One Month in Alibaba as a Global Intern

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This PowerPoint summarizes what I saw, what I heard, what I felt, and what I think about the company, its people, and its culture etc, during and after my Alibaba summer internship in 2013. This internship, though short, provided me with lenses with different focal length to see both the big picture and some details of the company. It is said that outsiders' understanding of Alibaba usually lags two years behind what actually happens in China's biggest e-commerce company. Hope this presentation will give you some more accurate, updated, and probably unbiased information.

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One Month in Alibaba as a Global Intern

  1. 1. One Month in Alibaba Jeff Tang, 2013/09 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  2. 2. Absolutely more than this… Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  3. 3. More than this as well… * Incomplete agenda Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  4. 4. Agenda • The program • The company • Tmall & my work • Observations • It’s fun time • Summary Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  5. 5. 1. THE PROGRAM Good to be the “first” class. One Month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  6. 6. Global Interns Program (全球实习生项目) Conceived the plan 3 years ago… 戴珊(集团CPO):the ultimate program manger 曲洋(资深总监): Class coordinator out of 10K+ applications http://e.weibo.com/1897953162/A3mxL3AWa 陆兆禧 (集团CEO) 彭蕾 (小微CEO) Many others… Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Goal & an unwritten law
  7. 7. A bit more about this program… Group Activities • Opening • Campus visits • Weekly gathering • Top mgmt sharing • Graduation The best way to taste Aliway (阿里味儿) is to work with Alipeople (阿里人). 1-on-1 mentorship in BUs Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  8. 8. 2. THE COMPANY BUs are working independently together... 形散而神聚 One Month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  9. 9. A quick view of its business in 2013 25 BUs constitute “Alibaba Group”, but it only means 1/3. * Org chart after restructuring on 2013/01/10, maybe outdated.. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  10. 10. A quick view of its business in 2013 Alibaba Small and Micro Financial Services Group (under formation) 彭蕾 - CEO 国 内 事 业 群 国 际 业 务 事 业 部 共 享 平 台 事 业 群 创 新 金 融 事 业 群 樊路远 (木华黎) 彭翼捷 (翼捷) 井贤栋 (王安石) 胡晓明 (孙权) China Smart Logistics Network Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  11. 11. The structure looks familiar? Key Concepts of Supply Chain Management Alibaba Group Cainiao Network Alibaba SMFS Group Alibaba’s E-commerce Territory Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  12. 12. 3. TMALL & MY WORK C2B is the future, but has a long way to go.. One Month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  13. 13. China B2C market is huge and still growing fast Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  14. 14. Tmall is Asia’s largest B2C online retail platform Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  15. 15. Tmall: Online Shopping Landmark in China Tmall allows brand owners, channel partners (distributors, authorized sellers) to sell quality, brand name goods to consumers in Greater China region. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  16. 16. Tmall is featuring more and more (high-end) brands 70,000+ merchants, 80,000+ brands, 400,000,000+ buyers. (as of 2013/07) Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  17. 17. Organizational Structure of Tmall 张勇(逍遥子) 总裁 物流事业部 大客户部 天猫事业部 航旅事业部 国际业务及 商家成长部 产品技术部 网站运营部 客户满意部 新业务部 服装服饰 家装生活 美妆个护 时尚生活 数码电器 商家成长培训部 服务商运营 进口业务部 整合营销 商家互动部 国际招商(BD) 国际品牌管理 商家成长体系 整合营销 流量拓展部 品牌及行业合作 网站及规则 无线 商业分析部 品牌站 品牌街 五大垂直类目 Merchant Growing System Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  18. 18. Team of Merchant Growing System Intelligent Product & Service System 智能化产品与服务体系 Policy & Communication Service Platform • 天猫早知道:the only official portal for information disclosure and communication, (rules, updates, solutions, training course, online registration etc) . • 天猫规则解读:interpretation of rules for merchants selling goods on Tmall – Dos & Don'ts. Data-driven Operational Capability Enhancement Plan for Merchants • Diagnostic reports. • Structured SOP after diagnosing. • Data tools for regular operations and special events. • Knowledge system. • Track merchant’s growing roadmap. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  19. 19. What did I do with the team? * Part of my first & last bi-weekly report. This page is intentionally left blank. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  20. 20. Knowledge System Framework Goal: to better assist category operations specialists (类目运营小二) to diagnose individual stores, identify root causes to any problem, and push customized operational enhancement solutions. This page is intentionally left blank. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  21. 21. Knowledge System Framework It will be integrated into current data- driven store enhancement plan. Merchants, Tmall, and consumers are on the same boat! Only when merchants grow, Tmall grows. This page is intentionally left blank. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  22. 22. “Double Eleven” 2013 2012 US Cyber Monday ~95 China’s Singles’ Day (光棍节) Chinese Online Shopping Carnival Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  23. 23. Challenges behind the prosperity It’s an extreme stress test for the whole ecosystem… 2012/11/11Before After Merchants Tmall Prod. planning Inv. planning Marketing Biz innovation Order fulfillment Logistics Traffic mgmt After-sale serviceAlipay cap. Real-time service CRM Sales volume = Website UV × Click- thru-rate × Purchase- thru-rate × Avg buyer spending Cust. service Huge QPS Real-time tracking Order processing This page is intentionally left blank. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  24. 24. “Double Eleven” Preparation Whitebook Tmall rules, page template, etc Operational planning CRM techniques Marketing channels Customer service Warehousing & distribution Organizational readiness Planning I will be proud of this year’s success… This page is intentionally left blank. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  25. 25. C2B: Future of E-commerce Consumer-driven Make-to-order (以销定产) Personalization (个性化定制) Personalized marketing Socialized (open) supply chain collaboration Flexible manufacturing Cloud computing Personalized needs Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  26. 26. Tmall: Alibaba’s frontline for testing C2B initiatives Pure Sales Platform Consumer Connection Platform Tmall Strategies (2013) Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  27. 27. Presales: Tmall’s first step to educate the market Tmall presales Pick & pack to order Shipping Delivery to doorstep 原产地直供,时令最新鲜 * captured on 9/4 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  28. 28. Customization? Category by category, even item by item. Products like furniture, home appliances are much easier to do customization than clothes. Event-based; Right cust. scope; Group buying; Attractive price; * captured on 9/4 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  29. 29. Customization? Category by category, even item by item. * captured on 9/5 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  30. 30. It takes a long way to fully roll out. Shopping experience is key. Item Store Brand/Category Platform Personalized Marketing • Tag-based CRM tools (product, demographic, customer behavior, etc) • Brand watch + subscription + SNS + Mobile Internet  seller-buyer interaction (O2O) • “千人千面” (PC & Mobile) and push personalized feeds Low-hanging fruit Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  31. 31. Implications of Tmall C2B initiatives on my research Product (line) launch Planning Stage Operation Stage Time Product Portfolio Planning Flexible Feature Commitment Customer Choice Behavior Modeling for Mass Customization Multi criteria need to be considered when merchants are planning products to sell. Even if fitting customer individual needs is an extra selling point for MC, price is still (oftentimes) the most important factor for customer’s choice decision-making. This page is intentionally left blank. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  32. 32. 4. OBSERVATIONS It is truly unique, value-driven, and organized to win. One Month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  33. 33. Simple logic for strategic planning 20 80 SOE / Big enterprises SME (屌丝:underprivileged losers) Internet technology Significantly lower entry barriers and help the 80% grow Matthew Effect often occurs.. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  34. 34. It could be applied to virtually any industry… Supply Demand C2BTmall/B2C Taobao MarketplaceAuction Focus Position Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  35. 35. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture Organization Hierarchy Innovation Value/Intensity Strategies Tactics Operations Great Executors Great Thinkers Great Managers Alibaba is almost purely driven by business model innovation until ~2009. How to manage 22K+ employees?? Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  36. 36. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  37. 37. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  38. 38. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture 大理段氏的最高武学 客户 第一 激情 诚信 敬业 拥抱 变化 团队 合作 Alibaba Value System Detailed interpretation of 6 values could be derived for different functions. 客户是衣食父母 共享共担,平 凡人做非凡事 专业执着 精益求精 诚实正直 言行坦荡 迎接变化 勇于创新 乐观向上 永不放弃 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  39. 39. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture 金庸武侠中最高深的 武学宝典,此功佛道 相参,刚柔并济。 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Alibaba Leadership Model 胸怀 眼光 超越 伯乐 会看 会Sell 有结果 领导者是寂寞的 胸怀是被冤枉撑大的 心态开放,能倾听, 善于换位思考 找对人 养好人 养成人
  40. 40. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture These are not just slogans… they are like blood running through employees' veins, and embodied by what they think, what they say, and what they do. 武侠文化:capable, righteous, idealistic, realistic (Chinese Chivalrous Culture) Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 风 清 扬
  41. 41. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture These are not just slogans… they are like blood running through employees' veins, and embodied by what they think, what they say, and what they do. 武侠文化 (Chinese Chivalrous Culture) Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 嗨,我是 三丰! 姜鹏 (集团SVP)
  42. 42. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture These are not just slogans… they are like blood running through employees' veins, and embodied by what they think, what they say, and what they do. 武侠文化 (Chinese Chivalrous Culture) Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  43. 43. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture These are not just slogans… they are like blood running through employees' veins, and embodied by what they think, what they say, and what they do. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 家文化:feel at home, emotional bond, brotherhood (Home Culture,人情味儿) Dress comfortably Trust, Simple, Happy
  44. 44. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture These are not just slogans… they are like blood running through employees' veins, and embodied by what they think, what they say, and what they do. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 家文化:feel at home, emotional bond, brotherhood (Home Culture,人情味儿) You Are Cared!
  45. 45. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture These are not just slogans… they are like blood running through employees' veins, and embodied by what they think, what they say, and what they do. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 家文化:feel at home, emotional bond, brotherhood (Home Culture,人情味儿) 有情有义
  46. 46. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture Why Alibaba puts so much effort in developing such unique organizational culture? Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Hard Power Soft Power Vision Mission KPI Code of Conduct Incentives Penalties Value System Org. Culture No perfect system. It always has some holes. Complementary 互补法律 道德 ……
  47. 47. Business Nature  Organization  Corp. Culture Organization Hierarchy Innovation Value/Intensity Strategies Tactics Operations Great Executors?? Great Thinkers Great Managers Alibaba is almost purely driven by business model innovation until ~2009. How to adapt the organization?? Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Since Aliyun & “de-IOE” scheme, more technology innovation is taking place.
  48. 48. Alibaba redefines the role of HR Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 行军打仗,政委有担当! 集团OD平台&Staffing 组织与人才发展 组织文化与沟通 业务HR 组织成长与关怀 HR General Join business decision-making!! Make sure right people at right place Empower the teams Training Education Organizational Development Organizational Culture What traditional HR professionals should do (mostly paperwork) has been outsourced.. Change champion
  49. 49. Alibaba redefines the role of HR Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. It’s possible in Alibaba! 彭蕾:阿里小微金服CEO
  50. 50. 3 Words I Heard Most Often in Alibaba 沉淀 共创 落地 Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  51. 51. Words of Wisdom in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. 平凡人做非凡事 快乐工作,认真生活 今天的表现是明天最低的要求 马上做!做精彩! 心要大,脚要实。 刚工作的几年比谁更踏实, 再过几年比谁更激情。 男人的胸怀是被冤枉撑大的 你感觉不舒服的时候,就是成长的时候。 教是最好的学 ……
  52. 52. but, it must be a happy one Problems/Challenges • Manage post-90s employees • Limited bottom-up innovations • Make 360°assessment really work • Still a question mark for its social-media roadmap • …… Alibaba is by no means a perfect company
  53. 53. 5. IT IS FUN TIME Happy working, live earnestly... 快乐工作,认真生活 One Month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  54. 54. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Day 1: Half-day Opening Ceremony
  55. 55. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. DH12 & Tmall’s president in a joint marketing event in Hangzhou Day 2: Tmall mentor team & intern team were syncing expectations from both sides
  56. 56. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Sharing on Alibaba (华蕾, one of the earliest Alibaba employees) & Alipay Yanjin’s sharing on fashion
  57. 57. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Sharing on Alipay business & technologies, by 井贤栋, President of 共享平台事业群(阿里小微金服) Cross-departmental brainstorming session on 2013 11-11 live broadcasting
  58. 58. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. First day (8/21) of Alibaba’s move to its new campus, Taobao City, in Yuhang District. Visits to Binjiang Campus, Taobao City, & Hupan Garden, Jack Ma’s apartment, where Alibaba was born.
  59. 59. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. A whole-day painstaking journey for deep reflection on our life & dreams. Dundun Academy(盾盾学堂): industry sharing by outside speakers (VP of Tianhong Fund, Director of Youku)
  60. 60. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Self-torture like challenge – 10hr walking tour (~27KM) around West Lake under summer sun.
  61. 61. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Dialogue with 王民明 (VP of OC), and 李俊凌(VP of Strategy, former Jack Ma’s PA) Dialogue with 彭蕾 (CEO of Alibaba SMFS Group)
  62. 62. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Small group luncheon meeting with 蔺相如(VP of Alipay) Brainstorming session for connecting Qingzhi’s social enterprise project with Taobao
  63. 63. It’s Fun Time! Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Dinner with Group CEO for best performance of marketing 来往 Talk with the founder, Jack Ma, through Alibaba’s own mobile IM client - 来往
  64. 64. Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. It’s Fun Time! Our video clip for graduation ceremony
  65. 65. 6. SUMMARY & some final words… One Month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  66. 66. Takeaways from one month in Alibaba Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Know Alibaba better Know post-90s better Know myself better
  67. 67. Jack Ma on the Company Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  68. 68. If you work for making money, it’s just a job. If you work for self-actualization, it could be a career. If you work for pursuing some dream, it’s answering a calling. -- Jeff Tang, 2013 My updated thoughts on work & life Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved.
  69. 69. Thanks for your attention! “Life is like a box of chocolate, you never know what you’re gonna get.” Copyright © 2013 Jeff Tang, HKUST. All rights reserved. Contact: ghtang#ust.hk (replace # with @) 来往ID:

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