A CASE STUDY OF NEW LOOK
Question 1 Make a critical analysis of New Look’s stock management system. This question asks the student to explore all aspects of the stock management activity that takes place throughout the organization. It needs to cover the way the stock is allocated to and replenished in stores; the way information is managed in order to underpin stock control; the organisation of product supply and supplier management; the way stock turnover is managed; and the contribution of Quick Response initiatives. Chapters 6 and 7 will be helpful.
Question 2 Discuss the positioning of New Look’s product offer. How is this supported by the company’s product management operations? The first part of this question asks the student to look at New Look from the customer’s viewpoint. Who do they appeal to and what are the product features that are attractive to this customer profile? Making comparisons to other retailers in the clothing market is a useful exercise when defining a market position. The second part of question asks the student to go back to the elements of the product management set up within New Look (covered to a great extent in question 1) and highlight those aspects that have a direct impact on formulating a retail offer that appeals to the target market. As well as stock management however, this question needs to consider the retail environment (chapters 9 and 10) and product development (chapter 4).
Question 3 Outline what you consider to be New Look’s retail brand values. How are they communicated to the customer? This question asks the student to summarise what New Look represents to their customer in terms of a total shopping experience (product plus related services). It is then necessary to explore the various ways in which these brand values are communicated by the company to their target customers. Students need to consider both in store and out of store communications (chapter 11), and the messages the total retail environment sends (chapter 10).
Question 4 To what extent do you consider New Look to have a sufficiently strong retail proposition for the company to grow into a global operator? This question asks the student to consider New Look in an international context. Do they think that what New Look offer is appealing enough and strong enough to conquer retail markets outside of the UK? What are the opportunities for New Look and what are the challenges that international retailing will impose? What kind of resources will be necessary for this venture? Does New Look have access to those resources? Please note: New Look has implemented many changes since this case was written. In order to use this case study successfully, I would suggest tutors add the phrase ‘at the time this case was written’ to questions they set.