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Verizon SWOT Analysis / Matrix
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SWOT analysis is a vital strategic planning tool that can be used by Verizon managers to do a situational analysis of the company . It is a handy technique to evalauate the present Strengths (S), Weakness (W), Opportunities (O) & Threats (T) Verizon is facing in its current business environment.
The Verizon is one of the leading organizatations in its industry. Verizon maintains its dominant position in market by carefully analyzing and reviewing the SWOT analysis. SWOT analysis a highly interactive process and requires effective coordination among various departments within the firm 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 Verizon to develop four types of strategies:
- SO (strengths-opportunities) Strategies
- WO (weaknesses-opportunities) Strategies
- ST (strengths-threats) Strategies
- WT (weaknesses-threats) Strategies
SWOT Matrix Strategies Objective
The main purpose of SWOT matrix is to identify the strategies that an organization can utilize to exploit external opportunities, counter threats, and build on & protect Verizon strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.
Step by Step Guide to Verizon SWOT Analysis
Strengths of Verizon – Internal Strategic Factors
As one of the leading companies in its industry, Verizon 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 Verizon are –
- Reliable suppliers – It has a strong base of reliable supplier of raw material thus enabling the company to overcome any supply chain bottlenecks.
- Highly skilled workforce through successful training and learning programs. Verizon 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.
- 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.
- Strong Brand Portfolio – Over the years Verizon has invested in building a strong brand portfolio. The SWOT analysis of Verizon just underlines this fact. This brand portfolio can be extremely useful if the organization wants to expand into new product categories.
- Strong Free Cash Flow – Verizon has strong free cash flows that provide resources in the hand of the company to expand into new projects.
- Strong distribution network – Over the years Verizon has built a reliable distribution network that can reach majority of its potential market.
- 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 Verizon – Internal Strategic Factors
Weakness are the areas where Verizon can improve upon. Strategy is about making choices and weakness are the areas where a firm can improve using SWOT analysis and build on its competitive advantage and strategic positioning.
- Limited success outside core business – Even though Verizon is one of the leading organizations in its industry it has faced challenges in moving to other product segments with its present culture.
- Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, Verizon 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.
- 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.
- Not highly successful at integrating firms with different work culture. As mentioned earlier even though Verizon is successful at integrating small companies it has its share of failure to merge firms that have different work culture.
- 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.
- 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 Verizon is not very good at demand forecasting thus end up keeping higher inventory both in-house and in channel.
- 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 Verizon
Opportunities for Verizon – External Strategic Factors
- Economic uptick and increase in customer spending, after years of recession and slow growth rate in the industry, is an opportunity for Verizon to capture new customers and increase its market share.
- New trends in the consumer behavior can open up new market for the Verizon . It provides a great opportunity for the organization to build new revenue streams and diversify into new product categories too.
- The new taxation policy can significantly impact the way of doing business and can open new opportunity for established players such as Verizon to increase its profitability.
- Decreasing cost of transportation because of lower shipping prices can also bring down the cost of Verizon’s products thus providing an opportunity to the company - either to boost its profitability or pass on the benefits to the customers to gain market share.
- The new technology provides an opportunity to Verizon 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.
- 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 Verizon. In the next few years the company can leverage this opportunity by knowing its customer better and serving their needs using big data analytics.
- 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.
- Lower inflation rate – The low inflation rate bring more stability in the market, enable credit at lower interest rate to the customers of Verizon.
Threats Verizon Facing - External Strategic Factors
- Rising pay level especially movements such as $15 an hour and increasing prices in the China can lead to serious pressure on profitability of Verizon
- Increasing trend toward isolationism in the American economy can lead to similar reaction from other government thus negatively impacting the international sales.
- The company can face lawsuits in various markets given - different laws and continuous fluctuations regarding product standards in those markets.
- Imitation of the counterfeit and low quality product is also a threat to Verizon’s product especially in the emerging markets and low income markets.
- Shortage of skilled workforce in certain global market represents a threat to steady growth of profits for Verizon in those markets.
- As the company is operating in numerous countries it is exposed to currency fluctuations especially given the volatile political climate in number of markets across the world.
- New technologies developed by the competitor or market disruptor could be a serious threat to the industry in medium to long term future.
- 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.
Limitations of SWOT Analysis for Verizon
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 Verizon
- 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 Verizon
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 Verizon 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 Verizon
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.
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SWOT Worksheet & Template
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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)