Walmart Stores, Inc.
Preston Burrell, Sue Ford, Ketia Francois, Chris Hiniker, George Lance FIN370
July 29, 2013
Walmart’s Strategic Initiative
Strategic planning is a goal of most if not all companies that exist. Some may use this form of planning on a small scale and meet about things such as improving satisfaction ratings or improving the company’s website. Others meet about larger goals that can change and improve the image and branding of a company. That is the case with Walmart. According to Walmart (2013), the company has been issuing a Global Responsibility Report since 2005. This report covers many areas of importance to Walmart such as talent development, healthier foods, and stakeholder engagement, but there is one area of importance that has been a key area of improvement for the past few years. Walmart has invested a large amount of energy, time, and money in the area of environmental sustainability. A project this big needs a specialized team of individuals skilled in strategic planning to ensure that this focus becomes an attainable goal. The process of strategic planning helps Walmart understand who they are as a company and the impact it will have on its business.
Walmart and other companies have learned that environmental sustainability has become an essential ingredient to doing business responsibly and successfully ("Walmart", 2013). According to "Walmart" (2013), "As the world’s largest retailer, our actions have the potential to save our customers money and help ensure a better world for generations to come” (Environmental Responsibility). The report also states that, “at the same time, it sets the stage for a more financial stable and responsible Walmart” (Environmental Responsibility). Walmart has three inspirational goals to help the environment, be supplied 100% by renewable energy, create zero waste, and sell products that sustain people and the environment ("Walmart", 2013).
Walmart knows that the company’s goal to be supplied by 100% of renewable energy will require investing in different technologies and power generation strategies. According to "Walmart" (2013), "The Company is progressing towards the goal of being supplied 100% by renewable energy, driving sustainable development, as well as the company expanding its global reach to provide goods and services to customers around the world” (Renewable Energy). The report also states, “The renewable energy principles include demonstrable change that drives the production of renewable energy projects, saving money, and living better by driving down the cost-effective stable energy pricing” (Renewable Energy).
Walmart’s goal of achieving zero waste motivates employees and its suppliers across the world. According to "Walmart" (2013), "We’ve made strong progress on our commitment to generate zero waste to landfill, reduce one-time use bag waste, and globalize our network of associates who are focused on delivering business and sustainability results through waste diversion” (Waste). In 2010, the company formed a team of associates across the world to lead the waste reduction initiative and move toward the ultimate goal ("Walmart", 2013). Walmart remains committed to reducing waste across its global operations so this team is in place to identify opportunity, drive innovation, and share his or her best practices ("Walmart", 2013).
In 2009, Walmart developed a Sustainability index. According to “Walmart” (2013), “They are utilizing the work of the Sustainability Consortium (TSC) to integrate the index into its business, but also tie it to buyer incentives and performance evaluations” (Sustainability Index). The reason for this change was that Walmart wanted to provide tools for its merchants and customers to improve the sustainability of products, integrate sustainability into the buying and selling of its products, reduce costs by being more efficient and improve quality, and...