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Harrison-Keyes Benchmarking Paper

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Essay title: Harrison-Keyes Benchmarking Paper

Harrison-Keyes Implementation Plan Generic Benchmarking

University of Phoenix

Dr. Mary Weber

MBA-590 Strategic Implementation and Alignment

March 31, 2007

Harrison-Keyes Implementation Plan Generic Benchmarking

Harrison-Keyes is a global publisher of print products in educational, technical, professional, consumer, and business books and journals. Founded in 1899, they have developed a reputation throughout the industry as a leader in publishing superior materials by grand authors. The key problem the company faces now is a trend in the industry towards e-publishing and consolidation in the market front. “Our vision is to be the world’s most dynamic publishing company, packaging innovative information solutions essential to communities of interest.” (University of Phoenix, 2008) This vision statement may need to be updated to comply with the new vision in e-publishing.

“In recent years, Harrison-Keyes has suffered the woes plaguing the entire industry…. In an effort to revitalize the company, the Harrison-Keyes Board of Directors recently hired a new CEO.” (University of Phoenix, 2008) This new CEO is Meg P. McGill, a high-tech guru of all things digital. She believes the answer to revitalizing the company lies with e-publishing. Other players in the company are having mixed feelings with e-publishing. Some are excited about the change and others, such as well-renowned author Will X. Harper, are strongly against it. Bad publicity articles, international communication problems, financial questions, and much needed computer updating, are just some of the major issues facing the new vision with the company.

Barnes and Noble – Kathy Ray

Barnes and Noble, Inc. is the world’s largest bookseller and a Fortune 500 company, according to their website barnesandnobleinc.com on March 24, 2008. Barnes and Noble operate 798 bookstores in 50 states and have become one of the largest e-commerce sites. The company deals in books, videos, DVDs, music and gaming.

Barnes and Noble did try its hand in e-books, but found that it was not a profitable market that it needed to pursue at the time. In September, 2003, Barnes and Noble pulled out of the e-book business and focused more on the online market from which they have excelled. Does this mean that e-books have no future? Not likely. In 2003 when Barnes and Noble pulled out, e-books were making headway. “The report claims unit sales of e-books jumped 40% in the first six months of 2003, compared to the same period in 2002.” (Booktech the Magazine, 2003)

Barnes and Noble has decided that e-books are not going to be its expertise, at least not for now. The company has decided to instead focus on another internet option called Quamat.com, a how-to website that provides reputable resources that have been screened and considered accurate by their experts. The site will provide a quick reference section and give resources available as to which books would be best suited for the given problem. Could this be another spin of e-book resourcing? The wave of the future is most likely a mixture of resources that each company will specialize in. For Barnes and Noble, today is Quamat, but e-books could still be seen in their future.

Borders – Kathy Ray

Borders bookstores have more than 1,100 stores located throughout the world. “More than 30,000 employees worldwide engage our customers with a rich shopping experience and provide them with the books, music, movies, and other entertainment items they love in a relaxing, enjoyable atmosphere. We are a company committed to our people, to diversity, to our customers, and to our communities.” (Borders Stores, 2008) The company started back in 1962 with Walden Bookstore and in succession through Kmart the Borders-Walden Group became the Borders Group in 1995.

Borders realized that as technology grew the company would need to grow with it. “Embracing technology as a path to differentiate Borders is a key part of our company’s strategic plan… We firmly support the e-book as a format we believe will be of growing importance to our customers in the future, and this agreement is a big part of our plans to make Borders a true cross-channel retailer, fulfilling our mission as a headquarters for knowledge and entertainment.” (Wireless News, 2007) In order for Borders to continue to grow, the company needs to revisit its mission statement periodically and revise its mission statement to meet the needs of the current business. The new mission can change the culture of

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