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Online Platform Development: Rafeeq Essay

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Updated: Aug 17th, 2022

Introduction

Rafeeq is an online platform that offers customized local services by bridging the gap between vendors and customers. The company is also catering the needs of the target customers in the most creative manner. In short, Rafeeq is offering mobile food delivery to meet the ever-changing demands of the people.

Currently, the size of the company is based on 150 to 200 employees (Rafeeq, 2021).

How the application work

A Valid Customer with appropriate identification places an order. The order received by the administration, which acknowledges the order with the restaurant and the customer.

Rafeeq collect the order from the restaurant and confirms that they delivered it to the customer properly and with the best quality.

Potential Problems

  • After the sudden pandemic of covid-19, business was forced to stop their operations. People witnessed global lockdown that negatively impacted on the financial performance of businesses (Ahmad, 2020). Identically, Rafeeq failed to generate the expected revenue for the year of 2020.
  • Along with that, another potential problem is also linked with Covid-19 restrictions. According to World Health Organizations, people are required to practice social distancing to prevent the spread of virus. However, the company is providing mobile delivery services; customer interaction is a must. Hence, Rafeeq is needed to provide their workers with adequate PPEs and good food packaging.
  • Rafeeq is also dealing with the problem of consumer behavior that has been change during the isolation for preventing covid-19 (Pathak and Warpade, 2020).
  • The strategic problem is people have doubts that restaurants and food delivery companies do not follow the guidance of the ministry of public Health.

Goals and Objectives

According to the situation, the goals and objectives of Rafeeq is to generate more revenue in order to overcome the financial loss produced during covid-19 due to the lack of employee which caused by the published Qatar’s travel policy. Which was emphasizing the need for preapproval to re-enter Qatar in the case of residents. Along with that, the behavior of the customers has been changed and continue to change; therefore, the company will perform market research to identity the new trends and changes. Along with that, Rafeeq is committed to comply with the enforcement of preventing covid-19; therefore, personal protective equipment will also be provided to all the employees.

SWOT Analysis

  • Strengths: Trained staff, live delivery tracking system and Strong brand recognition.
  • Weaknesses: Possibility of poor user experience, technology lags, restaurants’ quality control.
  • Opportunities: Large customer base, growing market capacities, technology advancement, new merchant partners.
  • Threats: Covid-19 restrictions, competitors, change consumer behavior.

External Analysis: PESTLE ANALYSIS

  • Political: Three years ago, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut trade with Doha; However, now the blockade has been lifted up providing Qatari businesses the opportunities to improve their financial performance (Aljazeera, 2020). Rafeeq also has the benefit to improve their growth performance by operating in the stable market.
  • Economic: In the second quarter, the Qatar economy increased by 6.1% ; however, the country is expected to rebounds in domestic and foreign demands that helps in improving financial status of people (Focus Economics, 2020). This situation impacts on the sales of the businesses, as it will benefit in increasing customer base.
  • Social: Life expectancy in Qatar is 80.7 years; whereas the largest cities of Qatar are Doha and Ar Rayyan (Worldometer, 2021). Therefore, the company is required to focus on its long-term stability plan while expanding the business roots in the mentioned cities.
  • Technology: the evolution of technology is increasing rapidly, forcing businesses to alter their existing practices (Momani and Jamous, 2017). This factor impacts the change management practices of Rafeeq.
  • Legal: After covid-19, businesses are forced to work remotely while following the safety measures (Ahmad, 2020). This factor increases the difficulties of controlling the employees tracking.
  • Environmental: Qatar is taking actions for the development of a sustainable environment as well as forcing business to work under the proposed restriction (Qatar Gov, 2021). Hence, the positive brand positioning in the market can be made by contributing in the sustainable environment development procedures.

Internal Analysis: VRIO ANALYSIS

  • Valuable: The services mobile application provided by Rafeeq is increasing the value of the business.
  • Rare: Rafeeq application include routine system maintenance – upgrade and security updates which is rare in food delivery company.
  • Imitate: The company is working under the influence of corporate management that is difficult to be imitated by the competitors.
  • Organizational Services: Rafeeq is organizing the services between vendors and customers over its platform (Rafeeq, 2021).

External Analysis: PORTER’S FIVE FORCES

  • Threat of entry: Technological advancement is increasing rapidly; therefore, businesses are shifting towards mobile application (Momani and Jamous, 2017). Hence, this forces is moderate, as start ups with minimum investment can be established.
  • Threat of competition: This force is high, since the competition is tough between Foodak, Talabat and Rafeeq.
  • Threat of substitute: People are highly influenced by technology and mobile food delivery services is high appreciated (Rafeeq, 2021). Therefore this force is relatively low.
  • Bargaining power of suppliers: Rafeeq has a prominent position in the market thus, this force is low.
  • Bargaining power of customers: Rafeeq is already providing customers with reasonable prices; hence this forces is also low.

Competitive Environments

  • Economic Impacts: Increased food delivery applications encouraged the opening of new restaurants, which led to creating new jobs, like chefs and administrative staff in restaurants, delivery people or as programmers behind the Apps/online platforms.
  • Social Impacts: Online Food Delivery impacts the relationship between consumers and their food by changing the way consumers obtain, prepare and consume food. Its also impacted on the public health.
  • Environmental Impacts: One of the most pressing environmental concerns evident from the dramatic increase in online food delivery is the sheer volume of plastic waste generated, and how to deal with it. The effectiveness in which different countries are dealing with the plastic waste is depending on how well developed their recycling infrastructure is.

Action Plan

  • Design an effective management system to provide proper guidelines to the employees
  • Employees’ knowledge of buying materials, equipment, and/or facilities, as well as inventory management, must be improved.
  • Encourage employees to be able to obey simple verbal and written directions. Reading and writing skills are essential.
  • Properly understand customer’s demands to fulfil their needs.

Market-Based Measures

The annual revenue of the company is estimated at $22.87 million in 2020. Along with that, Rafeeq could operate effectively in restaurant and care, pharmacy, local retailers, flower shop and market, which the business has recently expanded. Along with that, the business is providing top rated call center services and wide coverage delivery with the help of highly professional workers (Rafeeq, 2020).

According to the status, customers are positively responding to the business; therefore, the total number of application downloads has been continuously increasing. Along with that, the vendors trust has been escalated, which is allowing the company to increase its workforce (Rafeeq, 2021).

Timeline

Above is the timeline for Rafeeq, beginning with the company’s establishment in 2018. Mainly, by the end of 2018, Rafeeq launched its application for Android and iOS users, allowing them to access the delivery service’s main features. During the first months of 2019, the service had its first 1,000 customers. During this period, Rafeeq signed partnership agreements with 50 local restaurants. Finally, the recent benchmark is working with more than 150 employees, which happened in 2021.

Value Chain Analysis

Value chain analysis for Rafeeq
Table 1. Value chain analysis for Rafeeq (created by the author).

Above is the value chain analysis for Rafeeq presented in Table 1. Technology development is the central element in Rafeeq’s operations since this business delivers services through mobile applications. The inbound logistics are based on partnerships with restaurants, which prepare food for the customer’s order. The outbound logistics are also managed through the application, which assigned a company’s courier for each order. Next, technology development and application maintenance are managed through in-house technical specialists. The advertisements are controlled primarily through social media and other digital platforms. Finally, customer support managers are responsible for resolving conflicts and communicating with the clients.

Conclusion

Managers can’t manage their employees if they don’t know how to communicate with them. Sending messages is only half the battle, knowing how to listen to their employees is just as important as getting your message across.

In order to be an effective communicator and leader, they must:

Be consistent

With providing feedback, both negative and positive, and make sure that they are always available to the employees when they need them.

Engage your employees

With meaningful workplace talk. This will help to keep them in the loop with how your employees are doing and what challenges they may be facing.

Lead by example

If your behavior and actions as a leader in the workplace don’t match up with the messages that you are sending, don’t expect employees to listen,. It’s paramount that everything they are telling them employee’s lines up with their behavior.

Be sincere

When addressing employees. This will always be a more effective form of communication than having a distanced corporate tone.

Use a personal touch

When at all possible, communicate face-to-face rather than email or phone. This is very refreshing in an e-communication world.

References

Aljazeera. (2021). Web.

Ahmad, T. (2020). Corona virus (covid-19) pandemic and work from home: Challenges of cybercrimes and cybersecurity. Available at SSRN 3568830.

FocusEconomic. (2020). Web.

Momani, A. M., & Jamous, M. (2017). The evolution of technology acceptance theories. International Journal of Contemporary Computer Research (IJCCR), 1(1), 51-58.

Pathak, G., & Warpade, S. (2020). Impact of Lockdown Due to COVID-19 on Consumer Behaviour While Selecting Retailer for Essential Goods. Pathak, GP, & Warpade, S.(2020). Impact of Lockdown due to COVID, 19, 282-289.

Qatar Gov. (2021). Web.

Rafeeq. (2021). We Deliver everywhere. Web.

Rafeeq. (2021). About Us. Web.

Rafeeq. (n.d.). Web.

Worldometer. (2021). Web.

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