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Bus 210 Week 8 Checkpoint 3






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Bus 210 Week 8 Checkpoint 3
Retail establishments and department stores are some of the easiest
kinds of companies to observe from the outside. Macy’s, Sears, and
Wal-Mart are my choice companies because I frequent all of these
stores, and they are each different in their own way Macy’s is geared
toward the middle and upper class with the styles and prices of their
cloths. Sears is a common household name that carries clothes, make-
up, appliances, tools, and is affordable for the average American. Wal-
Mart targets customers of all types because they carry just about
everything that the average household needs at a very low price.
Macy’s has nice enough employees who try to be helpful, but the only
ones who will really tell you all about a product are the sales people at
the make-up counter. Most likely because they make a commission off
the products they sell. The average employees at Macy’s are unfamiliar
with most of the inventory; they have one department and they only
know that department. The people who shop at Macy’s are there for the
products not the customer service. It is rare to see a manager on the
sales floor. At Sears, employees are very knowledgeable about most of
the store’s inventory. If the employee that you have found cannot help
you they will find someone who can. Most of Sears’s employees are
quite knowledgeable and eager to help you make your decision. It
seems to me that they are just happy to help and not paid based on
commission. Wal-Mart employees are usually young and semi
knowledgeable about the inventory. They are friendly and there is always
a greeter at the door to welcome you. There are employees who have
their own department, but they are usually trained in several areas of the
store so they are available and able to cover other shifts. The three
stores are all different in the way they treat their customers; Wal-Mart

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and Sears make you feel much more welcome than Macy’s. Macy’s
treats their customers like they should feel privileged to be in there.
Macy’s has a decent operations system; they have a catalog their
customers can order from as well as the ability to make online
purchases. There are employees who are dedicated solely to taking
catalog orders over the phone. The store itself is usually in a mall so
there are several people who just come in to browse. The store front
tends to hold inventory for a long time because their prices are so high.
They get rid of most of their old inventory when they have a sale; what
Macy’s cannot get rid of with a sale they sell to retail stores at a
discount. Most of the inventory is used for catalog and online purchases,
they use UPS to ship their items, and their distribution system is fairly
simple. The quality of their items and the efficiency that they ship with
gives Macy’s a competitive edge.
Sears probably has a similar OMM system to Macy’s because of its size
and the amount of stores across the country. They most likely use a
computer aided materials management system to help track the
popularity of inventory for different areas. This allows them to know how
much inventory to ship to a particular area or state. Markets vary by
state so when you have so many stores in different areas there needs to
be organization in the inventory shipping process. Their main costs
would most likely be in their inventory, their store fronts, and their labor.
Distribution probably plays a factor in costs, but is not a major cost
compared to the others. The size of these department stores helps offer
a variety of options to the consumer. Sears has good quality brands and
is more affordable for the average shopper which gives them a
competitive edge.
Wal-Mart has a much different operating system than Macys and Sears.
What gives Wal-Mart an edge is the fact that they have such a diverse
range of products and their prices are the lowest out there. They even
have a price match guarantee that states if you can find it cheaper we
will match it. Wal-Mart is constantly rolling back prices as they like to call
it, and this just makes their everyday low prices even lower. Wal-Mart
has its own distribution company, and I see their trucks on the road
every day. Most inventories at Wal-Mart have a high turnover rate; every
night stockers are bringing huge pallets of inventory out to be restocked.
Every day Wal--Mart stores around the globe are filled with consumers
who want spend their money. Wal-Mart makes more money than the

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competition even though the competition has more expensive items. It is
the frequency of shoppers that makes them their money. Wal-Mart’s
costs are likely mainly in their inventory, distribution, labor, and store
fronts. Wal-Mart has convenient online shopping where the consumer
can either ship to their home or ship to their local store. This makes
ensuring that the most popular items are in stock even for the areas that
do not carry particular things or off season products. Out of the three
stores I feel that Wal-Mart is taking the industry by storm. Wal-Mart has
expanded faster than most others in the industry; their low prices, readily
available inventory, and the convenience of finding everything in one
store has made shopping around a thing of the past.

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Excellent resource! Really helped me get the gist of things.