This year’s project was titled, “How U.S.-based cabinet manufacturers can compete against Chinese imports.” Students Chris Baker, Jing Jin, Altanzul Lkhagvasuran and Qianli Wang were the project managers while Faculty Advisor Paul Blossom and Executive Partners Paul Langenus and John Wineinger provided overall project assistance and recommendations on how to execute the presentation.
Their research included reviewing seven large competitors from a customer experience perspective. After gaining a basic understanding, they dove into details from a top-down approach, then individually, from a bottom-up approach. They noted that since 2006, there have been two strong disruptors in the industry: imports from China and small-size businesses rapidly gaining market share. Not to mention, the recent tariff impacts, which have been felt throughout the industry with trade tension expected to sustain in the short-run.
The students also found competitors are growing at a double-digit rate and have a shorter lead time for cabinet deliveries, high efficiency, good relationships with dealers and a great customer experience.
As a result of their extensive research, the students provided two recommendations: 1) Improve the supply chain and 2) Enhance the customer experience through the service platform.
“It is an honor and a privilege to continuously evolve our relationship with William & Mary and work with students pursuing their MBA,” said Craig. “Through this joint venture, the students gain greater education on the cabinet industry and advance their research skills that will guide them in their careers.”