Whiting Petroleum Corporation SWOT Analysis / Matrix

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

The Whiting Petroleum Corporation is one of the leading organizatations in its industry. Whiting Petroleum Corporation maintains its dominant 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 company such as – marketing, finance, operations, management information systems and strategic planning.

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The SWOT Analysis framework helps 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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation to develop four types of strategies:

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

SWOT Matrix Strategies Objective

The central purpose of SWOT matrix is to identify the strategies that an organization can utilize to exploit external opportunities, counter threats, and build on & protect Whiting Petroleum Corporation strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.

Step by Step Guide to Whiting Petroleum Corporation SWOT Analysis

Strengths of Whiting Petroleum Corporation – Internal Strategic Factors

As one of the leading firms in its industry, Whiting Petroleum Corporation 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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation are –

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  • Strong Brand Portfolio – Over the years Whiting Petroleum Corporation has invested in building a strong brand portfolio. The SWOT analysis of Whiting Petroleum Corporation just underlines this fact. This brand portfolio can be extremely useful if the organization wants to expand into new product categories.
  • Strong distribution network – Over the years Whiting Petroleum Corporation has built a reliable distribution network that can reach majority of its potential market.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Successful track record of integrating complimentary firms through mergers & acquisition. It has successfully integrated number of technology companies in the past few years to streamline its operations and to build a reliable supply chain.
  • Highly successful at Go To Market strategies for its products.
  • Reliable suppliers – It has a strong base of reliable supplier of raw material thus enabling the company to overcome any supply chain bottlenecks.
  • Automation of activities brought consistency of quality to Whiting Petroleum Corporation products and has enabled the company to scale up and scale down based on the demand conditions in the market.

Weakness of Whiting Petroleum Corporation – Internal Strategic Factors

Weakness are the areas where Whiting Petroleum Corporation 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.

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  • Investment in Research and Development is below the fastest growing players in the industry. Even though Whiting Petroleum Corporation is spending above the industry average on Research and Development, it has not been able to compete with the leading players in the industry in terms of innovation. It has come across as a mature firm looking forward to bring out products based on tested features in the market.
  • The profitability ratio and Net Contribution % of Whiting Petroleum Corporation are below the industry average.
  • Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, Whiting Petroleum Corporation 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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation is successful at integrating small companies it has its share of failure to merge firms that have different work culture.
  • High attrition rate in work force – compare to other organizations in the industry Whiting Petroleum Corporation has a higher attrition rate and have to spend a lot more compare to its competitors on training and development of its employees.
  • Limited success outside core business – Even though Whiting Petroleum Corporation is one of the leading organizations in its industry it has faced challenges in moving to other product segments with its present culture.

Opportunities for Whiting Petroleum Corporation – External Strategic Factors

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  • The new technology provides an opportunity to Whiting Petroleum Corporation 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 environmental policies – The new opportunities will create a level playing field for all the players in the industry. It represent a great opportunity for Whiting Petroleum Corporation to drive home its advantage in new technology and gain market share in the new product category.
  • Stable free cash flow provides opportunities to invest in adjacent product segments. With more cash in bank the company can invest in new technologies as well as in new products segments. This should open a window of opportunity for Whiting Petroleum Corporation in other product categories.
  • Government green drive also opens an opportunity for procurement of Whiting Petroleum Corporation products by the state as well as federal government contractors.
  • Opening up of new markets because of government agreement – the adoption of new technology standard and government free trade agreement has provided Whiting Petroleum Corporation 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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation.
  • The market development will lead to dilution of competitor’s advantage and enable Whiting Petroleum Corporation to increase its competitiveness compare to the other competitors.
  • New trends in the consumer behavior can open up new market for the Whiting Petroleum Corporation . It provides a great opportunity for the organization to build new revenue streams and diversify into new product categories too.

Threats Whiting Petroleum Corporation Facing - External Strategic Factors

  • 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.
  • Rising raw material can pose a threat to the Whiting Petroleum Corporation profitability.
  • Changing consumer buying behavior from online channel could be a threat to the existing physical infrastructure driven supply chain model.
  • 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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation
  • New technologies developed by the competitor or market disruptor could be a serious threat to the industry in medium to long term future.
  • Shortage of skilled workforce in certain global market represents a threat to steady growth of profits for Whiting Petroleum Corporation   in those markets.
  • The company can face lawsuits in various markets given - different laws and continuous fluctuations regarding product standards in those markets.

Limitations of SWOT Analysis for Whiting Petroleum Corporation

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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation
  • 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.

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Weighted SWOT Analysis of Whiting Petroleum Corporation

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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation 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 Whiting Petroleum Corporation

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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Example of Weighted SWOT Analysis

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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)