Case Questions for Discussion
1. Define Lawn Care’s current strategic mission, strategy, competitive priorities, value chain, and how it wins customers. What are the order qualifiers and winners? Draw the major stages in its value chain without an application service. The Lawn Care Company defines its business strategy as the “highest quality grass seed and fertilizer in the world” while the competitor defines their business strategy as “beautiful lawns with no hassles.” Therefore, the Lawn Care Co. focuses on competitive priorities such as high product quality, delivery to retail store or golf course loading dock, and price. Product quality is the #1 competitive priority for the Lawn Care Co with price/cost #5. The competitor focuses on (1) high product quality, (2) no hassle application to the customer’s lawn, (3) higher margins on the application service than the physical goods, (4) customized 6 OM2 C4 applications as needed, (5) service encounter excellence, and (6) building a strong relationship with customers. Service quality is the #1 competitive priority for the competitor. 2. What problems, if any, do you see with Lawn Care’s current strategy, vision, customer benefit package and value chain design, and Pre-and postservices? Customers and Third Party Applicators Apply to Lawns OM2 C4 There will always be a market for self-service application for golf courses, parks, and residential lawns (like Scotts 1-2-3-4 self-service Four Step program sold at retail stores) but as the U.S. standard of living and disposable income increases, the market for lawn care application services will grow.
The Lawn Care Co. is missing a major market opportunity but has time to catch up. Their current vision of the business focuses on perfect physical goods but that is not enough in today’s competitive markets! Services need to be bundled with the goods to help gain competitive advantage in this market. The strategy determines everything else! 3. Redo questions (1) and (2) and provide a new or revised strategy and associated customer benefit package and value chain that is more appropriate for today’s marketplace. What does operations have to be good at to successfully execute your revised strategy? The key to a good application service is (1) good equipment, (2) good seeds and fertilizer, (3) well trained employees with service management skills, (4) crew routing and scheduling of labor and trucks, (5) clean freshly painted equipment and crew uniforms (part of servicescape), (6) right number of trucks and crews per area (capacity), (7) call center processes, and so on. 4. What are your final recommendations
I would recommend that the services be restructured to produce more profit. Maybe there could be the possibility of hiring more employees, you could also create a company owned application service, and if the requests for your services become overwhelming then you could hire a third party local contractor certify them in Lawn Care products and equipment. In the end this could be a very productive and profitable business. If there is a desire to make this a successful venture, then you would have to be fully dedicated to it.