IT applications in Business, Assessment Example

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Assessment

Questions

List and describe five types of information systems and explain how the type is used by the organization.

  1. List and describe the four phases of the Systems Development Life Cycle.
  2. List and describe five types of electronic commerce and explain the purpose of each type.
  3. List and describe five different types of organizational strategy.
  4. List and describe the core and extended components of an ERP system. B. Explain how an ERP system is different from a legacy system.

 

Questions 6 through 10 are based on the Harrah’s Case. Read the case carefully and write a complete response that explains how you suggest Harrah’s address each scenario. Use both your IT and management expertise to develop your response.

 

Harrah’s Case

Imagine that it is 2014. You graduated as a Management major and are working at the Human Resources (HR) department of Harrah’s (a hotel & casino chain). It’s Thursday afternoon and you are at a monthly staff meeting discussing various business problems. The Vice President of HR describes several problems related to employee recruiting. Provide suggestions to address each of the problems below. When possible, instead of just naming the core idea, add a few sentences providing some detail or examples to make the idea more concrete. Feel free to state and follow assumptions about the business situation. Don’t limit yourself to computer-related ideas.

  1. a. Right now, resumes arrive in different formats and different media (paper, Word, pdf, html) and managers find it difficult to search these files and find applicants that match current hiring needs.
  2. There is no easy way to find out which candidates are still “on the market” so staff assistants waste time sending interview invitation letters to candidates marked by managers as promising even when those candidates told us they had already accepted a position with another employer and are no longer looking for a job.
  3. We are experiencing increased employee attrition (more and more employees are leaving us voluntarily) but we don’t know why. The CEO asked the HR department for a plan to address this problem.
  4. The process of collecting opinions about the candidate from all the interviewers typically falls on one manager and is cumbersome. By the time a meeting is assembled to share opinions about all interviewed candidates, many interviewers simply forget important details about earlier interviews. Also, negative decisions are communicated to the candidate but we’ve had several cases where the same (bad) candidate was invited to interviews 2 months later by managers from another area or from another hotel/casino simply because they were not aware that the candidate was already interviewed by another hotel/casino or another department within the company and was deemed unacceptable.
  5. Our web site has a long page for “Open Positions” where we list all the open jobs across all our properties and departments. The jobs are sorted ascending by the date they were first added to the web page. We have an IT web specialist who calls each HR specialist at each Hotel/Casino resort and at each department to review together what entries should be added to or removed from the web page.

Originally, we were very happy with this process because it is much cheaper than placing “Wanted” ads in local and national newspapers. It also allowed us to have a centralized view of all open positions in the company. One advantage is that we can identify “hot” job areas (job titles and/or locations) where we have more and more recruiting needs, and focus recruiting attention on them. For example, we developed a very successful summer IT Internship program based on that information.

There are however several problems with this system:

 

  1. The web page is very long and potential candidates told us it was difficult to locate items that were relevant to them (according to type and location of the job)
  2. We depend on subjective review of the long web page in order to identify trends and “hot” areas
  3. As we add more Casinos, the process of contacting all the HR specialists requires overtime for our web specialist and we are planning to add an assistant for that position.
  4. Many job candidates tell us that even though they searched Google for a job title and location that matches an entry on our page, Google didn’t find our page for them. They ended up finding our page only because a friend told them about it.
  5. We’ve been receiving complaints about bad Recruits for Systems Analyst positions. It seems that our HR professionals frequently deliver candidates that are more suitable for programming positions. Also, we are experiencing a high rate of IT project failures.
  6. List the main elements of a Systems Analyst’s job B. List the key factors in increasing IT project success
  7. Provide an example of a Transaction Processing System. Give one example each of a) Input
  8. b) Process
    c) Output.
    Give one good example of an immediate process benefit provided by IT within that process.
    Give one example of an informational/decision benefit provided by the data collected in that process for reporting or decision making later on.

 

  1. The types of information systems include:
  2. a) The Executive Support Systems (ESS) which help senior managers in making strategic decisions
  3. b) Management information systems; which deals with internal information sources in businesses. This system uses data from transaction processing system to create reports. It creates reports in a manner that enable business managers to make respond to problems by making relevant business decisions.
  4. c) Decision support systems (DSS). The design of these systems enables managers make decisions in cases of uncertainty about the tentative outcomes of the decisions made. This system supports making of decisions through data analysis that generates data models and statistical projections.
  5. d) Knowledge Management Systems (KMS). These help business organizations to facilitate the creation and sharing of knowledge. This system enables analysis of data and production of controlled recommendations, decisions and diagnosis.
  6. e) Transaction Processing Systems (TPS). These are systems, which help organizations to process regular transactions accurately and efficiently. The system provides a means of collecting, storing, processing, cancelling of transactions or display modifying.
  7. Four phases of the Systems Development Life Cycle

They include the following:

  1. It involves understanding the need of building the system and the definition of its requirements. Planning also incorporates feasibility study from various perspectives, economic, technical and feasibility aspects of the organization.
  2. Analysis; this involves activities including analysis and identifying and prediction of tentative problems that may affect the system after implementation.
  • Design; design decision comes because of analysis. This determines the system operation in terms of data, process, network infrastructure, hardware, user interface amongst other crucial system environment factors.
  1. Implementation; this refers to the actual building of the system, testing and final installation. In addition, included in this phase are system maintenance and user training.
  2. Five types of electronic commerce. They include the following:

 

  1. Business to consumer (B2C); this involves customers and businesses. Individual consumers buy from online businesses. The purpose of this electronic commerce is to facilitate the sell of products through clear data available via the internet. This leads to increased sells and profit maximization enhancement.
  2. Business to business (B2B); this is the largest form of e-commerce involving trillion dollar businesses. The buyers and sellers are all business entities. It does not involve individual consumers. The purpose of this e-commerce is to enable quick and bulk supply of goods and services from large business organizations to other businesses.
  3. Consumer to consumer (C2C); this is a form of e-commerce that facilitates transaction of services and goods between two individuals.
  4. Peer to peer (P2P); in itself, this is more of a technology than e-commerce model. It helps persons to share computer resources and files directly without involving a central web server. Both sides of the peers must install the necessary software, which enables common platform communication.
  5. M-commerce; this is the use of mobile devices to conduct business transactions. Mobile device users make contacts and carry out the business. Companies dealing with web development and design enhance the websites for mobile devices to enable correct view.
  6. Five different types of organizational strategy
  7. Growth strategy; this involves adding new features to existing products or introduction of new products. Business organizations may find it necessary to alter or increase products in order to meet the competition demands from other companies dealing with the same products. For instance, companies dealing with cell phones constantly add new features or work to discover new technology.
  8. Product differentiation strategy; small companies with a competitive advantage such as superiority in quality or service use product differentiation strategy. The aim of using product differentiation strategy is to enable companies overcome their key competitors.
  9. Price-skimming strategy; this is a strategy involving charging high prices especially during introductory phases of a product. Businesses do this in order to recover advertising and production costs quickly. Customers should find something peculiar to accept the high product prices or else there will be no sales for the product.
  10. Acquisition strategy; businesses use this strategy to obtain competitive advantage. This strategy involves the purchase of another company or product lines from the company. For example, a grocery retailer in New York may purchase a similar grocery in Washington in order to expand his or her operations.
  11. Strategies to develop distinctive advantages; development of competitive advantages or distinctive core competencies can lead to the creation of a successful business company. Competitive advantages and core competencies are singular abilities or activities that a company employs in producing products in a better way than in another company.
  12. A. Core and extended components of an ERP system

The core ERP components include;

  1. Accounting and finance ERP components, which handle financial, and accounting data process function including accounts payable, general ledger, accounts receivable, asset management and budgeting.
  2. Production and materials management ERP components which deals with different production planning and execution aspects such as production scheduling, demand forecasting, quality control and job cost accounting.
  • Human resources ERP components, which enables monitoring of employee information including benefits, payroll, performance assessment and compensation. It ensures that the company complies with multiple tax and jurisdictions authorities legal requirements.

The extended components of an ERP include the following:

  1. Business intelligence ERP components, which collects information in use at the organization. These components organize the information and assist managers in making decisions by use of analytical tools.
  2. Customer relationship management ERP components, which provides overall information about customer data and customer interactions to make organizations responsive to customer’s needs. These components include sales force automation, contact centers, and marketing functions.
  • Supply Chains Management ERP components, which help the supply chain of organizations from raw materials acquisition to finished goods receipt by customers. This is possible through the organization of a plan, optimization, and scheduling control.
  1. Ebusiness ERP components, which have two principal features including E procurement and Elogistics. Eprocurement applies to business-to-business sales and purchases while Elogistics deals with the storage and transportation of goods.

VI). B. Explain how an ERP system is different from a legacy system.

Legacy systems use hardware and /or software not supported by ERP and outmoded programming languages. Legacy systems are different from ERP systems in that they lack ad-hoc reporting tools, graphical user interface and easy customizations including the addition of user-defined fields. ERP has all these features.

Responds to harra’s case

VI). Sometimes it may be difficult to search a document on web, and this may be because of the un-familiar association to the web page or the html program that one is using. Consequently if resumes comes in a paper form, the Human Resource has to make it possible that letters from other institution comes with the reference number. Moreover, it will be better for one to address the later using reference numbers since this will make ease for the search process. When it comes to word on a computer system, it is easier because the system has capability to search a document using its heading or title. Consequently, in dealing with PDFs it might be difficult to get the reliable information if the system in use does not have unzipping software. It is advisable for one to get winrar, adobe reader or any other related unlocking software. Ultimately, resume that use html for read only process it is better to make the Program either using SQL or the HTML to sort item by the latest arrival for easy access.

Herein, on part B of the question is better for the café to have software that will notify the firm if the candidates are still on the market or on another task. This can be true if the applicants are fed into the system of the company so that their information is well known. Following this if the same person with same ID gets another job, the system responds either by sending the message to company’s email address, which will in turn notify the human resource via message on his handset. Alternatively, the system should respond by giving signal to the human resource desk. Consequently, this will make staff to be alert and send invitation later to those who are searching for the same.

Apparently, if the employees are moving away from the harras’ company, this might be a technical problem in the managerial sector. Therefore, it is better for the company to make suggestion box available, or make sure its entire members log in to their website and participate in the running of the company. On contrary, the managerial team should inject grape vine and monitor the reaction of its employees.

Besides doing physical interview, which might have many problems, it is better for the firm to embrace technology. This is where someone can attend to interview even if he/she is far from vicinity and the details put in record by the system for further reference.

VII). Ideally, web page can have a lot of unnecessary information, on the above issue, the firm should review its web page and arrange in departments so that it may be easier to notice. On contrary, the web specialist has to use attractive colors on the concerned issue so that the other issues should be in ignorance for a while. For instance, the IT specialist may use eye-appealing colors that will get fast attraction to the new visitor.

Adding of more casinos means addition of some task on the web manipulation. Although it a good idea to add assistant but again this might be, fatal if the assistant will not be active as such. In my opinion, the website can be under a single controller and so some of the irrelevant information should not be in the browser.

VIII). The programmer should link the website on the Google search engine and not privatize it. Besides managing the web, for good quality of system, it is better for the programmer to work hand in hand with system analyst. System analyst is one who plays the strategy for the programmer to follow.

IX). For a good system analyst, one should have good analyzing skill, one should be sharp and good in decision-making, and he should be independent in thinking and lastly, should have self-motivation. Good understanding of the system is on basis of the input, processing, and output. This is essential for project success in the IT sector.

X). Transaction system, it is important to analyze the ATM system where, the client feeds the machine with his/her basic information “pin.” Then the machine confirms by processing the match of the input to the one that is inside. Then if it matches, then there will be feedback to confirm or to allow the transaction. IT benefits in the confirmation of the pin for security purpose. Furthermore, if the client has transacted and left, the transaction will remain vivid to the system and he/she can later get the print out of the same.

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