Edward Jones had been pursuing the same strategy for nearly thirty years and had become the fourth largest broker in the U.S. Central to the strategy was the belief that the end consumer was the only client to the firm. With the changing business landscape, stiff competition, and complex customer requirements. Edward Jones has to come up with strategic changes in its operation in order to continue delivering superior performance for the firm, its employees, and clients.
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Edward Jones has excelled in individual customer brokerage thus; they should try to maintain the existing individual customers. In the next year, the firm should diversify and incorporate the institutional businesses as part of its client because they are huge investors nowadays with long-term investment. This will be more profitable to the firm in the future.
Regarding the geographical scope and office operation, I would suggest that the firm maintain fifty percent office in the rural and fifty percent in the metropolitan for an even market coverage because currently the population is evenly distributed. This should be done in the next year in order to counter competitors who would want to use the advantage of not been well covered in an area.
Due to the coming up of new players in the industry, financial advisors have become very marketable and scarce. I would suggest that the firm stops the process of training and recruiting fresh financial advisors trainee as this will be very costly to the firm in the end in terms of money and time, because after them completing the training they will be absorbed with the competing firms, luring them with more benefits. The firm should focus more on retaining their financial advisors by giving them favorable terms of work and other benefits. The firm can start recruiting financial advisors from other brokerage firms as they may end up bringing the much-needed change and experience.
On the issue of Edward Jones venturing into international markets, I would suggest they put a stop to this because of the cost involved and risk due to the stiff competition. It is better to use the resources to conquer the stiff competition in the U.S. market and become the leading brokerage firm first. Edward Jones should observe the market trends and competition in the next five years before expanding to international scopes.
Edward Jones should change its marketing strategy from a television advertisement, that is costly and embrace product awareness through recruiting more financial advisors in the fields and participating in corporate social responsibility.
In regards to the emerging competitors, Edward Jones should in the next one-year offer a full range of financial products and services to its clients; it will be easy for the firm to sell an additional financial service to an existing client than to a new client. Clients who use multiple financial products are less likely to switch to other financial institutions and are more profitable.
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In conclusion, Edward Jones should embrace changes in; cost-cutting in the operation expense, financial products, and service diversification to meet the different customer’s needs, product differentiation, retain existing clients and keep in tune with the changing customer’s demands. Equipped with these strategies they might survive the stiff competition in the market.