Making eBay work
Analyse eBay’s strategic capability using an analytical framework(s)
•IT server platforms and space
•Offices and facilities
•Sufficient customers and suppliersThreshold competences •Account management
•All other general managerial skills
•Sophisticated ICT skills
•Customers and suppliers who are competent
•The biggest on-line electronic exchange platform
•The eBay brand
•First mover advantage
•An active and vocal community of users
•Learning from experienceUnique competences
•A unique form of account management that balances central control versus decentralised community involvement •Leadership in terms of ability to renew the Board and keep a sense of consistency •Electronic platform management skills
•Partnering on the internet (deciding when and how to compete) •Web 2.0 management skills
You might choose activity mapping or value chain analysis to get into the specifics here. It is important to recognise that it is not a single competences that matter so much as linkages between activities.
What are the capabilities that have provided eBay with competitive advantage and why?
There is no point listing all capabilities. You should rather focus on those that are truly unique and which therefore confer competitive advantage. Performing the analysis in question 1 goes someway to avoiding this pitfall. As with all analysis it forces a more in-depth view and by classifying what is unique and not unique ensures that this process of identification takes place and is in some sense defended.
Using the concepts of sustainability and dynamic capabilities, how would you manage this capability (create new resources and competences, invest/divest in others, extend others), given:
(a) New entrants in the marketplace?
(b) The changing nature of eBay?
You need to ask yourselves: