The Tech Future of Walmart

In order to survive the overwhelming competition of Amazon, WalMart must throw itself forward and find unique ways to be competitive. They can approach this by lessening pressure on employees by having tech aid. Drones carrying deliveries and custodial robot may soon be featured if WalMart wants to stick around.


 

If you ask any random person if they think Wal mart is a desirable place to work the odds are they would say no. Wal Mart has often been the staple for employee dissatisfaction. If you asked what they thought the future of the company would be many wouldn’t have a reason to think too positively of it.

As of 2014 “The company employs 2.2 million associates worldwide and serves more than 200 million customers each week at more than 11,000 stores in 27 countries.”

However, recent new broke that Wal mart is, like Amazon, heading towards drone delivery. This tech future for both companies will, at the least cause a shift in the labor force which both companies have issues with. Tech will either aid the worker or take their place. Regardless, the novelty of drone delivery will captivate the consumer. Wal mart will most likely feature robots In store as well. It will be an intriguing place to visit instead of a ghetto misery.

Imagine the future Wal Mart: You can order your pens and have them delivered via drone. You go into the store to purchase some candy and see a robot coming through cleaning the floors. There is interesting technology all over the place instead of sad-faced, underpaid employees.

My confidence that the company is willing to take this direction is due to the two young tech executives on the Board: Marissa Mayer and Kevin Systrom, who can push Wal mart into the modern era centered around millennial interest. Millennials want things cheap and fast but also expect personalization (due to pride in individualism)  and quality (due to equal access of information because of the internet age). Ms. Mayer has several patents in AI and has brought  an innovative edge to the company since 2012. Also, in 2014 Doug McMillon succeeded Mike Duke as a CEO.

To be fair, Sam Walton’s vision of Wal mart has always been to have “The Lowest Prices Anytime, Anywhere.” This has been true since the retail revolution in the 1960’s. They took the company national in the 70’s. Look at the logo change below. There is a distinct middle-america/western feel to the font. It used to be that buying local was cheaper since you didn’t have to charge for import. Walmart completely changed that game. You can see how Wal Marts strategy is reflected in it’s logo.

wal

Wal mart’s re-brand process probably began around 2008 when it changed its logo to a more simple font and icon, opting for ‘sky blue’

Since cheap prices are still Wal Mart’s goal, keeping up with the new tech revolution actually seems natural to the brand.

The 2008 design speaks to me. It says “Modern, Clean, and Simple”.

The enhancement of daily life, through evolving businesses and communal places, will be found through the benefits of technology. The future will be, at least, cleaner and better organized with global accessibility to information. The information having less to do with Wal Mart and maybe relates more to Barnes & Nobel

 

UPDATE:

January  Wal Mart to shut down 200+ stores

 

SOURCES:

Picture: http://e.fastcompany.net/multisite_files/fastcompany/imagecache/1280/poster/2013/12/3023007-poster-p-2-u-walmart-washington-dc.jpg

http://corporate.walmart.com/our-story/our-history

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