Informing Strategic Decision-Making Through Sales and Staffing Data Analysis

Client: Housing Works Thrift Shops
Faculty: Edward Sermier
Team: Valerie Boileau, Molly Goodwin, Rachel Hodes, Tiffany Tribbitt
Year: 2013

Housing Works, a nonprofit dedicated to helping those affected by HIV/AIDS, operates Thrift Shops around the New York City area. Housing Works requested the Capstone team to analyze existing sales, staffing, and customer survey data in order to inform its most pressing strategic decisions including upcoming shop lease expiration, fluctuating staffing levels, and pressure to continue growing. The team visited and analyzed Housing Works’ Product Distribution Center, which sorts and distributes all clothing donations, and made recommendations for how it might change or improve current practices in order to increase profitability and reduce overhead cost. By incorporating research about changes in consumer preferences, the unstable economic environment, and wealth density in the Thrift Shops’ respective neighborhoods, the team worked to produce a comprehensive presentation and Executive Summary report outlining analyses and recommendations to be employed by the Thrift Shops’ senior management and Board of Directors.