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Woolworths Stakeholder Value and Ethics

Executive Summary

The essay is about the stakeholder’s value and ethics in Woolworths Limited. It describes the policies and measures which the company takes to satisfy its stakeholders. It ensures that the company is able to fulfil the basic needs of the society and country by working within the framework of society. Stakeholder’s value and ethics is an important concept because it helps the business to perform effectively in the business world. The essay also highlights the benefits of maintaining ethics and value in the business.

Introduction

Woolworths Limited is an Australian company who has more than 3000 stores all over the parts of New Zealand and Australia (Carroll and Buchholtz, 2014). The head office is in Sydney which is one of the Australia’s largest public companies. The company provides employment to around 180,000 people and becoming the largest private employer in Australia. It serves around 21 million customers per week through its stores at all the places. In today’s global era, it is important for all the organisations whether big or small to maintain good relations with their customers as well as with the internal parties of the business. The internal parties of a business include the stakeholders, shareholders, employees, management at all the levels, labour and others. The most important are the stakeholders of the organisation. It is very important for the business to maintain good relations with their stakeholders to increase the productivity of the business.

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Stakeholders Value and Ethics at Woolworths Australia

Woolworth’s stakeholders include suppliers, employees, shareholders, the government and customers (Carroll and Buchholtz, 2014). In addition to this, the other stakeholders include unions, media, and franchisees, community interest groups, organised business and NGO’s. On particular issues, Woolworths Australia also deals with advocacy and interest groups. To focus and maintain healthy relationship with the stakeholders, the company has worked on an active stakeholder engagement process. Regular review of needs and expectations of the stakeholders is conducted by the company so that it can satisfy its stakeholders.

Stakeholders have their concern and interest in the business. In addition to this, stakeholders get affected and also affect the actions of the business. The list of the stakeholders includes group, system, accountant, member or organisation. In short stakeholders are the people who have stake in the business. Stakeholder is a wider term which includes project stakeholder, stakeholder theory and stakeholder analysis (Carroll and Buchholtz, 2014). Project stakeholder refers to the organisation, a person or group who have an interest in a project and would like to carry out that project. The next one is stakeholder theory which refers to the use of theory for the group of stakeholders of a project of the business or corporation. The next one is stakeholder law in which a third party is appointed who is responsible for temporarily holding the property and money. In this case the third party hold money till the time the owner is determined.

Woolworths focus on its stakeholders so that it can understand the main problems faced by the stakeholders in the social, environmental and economic area (Ferrell and Fraedrich, 2009). The company also focus on adoption of problem solving approach so that it can influence the stakeholders and get maximum output. The company is always ready to face the challenges and changes related to the stakeholders. This help the company to face the risk and maximise the available opportunities. Woolworths also take care of its brand name by supporting the country’s growth strategy.

The company has taken various efforts to ensure good relations with its stakeholders and organised business and government (Ferrell and Fraedrich, 2009). It tries to deepen its relationship with the stakeholders by ensuring proper satisfaction to them. In the year 2007, the main focus of the company was to ensure stakeholder engagement as the core area of the business. In addition to this, it also tried to ensure stakeholders engagement at all the levels of the organisation. The company takes regular efforts to maintain and deepen the relationship with its stakeholders.

It is important for every organisation to ensure value and ethics with its stakeholders to maintain healthy relationship with them. Value and ethics defines the basic framework within which every organisation has to operate (Freeman, Harrison and Wicks, 2007). It is important for the businesses to ensure value and ethics which means that they will follow the basic guidelines and rules of the business as well as of the society. Value refers to the organisation’s core value which every business has to fulfil. Basic concepts included in value are honesty, teamwork, integrity, loyalty, caring, professionalism and others. On the other hand, ethics are the basic guidelines required to run a business in a society. It includes fairness and transparency and ethical considerations.

The ethical sourcing policy for the stakeholders at Woolworths includes providing quality products and services to its customers (Freeman, Harrison and Wicks, 2007). The company source its products from various locations to meet the needs of global environment. The company tries to fulfil the needs and wants of its customers by operating at national as well as international level. In addition to this, the company takes efforts to source its products in an appropriate manner.

Woolworths ensure value and ethics of its suppliers by taking efforts to improve the environmental and social practices with them. It takes due care to ensure that it regularly work with its suppliers so that they feel satisfied and encourages to deliver raw material on time. The company also provide understandable and clear directions to its buying staff so that they feel encouraged and motivated (Lozano, 2001). The company tries to maintain its brand level by making sure that its actions does not affect its corporate reputation and image of its individual brands.

Woolworths Limited provides good working conditions to its employees safeguard the basic human rights and ensure full protection of its surrounding environment (Lozano, 2001). The company function maturely within the community so that it can fulfil the basic guidelines of the society. To maintain the ongoing success of the business, it is important to meet the ethical and moral standards and maintain its reputation. The main values of the company ijcldue trust, integrity and acting responsibly. To improve the environmental and labour practices of the suppliers, the company shows its full commitment towards them.

In addition to this, the policies of the company include fair pay, workplace safety, job security, employment conditions and motivating environment (Peterson and Ferrell, 2005). The company maintains healthy relations with its suppliers from all parts of the world. For the company its all suppliers are the same whether they belong to the same country or different country. The company implement improvement plans to make sure that its suppliers are able to meet the standards.

Woolworths ensure regulation of labour rights in which the labour are free to choose the employment of their choice. The labour is not forced to work in the organisation; they are free to leave the organisation whenever they wish. They just need to provide a reasonable notice before leaving the organisation (Peterson and Ferrell, 2005). In addition to this, workers can form trade unions and bargain collectively with the management of the company over their problem areas. The employer has to openly accept the activities of the trade union in the organisation.

In addition to this, the company ensures that there is no discrimination in the workplace on the basis of caste, colour, creed or gender (Weiss, 2008). All the workers are same for the organisation. The company provides a safe and hygienic working environment to its workers and employees. The workers are provided safety and security against the hazards in the workplace. From the past records, it is clear that the company takes efforts to minimise the issues in the workplace.

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The company maintains sustainability i.e. doing the right thing in a right manner so that unethical activities are avoided (Weiss, 2008). The strong values of the company help to motivate its stakeholders. It is challenge for the company to maintain its large number of employees in New Zealand and Australia. The company maintain openness and transparency in its business transactions. The company has increased its financial investment to maintain the sustainability in its business. This helps the company to meet the targets and deliver quality products and services to its customers. In addition to this, the main problem faced by the company is the climate changes. The company ensures reduction in its carbon emission so that the environment is not affected.

The company pays attention towards the environments sustainability. It focuses on delivering good shopping experience to its customers on regular basis. The company conducts customer survey and marketing to analyse their needs and wants (Weiss, 2008). The company takes efforts to retain and attract the talent, improve skills and competence, ensure good delivery services, ensure value and commitment and others. The company develops a positive attitude towards the queries and suggestions of its stakeholders and try to incorporate these suggestions so that it is able to retain its stakeholders. In addition to this, it ensures fair and transparency in its business transactions.

Maintaining the value and ethics on regular basis helps the company to increase its revenue, target new customers and market, build brand image, sustain in the competitive environment and serve society and economy. In addition to this, the other benefits are it can maximise the opportunities, minimise the risks, retain old customers and suppliers and attract new ones, growth and diversification and others. The stakeholders comprise a large part in the deciding the various decision of the business (Weiss, 2008). In addition to this, it is also important for the stakeholders to make sure that they do not take the decisions lightly. Even the stakeholders should cooperate with the business to ensure efficiency and effectiveness. The business can only run with the support and cooperation from the stakeholders. The stakeholders play an efficient role in deciding the policies and strategies of the business. It is important for every business to ensure that they follow ethical considerations in their business for its smooth functioning.

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Conclusion

Stakeholder’s ethics and value plays an important role in maintaining the brand image of the business. Woolworths limited focus on maintaining its stakeholder’s value and ethics so that it can differentiate itself forum the others in the market. The main areas where the company focus include environment protection, good labour working conditions, customer satisfaction, good relations with suppliers, following government policies, working within the framework of society and others. This helps the company to attain economic, social and global objectives. The company defines itself as an ethically responsible management company which takes efforts to handle all the queries of its stakeholders.

In addition to this, the stakeholders affect the decision making process of the company due tow which it has to ensure that due care of needs and expectations of its stakeholders is taken. The company takes efforts to maintain healthy relations with its stakeholders. Woolworths limited is the market leader in New Zealand and Australia because of the ethical considerations which it follows. It makes sure that it is able to fulfil the global needs without harming the society and environment. Value and ethics include respect, responsibility, integrity, trust and fairness. The company is responsible for all the policies which it incorporates whether related to business or stakeholders.

Woolworths limited understands the requirements of its stakeholders for which it takes care to ensure that they are fully satisfied. It also contributes towards the society and country by satisfying its stakeholders and fulfilling the needs of the society. Fulfilling the needs of the stakeholders help the company to earn more revenue and profits and become market leader. The company is able to increase market size and target customers because of the policies which it adopts. It takes efforts to resolve the complaints and issues of its stakeholders on regular basis. In today’s era of growth and development it is important for every organisation to focus on its internal as well as external policies and strategies so that it can enhance the relations with its stakeholders.

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References:

Carroll, A. and Buchholtz, A. 2014. Business and society: Ethics, sustainability, and stakeholder management. Cengage Learning.
Ferrell, O.C. and Fraedrich, J. 2009. Business ethics 2009 update: Ethical decision making and cases. Cengage Learning.
Freeman, R.E., Harrison, J.S. and Wicks, A.C. 2007. Managing for stakeholders: Survival, reputation, and success. Yale University Press.
Lozano, J.M. 2001. Ethics and organizations: Understanding business ethics as a learning process. Springer.
Peterson, R.A. and Ferrell, O.C. 2005. Business ethics: New challenges for business schools and corporate leaders. M.E. Sharpe.
Weiss, J. 2008. Business ethics: A stakeholder and issues management approach. Cengage Learning.

July 5, 2016