Are Corporations Our Personal Shoppers?

The thought of ordering an item online and receiving it the same day, just a few hours later seems unrealistic. With technology becoming more integrated in our world and the demand for instant gratification, this unrealistic idea is now a reality. Major corporations like Wal-Mart, Amazon, and EBay have adopted this new service of same-day delivery. It is really testing the limits of supply chain management, and now a whole new look on logistics is being placed in the hands of these corporations.

walamrt  Wal-Mart , is sitting at an advantage because of its massive fleet of stores across the country. They use their 4,005 locations as inventory holders and distribution centers, so now when you order something before noon you can receive it by that evening. Workers will literally go down the aisle and collect the item you want, which is later delivered to your door. Even though this service is only in the test phase in five major cities, Denver, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, northern Virginia and San Francisco/San Jose, it has proven to be a huge success thus far.

Amazon has a new technology that now sends your order to the closest of its 40 massive and highly efficient distribution centers that has same day service available. From here a robot find your item and places it in a place where a human can package it and ship it to you just in time before the day is over. This is pretty crazy, right? Wait till read this next corporation’s new strategy!

debay   EBay, a dominant online seller has a brand-new beta service that brings same day delivery to an even new level. It currently operates in beta form in New York, San Francisco, and San Jose. This service involves personal shoppers, or “valets, that EBay will send to pick up a good you have just ordered. They will literally drive to the outlet from which you ordered it from through EBay, and deliver it to your doorstep that same day, sometimes even within only few hours! If this doesn’t impress you then this will. EBay now even offers an iOS app that you can use to buy, and track your item for same day delivery. This app tracks your “valets” progress in real time so you know exactly where he/she is, what step of the delivery they are on, and how far away they are from your home. This tracking app will even give you a picture of what the “valet” looks like so you can recognize them when they arrive. Once they have arrived, all you have to do is simply swipe your credit card, or pay with PayPal. The best part about this service is that it costs only $5, yes that’s it!

With this extremely gratifying service from these corporations how do you think it tests the limits of supply chain management and inventory management? Could this be the future for online shopping or delivery? Do you think implementing the service that EBay has in many other corporations could add a lot of jobs to the economy?




6 thoughts on “Are Corporations Our Personal Shoppers?

  1. You make a lot of good points here. I believe same service delivery is essential these days because everything is moving at an accelerated level. As far as inventory management goes, this will force these large corporations to be especially careful when counting their products. They need to have an advanced system in place that will track everything that comes in and out of their warehouse in order to keep everything in line at the advanced pace.

  2. This was a really interesting post. As a consumer I love the idea of being able to buy something and have it at the end of the day without ever leaving my house. I still do most of my shopping at stores and a big reason for this is because I’m too impatient to buy something online and then wait days for it to be delivered. However, a part of me thinks that this same day delivery system will be too good to be true. The inventory management itself is a big obstacle, but more than that the immense man power that will be needed to deliver items seems implausible.

  3. I was definitely drawn by this post because I happen to work retail. I’ve been at a BestBuy for 2.5 years and I want to say that if we had anything close to what Amazon has or what ebay has, we would be doing better than we are now. When we don’t have stock, we can order the product for the customer which can take 3-5 days, usually. There might be other stores that have the product in stock but the customer doesn’t want to make that trip and that’s when amazon comes up. If you’re a prime member, you can get your product much sooner and that’s something that retailers are struggling with. I wouldn’t be shocked if any day now, best buy. target, walmart and others simply deliver to your doorstep within minutes or hours.

    Edwin C

  4. I agree that today the pace at which society moves is much quicker than it was even just five years ago. However, with all new processes and procedures there are positives and negatives. The positives being that jobs would be created and people may be more willing to purchase products because they do not have to waste time by traveling to the store. There is also the possibility that same day delivery could actually lead to a job loss. What will happen to all the cashiers and people who rely on the face to face customer interaction as part of their job?

    In regards to inventory management, same day delivery could make it much harder to manage inventory. Delivery people will be pulling inventory off the shelf in addition to customers coming into the stores to shop for themselves. More research will need to be done to determine how to best manage inventory if same day delivery takes off.

  5. After reading this post, EBay has shown to take their service to another level. I believe that there are both pros and cons to this new service. Each company will gain more consumers through their online services which can also eliminate some of their competition in the industry. However, I believe that this can take away jobs from those who work inside the stores, as they are not needed. This can also bring up hazard issues. Who will be responsible for maintenance issues with the cars. If an accident occurs and the product is damaged, it can cause complications for both the supplier and consumer. This will bring a lot of stress to the supply chain management. The delivery service is quite convenient, but the cons may overweigh the pros.

  6. In this ever growing world of instant gratification no wonder companies are finding innovative ways to deliver the products that we want as soon as we order them. I honestly don’t remember the last time I order something online and took longer than three days to get to my door. The scary part is that this is just the beginning of it all. Amazon recently unveiled their futuristic drone in which they will use to deliver products. As the concept is great but I can’t help to think about safety. Do we really need items delivered that instantly? Personally I don’t want my order delivered by a drone I am satisfied with the current system. As I can see several issues coming with this system. Like delivery problems, such as packages on the roof of my house, broken contents, packages laying in the yard or a neighbor’s yard.

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