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Chapter 13

Management II Chapter 13

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Management (MGT)
Chris Bovaird

Chapter 13: Managing Information Systems and Communication Technology Information Management − information management: an internal operation that arranges the firm’s information resources to support business performance and outcomes − firm information is private resource that must be protected − information manager: responsible for the activities needed to generate analyze, and disseminate information that a company needs to make good decisions − every big firm’s activities (designing services, ensuring product delivery and cash flow, evaluating personnel, creating advertising) are linked to information systems Data vs Information − data: raw facts and figures − information: a meaningful, useful interpretation of data Information Systems − information systems: an organized method of transforming data unto information that can be used for decision making − IS managers must determine what information is needed, gather data, turn it into information using technology, control the flow of information so that it only goes to people who need it New Business Technologies in the Information Age − employees at all levels use information systems to improve performance − technology has inspired new organization designs, innovative relationships with other organizations, and new management processes for improved competitiveness The Expanding Scope of Information Systems − IS used to be technically focused (processing payroll data, simulating new engineering designs, compiling advertising expenditures; now managers use IS systems to analyze management problems, especially for control purposes- applying quality control standards to production, comparing costs against budgeted amounts, keeping records on employee absences and turnover − managers use IS to decide firms products and markets for next 5-10 years; business strategy is now more dependant on IS (ex. Whether to be low-cost or flexible provider Electronic Business and Communications Technologies − maintaining better communications and information systems are important; Ralston Purina Co. needs instantaneous communication among managers in countries they sell products to or buy raw materials from Electronic Information Technologies − electronic information technologies (EIT): IS applications based on telecommunications technologies − EITs enhance production and performance by: providing coordination and communication within firm, speeding up transactions with other firms − 6 most commonly used digital, business innovations - fax (facsimile) machine: a machine that can quickly transmit a copy of documents or graphics over telephone lines (speed and low cost) - voice mail: a computer-based system for receiving and delivering incoming telephone calls (calls are never missed) - electronic mail (email) system: electronic transmission of letters, reports, and other information between computers (substitutes for a lot of paper and phone calls) - electronic conferencing: allows people to communicate simultaneously from different locations via telephone, video, or mail group software (accessible, fast, allows team work from different parts of the planet at same time) - groupware: a system that allows two or more individuals to communicate electronically between desktop PCs (requires software) - digital information services: provide online information for both special purpose and general topics Data Communication Networks − data communication networks: global networks that permit users to send electronic messages quickly and economically (internet) − internet: a gigantic network of networks that serves millions of computers, offers information on business, science, and government, and provides communication flows among more than 170 000 separate networks around the world (commissioned by US military as communication tool during war) − internet service provider (ISP): a commercial firm that maintains a permanent connection to the internet and sells temporary connections to subscribers − world wide web: a system with universally accepted standards for storing, retrieving, formatting, and displaying information on the internet (provides a common language for users to surf the internet) − uniform resource locator (URL): points to the resource's unique address on the web- its a designation that specifies the storage location of a certain user − web servers: dedicated work stations – large computers – that are customized for managing, maintaining and supporting websites − webmaster: person responsible for maintaining an organization's website − browser: software that enables a user to access information on the web (Netscape Navigator, Microsoft Internet Explorer − directories: features that help people find the content they want on the web. The user types in key words and the directory retrieves a list of web sites with titles containing those words − search engine: software for searching webpages that does not pre-classify them into a directory − intranet: a company's private network that is accessible only to employees via entry through electronic firewalls − firewall: hardware and software security systems that are not accessible to outsiders − extranet:a network that allows outsiders limited access to a firm's internal information system (most common application allows buyers to enter the seller's system to see which products are available for sale and delivery) New Options for Organizational Design The Networked Enterprise − leaning organizations: information networks are leading to leaner companies with less employees and simpler organizational structures (information is shared between all levels of workers and work is done more efficiently)- bank tellers not needed as much because transactions can be done electronically – more middle management jobs gone − more flexible operations: electronic networks allow businesses to offer customers greater variety and faster delivery cycles (cell phones, CPUs, can be custom ordered) − mass-customization: producing large volumes of products or services, but giving customers the choice of features and options they want − increased collaboration: among internal units and outside firms as well is rising because networked systems make it easier and cheaper to contact everyone – marketing, finance, production, engineering, and purchasing can share different information to determine best design − networking and the Virtual Company: virtual company can be a temporary team assembled by a single organization or by several firms (expertise brought together to make efficient company) – networked systems can improve collaboration through firms by using virtual companies − greater independence of company and workplace: networked organizations can overcome geographic separation (people can work at home and still communicate to the workplace in real time) – networking improves efficiency of companies without central locations ex. Internet sales − improved management process: management used to be delegated to middle and first-line management because information that made its way to the top managers was often slow coming in, expensive to gather and quickly became out of date) – now top managers can find out current status of any customer order, inspect productivity statistics for each workstation, etc. − enterprise resource planning: large information systems for integrating all the activities of a company's business units ( biggest supplier of ERP is Germany's SAP AG, then Oracle) Types Of Information Systems − information systems are actually made up of several information systems that serve different levels of the organization (different departments or operations) User Groups and System Requirements − different user groups use different systems suited to their level (first-line manager, middle level managers) − knowledge workers: employees whose jobs involve the use of information and knowledge as the raw materials of their work − managers at different levels and their information systems: - top level managers – strategic info system (ex. Economic forecasts) - mid-level managers – management info system (ex. set sales quotas) - knowledge workers – knowledge info system (ex. find chemical properties) - first-level managers – operational info system
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