USAA SWOT Analysis / Matrix

Essays, Term Papers & Research Papers

SWOT analysis is a strategic planning tool that can be used by USAA managers to do a situational analysis of the firm . It is a handy technique to understand the present Strengths (S), Weakness (W), Opportunities (O) & Threats (T) USAA is facing in its current business environment.

The USAA is one of the leading companies in its industry. USAA maintains its prominent position in market by carefully analyzing and reviewing the SWOT analysis.  SWOT analysis an immensenly interactive process and requires effective coordination among various departments within the organization such as – marketing, finance, operations, management information systems and strategic planning.

The SWOT Analysis framework facilitates an organization to identify the internal strategic factors such as -strengths and weaknesses, & external strategic factors such as - opportunities and threats. It leads to a 2X2 matrix – also called SWOT Matrix.

The Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) Analysis / Matrix enables the managers of the USAA to develop four types of strategies:

  • SO (strengths-opportunities) Strategies
  • WO (weaknesses-opportunities) Strategies
  • ST (strengths-threats) Strategies
  •  WT (weaknesses-threats) Strategies
USAA swot analysis / matrix

SWOT Matrix Strategies Objective

The main purpose of SWOT matrix is to identify the strategies that a company can use to exploit external opportunities, counter threats, and build on & protect USAA strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.

Step by Step Guide to USAA SWOT Analysis

Strengths of USAA – Internal Strategic Factors


As one of the leading companies in its industry, USAA has numerous strengths that help it to thrive in the market place. These strengths not only help it to protect the market share in existing markets but also help in penetrating new markets. Based on Fern Fort University extensive research – some of the strengths of USAA are –

  • Highly skilled workforce through successful training and learning programs. USAA is investing huge resources in training and development of its employees resulting in a workforce that is not only highly skilled but also motivated to achieve more.
  • Reliable suppliers – It has a strong base of reliable supplier of raw material thus enabling the company to overcome any supply chain bottlenecks.
  • Good Returns on Capital Expenditure – USAA is relatively successful at execution of new projects and generated good returns on capital expenditure by building new revenue streams.
  • Strong dealer community – It has built a culture among distributor & dealers where the dealers not only promote company’s products but also invest in training the sales team to explain to the customer how he/she can extract the maximum benefits out of the products.
  • Automation of activities brought consistency of quality to USAA products and has enabled the company to scale up and scale down based on the demand conditions in the market.
  • Strong Free Cash Flow – USAA has strong free cash flows that provide resources in the hand of the company to expand into new projects.
  • High level of customer satisfaction – the company with its dedicated customer relationship management department has able to achieve a high level of customer satisfaction among present customers and good brand equity among the potential customers.
  • Highly successful at Go To Market strategies for its products.


Weakness of USAA – Internal Strategic Factors


Weakness are the areas where USAA can improve upon. Strategy is about making choices and weakness are the areas where an organization can improve using SWOT analysis and build on its competitive advantage and strategic positioning.

  • Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, USAA needs to put more money in technology to integrate the processes across the board. Right now the investment in technologies is not at par with the vision of the company.
  • Days inventory is high compare to the competitors – making the company raise more capital to invest in the channel. This can impact the long term growth of USAA
  • High attrition rate in work force – compare to other organizations in the industry USAA has a higher attrition rate and have to spend a lot more compare to its competitors on training and development of its employees.
  • Financial planning is not done properly and efficiently. The current asset ratio and liquid asset ratios suggest that the company can use the cash more efficiently than what it is doing at present.
  • There are gaps in the product range sold by the company. This lack of choice can give a new competitor a foothold in the market.
  • The company has not being able to tackle the challenges present by the new entrants in the segment and has lost small market share in the niche categories. USAA has to build internal feedback mechanism directly from sales team on ground to counter these challenges.
  • Not very good at product demand forecasting leading to higher rate of missed opportunities compare to its competitors. One of the reason why the days inventory is high compare to its competitors is that USAA is not very good at demand forecasting thus end up keeping higher inventory both in-house and in channel.

Opportunities for USAA – External Strategic Factors

  • Opening up of new markets because of government agreement – the adoption of new technology standard and government free trade agreement has provided USAA an opportunity to enter a new emerging market.
  • Lower inflation rate – The low inflation rate bring more stability in the market, enable credit at lower interest rate to the customers of USAA.
  • New environmental policies – The new opportunities will create a level playing field for all the players in the industry. It represent a great opportunity for USAA to drive home its advantage in new technology and gain market share in the new product category.
  • Government green drive also opens an opportunity for procurement of USAA products by the state as well as federal government contractors.
  • New customers from online channel – Over the past few years the company has invested vast sum of money into the online platform. This investment has opened new sales channel for USAA. In the next few years the company can leverage this opportunity by knowing its customer better and serving their needs using big data analytics.
  • The new technology provides an opportunity to USAA to practices differentiated pricing strategy in the new market. It will enable the firm to maintain its loyal customers with great service and lure new customers through other value oriented propositions.
  • Organization’s core competencies can be a success in similar other products field. A comparative example could be - GE healthcare research helped it in developing better Oil drilling machines.
  • Economic uptick and increase in customer spending, after years of recession and slow growth rate in the industry, is an opportunity for USAA to capture new customers and increase its market share.

Threats USAA Facing - External Strategic Factors

  • The demand of the highly profitable products is seasonal in nature and any unlikely event during the peak season may impact the profitability of the company in short to medium term.
  • The company can face lawsuits in various markets given - different laws and continuous fluctuations regarding product standards in those markets.
  • New technologies developed by the competitor or market disruptor could be a serious threat to the industry in medium to long term future.
  • New environment regulations under Paris agreement (2016) could be a threat to certain existing product categories .
  • Rising pay level especially movements such as $15 an hour and increasing prices in the China can lead to serious pressure on profitability of USAA
  • No regular supply of innovative products – Over the years the company has developed numerous products but those are often response to the development by other players. Secondly the supply of new products is not regular thus leading to high and low swings in the sales number over period of time.
  • Imitation of the counterfeit and low quality product is also a threat to USAA’s product especially in the emerging markets and low income markets.
  • Rising raw material can pose a threat to the USAA profitability.

Limitations of SWOT Analysis for USAA

Although the SWOT analysis is widely used as a strategic planning tool, the analysis does have its share of limitations.

  • Certain capabilities or factors of an organization can be both a strength and weakness at the same time. This is one of the major limitations of SWOT analysis . For example changing environmental regulations can be both a threat to company it can also be an opportunity in a sense that it will enable the company to be on a level playing field or at advantage to competitors if it able to develop the products faster than the competitors.
  • SWOT does not show how to achieve a competitive advantage, so it must not be an end in itself.
  • The matrix is only a starting point for a discussion on how proposed strategies could be implemented. It provided an evaluation window but not an implementation plan based on strategic competitiveness of USAA
  • SWOT is a static assessment - analysis of status quo with few prospective changes. As circumstances, capabilities, threats, and strategies change, the dynamics of a competitive environment may not be revealed in a single matrix.
  • SWOT analysis may lead the firm to overemphasize a single internal or external factor in formulating strategies. There are interrelationships among the key internal and external factors that SWOT does not reveal that may be important in devising strategies.

Weighted SWOT Analysis of USAA

In light of the above mentioned limitations of the SWOT analysis / matrix, corporate managers decided to provide weightage to each internal strength and weakness of the firm. Organizations also assess the likelihood of events taking place in the coming future and how strong their impact could be on company's performance.

This method is called Weighted SWOT analysis. It is better than doing simplistic SWOT analysis because with Weighted SWOT Analysis USAA managers can focus on the most critical factors and discount the non-important one. It also solves the long list problem where organizations ends up making a long list but none of the factors deemed too critical.

Limitation of Weighted SWOT analysis of USAA

This approach also suffers from one major drawback - it focus on individual importance of factor rather than how they are collectively important and impact the business holistically.

Buy Custom Essay and Term Paper on SWOT Analysis / Matrix , Weighted SWOT Analysis of USAA

Example of Weighted SWOT Analysis

You can email us to get an example document of Weighted SWOT analysis.

SWOT Worksheet & Template

If you like to do your own SWOT analysis or want to make your own Weighted SWOT SWOT matrix then feel free to download Fern Fort University SWOT Analysis Template.


References / Citations & Bibliography

  • M. E. Porter, Competitive Strategy(New York: Free Press, 1980)
  • A. D. Chandler, Strategy and Structure (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1962)
  • O. E. Williamson, Markets and Hierarchies(New York: Free Press, 1975);
  • L. Wrigley, Divisional Autonomy and Diversification (PhD, Harvard Business School, 1970)
  • R. E. White, Generic Business Strategies, Organizational Context and Performance: An Empirical Investigation, Strategic Management Journal7 (1986)