Bridge the Gap
Before a client can move to an e-business format, it is important to determine a proper state of readiness. This means a critical examination of the current state of the business in order to determine how it will move to an e-business platform. Some form of strategic direction or business plan must drive even a small business. Hence, the first task is to look at alignment between the current state and the strategic direction setting. The above diagram illustrates the sub composition of e-business architecture and this can be used in the determination of the gap analysis to that of state readiness. (Mario Spremić, 2003).
| Process Improvement - The E-business will be driven by some form of e-business trading software. This will define some form of process steps that will be required. It will be necessary to examine the existing business processes and re-engineer these in order to accommodate the e-business software. (Sauer, 2000)
| IT Architecture - The business will need to consider the best technology platform to support the e-business initiative. This often means going from a stand-alone system to a web based server application. Technical consultation will be required to cover a host of technical configurations that will include: the communications network, hardware compatibility to software, storage requirements, memory and processing speed of the CPU, configuration of the network if addressing multiple store locations.
| Software Development - This may include database applications, new operating systems, the e-business software and integration into existing software and business process applications. This relates to business process re-engineering and systems integration. It is often a collaborative exercise between the software vendor and the IT department.
| Package configuration - This can involve a high degree of expertise in the integration stage. In the first instance, it is important that all the business processes are mapped and configured to the e-business software. Staff will need to be trained on the use and application of the new e-business software. (Repa, 2011)
| Security – This is extremely important and one of the features that will