Kenya Tea Development Agency is facing a dilemma on the way forward as far as implementation of an information system that is responsive to their changing needs is concerned. The company has 45 rural factories-most in the rural areas with limited telecommunication infrastructure yet they need to be in seamless harmony in order for KTDA to provide faster, modern and efficient services. If they are able to implement a solution that links all these factories together with the Headquarters, then KTDA will have effectively achieved a competitive advantage for themselves in the market. Key Issues
Amongst the critical elements that need to be tackled by the management in order to realise this success are as follows: The Operating division did not have sufficient information processing capacity for management decision-making since the daily reports could never be collected from the different factories in time. Even agricultural activities within the division did not have efficient and adequate data collection processes for management. The main barriers to access of information were the data sources. They were in the field -factories, tea buying centers and farms As for marketing purposes, management was neither able to get sufficient, accurate and timely information on tea, trading activities at the weekly Mombasa auctions. The same was the case for customer product information requirements and quantities of different tea grades waiting in warehouses to be sold either at the auction or directly to overseas customers. In addition, Mombasa’s data on tea delivery from factories, tea packaging and presentation requirements, value adding through product range and processing techniques was not readily available. Finance Division’s main issues included lack of current debtors' payment schedules, inability to get monthly reports (they used to get quarterly accounts reports), need to increase returns on investments, unfulfilled need to reduce organization...
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