offer the complete package from software to robots custom to your business, I am sure production would go from 0 to 100. I also asked about the price, they were a little more hesitant on that answer but were willing to offer payment options " bundled into a single, low annual fee over a 3- or 5-year term." I don't know about low, but at least anyone has the potential to automate their business with Vectna Robotics
Wishart-Smith, H. (2023, January 3). Meet The Roboticist Working To Make Robots Help Us Be More Human. Forbes.
Vecna Robotics Website
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Macy's Grand Strategy
3) Jonathan Astaciomunoz
In February 2020, Macy’s announced that they would be closing 125 stores nationwide and dismissing roughly 2,000 employees. This begs the question, how did Macy’s find themselves in this position?
For nearly all of human civilization, the only way to purchase a product or service was to go to a physical location and pick the item out. However, with the turn of the digital age, this format had completely changed. Companies like Amazon were taking out their competition without the need for any brick-and-mortar locations as more and more people found convenience in online purchasing. As we turn toward the dilemma that plagues Macy’s, this phenomena now threatens the existence of department stores altogether. So, in order to combat the need for online support, Adrian Mitchell, the Chief Financial Officer at Macy’s, announced that they were implementing a new strategy called omnichannel retailing (Thomas & Rattner, 2022).
For the past three years, Macy’s has been implementing this omnichannel retailing in order to compete with the demand for online services. This strategy takes the various platforms that one can shop on (mobile, website, physical locations) and combines them into one smooth process where the experience has a seamless transition. If it is implemented correctly, customer satisfaction should be the same whether one is online or in a physical location. Studies show that this omnichannel framework helps firms retain 89% of their customers and shoppers also spend 4% more during their interactions (2019).
Macy’s has been around much longer than the era of the internet, so their need for physical location was once very great. But, they have since realized that the strategies of the past are failing and this new plan will seek to set them on a new path of growth. Because of this, the extra cost of having more physical locations is not needed, and those locations that are not in a centralized area are more seen as burdens and profit generators. For that reason, it is essential that Macy’s shut down many of their sites around the country.
The past three years have shown that their current strategy is the one to move toward, not away. In 2019, Macy’s earned $25 billion annually. In 2022, with many more stores closed, they have already earned the same amount with roughly half of the year still remaining (2022). This shows that having the extra costs of excess brick-and-mortar locations is only hurting the income of the company and the move to a mixture of an online and physical setting is the future for department retailers.
CardConnect. (2019). Navigating the Future of Omnichannel Retailing. CardConnect. Retrieved from
Macrotrends. (2022). Macy's revenue 2010-2022. Macrotrends. Retrieved from
Thomas, L., & Rattner, N. (2022, January 6). Macy's is Closing More Stores this Year. Here's a Map of Which Ones are on the List. CNBC. Retrieved from
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Macy's Grand Strategy
4) Cuong Phung
Macy's has been growing through mergers and acquisitions, but this had not staved off a decline in the departmental store sales, and even before the COVID-19 pandemic, its revenues were sloping downwards. In 2020, Macy's announced a three-year Polaris strategy to stabilize profitability and position the company for growth (Macysinc.com, 2020). The company aimed to focus its resources on the healthy aspects of the business, directly address the unhealthy parts, and explore new revenue streams. Its Polaris strategy contains five main components: strengthening customer relationships, curating quality fashion, accelerating digital growth, optimizing store portfolio, and resetting the cost base (Macysinc.com, 2020).
In the case of store portfolio optimization, a rigorous evaluation was performed, including a store-level assessment. As a result, the company planned to close about 125 of its least productive stores within three years. In addition, the company has adjusted its staffing by causing reductions in some stores and increases in others. Macy's also plans on shedding 2000 corporate jobs, expansion of its deeply discounted offerings, restyling successful stores, and consolidating offices (Macysinc.com, 2020). These are strategic moves that the company sought to use to save its operations. Through its strategy, the company expects to save about $1.5 billion annually by 2022.
The strategies are failing because Macy's is a bit too late. Experts in the retail industry were not confident about the effective working of the plan. The company's management delayed responding to changes in consumer behavior and it is behind other retailers like Wal-Mart, Costco, Nordstrom, and Target, which responded faster by revitalizing stores, trimming waste, and exploring brand new partnerships (Kahn & Galino, 2020). The strategy Macy's is implementing is not flawed, but delays, for instance, in the adoption of digital strategies have caused it to lag. During the pandemic, there were restrictions in physical movement, and only companies with a strong online presence benefited. Physical stores remained closed, and this limited productivity and profitability of the retail stores. Also, customers have been shopping at macys.com instead of the local Macy's stores. For customers who prefer shopping at the physical stores, they go to alternatives because Macy's has been cited that it does not have the best experiences, best merchandise, or best prices (Kahn & Galino, 2020). Failure to successfully position the company for the future has caused the closure of the stores and the laying off employees.
Kahn, B., & Galino, S., (2020 February, 11). Can Macy's Save Itself? Knowledge at Wharton. Retrieved from
Macysinc.com, (2020, February 04). Macy's, Inc. Announces Three-Year Polaris Strategy to Stabilize Profitability and Position the Company for Growth. Macy's Inc. Retrieved from .