Maxima LT is the largest retail trade operator

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Maxima LT is the largest retail trade operator in the Baltic States, and it achieved theturnover of EUR 1.85 billion in 2006. It shows around 21 % growth in turnover fromthe previous year 2005 and the company forecasts a 20% growth in turnover thisyear (2007). Currently the company operates over 370 retail outlets in Lithuania,Latvia, Estonia and Bulgaria. The number of shops by country is as follows: Lithuania– 209, Latvia – 115, Estonia – 39, Bulgaria – 17. All together MAXIMA LT has around14,500 employees in Lithuania. In other countries MAXIMA LT has some 8,500employees.Key findingsMAXIMA is the largest employer in the Baltics and it recognises that its strength arelargely based on its employees whose professionalism, loyalty and spirit haveplayed a crucial role when the business has built its position as the leading retailerin the Baltic countries. MAXIMA has set the strategic objective to recruit, train andkeep the best employees and to earn their loyalty. On top of that, it seeks tomaximise the output by applying as many automated work processes as possible.As part of the business planning MAXIMA stores and shopping centres arepositioned at shopping-friendly locations. Issues that are considered in thedecision-making include the size of the local populace, the traffic and flow ofshoppers, the convenience for shoppers to access the store by private and publictransport. The name of the entire chain, MAXIMA is seen as a guarantee for uniformquality and the best prices. In order to take into account the different needs ofshoppers, the outlets come in different sizes and different formats including localcommunity stores, stores designed for large city districts or towns with populationsof 12,000 – 30,000, and the largest regional and national shopping centres arehypermarkets that offer the most extensive assortment of goods.Nature and organisation of R&D in servicesMAXIMA has no dedicated R&D unit. However, each organisational unit is chargedwith responsibility to survey trends/novelties in their respective areas and makeproposals for improvement projects. Also the organisation improvements areassigned to the managers at all organisational levels. Systematic R&D in servicesis partly built into the corporate strategy process that utilises the BalancedScorecard methodology. Gaps between existing situation and strategic objectivesare filled in with strategic initiatives/projects. Responsible managers are assigned toimplement the projects and budgets are assigned to those projects that areaccepted for further development.Although MAXIMA has developed high level of competency in the new shopsconstruction projects, it seeks to continuously improve competencies in managingstrategic projects. The company’s major challenges are to ensure a critical mass ofproject-minded people and to manage timely involvement and communication onproject activities within the large organisation.The cornerstone of the business is the provision of convenience shopping tocustomers – through suitable shopping formats and services available within inthem. In addition to traditional retailing activities, the service offer includes mobilecommunications services (through a provider owned by MAXIMA), insuranceservices, MAXIMA has recently launched the air ticket vouchers service with anairline partner (customers can buy air ticket vouchers at check-out counters inshops). MAXIMA is also testing a new service which allows customers to pay theircommunication services bills at check-out counters in the retail outlets. Thecompany operates a Customer loyalty card programme that provides its membersaccess – at privileged terms – to services of partner businesses working inpharmacy, petrol and other sectors. Within supermarket and hypermarket formatsMAXIMA stores have dedicated space for tenants who provide a wide array ofservices to shoppers.MAXIMA also has firm plans to continue to add new services to its existing portfolio.In terms of services efficiency, MAXIMA constantly analyses customer self-serviceoptions and invest heavily into supply chain improvements. In terms of publicfunding EU structural funds are used to support staff competence development inthe service organisation.Kuusisto, J. (2008, January). R&D in services – 17 business case studies (DG ResearchEuropean Commission). Retrieved from

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