Walmart Information Systems Research Project-Group2 CIS 511 Fall 2011 Amber Slemmons, Brooke Williams, Cheri Evans, Ismael Molina, & Wesley Belz
Walmart Information Systems Walmart Information Systems Executive Summary:
Walmart, the billion dollar retail giant, has grown significantly over the past five decades, incorporating numerous different types of information systems into their daily operations. The company is well recognized for their innovation when it comes to utilizing the latest technologies and information systems to maximize their profitability. Information systems structures and processes play a critical role in Walmart’s success and today they are bringing that innovative spirit to the market as they move toward full implementation of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID). This technology allows for Walmart’s operations to function efficiently and effectively as they are capable of sending and receiving real time data to the networks. By doing so they are able to communicate the information to the retailer and the product manufactures making it possible for Walmart to remain competitive in the retail industry by properly controlling its inventories. This report will explain how Walmart has utilized several information systems throughout the course of its history such as: point of sale, satellite communication systems, data warehouses, retail link systems, electronic data interchange (EDI), and most recently web bases platforms, but none are as innovative as RFID (Wailgum, 2007). This technology was previously tested by the U.S. Air Force to try and reduce labor costs and allow management to make better decisions based on more accurate information regarding tracking packages/inventories (Roberti, 2004). This technology in the hands of the retail giant will allow for more up to date accurate information to flow through the networks to management so that they can reduce costs and increase profitability by keeping current inventory levels under control. In the summary of functions section the paper expounds how Walmart does an excellent job of incorporating transactional processing systems, management information systems,
Walmart Information Systems decisions support systems, and business intelligence systems into their everyday business processes. One major system that links the entire supply chain to the Walmart enterprise, with
the use of the RFID system, is the supply-chain management system that Walmart utilizes. These systems help suppliers, purchasing firms, distributors, and logistic companies share information systems about orders, production, inventory levels, and delivery of product and services so that they can source, produce, and deliver goods and services efficiently (Laudon & Laudon, 2010). The IS department section and the description of structures and processes for managing IS’s for Walmart is explained in this paper through interviews with IS faculty at Walmart’s corporate headquarters, as well as local employees. The information gathered from these interviews illustrate Walmarts extremely structured IS department. Functioning from a top down approach Walmart is capable of micromanaging all of its resources both capital and human in nature. A deeper explanation of Walmart’s current Information System direction, RFID, is presented detailing the capabilities, users involved, implementation, and benefits to the entire supply chain system. As mentioned before, the innovative RFID system is the new era of inventory management, which Walmart is going to try and implement worldwide to increase their profitability by properly managing their inventories. Concluding the report will be the appendices, which illustrate the organizations financial success over the past few years. Walmart’s success could only have been accomplished through the innovative and carefully managed use of the information systems and the systems that link the...