Strategic Business Management:

Traveler, the trading name of parent holding company, Travelers Exchange Corporation Limited, is a diversified worldwide money business offering retail, corporate and commercial currency services to consumers, corporations and institutions 4 throughout the world. They provide the foreign exchange services in North America, the I-J, Ireland and Australia. Their clients include many of the major banks such as the Barclay Bank and the Bank of Montreal. This evaluation attempts to provide an in-depth analysis of Traveler and its strategic management approach. It shall assess he pertinent issues confronting the firm and how it had dealt with the issues and how it had tried to turn it as their advantage.

The first part shall outline the internal analysis of Traveler followed by an analysis of the external environment of Traveler with the focus on market competition and finally, the last part shall discuss the approach employed by Traveler in successfully hurdling all the challenges bestowed on its way and become one of the largest worldwide money business company in the world. Traveler: Company Profile Traveler was established in 1976 in London by opening Auk’s first Motorway Service Station Bureau De Change and began serving ferries and on docks. After a decade, it London. A year later, it entered the airport market and began operation in three UK terminals. Following this development, it established the Traveler US, Traveler Australia and Traveler New Zealand in 1989, 1990 and 1991 respectively. In 1993, it expanded operation to the European market.

Following the expansion, Traveler introduced several services in worldwide money business. In March 2001, The Traveler Group acquired Thomas Cook Global & Financial Services and hence, expanded its operation. 5 At the present, Traveler offers a wide array of services such: global currency specialist, worldwide network of coin exchanging machines, Visa Travel Money, Traveler Worldwide Money Ltd (HTML), web-based travel money ordering service, Traveler airport bureau network, assistance during emergencies and operation of Tams worldwide. It is located in 31 countries worldwide and operates in 97 countries, the biggest of which is in the United Kingdom.

Operating in a highly competitive and volatile environment, Traveler had been known for its flexibility, high-quality services and innovation. These three goals came from deeply embedded values of its employees, which centers on competitiveness, efficiency and service-oriented. Traveler has also committed itself with employee involvement: staff members are kept informed about company performance through briefing meetings, supplemented by a range of staff magazines and internal communications. Moreover, it is worth noting that most of Traveler’ business clients had maintained a long-term relationship with the company. With these values, is a culture that is both dynamic and innovative. It is with this philosophy that Traveler maintains its mission-vision.

Mission: To provide our customers the preferred means of worldwide remittance transactions with higher reliability and better customer service than any other similar enterprise Vision: Maintain market leadership through constant innovative offerings, quality management and service and through building life-time value based relationships. 6 The company maintains a formal structure consisting of a Board of Directors (BODY) responsible for the decisions made in the company. The BODY consists of recognized and seasoned executives in their own field of expertise, headed by Lloyd Doorman, Chairman and CEO of the Traveler Group. The organizational structure of Traveler shown below illustrates the top management of the company. These executives have their own departments and employees who fill their field of service.

Lloyd Doorman CEO Nicholas Page Chief Operating Officer Clive Kahn Chief Financial Officer Gerry Convoy Group Director, Retail Keith Richfield Managing Director David Painter Peter Birch Non Executive Director Ann Cooley Group Director Human Resources Neil Harrison Chief Information Officer Hooeys Sheets Group Director FAX Melanie Whitehorse Group Director BP SUB: Traveler Chapter I Internal Analysis of Traveler 7 The success of a company can be attributed to the marketing expertise of the company, innovative products and services, company location, quality processes and procedures and vast amount of resources. On the other hand, the limitations of Traveler shall also be outlined and evaluated. Human Resource Management: Managing Change and Stress in the Workplace Human resource management of Traveler centered on the efficient, flexible and competitive workforce that is adaptable to change. A change in the workplace creates both an opportunity and stress among order to cope with the challenges posed in the workplace.

Hence, this challenge for Traveler had been sufficiently addressed by managers and the company’s management by developing a competency training and development program to the employees, launching a marketing program that adheres to the company’s mission and vision thereby communicating not only the product and the brand but the company as well and third, build up the technological capability of the company. Furthermore, in response to the wide variety of consumers and business services demanded, Traveler evolved to become a dynamic, pioneering and diversified worldwide money business (Traveler, AAA). This success can be associated with the company’s culture and company management (Traveler, AAA). In order to expand the services provided by Traveler and in order to gain a stronger 8 market hold, they acquired Thomas Cook Global & Financial Services in March 2001.

This acquisition centered on the rationale that travelers cheeses are still regarded by consumers as the safest way to carry money whilst traveling abroad (Traveler 20th). Consequently, the main reason why Traveler prospers is also its main weakness. The worldwide money business is a very risky industry prone to outside threats. Thus, the internal management of the company needs to respond to the human resource management issues such as training and development of its workers, the institution of knowledge management in order to develop human capital, the quality of the services that they offer (in this case, Traveler offers high-quality products) and the cost of those services. Internal conflict must also be resolved and transparency and honesty within the organization need to be inculcated.

Technological Innovations Part of Traveler’s internal strength is that it has global currency specialists with the yester and expertise to process and sort high volumes of mixed foreign coins (Traveler 20031). Traveler works with many organizations around the world to turn their unused foreign coins into working capital, thereby reducing storage and handling costs (Traveler 20031). Furthermore, Traveler has developed and deployed a worldwide network of coin exchanging machines that will make the operation easier and more efficient (Traveler 20031). 9 Thomas Cook launched visa Travel Money in 1996, Traveler’s aim is to further invest in the business and build on its status as the world’s largest issuer of Visa Travel Money (Traveler IEEE).

Thus, innovative new products were launched by Traveler to support infrastructure themselves (Traveler IEEE). Traveler Worldwide Money Ltd (HTML) has designed and developed leading edge Internet-based payment, exchange and settlement technology (Traveler egg). The system manages the instant transfers of funds, calculates and settles agent commissions and supports an integrated frequent user programmer (Traveler egg). The level of convenience provided by transactional processes such as webbed travel money ordering service and Traveler airport bureau network for collection makes Traveler uniquely questioned to harness the global potential of the Internet (Traveler oh).

Consequently, Traveler provides innovative online solutions for both consumer and business markets, enabling customers to order foreign currency, execute global payments or purchase travel insurance (Traveler oh). In 1998, Traveler launched Latitude, this had helped customers get out of trouble by offering assistance during emergencies and discover more through providing information assistance, enabling them to relax and enjoy their travels (Traveler 2003]). Traveler operates over 700 Tams worldwide, providing 24-hour access to SUB: Traveler 10 cash in local currency in gateway airports and into high street locations such as McDonald’s restaurants and Texaco service stations (Traveler kick).

Organizational Structure Among internal organizational structures, the ones tending to predominate over time are those that tend to minimize transaction costs. However, this statement is true only for profit-oriented organizations. Non-profit organizations most of the time lacks the rigid and formal structures prominent in for profit organizations. Mason (1984) suggested that for non-profit organizations, a legible organization must be instituted in order to allow cooperation, interaction, communication, and coordination. Traveler is regionally managed but globally coordinated, which makes it easy to get buried in the massive project of trying to implement their projects on a global scale.

Thus, one of the primary opportunity of Traveler is that it has mastered the ability of online ordering through their pick and pack fulfillment engine, which can fill a customer order within twenty-four hours delivered to their door. Moreover, Traveler has started a partner program, originally established through Thomas Cook International, which has now spread to the U. S. And into Canada in September of 2001. Marketing the Brand Name Mezzos (1991) suggested that, companies should give marketing top priority by emphasizing customer satisfaction at all levels of the organization, offering products that are perceived to truly satisfy customer needs, striving to achieve SUB: Traveler 11 efficiency in producing goods, and keeping the customer in mind when pricing their products.

Marketing expertise stresses the importance of developing brand name and in adapting to the needs of the consumers. Traveler plopped its brand name through brand awareness programs and sponsorships for instance of Panasonic Toyota Formula 1 Team and the I-J television coverage of the FIFE World Cup (Traveler Annual Report 2002). Successful brand management requires both an understanding of how the brand strategy is implemented and communicated to consumers and how consumers respond to this. Evidence is consumption behavior (Goodyear 1996; Seafarer 1997). Traveler had firmly established its brand name through the establishment of branches around the world.

This is aside from the quality of business that it had successfully upheld. Moreover, the marketing strategy of Traveler had been a perennial fixture on businessmen and companies. Thus, while the Traveler brand may only be a name, its value transcends letters and words- it dictates and to a large extent determines the sales and profitability of the company, the prospects and projections for company expansion and in defining the company. Company Location Having achieved a vast amount of clientele, Traveler had responded by establishing offices in 31 countries and corporate relationships in 97 countries SUB: Traveler 12 (Traveler Bibb). To date, Traveler claims to cater to over 29,000,000 customers every year.

Furthermore, the acquisition of Thomas Cook Global & Financial Services strengthened Traveler’s presence in airports and tourist locations (Traveler Bibb). Moreover, it established offices in strategic locations such as London, New York, Sydney, Frankfurt, San Francisco and Honeysuckles known as international airport gateways (Traveler Bibb). Quality Processes and Procedures Traveler’s expertise extends to providing foreign exchange dealing, payment and collection services to risk solutions and outsourcing (Traveler, ICC). In addition, foreign exchange and Corporate Foreign Exchange shows their competence by offering simple, personalized service for corporate customers (Traveler, ICC).

These services also include the information on the dealing desk in each operational region thereby keeping the customers updated with market movements and events. Resources The acquisition of Thomas Cook Global & Financial Services has increased its customer base as well as adding further processing facilities, bringing additional capacity to help fulfill a greater number of customer orders (Traveler 20030. Currently, Traveler Currency Services (TTS) is the world’s leading supplier of out sources foreign currency services. Traveler Currency Services’ customer base in the I-J includes Barclay Bank, Neatest Bank and Royal Bank of Scotland as well as a number of building societies and major travel agency chains such as SUB: Traveler 13 Thomas Cook and Lung Poly (Traveler off).

To assure the market share of Traveler, it has committed itself in providing resources to support Currency Services’ business growth and is undertaking ongoing investment to ensure that it remains the largest and most automated foreign currency fulfillment business in the world (Traveler 20030. The Financial Triumph of Traveler: Managing the Balance Sheet Financial statements, balance sheet and annual reports of companies and firms make up the financial portfolio of the company- their real worth in monetary terms. The financial statement and financial portfolio of Traveler showed an increasing profit- this implies that the profits of Traveler have constantly been going up since 1998.

Some financial services rely primarily on localized and specialized information, others on information that is geographically diffuse at the global scale. Second, in many cases the information is vague, ambiguous, and difficult to interpret and understand (Thrift 1994). Such information is characterized by its complexity, sophistication, and embodiment in individuals, which lessens its ease of dissemination through electronic systems (von Hippie 1994; Fleck 1996). SUB: Traveler 19 This is compounded by the fact that the same information may have different meanings to various firms due to their market positions, interests, and goals (Agnes, 2000).

Third, the timeliness of information is often essential. The volatility of financial markets means that the pace of change and movement is rapid and information becomes outdated quickly. Timing and access to up-to-the-minute information are paramount for Traveler in maintaining its market position and in avian a sound financial health. SUB: Traveler 20 Chapter II External Analysis Globalization is one of the hallmarks of the new millennium, involving accelerated international movements of capital, technology, people, products, services, and ideas. These accelerated movements provide businesses and consumers with new opportunities and new threats.

Globalization involves profound changes in the competitive and cooperative business environment, and provides firms with access to new groups of consumers and new kinds of suppliers, Just as it confronts consumers with novel and unfamiliar consumer choices. Economic and Industrial Factors Only a few major players dominate the landscape of foreign currency exchange, particularly in the online Internet environment, Traveler, Custom House and the International Currency Exchange (ICE) are the most prominent in the business of foreign exchange and online transactions. Thus, the limited number of big corporations in the business had propelled the profits of Traveler into new heights in 2001 and 2002 despite the economic let down experienced by the world economy (Annual Report 2002). The corporation seeking a growth opportunity selects the larger developing economies.

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