The optometry center project entails the development of a total eye care centre. The optometrist store will carry out activities such as clinical assessment of eyes and prescribing to customers the right products. The store will offer glasses, sunglasses, and contact lenses.
The project is viable in that almost 480,000 Australians are visually impaired. This makes the Optometry and Optical Dispensing industry a target for many investors. The industry could generate revenue of $1.57 billion, indicating an increase of almost 0.8% from 2010. In terms of total spending in the health care sector, Optometry and Optical Dispensing industry takes 0.8% of the total expenditure.
Thus, prior to commencement of the business, the entrepreneur needs to source viable suppliers, medical staff, and the right equipment and also find the right channels to market the products (Zurn et al., 2004; Sullivan & Steven, 2003). The project intends to provide the community with health requirements and consequently fill the gaps in the market.
After developing the project, we have inculcated the requirements needed in any optometry business. Most of these are competitors and development of SMART objectives (Sekaran, 2005). For instance, initially we thought the project had very few competitors but having been located in an affluent neighborhood; competition from other private businesses was likely to crop up. Thus, to beat this, we had to develop strategies such as the 40 minutes free consultation time.
Additionally, the event was a complete learning experience for the members as sources of money were not real. This became a real constraint on our part, coupled with the sourcing of products for the project. Thus in future, prior to any business venture, one needs to plan ahead and have other sources of money other than completely relying on the allocation of funds, perhaps, from the health care industry.
Further, employee satisfaction is also important in such a business as it avoids unpleasant surprises such as employee resignation and ensuring that turnover is maintained over the years (O’Brien & Dowling, 2000; Freeman, 2000). This is especially vital in a competitive industry as well as an income generating industry in the sense that most of the populations have eye care problems.
A notable significance of the venture in the learning process was the few constraints we identified, while completely ignoring other vital aspects such as maintenance of the right stock. In such a business, however, bulk buying is vital as economies of scale would mostly apply (Armstrong, 2006).
Further, the creation of customer-tailored products is very vital as this makes the customer develop a one on one relationship with the retailer. In future developments, customer satisfaction, product quality, the need to consider reigning competition and development of the most current products are among the key factors to consider prior to engaging in any business.
Product sourcing was realized to be hectic in the sense that in the optometry industry, many people would like to keep abreast with the latest fashions. Thus it is vital to maintain the same especially for an affluent neighborhood (Meng, 2000). In future endeavors, entrepreneurs need to think of more than a single source of capital, various suppliers and the competition they are bound to face. This was a limitation to our project.
Armstrong, M. 2006. A handbook of human resource management practice. London; Kogan Page Publishers
Freeman, R. 2000. ‘Job satisfaction as an economic variable’. American Economic Review, 68: 135-141.
Meng, R. 2000. ‘The relationship between unions and job satisfaction. Applied Economics, 22:1635-1648.
O’Brien, G. E. & P. Dowling. 2000. ‘Age and job satisfaction.’ Australian Psychologist, 16, 49-61.
Sekaran, U. 2005. Research methods for business: A skill-building approach (4th Ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Sullivan, A. & Steven, M. S. 2003. Economics: Principles in action. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Zurn, P., Dal Poz, M. R., Stillwell, B., & Adams, O. 2004. ‘Imbalance in the health workforce’. Human Resources for Health, 2 (13), 45- 69