Many of the employees have suggested that the company might try to take greater advantage of internet sales and marketing. E-markets can provide immense opportunities to automate supply processes, increase operational efficiency, reduce overhead and expand a company’s market at minimal costs. A primary factor in increasing revenue and cost-cutting is a commitment to an integrated e-systems process that will create more contacts and sales at minimal costs. Such a process also encourages buyers to send purchase orders via e-markets. Billing clients using an electronic invoice system and automated sales and customer support system can lower overhead by 25-30% while at the same time reducing errors in the process. Such an electronic system may well allow the company to become more efficient and productive, thus increasing sales while holding down non-staff costs and preventing layoffs. Axson (2003) provides a variety of methods that a firm’s executives can use to evaluate alternatives to their current ways of doing business. Axson argues that companies should “benchmark” themselves by looking to more successful enterprises and copying them. Axson sees benchmarking as a necessity today as “no organization can afford the luxury of failing to leverage acknowledged best practices” (p.21). This is a strategy that Artemis should follow. While benchmarking can lead to downsizing strategies, that is not necessarily the best thing to do. Benchmarking in a positive way can produce unprecedented results, but Artemis should look at more positive alternatives and inject a bit of creativity in order to come up with a solution to its problem. Downsizing is swift and cuts costs immediately, but it is not the only alternative to cutting costs or increasing productivity. Artemis should look at the entire range of strategies that other firms have used to decrease costs while retaining staff.
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