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The current economic environment is an opportunity to review the foundations of your business and ensure your time and effort is targeted in the areas that will reap the most rewards.

The first step in this process is to review and understand your Sustainable Competitive Advantage ("SCA").

Sustainable Competitive Advantage (SCA)

Determining the SCA for your business requires an understanding of your customer's needs and preferences.  No matter what industry you are in, whether it is Manufacturing, Retail or Real Estate everyone needs to have an SCA!

In marketing. SCA represents an advantage that one business has relative to a competing business.  For an SCA to be effective it must be:

  • Sustainable
  • Hard to Copy
  • Unique
  • Superior to the Competition
  • Applicable to Multiple Situations
A competitive advantage arises out of activities that provide high value to the customer and the supplier has a strong ability to beat their competitors.  Examples of SCA's include factors such as quickest turnaround time, high product quality, low cost production techniques, patents and copyrights, government protection of simply a good reputation.

Similar to when an organisation has a clear vision, the benefits of understanding your SCA include:
  • Quicker decision marking
  • Better time management
  • Keep you focused on the customers
Without a clear picture of your SCA you may find yourself going around in circles with no clear strategy.  Identify and understand your SCA and it will become an integral part of your business and an essential driver in any decision making process.

Summarise your SCA in a simple specific statement.  This is what we call the "We Win" statement.  For example:

"We will win by having the best response time in our industry."

It is also useful to have a "We Will Not Win" statement such as:

"We will NOT win by simply competing on price."

Of course, there's more than one way you can win in the marketplace.  You just need to find the way that will provide the most value to your customers and the greatest impact on you and your business.

To sustain your SCA through today's fast changing competitive environment an organisation must be alert, agile and always able to find an advantage no matter what changes occur.  You therefore need to ensure your SCA is regularly checked and formally reviewed each year to keep a step ahead of the current environment and to implement strategy changes.  Take note this is not a process to be rushed; getting it wrong could bring out the worst key issues.  Take time to reflect on your potential SCA before your commit.

Having a clear SCA is critical to the success of your business - especially now!

Do you know your SCA?  Do you need to revisit your SCA given the current marketplace?

Contact PRT Chartered Accountants to initiate the first step towards great improvements to your business .