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Schuler Books Company Analysis
Schuler Books is a chain of bookstores in Michigan that deals with print books, e-books, and music. It also sells food and drinks at the stores found inside the bookstore. The principal store was opened in 1982 by Bill and Cecile (Schuler Books & Music, n.d.). The firm has sustained operations in the industry that was threatened by advancing technology. This paper discusses the value delivery process, core competencies, resources, assets, performance in the domestic and international market, future trends, and the internal environment of the company.
Value Delivery Process
The company derives value from its core principles that focus on adaptability, innovation, and passion. Schuler Books adapt to change effectively which has enabled it to stand the test of time. For instance, the company has ventured into selling e-books due to the changing technology. This move has been strategic in ensuring that the firm obtains increased revenue (Inghilleri & Solomon, 2010). The company adopted a go big approach that responds to competition in the market. This approach has been evidenced by the firms venture into music, used books, and gift items. In all these new undertakings, the company stocked a huge selection of books in big spaces. Schuler Books has introduced a kid section that contains children books and a space where community events are held. This move has obtained value as it caters for all members of the community. Thus, the company focuses on the entire book experience rather than just selling books which ensures that the customers obtain value for their money.
All the employees hired by the company have comprehensive knowledge of different books. Therefore, they can chat with clients about what they want to read or what they have read before. Once a customer arrives at the stores of the company, its personnel approach him or her and initiate a light conversation. After the customer says the title of the desirable book, the employee accompanies him or her to the section containing that book, makes sure the customer finds the book and leaves. This critical competency has been a primary source of customer satisfaction as it takes a minimum amount of time for a client to locate an item (Schuler Books & Music, n.d.). Shuler Books was one of the first bookstores in the nation to purchase an Espresso Book Machine that can quick print books.
Resources and Assets
Currently, Schuler Books has five different locations that have one hundred and fifteen thousand square feet of space and over one hundred thousand different titles in inventory. The company has two hundred and twenty-five skilled employees (Schuler Books & Music, n.d.). The business has an efficient inventory management system that was developed in-house. Schuler Books has an Espresso Machine that helps self-publishers that want to publish their manuscripts. The authors pay a one-time fee for their books to be published. The company works on about eight to nine projects at a given moment, printing quantities that vary from a few copies to several thousands. Recently, Schuler Books launched a publishing imprint Chapbook Press that has approximately fifty titles.
Performance in Domestic and International Markets
The company is performing well in the domestic market. This is evidenced by the fact that the store is still open despite many bookstores in the country closing down due to technology changes that shifted from print media to e-books. The diversification of products has enabled the good performance in the local market. Now, the company has cafes where clients can come and read books while they are having lunch or dinner. Moreover, the firm brings in local authors to their vast space to talk to customers. The company has managed to compete with Amazon, even though Amazon has a competitive advantage due to its pricing policy (Lepak & Gowan, 2010). The company has not yet ventured into international markets, but plans are underway.
The company plans to increase the sale of gift items and enhance the self-publishing business. It is also considering upgrading its cafes by incorporating beer, wine, and an improved menu. Schuler Books also wishes to expand to international markets by making acquisitions of various companies.
Internal Business Environment
The primary objective of Schuler Books is to provide the books that clients want, and hire the staff that has read books, and therefore can help customers to find the right book. The company also aims to avail various books to customers and provide them with a favorable means of accessing books. Moreover, it sells print books and e-books via its website. Schuler Books has also intensified in-store marketing to notify clients of their digital presence. The staff is allowed flexibility to help create a niche contingent on the market (Schuler Books & Music, n.d.). Thus, a positive work environment has been set up between the management and the employees that has been translated into favorable customer relationships. All the employees are passionate about their job, and their knowledge of books is tested before they are hired.
The company has faced many challenges since its inception. Despite being a small chain, Schuler Books has managed to compete with established companies like Amazon. The primary reason for Schuler Books success is the company value process that focuses on adaptability, innovation, and passion. The skilled employees foster customer satisfaction by talking about various books with clients. Furthermore, the go big approach allows the company to face changes and competition effectively. Nevertheless, it has to adopt trends like acquisition and diversification of products that will ensure its survival in the market.