Amazon Wants Convenience Stores to Be More Convenient

Amazon Wants Convenience Stores to Be More Convenient

As Amazon expands its presence in physical retail, it is also trying to disrupt it.

We all dread checkout lines at the grocery store. To eliminate this bottleneck in the shopping experience, Amazon is experimenting with a new concept that involves digital cameras, sensors, computers, and phone apps. The company’s initial building project has been scaled down from large grocery stores to convenience stores. After several years of research and millions of dollars spent, the project remains at the pilot stage.

In the end, the project may be more about a new, big idea than a store.   


Video Spotlight: Shopping Experience at Amazon Go


This post is based on the Bloomberg Businessweek article, Amazon’s Ambitious Research Project Is a Convenience Store, by B. Stone and M. Day, July 18, 2019, and the YouTube video, How Does Amazon Go Work?by Techquickie, March 13, 2018. Image source: Hero Images / Image Source.

Discussion Questions:

1. At what stage of the life cycle is this project? Justify your answer.

Guidance: This is a pilot project. The pilot project itself is in the execution and monitoring stages. Quality is assessed with thorough testing, and changes are Continue reading

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Making the Little Black Dress Green

Making the Little Black Dress Green

Environmental excesses are soiling the glamorous image of fast fashion.

The ability to bring the latest styles to the masses has made Zara a leader in the fast fashion industry. However, this success is leaving a sizeable carbon footprint. Determined to be a trendsetter on several fronts, Zara has vowed to become a model of sustainability in its industry by 2025. Some skeptics believe that goal may be unrealistic.


Video Spotlights: Environmental Impact of Fast Fashion and How to Make Fast Fashion More Sustainable


This post is based on the npr.org article, Can Fast Fashion and Sustainability Be Stitched Together?, by E. Bowman and S. McCammon, July 27 2019, and the YouTube videos, The Problem with Fast Fashionby Teen Vogue, September 21, 2018, and Making Fashion More Sustainable, by Bloomberg Markets and Finance, November 8, 2018. Image source: David Hughes/Getty Images.

Discussion Questions:

1. What is “fast fashion”? What are the reasons for its appeal to customers?

Guidance: Fast fashion is affordable, trendy clothing that is produced and distributed rapidly to mass markets. The availability of the latest styles at relatively low prices makes fast fashion very appealing.

2. What are the core Continue reading

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DIY Health Tests

DIY Health Tests

At-home health tests may promote better health at a lower cost.

Lab testing ranks high among the most unpleasant experiences people endure in their lifetimes. Because of their adverse relationship with lab testing and its cost, patients tend to miss screenings or simply ignore them. Everlywell has created multiple at-home tests that make it more convenient and cheaper for patients to get tested.


Video Spotlight: At Home Lab Testing


This post is based on the Bloomberg Businessweek article, At-Home Health Tests Get the Direct-to-Consumer Treatment, by A. Cohen, July 23, 2019, and the YouTube video, EverlyWell – At Home Lab Testing – How It Worksby EverlyWell, December 19, 2017. Image source: Shutterstock/peter verreussel.

Discussion Questions:

1. Using the HOQ framework, what are customer and product/process design requirements for lab testing?

Guidance: The patients’ or customers’ requirements are: health, convenience, speed, privacy, low cost, reliability, and personal involvement in care. The product/process requirements include test availability at major pharmacies, at-home testing for privacy, affordable retail cost and partnership with insurance companies, easy mail-in process, online results and professional consultation, and CLIA-certified labs.

2. What are the steps you go through when getting a lab Continue reading

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