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BMP6001 Dissertation 2021-22

Assessment 1 Brief: (Short Report -1200 Words)

Write a research proposal of 1200 words (±10%).  In this you will outline the context of your research and provide motivation for your work; you will identify a driving research question and clarify the aims and objectives of your proposed research; you will present a short, critical review of key areas of relevant literature and use this to develop an initial conceptual framework; you will briefly present the theoretical perspective underpinning your proposed research approach and use this to justify your research design;  finally, you will conclude with a brief discussion of limitations of your proposed approach and state expected research outcomes.

Solution:

The Hut Group – Proposal

Topic: An investigation of analyzation into business growth and expansion across multiple distribution centres.

1.   Introduction

The Hut Group offers beauty and well-being services by operating over 100 International websites. The business is known to take brands directly to the customers (The Hut Group, 2021). The growth of the retail and technology world and the need for brands to contact the customers in the shortest time possible has helped in growing the business of the company. The wish of the brands to enter unexplored markets and many more brands entering the field have made it crucial to assess the growth and the competitive working of the Hut Group (Dewez, 2020). In 2017, the company was awarded with “International Growth Retailer” of the year award (The Hut Group, 2021).

The KPMG International Growth Retailer of the Year has made an achievement of its aspiring worldwide extension methodology in only three years. Hardly any retail organizations can portray themselves as really worldwide, however The Hut Group’s procedure of fostering an innovation stage that can uphold fast centralized roll out close by acquisitions has accomplished precisely that. The intent of Hut Group is to drive global incomes by putting time and assets in a completely in-house model, making an adaptable worldwide innovation stage “This is a stage where The Hut Group can rush on to the front end with negligible additional work and cost. It is very much contributed, with a decent and progressively solid supervisory crew”. That The Hut Group accomplished that in only three years likewise won their acclaim (The Hut Group (THG), 2021).

Research Question

  • How to be cost effective during business growth into multiple distribution centres?

Research Aims and Objectives

Aim – The aim of the research is to demonstrate the growth of company The Hut Group in a competitive e-commerce market resulting in expansion and readjustment of brands across distribution centres.

Research objectives –

  • To identify the ways to accommodate new brands and clients with the business.
  • To assess the ways to improve the business functions of the Hut Group to remain competitive.
  • To identify the ways to reduce the cost of working for the company.

Research Problem –

Due to the expansion of fulfilment distribution centres THG have been spreading out specific brands to different warehouses to improve business function and to be able to accommodate new brands and clients.

2. Literature Review

The Hut Group has experienced a growth in revenue of £1.6 billion which was a 42% growth in the year-on-year profit of the business in 2020 (Ward, 2021). A key element in this has been the growth of the e-commerce and digital world (Rigby, 2021). This helped the company to make great profits over the years and get itself listed on the London Stock Exchange. The Hut Group allows businesses to reach the customers helping them grow their business along with making things convenient for the customers (Jack Webster, 2020).

The growth of the Hut Group can be witnessed in the name of the expansion of the warehouse. The winner of the International Growth Retailer of the Year Award, 2017 states the expansion strategy of the business that has offered it great results (The Hut Group, 2017). The stock of the company listed on the London Stock Exchange should be made available to the customers and the general public in order to raise money for the expansion and growth of the company. It has been because of the growth of the online and beauty sector and investing in a model that has generated great results for the company and its growth (Reddy, 2021).

The flotation of the company in the largest share sale in London has proved to be another part of this growth and expansion of the business (The Guradian, 2021). Forming networks with other groups and names such as the Airport City Manchester has also offered greater opportunities for the growth and success of the company. It is because it will help in acquiring more customers and markets for the business (Shone, 2020).

The capital expenditure of the Hut Group is stated to be around 10 – 12% of the revenue of the company. The acceleration in the growth plans of the business is expected to have an increase in the same. It is because the business is making efforts in order to meet up with the demand of the brand along with the elevated sales of the business (The Hut Group (THG), 2021). But the growth and expansion plan of the Hut Group has cost the business a lot of money. This has been a problem as a lot of plans and development had to be pushed back because of opening new warehouses and expanding the business of The Hut Group. A move of this kind might not be fruitful for the longer run, in terms of the growth and success of the company. The move has also created too many competitions for The Hut Growth (Crux, 2020).

Figure 1:Reasons for the increase in cost of the Hut Group and its possible solution

The conceptual model proposed in figure 1 indicates the factors that have led to the increase in the cost of Hut Group. The model also suggests the reasons for this growth and proposes a possible solution. This information is extracted through the literature survey conducted in the previous work. The proposed model would be the base for future research on this selected topic.

3. Methodology

Theoretical Perspective and Research Paradigm

The method of conducting research depends on the aims and objectives that need to be achieved. The use of research onion by Saunders (Sahay, 2016) states the different steps of the methodology that will help in developing an effective methodology for successful research.

Based on the research aims and questions, it is stated that the interpretivism philosophy would be most appropriate (Kumar, 2018). It is because it is suitable for in-depth and qualitative investigation which would help in fulfilling the objectives of the research.

Data Collection and Analysis

Data collection states the collection of data for the purpose of making a meaningful understanding based on the information collected through different methods. There are two types of data collection methods – primary and secondary data. There are two types of data – qualitative and quantitative data (Bairagi and Munot, 2019).

The primary data is the one that is collected for the first time for the purpose of the research. The secondary form of data collection is used based on the different information that is already available in the form of journals, articles, websites, books and online publications.

Qualitative data is the type of data that helps in acquiring subjective and informational detail whereas quantitative data is the one that helps in getting numerical and statistical data.

In order to carry out this research, the research would make use of both the primary and secondary forms of data collection. The primary data would be collected through the qualitative data method (Paradis et al., 2016). A series of interview questions would be used to gain information about the issues or problems of cost related to the growth of the Hut Group along with the ways to remain competitive in the e-commerce market.

Sampling Approach

The use of non-probability sampling method would be used as the researcher will not be well-aware of all the elements or respondents. The use of convenience sampling method would be used as this would use the convenience and judgement of the researcher for the research. The sample selected would be people working in the e-commerce field in relation to beauty and wellness. These would be people with adequate experience in the field. In order to carry out the research, a total of 15 respondents would be selected. A telephonic interview would be conducted with them stating the growth journey and the problems concerning this growth for the Hut Group.

4. Conclusion

Limitations of Proposed Approach

The limitation of the proposed approach is that the data would be collected based on the understanding of the researcher which may not be suitable in different regards (Connelly, 2014).

. Also, as the qualitative research method is used, one would not be able to assess the number or statistical data for the growth of the business of The Hut Group.

Expected Research Outcomes

The expected outcomes from this research would include the problems that have raised because of the growth of The Hut Group. This would help in better understanding of the areas that the business needs to work upon to get similar results. It would mean planning the expansion considering the cost and the best way to manage the finances so that the Hut group can focus on other aspects of the business as well. Along with that, it would help in acquiring information about the areas that can help in the competitive advantage of The Hut Group.

References

Bairagi, V. and Munot, M.V. eds., 2019. Research methodology: A practical and scientific approach. CRC Press.

Connelly, L.M. (2014) ‘Ethical considerations in research studies’, MedSurg Nursing, 23(1), 54+, available: https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A360608990/AONE?u=anon~8ecd1df&sid=googleScholar&xid=50a52844 [accessed 03 Nov 2021].

Crux, J., 2020. The Hut proves a hit after upgrading top-line guidance | Shares Magazine. [online] Sharesmagazine.co.uk. Available at: <https://www.sharesmagazine.co.uk/news/shares/the-hut-proves-a-hit-after-upgrading-top-line-guidance> [Accessed 4 November 2021].

Dewez, A., 2020. 🛍 The Hut Group – How to Thrive in Ecommerce?. [online] Alexandre.substack.com. Available at: <https://alexandre.substack.com/p/-the-hut-group-how-to-thrive-in-ecommerce> [Accessed 27 October 2021].

Kumar, R., 2018. Research Methodology: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners. SAGE.

Paradis, E., O’Brien, B., Nimmon, L., Bandiera, G. and Martimianakis, M., 2016. Design: Selection of Data Collection Methods. Journal of Graduate Medical Education, [online] 8(2), pp.263-264. Available at: <https://meridian.allenpress.com/jgme/article/8/2/263/34418/Design-Selection-of-Data-Collection-Methods> [Accessed 3 November 2021].

REDDY, B., 2021. FOUNDERS WITHOUT LIMITS. [S.l.]: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS.

Rigby, C., 2021. The Hut Group reports 42% first-half sales growth as shoppers continue to shift online. [online] Internet Retailing. Available at: <https://internetretailing.net/strategy-and-innovation/strategy-and-innovation/the-hut-group-reports-42-first-half-sales-growth-as-shoppers-continue-to-shift-online-23722> [Accessed 27 October 2021].

Sahay, A., 2016. Peeling Saunder’s research onion. Research Gate, Art, pp.1-5.

Shone, E., 2020. Contracts exchanged for The Hut Group’s £1bn HQ at Airport City Manchester. [online] Property Week. Available at: <https://www.propertyweek.com/news/contracts-exchanged-for-the-hut-groups-1bn-hq-at-airport-city-manchester/5106345.article> [Accessed 27 October 2021].

the Guardian. 2021. THG | Business | The Guardian. [online] Available at: <https://www.theguardian.com/business/hut-group> [Accessed 4 November 2021].

The Hut Group (THG). 2017. The Hut Group wins International Growth Retailer of the Year at the Retail Week Awards 2017 – The Hut Group (THG). [online] Available at: <https://www.thg.com/news/hut-group-win-international-growth-retailer-year-retail-week-awards-2017/> [Accessed 4 November 2021].

The Hut Group. 2021. Our Business. [online] Available at: <https://www.thg.com/about-us/> [Accessed 27 October 2021].

The Hut Group (THG). 2021. Preliminary FY20 results and first quarter trading statement – The Hut Group (THG). [online] Available at: <https://www.thg.com/news/preliminary-fy20-results-and-first-quarter-trading-statement/> [Accessed 5 November 2021].

Ward, T., 2021. The rise and rise of The Hut Group – The Gentleman’s Journal. [online] The Gentleman’s Journal. Available at: <https://www.thegentlemansjournal.com/article/the-rise-and-rise-of-the-hut-group/> [Accessed 4 November 2021].

Webster, J., 2020. Equity Focus: The Hut Group and its IPO. [online] Uobinvest.org. Available at: <https://www.uobinvest.org/post/equity-focus-the-hut-group-and-its-ipo> [Accessed 4 November 2021].

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