Name: Lauralynn (Elle) Pearson
Module: The Business Environment
Tutor: Steve Tidball
Submission Date: 16 Jan 2012
Academic Integrity Statement: I have read and understood the Academic Integrity guidelines for Kaplan Open Learning and the University Of Essex, and declare that this assignment conforms to all of the rules and regulations contained therein.
Please note: the guidelines can be found in the Student Handbook (see section 6.4)
Skype is a new technology that has potential to influence how Mudskipper operates and affect productivity. Specifically, how internal and external meetings are held. By using a SWOT analysis, this report aims to outline the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats using Skype as a new technology and how Mudskipper operates. For purposes of this report, the conferencing facility will be examined since it is the main means of communication internally and externally.
What is Skype?
Skype is a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) communication application using voice, video and instant messaging via the internet. Founded by Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis in 2003, Skype was originally designed for domestic use to save money making long distance phone calls to stay in touch with friends and family by either calling Skype to Skype or Skype to phone at substantially lower cost than traditional telephony. However, as popularity grew, Skype has been incorporated into the business world and widely recognised as a valuable business tool to increase productivity and save money. Such uses include: * Audio and video conferencing with capabilities to record meetings * Real time, face to face collaboration internally as well as on a client level * File sharing and transfer during meeting sessions
* Interviewing potential candidates reducing travel costs * Ability to be used on Smartphones and iPads
Who is Mudskipper Business Limited?
Mudskipper is a rapidly growing medical communications agency with offices in Manchester, London, Shanghai and Chicago and is comprised of two main disciplines; the bioscience team engages in technical medical writing and commercial analysis of drugs while the strategies team focuses on the development and marketing of upcoming drugs and therapies for clients such as Novartis, AstraZenica and LeoPharma and covers a global arena. Both teams depend heavily on telecommunications between their Manchester and London offices as well as with clients in other European and American markets. Additionally, the management team is spread between all four offices, and are also heavily dependent on telecommunications for holding management meetings on a weekly basis. The need to find a solution to increase productivity for these teams has been discussed with regard to communication and budgetary considerations.
* Cost effective for meetings opposed to traditional telephony and BT Meet Me facilities * Travel costs significantly reduced between Manchester and London * Better communication within teams spread between all office locations * Higher team morale leading to higher productivity from faster collaboration Skype’s cost effective technology rivals other technologies such as BT Meet Me and Adobe Connect used for conferencing. Mudskipper currently uses BT Meet Me and landlines to conduct meetings at a substantial cost. Additional costs for meetings include travel between the Manchester and London offices for training sessions, internal meetings and client conferences. The management team is spread across three continents and use these facilities as well. With the use of Skype, not only are costs of travel between the offices diminished if not eliminated, but with the video capacity team morale increases with ‘face time’ and real time collaboration by sharing ideas thereby increasing productivity. However,...