Introduction to SWOT Analysis
SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix for Mastercard (United States)
Based on various researches at Oak Spring University , Mastercard is operating in a macro-environment that has been destablized by – increasing household debt because of falling income levels, banking and financial system is disrupted by Bitcoin and other crypto currencies, cloud computing is disrupting traditional business models, geopolitical disruptions, customer relationship management is fast transforming because of increasing concerns over data privacy, there is increasing trade war between United States & China, competitive advantages are harder to sustain because of technology dispersion,
wage bills are increasing, technology disruption, etc
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- 100% Plagiarism Free
- On Time Delivery | 27x7
- PayPal Secure
- 300 Words / Page
Introduction to SWOT Analysis of Mastercard
SWOT stands for an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats . At Oak Spring University, we believe that Mastercard can use SWOT analysis as a strategic management tool to assess the current internal strengths and weaknesses of the Mastercard, and to figure out the opportunities and threats in the macro environment – technological, environmental, political, economic, social, demographic, etc in which Mastercard operates in.
According to Harvard Business Review, 75% of the managers use SWOT analysis for various purposes such as – evaluating current scenario, strategic planning, new venture feasibility, personal growth goals, new market entry, Go To market strategies, portfolio management and strategic trade-off assessment, organizational restructuring, etc.
SWOT Objectives / Importance of SWOT Analysis and SWOT Matrix
SWOT analysis of Mastercard can be done for the following purposes –
1. Strategic planning of Mastercard
2. Improving business portfolio management of Mastercard
3. Assessing feasibility of the new initiative in United States
4. Making a Consumer Financial Services sector specific business decision
5. Set goals for the organization
6. Organizational restructuring of Mastercard
Strengths of Mastercard | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Strengths in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis
The strengths of Mastercard are -
Cross disciplinary teams
– Horizontal connected teams at the Mastercard are driving operational speed, building greater agility, and keeping the organization nimble to compete with new competitors. It helps are organization to ideate new ideas, and execute them swiftly in the marketplace.
Sustainable margins compare to other players in Consumer Financial Services industry
– Mastercard has clearly differentiated products in the market place. This has enabled Mastercard to fetch slight price premium compare to the competitors in the Consumer Financial Services industry. The sustainable margins have also helped Mastercard to invest into research and development (R&D) and innovation.
High switching costs
– The high switching costs that Mastercard has built up over years in its products and services combo offer has resulted in high retention of customers, lower marketing costs, and greater ability of the firm to focus on its customers.
Ability to recruit top talent
– Mastercard is one of the leading players in the Consumer Financial Services industry in United States. It is in a position to attract the best talent available in United States. The firm has a robust talent identification program that helps in identifying the brightest.
Superior customer experience
– The customer experience strategy of Mastercard in Consumer Financial Services industry is based on four key concepts – personalization, simplification of complex needs, prompt response, and continuous engagement.
Diverse revenue streams
– Mastercard is present in almost all the verticals within the Consumer Financial Services industry. This has provided Mastercard a diverse revenue stream that has helped it to survive disruptions such as global pandemic in Covid-19, financial disruption of 2008, and supply chain disruption of 2021.
Digital Transformation in Consumer Financial Services industry
- digital transformation varies from industry to industry. For Mastercard digital transformation journey comprises differing goals based on market maturity, customer technology acceptance, and organizational culture. Mastercard has successfully integrated the four key components of digital transformation – digital integration in processes, digital integration in marketing and customer relationship management, digital integration into the value chain, and using technology to explore new products and market opportunities.
Strong track record of project management in the Consumer Financial Services industry
– Mastercard is known for sticking to its project targets. This enables the firm to manage – time, project costs, and have sustainable margins on the projects.
Innovation driven organization
– Mastercard is one of the most innovative firm in Consumer Financial Services sector.
– The operational resilience strategy of Mastercard comprises – understanding the underlying the factors in the Consumer Financial Services industry, building diversified operations across different geographies so that disruption in one part of the world doesn’t impact the overall performance of the firm, and integrating the various business operations and processes through its digital transformation drive.
Ability to lead change in Consumer Financial Services
– Mastercard is one of the leading players in the Consumer Financial Services industry in United States. Over the years it has not only transformed the business landscape in the Consumer Financial Services industry in United States but also across the existing markets. The ability to lead change has enabled Mastercard in – penetrating new markets, reaching out to new customers, and providing different value propositions to different customers in the international markets.
Training and development
– Mastercard has one of the best training and development program in Financial industry. The effectiveness of the training programs can be measured in – employees retention, in-house promotion, loyalty, new venture initiation, lack of conflict, and high level of both employees and customer engagement.
Weaknesses of Mastercard | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Weaknesses in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis
The weaknesses of Mastercard are -
Ability to respond to the competition
– As the decision making is very deliberative at Mastercard, in the dynamic environment of Consumer Financial Services industry it has struggled to respond to the nimble upstart competition. Mastercard has reasonably good record with similar level competitors but it has struggled with new entrants taking away niches of its business.
Lack of clear differentiation of Mastercard products
– To increase the profitability and margins on the products, Mastercard needs to provide more differentiated products than what it is currently offering in the marketplace.
Slow decision making process
– As mentioned earlier in the report, Mastercard has a very deliberative decision making approach. This approach has resulted in prudent decisions, but it has also resulted in missing opportunities in the Consumer Financial Services industry over the last five years. Mastercard even though has strong showing on digital transformation primary two stages, it has struggled to capitalize the power of digital transformation in marketing efforts and new venture efforts.
Workers concerns about automation
– As automation is fast increasing in the Consumer Financial Services industry, Mastercard needs to come up with a strategy to reduce the workers concern regarding automation. Without a clear strategy, it could lead to disruption and uncertainty within the organization.
Need for greater diversity
– Mastercard has taken concrete steps on diversity, equity, and inclusion. But the efforts so far has resulted in limited success. It needs to expand the recruitment and selection process to hire more people from the minorities and underprivileged background.
High operating costs
– Compare to the competitors, Mastercard has high operating costs in the Consumer Financial Services industry. This can be harder to sustain given the new emerging competition from nimble players who are using technology to attract Mastercard lucrative customers.
High dependence on Mastercard ‘s star products
– The top 2 products and services of Mastercard still accounts for major business revenue. This dependence on star products in Consumer Financial Services industry has resulted into insufficient focus on developing new products, even though Mastercard has relatively successful track record of launching new products.
Low market penetration in new markets
– Outside its home market of United States, Mastercard needs to spend more promotional, marketing, and advertising efforts to penetrate international markets.
Products dominated business model
– Even though Mastercard has some of the most successful models in the Consumer Financial Services industry, this business model has made each new product launch extremely critical for continuous financial growth of the organization. Mastercard should strive to include more intangible value offerings along with its core products and services.
Slow to harness new channels of communication
– Even though competitors are using new communication channels such as Instagram, Tiktok, and Snap, Mastercard is slow explore the new channels of communication. These new channels of communication can help Mastercard to provide better information regarding Consumer Financial Services products and services. It can also build an online community to further reach out to potential customers.
High bargaining power of channel partners in Consumer Financial Services industry
– because of the regulatory requirements in United States, Mastercard is facing high bargaining power of the channel partners. So far it has not able to streamline the operations to reduce the bargaining power of the value chain partners in the Consumer Financial Services industry.
Mastercard Opportunities | External Strategic Factors
What are Opportunities in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis
The opportunities of Mastercard are -
Use of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies for transactions in Consumer Financial Services industry
– The popularity of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies as asset class and medium of transaction has opened new opportunities for Mastercard in the Consumer Financial Services industry. Now Mastercard can target international markets with far fewer capital restrictions requirements than the existing system.
Developing new processes and practices
– Mastercard can develop new processes and procedures in Consumer Financial Services industry using technology such as automation using artificial intelligence, real time transportation and products tracking, 3D modeling for concept development and new products pilot testing etc.
Finding new ways to collaborate
– Covid-19 has not only transformed business models of companies in Consumer Financial Services industry, but it has also influenced the consumer preferences. Mastercard can tie-up with other value chain partners to explore new opportunities regarding meeting customer demands and building a rewarding and engaging relationship.
Building a culture of innovation
– managers at Mastercard can make experimentation a productive activity and build a culture of innovation using approaches such as – mining transaction data, A/B testing of websites and selling platforms, engaging potential customers over various needs, and building on small ideas in the Consumer Financial Services industry.
Buying journey improvements
– Mastercard can improve the customer journey of consumers in the Consumer Financial Services industry by using analytics and artificial intelligence. It can provide automated chats to help consumers solve their own problems, provide online suggestions to get maximum out of the products and services, and help consumers to build a community where they can interact with each other to develop new features and uses.
Reconfiguring business model
– The expansion of digital payment system, the bringing down of international transactions costs using Bitcoin and other blockchain based currencies, etc can help Mastercard to reconfigure its entire business model. For example it can used blockchain based technologies to reduce piracy of its products in the big markets such as China. Secondly it can use the popularity of e-commerce in various developing markets to build a Direct to Customer business model rather than the current Channel Heavy distribution network.
Better consumer reach
– The expansion of the 5G network will help Mastercard to increase its market reach. Mastercard will be able to reach out to new customers. Secondly 5G will also provide technology framework to build new tools and products that can help more immersive consumer experience and faster consumer journey.
Learning at scale
– Online learning technologies has now opened space for Mastercard to conduct training and development for its employees across the world. This will result in not only reducing the cost of training but also help employees in different part of the world to integrate with the headquarter work culture, ethos, and standards.
– Mastercard can use the latest technology developments to improve its manufacturing and designing process in Consumer Financial Services sector. It can use CAD and 3D printing to build a quick prototype and pilot testing products. It can leverage automation using machine learning and artificial intelligence to do faster production at lowers costs, and it can leverage the growth in satellite and tracking technologies to improve inventory management, transportation, and shipping.
Increase in government spending
– As the United States and other governments are increasing social spending and infrastructure spending to build economies post Covid-19, Mastercard can use these opportunities to build new business models that can help the communities that Mastercard operates in. Secondly it can use opportunities from government spending in Consumer Financial Services sector.
Reforming the budgeting process
- By establishing new metrics that will be used to evaluate both existing and potential projects Mastercard can not only reduce the costs of the project but also help it in integrating the projects with other processes within the organization.
Harnessing reconfiguration of the global supply chains
– As the trade war between US and China heats up in the coming years, Mastercard can build a diversified supply chain model across various countries in - South East Asia, India, and other parts of the world. This reconfiguration of global supply chain can help Mastercard to buy more products closer to the markets, and it can leverage its size and influence to get better deal from the local markets.
Using analytics as competitive advantage
– Mastercard has spent a significant amount of money and effort to integrate analytics and machine learning into its operations in Consumer Financial Services sector. This continuous investment in analytics has enabled Mastercard to build a competitive advantage using analytics. The analytics driven competitive advantage can help Mastercard to build faster Go To Market strategies, better consumer insights, developing relevant product features, and building a highly efficient supply chain.
Threats Mastercard External Strategic Factors
What are Threats in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis
The threats of Mastercard are -
Technology acceleration in Forth Industrial Revolution
– Mastercard has witnessed rapid integration of technology during Covid-19 in the Consumer Financial Services industry. As one of the leading players in the industry, Mastercard needs to keep up with the evolution of technology in the Consumer Financial Services sector. According to Mckinsey study top managers believe that the adoption of technology in operations, communications is 20-25 times faster than what they planned in the beginning of 2019.
Capital market disruption
– During the Covid-19, Dow Jones has touched record high. The valuations of a number of companies are way beyond their existing business model potential. This can lead to capital market correction which can put a number of suppliers, collaborators, value chain partners in great financial difficulty. It will directly impact the business of Mastercard.
Backlash against dominant players
– US Congress and other legislative arms of the government are getting tough on big business especially technology companies. The digital arm of Mastercard business can come under increasing regulations regarding data privacy, data security, etc.
Easy access to finance
– Easy access to finance in Consumer Financial Services industry will also reduce the barriers to entry in the industry, thus putting downward pressure on the prices because of increasing competition. Mastercard can utilize it by borrowing at lower rates and invest it into research and development, capital expenditure to fortify its core competitive advantage.
– Mastercard needs to prepare for regulatory challenges as consumer protection groups and other pressure groups are vigorously advocating for more regulations on big business - to reduce inequality, to create a level playing field, to product data privacy and consumer privacy, to reduce the influence of big money on democratic institutions, etc. This can lead to significant changes in the Consumer Financial Services industry regulations.
Barriers of entry lowering
– As technology is more democratized, the barriers to entry to Consumer Financial Services industry are lowering. It can presents Mastercard with greater competitive threats in the near to medium future. Secondly it will also put downward pressure on pricing throughout the Consumer Financial Services sector.
High level of anxiety and lack of motivation
– the Great Resignation in United States is the sign of broader dissatisfaction among the workforce in United States. Mastercard needs to understand the core reasons impacting the Consumer Financial Services industry. This will help it in building a better workplace.
Increasing international competition and downward pressure on margins
– Apart from technology driven competitive advantage dilution, Mastercard can face downward pressure on margins from increasing competition from international players. The international players have stable revenue in their home market and can use those resources to penetrate Mastercard prominent markets.
Technology disruption because of hacks, piracy etc
– The colonial pipeline illustrated, how vulnerable modern organization are to international hackers, miscreants, and disruptors. The cyber security interruption, data leaks, etc can seriously jeopardize the future growth of the organization.
Shortening product life cycle
– it is one of the major threat that Mastercard is facing in Consumer Financial Services sector. It can lead to higher research and development costs, higher marketing expenses, lower customer loyalty, etc.
Stagnating economy with rate increase
– Mastercard can face lack of demand in the market place because of Fed actions to reduce inflation. This can lead to sluggish growth in the economy, lower demands, lower investments, higher borrowing costs, and consolidation in the Consumer Financial Services industry.
Increasing wage structure of Mastercard
– Post Covid-19 there is a sharp increase in the wages especially in the jobs that require interaction with people. The increasing wages can put downward pressure on the margins of Mastercard.
Instability in the European markets
– European Union markets are facing three big challenges post Covid – expanded balance sheets, Brexit related business disruption, and aggressive Russia looking to distract the existing security mechanism. Mastercard will face different problems in different parts of Europe. For example it will face inflationary pressures in UK, France, and Germany, balance sheet expansion and demand challenges in Southern European countries, and geopolitical instability in the Eastern Europe.
Weighted SWOT Analysis of Mastercard Template, Example
Not all factors mentioned under the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants in the SWOT Analysis are equal. Managers at Mastercard needs to zero down on the relative importance of each factor mentioned in the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants.
We can provide the relative importance to each factor by assigning relative weights. Weighted SWOT analysis process is a three stage process –
First stage for doing weighted SWOT analysis of Mastercard is to rank the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. This will help you to assess the most important strengths and weaknesses of the firm and which one of the strengths and weaknesses mentioned in the initial lists are marginal and can be left out.
Second stage for conducting weighted SWOT analysis of Mastercard is to give probabilities to the external strategic factors thus better understanding the opportunities and threats arising out of macro environment changes and developments.
Third stage of constructing weighted SWOT analysis of Mastercard to provide strategic recommendations includes – joining likelihood of external strategic factors such as opportunities and threats to the internal strategic factors – strengths and weaknesses. You should start with external factors as they will provide the direction of the overall industry. Secondly by joining probabilities with internal strategic factors can help the company not only strategic fit but also the most probably strategic trade-off that Mastercard needs to make to build a sustainable competitive advantage.