Description: Retail is a very competitive industry, with companies perpetually seeking cost advantages over competitors. Walmart has often been seen as the leader in this respect, long renowned for its integration with suppliers and just in time deliveries. This week Walmart announced it would introduce a self-scanner for consumers to use in 22 of its Canadian stores to help it face competitive forces. With customers supplying Walmart with this “free” checkout labour, its probably bad news for Walmart workers.
Date: October 24, 2017
1) In problem 9-11A, page 508 of Wiley’s Financial Accounting: Tools for Business Decision Making, you can find a comparison of Walmart and Target, along with an invitation to calculate a few key ratios. Which company appears to be the leader?
2) As a consumer, how do you feel about contributing your own labour to assist in the checkout process? What are the pluses and what are the minuses?
3) What are the implications for the replacement of jobs by new technologies?