Organizational change is a process that takes place when a firm undergoes a transition from the current state to some future state (Betz, 2011). Such transitions involve deliberate planning and implementation of change; it is such a way that employee resistance is minimized while maximizing the effectiveness of such organizational transformation and transitions (Haddad, 2002). Such changes could be caused by advancement in technology.
Significant technological changes at Best Buy Company have often created major dislocations in its bid to keep with the speed of the technological advancements. For example, the rivals of the company have benefited from consumer behavior that has since shifted towards the internet. The products from the company such as cameras, video game consoles, CDs, and DVDs have all fallen victims of technological change that the company has not yet fully embraced due to the high operational costs associated with such moves (Lee, 2012). The financial capacity of the business to cope with the changes in the internet business was missing. This gave the rivals a competitive advantage over Best Buy Company as most customers did their actual purchases from the rivals since they were able to keep their operating costs relatively lower unlike Best Buy Company.
The deficits in the organizational ability of Best Buy Company in relation to the technological changes facing the electronics industry have worked against it. For example, its internet rivals out-maneuvered it, leading to great losses of the customer base. Many consumers ended up looking for stuff at Best Buy Company but instead purchased the very items elsewhere. This indicates that although technological changes in the industry may directly affect a business, it is upon the leadership of the organization to channel the threats and challenges that come with such changes to opportunities so as to realize the effectiveness and efficiencies that such transitions are intended for.
In embracing technological transitions, human resources must be given primary consideration. For example, the employees must be trained to embrace organizational change processes such as technological developments (Betz, 2011). This can be through training and the assurance that the changes will not cost them their job opportunities. Best Buy Company initially encountered resistance from the employees especially before the e-commerce initiative was launched by the company chief executive. However, the human resource capacity of the company was not adequately prepared for the transition to e-commerce trading. As the company started performing dismally at the stock market due to lack of effective and efficient management of the transitions, most customers shifted to online purchases of electronics from companies that had well trained human resources that enhanced efficiency (Lee, 2012). This finally led to high employee turnover rates from the company.
The big-box store launched by the company in a bid to embrace technology was counterproductive since the employees lacked adequate technical expertise to execute the online business processes. This illustrates just how lack of functional business resources to manage technological change may be detrimental to a firm. In order for a company to benefit from technological innovations and transitions, the functional ability of the business must be supported (Haddad, 2002). Betz cited that this entails empowering the employees with skills, sharing the visions, strategy and goals that the management is striving to achieve through such transitions (Betz, 2011). It is the inspiration and motivation of the employees and effective management of the entire transition process that will yield results. Otherwise, most change initiatives would be met with technical, human and market resistance leading to a slump of the business.
In conclusion, Best Buy Company has encountered great challenges in the management of the technological transitions towards e-commerce. Much of the hurdles were the result of human resource issues, functional ability of the business, technological advancements that are beyond the business capacity and organizational abilities. This illustrates how technological change may impact on an organization.