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BST714 Strategic and Operational Decision Making Assignment Sample


To give you an opportunity to obtain first-hand experience in

1. Employing strategic management concepts and analytical tools.

2. Appraising strategic choices and develop and evaluate viable strategic options.

3. Demonstrating a comprehensive understanding of the salient issues in the implementation of strategic change in the internal and external organisational environments.

4. Identifying and evaluating appropriate strategies to manage stakeholder demands.

5. Developing project plans to enable strategy implementation.

If you take this assignment seriously, you will teach yourself many basic principles on strategy, which will stand you in good stead in many subjects, and in many walks of life.


1. Review the marketplace / environment characteristics for the sector allocated by using any public domain information available and relevant academic literature search. You will need to select a particular case company to undertake tasks 2-

4. Highlight secondary data sources that you will exploit and explain their strengths and weaknesses.

2. Highlight and evaluate the corporate strategy of the organisation selected. How does the corporate strategy compare to that employed by Tails.com?

3. Providing empirical evidence and analysis as appropriate, determine the order winners and market qualifying criteria and classify the supporting operational process using the Hoekstra, and Romme (Buy-to-Order, Make-to-Order, Assemble-to-Order, Make-to-Stock, or Ship-to-Stock) process categorisation system. How do the order winning / market qualifying criteria and the supporting operational process compared to those of Tails.com?

4. Develop a change management plan to align the case company’s operations strategy to that of Tails.com, with due consideration of the necessary change levers. Is your change plan targeting short-, medium- or long-term change? What are the resource implications of your plan?



Pet are becoming an essential part of the lifestyle. In the UK, around 51% of the household owe pets, out of which dog is the most popular pet type. In the year 2021, around 26% of the residents in the UK have dogs as their pets; on the other hand, 24% of the household have cats. This has led to the boost of the pet sector within the country (pdsa.org.uk/get, 2021). The care stores, as well as the pet post business, are increasing rapidly. For Assignment Help Products like dry pet foods, flea and tick medicines as well as pet grooming suppliers are in huge demand among pet owners. In the process of excelling in the pets sector, it is essential for the companies to understand the condition of the market with an effective understanding of the macro environment of the country to understand the pet sector in a coherent manner. The execution of the corporate strategic development by the comparison of the strategies with the rival companies are effective manner. The study is focused on the business of Stella & Chewy's, which is operatives in an effective manner in the pet sector. The measures are taken to outline the current strategies used by the business and thus suggest alternative approaches for business improvement by understanding the current strategic measures adopted by the company to compete with Tails.com in a vivid manner.

Criterion 1 Context

Marketplace Review

Figure 1: Top ten pets
(Source: Pfma.org.uk, 2021)

As the above picture reflects, the craze for pets is increasing among the customers. Pet is becoming a companion for the people, and they are willing to take good care of their pets. In the UK, around 12 million dogs and 12 million cats are used as pets. On the other hand, the pets like birds and horses are also in high demand (Pfma.org.uk, 2020). The Pet industry in the UK is very promising as it includes Food products, grooming and toys as well as medicines businesses. Taking into consideration of pet’s food products; a diverse growth is evident in the market. As per the national pet owners survey, in the year 2020, around $103.6 billion was spent on pets, and the estimated expenditure on pets in the year 2021 is estimated to be $109.6 billion (Pdsa.org.uk/get, 2021). The organic food business is leading in the pet sector. The companies tend to introduce natural and organic canned food products. The demand for dry food for puppies and pups are also very potential business in the UK market in recent times. The pet industry in the year 2020 has higher sales and has reached $103.6 billion. The achievement is considered to be historic in nature. The sales elevation has been around 6.7% from the sales the sector had in the year 2020 (Supermarketnews.com, 2021). The positive sales and growth of the business in the pet sectors are effective in contributing towards the development of growth measures of the business and thus are acting as the pull factors for the companies to attract investments in the sector and gain positive returns.

In the global market context, the pet care market is considered to grow from $216 billion in the year 2020 to a threat of $232 billion in the year 2021. The pet food market size is also experiencing huge growth. It has been evident that pet food sales have risen from USD 87.08 billion to USD 92.66 billion in the year 2020. It is estimated that the global food market is sure to elevate by 4.6% from the year 2020 to 2027. The estimated returned in the year 2027 is approximately 124.9 billion (Fortunebusinessinsights.com, 2021).

In the views of Morelli et al. (2021), pet owners are wailing to buy healthy food products for their pets, and this tends to provide them with proper nutrition. The business of Stella & Chewy's is also a very promoting business dealing with the nutrient food products for a pet. However, in the process of surveying the market, the evaluation of the macro environment characteristics of the pet sector in UK markets is essential.

Environment Characteristics for the Sector

Political Factors

In the process of understanding the macro-environment factor, the political factor is essential for a business. The stable political condition of the UK is allowing the pet sector to flourishing in an effective manner. The country is supporting the adoption of pets and thus nourishment them with healthy food and food life. The care centre is also supported by the government to protect the animals (Bowley, 2017). The flexible relationship with the potential markets like USA and Australia is allowing the business-like Stella & Chewy's to export their products even in the international markets.

Economic Factors

At the same time, the economy of the country plays a vital role in boosting the pet sector. Pauliuc and Fu (2018) stated that a lot of money is needed for the caring and feeding of the pets; thus, it is essential for the owners to be economically stable to take proper care of the pets. In the case of the UK, the country has a positive GDP rate contributing to the evaluation of the purchasing power of the customers. The increasing percentage of pet owners in the UK are supporting the economical stability that exists in the UK.

Social Factors

Considering the social factors, the people in the UK are increasing care for keeping and caring for pets (Howe and Easterbrook, 2018). The pet industry is present in all sizes in the UK market. The demand for natural food products in the UK market is increasing. The growth of 4.6% is estimated by the year 2027. As per the American Pet Production Association, the sales of pet food products are adding up to US$3.7 billion in the year 2021 than that of 2020 (Fortunebusinessinsights.com, 2021).

Technological Factors

Davies et al. (2019) commented on mentioning that the increased technologies in the UK are promoting the business operating in the UK markets. This is acting as the boom to develop sustainability to the sector and thus allow reduction of waste generation at the same time. The positive growth of the pet sector is evident with the rise in the sales of pet food products. Thus it can be stated that the UK market has the potential to create an effective measure in ensuring success to the business of Stella & Chewy's as the markets in the UK are very competitive for the pet sectors, so the evaluation of the current strategies and its comparison with the competitors is a must.

Criterion 2 Corporate Strategy Development

Stella & Chewy's is one of the leading businesses in the pet sector. The company is using the world's finest ingredients from the supplier’s 100% organic fruits and vegetables are used in the preparation of pet foods. The company is passionate about the absolute best for pets (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). The execution of the 100% competes, and the balanced diets to the pets thrive. The Fortified with the vitamins and the minerals in the process of ensuring the pets gets the proper nutrients as per the needs of the pets (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021).

Current Strategies

Vision: Stella & Chewy's is determined of providing a high quality of natural pet food with the proper emphasis on nutrition, safety, conveniences as well as palatability (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021).

Objective: Stella & Chewy's is willing to ensure seamless execution of the pet food business and capture a wider market share with the help of strategic making and quality products measures.

• Resource Allocation

The company has used its resources to get fresh and natural marketing from the suppliers to develop the world’s best quality pet foods. The materials are responsible sources, and there are no added hormones or antibiotics (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). Cost is also invested in marketing the products. The use of blogs is designed to keep the customers aware of the effective strategies used by them in competing in the context of the global market with the expansion of the market share in the UK.

• Organisation Design

Stella & Chewy's is using flat business strategies. This allows the company to take up the fast decision that enables the company to execute excellent service measures and thus build an excellent working strategy in creating fast decision making (Petfoodindustry.com, 2021). The company is able to take a business decision without much confusion as the employees of the different strategies are empowers with decision-making ability in the sport to handle situations and keeping the customers satisfied. This is allowing the business to build locality among the customers, and thus the retention of the customers is possible by the business of Stella & Chewy's.

• Portfolio management

Stella & Chewy’s is in need of effective management. The increase in the employee’s turnovers reflects the outcome that the business is not having n effective team of management (Petfoodindustry.com, 2021). The poor policies and inferiors of healthcare facilities for the workers are making it difficult for the workers to execute their services within the company.

• Strategic tradeoffs

The delivery on its position is essential for Stella & Chewy's. The company has a strong network to deliver the products in different locations. The retail stores are also selling the pet food products of Stella & Chewy's, allowing the product to reach the customers easily.

Comparison with Tails.com

The comparison of Stella & Chewy's and its competitors such as Tails.com executed the fact that Tail.com has an excellent hold on the internal markets whereas Stella & Chewy's is mostly successful in its home country (Petfoodindustry.com, 2021). Tails.com being a UK based brand, has been able to capture huge maker areas in UK market with its excellent business executing strategies (Tails.com, 2021). Stella & Chewy's needs to develop better approaches for the international audiences in the process of gained profitability. At the same time, Stella & Chewy's is having issues in decision making due to the inefficient management that are increasing confusion among the staff.

SWOT analysis

The evaluation of SWOT analysis has highlighted that the business needs to work on the internal management and thus develop strategies for markets expansion with the proper financial allocations. Stella & Chewy's has a huge prospect of growth in the international markets provided that the business is effectively using its strategies measures while entering the new market (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021).

Alignment of the Implication and the Solution

The use of effective leadership with the employees training has the ability to bridge the identified threat. The company needs to identify the proper entry mode that is helpful in executing seamless expansion of the business and thus ensure that the company is able to maximise its sales. Stella & Chewy’s will be able to work on its strategic measures and develop competitive advantages to compete in the UK market. Grover et al. (2018) mentioned that strategic measures are essential in creating a positive attitude among the business. It is thus essential for the management to build its efficiency and create better decision making. The company needs to understand the market demand and, at the same time, create stronger measures in building profit-building measures.

Criterion 3 Operations strategy analysis

Porter generic

• Cost Leadership Strategy

The business of Stella & Chewy's is focusing on the increase in the products. In the opinion of Esmaeel et al. (2018), the increase in the products with the limited cost is helpful for business growth. Stella & Chewy's is the first to adopt the specification in the pet food production, and thus the cost leadership is evident in the case of Stella & Chewy's. The increasing market completion is reducing the cost leadership of Stella & Chewy's that the business needs to work on. The companies like Tail.com are leading the cost leadership, acting as the threats to Stella & Chewy's in the UK market.

• Differentiation Strategies

The company is effective in developing differentiation. The use of the strategies norms is used by the business. The company is able to create specification food products for pets, especially dogs and cats. The food with different speciation and amounts are available. The company aims to use only natural ingredients for food products and therefore tends to execute a wide variety of nutritious pet food products (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021).

• Cost Focus Strategies

The low cost and high quality positing of the product are unique in the case of Stella & Chewy's. It is essential for Stella & Chewy's to low its customers. The demand of pet owners is changing, and Stella & Chewy's needs to make changes in its products as per the market needs and trends (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). Innovative machines with proper employees training are needed so that the staff can contribute their part in creating customer satisfaction.

• Differentiation Focus Strategy

The use of Innovative technologies such as AI in Stella & Chewy's is needed. Currently, the mechanism used for the food production for the pets are not modernised and thus, the execution of differentiation strategies raw facing issues (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). Stella & Chewy's needs to work on the inclusion of more variety of food products for the bets and increase their specialisation for the horse and birds products as well.

The use of Porter's generic model has been helpful in creating a better idea about the operation strategies used by Stella & Chewy's. The companies have an effective differentiation in the product, but the re-design of the products as per the current market needs is essential.
Marketing mix

• Product

The products like cage-free chicken raw coated kibble puppy dry dog food, grass-fed beef raw coated kibble, raw coated kibble wild-caught salmon recipe and raw coated kibble cage-free chicken recipe are proposed by Stella & Chewy's (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). The quality of the products is maintained, and natural raw materials are taken to ensure that the business is able to provide the correct nutrition’s to the pets as per their requirement and thus take the measures to create better customer engagements.

• Price

The use of low price and high-quality products are taken into consideration. The products range from $30 to $ 90 (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). The price of the product varies on the basis of the ingredients used and the size of the package. The company maintains a low prices strategy so that it can keep the customers satisfied, but the availability of similar products at cheaper rates is acting as a huge market threat to Stella & Chewy's.

• Promotion

Stella & Chewy's is active in creating blogs and making the customers using their webpage (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). The use of social media marketing is also adopted by the business so that they can develop better customer engagement. This allows the business to create better strategic measures and therefore fetch a wider mass in the limited time period. In the era of digital promotion, Stella & Chewy's is using its social media presence to inform the customers about the new launches and the organic food specification without any preservatives to customers.

• Place

Stella & Chewy's has its headquarter in Oak Creek in the USA, and it has good control over the UK market and is successfully operating with its strategic business executing skills (Stellaandchewys.com, 2021). The network of distribution is used by Stella & Chewy's to reach the leading retail stores and thus make the product easily available to the customers.

Technical skill

In the views of Cooper (2019), the execution of technical skills is essential for the business to build its supremacy in the competitive market condition. In the context of Stella & Chewy's, The Company is not efficient with technical skills. The need for adopting artificial intelligence and developing excellent staffs training is felted. The staffs need to train to develop technical skills and at the same time build confidence in developing strategies measures in creating completive advantages.

Problem-solving ability

Funke et al. (2018) the execution of effective problem-solving skills is considered to be the key to success. Stella & Chewy's is not having a stronger management team. This is affecting the problem-solving ability. The business has, however, adopted the flat business structure, but the inefficient capability of the Stella & Chewy's is restricting the employees to take proper decisions. It is essential to train the employees to develop a stronger attitude in taking on the spot decision and reduce the business instability that arises due to the efficient problem-solving ability.

Criterion 4 Operations Strategy Implementation

Alternative approaches

The discussion in the above sections has pointed out that Stella & Chewy's is failing in maintaining internal integrity among the team. The unstable internal business environment is also the reason for poor decision making. The rival company like Tail.com is very much focused on staffs training, and thus they are able to build a better engagement with the customers fetching profit at the global markets. The dominance of Tail.com in the UK market is increasing the need of adopting alternative approaches. In the case of Stella & Chewy's, the company would be benefited from the product development approaches by staff training.
Change management using Kotter’s eight-step model.

The use of the eight-step model of Kotters is adopted to introduce the alternative business approaches of Stella & Chewy's in a coherent manner.

Step 1: Create Urgency

Stella & Chewy's identified that the competition in the market is increasing. The rival business is using better innovation with the help of their skilled team and is thus able to keep its customers satisfied. The increase in customers turnover and the lack of loyalty among the targeted customers increased the urgency of adopting the product development approaches. Hobbs and Shanoyan (2018) mentioned that the taste and preferences of the customers keep altering, and it is a must for the company to keep developing the product so that product utility is fetched.

Step 2: Form a Powerful Coalition

The team meeting will be organised where the financial data of Stella & Chewy's and the rival company of Tail.com will be compared. The areas of product development will be outlined to understand the urgency of adopting the alternative approaches by the business. Baloh et al. (2018) stated that developing enthusiasm among the team members are determined to be useful in planning for the change implication. Thus, Stella & Chewy's need to adopt the change, continues the discussion and then adopt the best methods for company benefit.

Step 3: Create a Vision for Change

Keeping the customer's happy and providing nutritious food to the pets is the vision that Stella & Chewy's follows. The alternation in vision by including the taste and health fusion would be helpful in attracting customers. The adding of taste to the product would not only make the pets happy but will satisfy the customers. This needs systemic training of the production team so that they can work seamlessly for the product development alternation.

Step 4: Communicate the Vision

The management will be informed about the changes using the personal meetings, and the team will be sent a notice that will include all the details written about the propped changes and the training schedules. Nikolaidis et al. (2018) stated that the mode of communication is essential in conveying a source of information. However, in the case of Stella & Chewy's the use of both verbal and written communication modes will be used to ensure that all the stakeholders are aware of the changes and its procedure to reduce the level of confusion.

Step 5: Remove Obstacle

The obstacles like the poor machinery and the waste generation need to be reduced. The execution of the sustainable measures needs to be introduced. Stella & Chewy’s needs to convince the production team to lead updated technologies so that they can contribute their best in the process of product development.

Step 6: Create Short term win

The production team and the other stakeholders will be invited for parties and get-togethers so that a flexible bond is created among them and they feel important. Tu et al. (2019) mentioned that the team bond is a must for an organisation to adopt new approaches. The coordination among the team members needs to take up the initiative so that they can build strategic measures and thus create a better bond. Cherishing the short wines will be building confidence among the team members, and they will be able to create a better prospect to win.

Step 7: Build Change

The weekly training of the production staff within the working environment will allow the team to fetch professionalism in developing innovative and tasted pet foods. The strategies measures are sure to build a positive attitude among the staff and there for a positive customer’s engagement can be developed. Jally et al. (2021) the execution of the new approaches is very tricky as the team members need to be well aware of the technologies they are using. As the profit development needs to be as per the preferences of the customers so the company will be using the proper markets evolution and the inspection of the products of the rival business to design their own exclusive pet food products.

Step 8: Anchor the change

Monitoring the performance of the business after the change implication is very much important. It has been evident that performance monitoring is essential to have a proper understanding of market performances. The sales figures will be monitor to see the changes in the sales rate with the implication of the product development approaches. The impaction of the reviews from the customer will also be monitored so that the idea about the positive success fetched by the business after the implication of the changes.

Estimated Time for The Implication of The Changes in The Operational Strategies

Figure 2: Time line


Stella & Chewy’s, being a successful business in the pet sector, has a huge competition. The other promising companies in the pet food industry are developing uniqueness in their product and thus lead to the creation of customer engagement. It has been evident that the business is willing to keep the customer engaged by serving them with the best product. Stella & Chewy's facing competitive changes needs to work on product development. Although product specification has been a quick, successful business idea for Stella & Chewy's but the development of the product a notch higher than that of the existing product available would be helpful in providing happiness to the pets leading to the elevation of the customer’s satisfaction. The company is sure to achieve an increment in sales rate.

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