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Step 1— Reply to In today’s competitive online markets, competition in the re

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In today’s competitive online markets, competition in the retail industry, and the effects of the pandemic, many companies are seeking new ways to be innovative while ensuring profitability. Amazon is no exception to this rule but actually the company that redefined the retail industry. By combining its eCommerce platform, innovation, and mastering the logistics hub and spoke system, Amazon was able to become a colossal retail unicorn and the envy of the online industry. Amazon’s success can be attributed to its Contemporary Management Technique of Benchmarking applications. Kaplan (2006) described the Benchmarking process as comparing activities of processes, production and services to determine the best activity in comparison to others. This also included setting the most achievable goals while achieving the most realistic action.
Blocher, Stout, Juras and Smith (2019), states Benchmarking is a
“process by which a firm identifies its critical success factors, studies the best practices of other firms (or other business units within a firm) for achieving these critical success factors, and then implements improvements in the firm’s processes to match or beat the performance of those competitors.”
Amazon applied one of its many Benchmarking techniques to its cloud applications and the results were significant. According to Amazon’s Web Services (AWS) paper, titled the Cloud Value Benchmarking Study whitepaper, which studied and analyzed four key areas with 1,000 AWS customers, including cost savings, staff productivity, operational resilience, and business agility. The data collection occurred between July and August 2019. In summary, the results highlighted that there was an overall 27.4% cost reduction, 67.7% increase in storage space, 56.7% decrease in downtime and 37.1% reduction in time-to-market for new products and services (Amazon Web Services, 2020).
Overall, Amazon benchmarks and Benchmarking processes are not fully advertised or disclosed on mainstream media due to Amazon trying to limit how they use their Benchmarking processes, in an attempt to maintain industry competitiveness. Karr (2020) highlights the process that the company Sellics Benchmarker uses to analyze sellers’ products. The metrics that Sellics’ uses to analyzes products  include Sponsored Ad formats, detailed scores, comparing advertising cost of sales, cost per click, click-through rates and improving Amazon conversion, which is how fast customers are completing a process after clicking on a specific add. By using these metrics, sellers on Amazon will get data and a better grasp on their products’ performance, advertising, and online performance. The data will allow the seller to determine what processes don’t work and what processes need to be Benchmarked.
As Christians we should be seeking the grace and mercy of God. In these challenging times our Benchmarking process in life should follow the greatest example and that is Christ Jesus. In John 8:12, (NIV) “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk-in darkness but will have the light of life.” By following these prescribed directions, we will have the light for this life and our Christian lives, and our actions will achieve the ultimate Benchmark. Not following Jesus and Christian values, all of our processes will have shortfalls and challenges that we may fail to overcome without Him in our lives.
References
Bible Gateway passage: John 8:12 – New International Version. (n.d.). Retrieved January 24,                        2021, from https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+8%3A12&version=NIV
Blocher, E. J., & Hicks, M. (n.d.). Accounting for Decision Makers. McGraw Hill. doi:https://player-ui.mheducation.com/#/epub/sn_c97a#epubcfi(%2F6%2F42%5Bdata-uuid-8208f65efd6a45abbdeed647faf28ed2%5D!%2F4%2F4%5Bdata-uuid-55f5680e5da54553a7babe63cd57b671%5D%2F2%5Bdata-uuid-3b51e6e44f52427bbb983237c34946df%5D)
Cloud Value Benchmarking Study Quantifies the Benefits of Cloud Adoption. (2020, June). Retrieved January 23, 2021, from https://pages.awscloud.com/rs/112-TZM-766/images/cloud-value-benchmarking-study-quantifies-cloud-adoption-benefits.pdf
Karr, D. (2020, November 19). How to Benchmark Your Amazon Advertising Account ” Martech Zone. Retrieved January 24, 2021, from https://martech.zone/benchmark-your-amazon-advertising-account/
When Benchmarks Don’t Work. (2006, January 09). Retrieved January 24, 2021, from https://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/when-benchmarks-dont-work
Step 2— Background for you as to what benchmarking is
Benchmarking
Benchmarking is a process by which a firm identifies its critical success factors, studies the best practices of other firms (or other business units within a firm) for achieving these critical success factors, and then implements improvements in the firm’s processes to match or beat the performance of those competitors. Benchmarking was first implemented by Xerox Corporation in the late 1970s. Today, many firms use benchmarking. Some firms are recognized as leaders, and therefore benchmarks, in selected areas—for example, Nordstrom in retailing, Ritz-Carlton in service, the Boeing Company in manufacturing, and Apple in innovation, among others.
Benchmarking efforts are facilitated today by cooperative networks of noncompeting firms that exchange benchmarking information. For example, the International Benchmarking Clearinghouse (www.apqc.org) and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) (www.iso.org) assist firms in strategic benchmarking.

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