Analyse the main problems Marks & Spencer (M&S) faces in its business environment.

Essay by znzUniversity, Master'sB-, February 2006

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1. Introduction

This report's aim is to analyse the main problems Marks & Spencer (M&S) faces in its business environment. In order to point to the most critical issues the report is divided into several sections, starting with an analysis of the broader macro and micro environment leading to focus on internal organizational problems afterwards. Thus, a broader picture is examined first and then narrowed down to more detailed analyses as illustration 1 shows:

Illustration 1 Main Topics of the Marks & Spencer Analysis

Having identified the most critical areas a list of recommendations will be provided before ending the report in form of a final conclusion.

2. Strategic Business Audit

2.1 The Macro Environment

Due to lack of available information in this case, the PESTEL framework, which is normally applied to analyze the macro environment, cannot provide great help in this discussion.

2.2 The Micro Environment

From the case, we can identify that "clothing" and "food" are the two major industries M&S is involved in.

These two industries have the common feature of swift change. The pace of technological improvement and the speed of global communications mean more and faster change now than ever before. This trend, therefore, requires managers to react swiftly to adjust strategies which fit the changing business environment. Unfortunately, M&S seemed to have done this poorly, as analysts commented: M&S ignored the changes in the marketplace while its competitors quickly reacted to changes. The reasons should be analyzed by looking closer at the micro environment.

Before using the five forces model to analysis the micro environment, the market has to be segmented. However relatively few information for this aspect can be drawn from the case. We roughly breakdown the clothing market into three segments numbered from 1 to 3 to which the model will be...