Professor Ray Schafer
November 14, 2011
Information Systems Practicality within the Business Setting The key to a business’ global success is the method employed to manage its information system and technology. Information systems solve business challenges and problems involving the organization, its technology, and people. The most successful companies, today, are those that are fully aware of their IT potential and use it as both a competitive and strategic tool. The World Wide Web phenomenon has forever changed the way global business is conducted, and the key to a business’ global success is the method employed to manage its information system and technology. An information system is the method used to create information and ideas, which are collected, stored, and distributed within a corporation; internally to required personnel and groups, and externally to support organizations and customers. Information technology is the foundation of the system; hardware and software, which drives businesses to meet their objectives. As described in BusinessDictionary.com, a business is an “economic system in which goods and services are exchanged for one another or money, on the basis of their perceived worth.” It is a formal complex organization producing products or services for a profit (Laudon & Laudon 2009, G-2). Businesses are born out of a need or want of a particular product or service. Proper management of those products and services, as well as business processes, ensures business longevity and sustainability; equaling to success. Information systems solve business challenges and problems involving the organization, its technology, and people. Using a four-step method of problem identification, solution design, solution evaluation and choice, and implementation (Laudon & Laudon 2009, 18) designers identify problems by understanding the existing issue, noting its cause and identifiable factors, and determine a probable and approachable solution. Designing a solution involves an investment of time and research to create viable results, evaluating those results to determine whether the solution will be cost effective, and selecting the best design for implementation. Objectives for that investment is the achieved result in operational excellence; new products, services, and business models; customer/supplier intimacy; improved decision making; competitive advantage; and survival (Laudon & Laudon 2009, 7). But, a business and its information system is only as good as the people who work with it. No matter how big or small the business, processes are required to set basic rules of company functions, such as with; finance and accounting, human resources, manufacturing and production, and sales and marketing (Laudon & Laudon 2009, 42). Information systems are used to house, maintain and disseminate those processes to employees, from management down to production workers; providing all employees access to information concerning the company and all required processes that are necessary to fulfill specific employee responsibilities. Dedicated sales and marketing professionals employ strategies to target specific consumer age, ethnic, and gender groups, or global product markets to purchase specific products and services. Relationships forge between customers and suppliers which assumes a certain amount of loyalty as long as the product and services continue to meet customer expectations. According to Jim Bengier, Global Industry Executive, Retail, Sterling Commerce, “Customers are becoming more aware of the possibilities. They’re technologically savvy, and they want to be sure they have the same experience regardless of the channel.” Experiencing consistency within consumer experiences garner and maintain loyalty, no matter whether they shop online, by phone, or within the market (Sterling Commerce, 2008). Controlling the...