INF220: IS Principles
How are information systems transforming business and what is their relationship to globalization?
Information systems are transforming business by making data accessible to those in a company that need it faster, more accurate and in any configuration that may be needed. Information systems are, “…interrelated components that collect (or retrieve), process, store, and distribute information to support decision making and control in an organization.” (Laudon & Laudon, pg. 11, 2009) Technology has allowed this information to be stored and sorted with computers instantly across a company or even between companies regardless of geography.
Intranet networks inside a company as well as internets such as the World Wide Web allow information to be shared across the country and around the world in near real time. A retail company based in the United States can communicate with a manufacturing division based in China when new merchandise is needed without human interaction by simply tracking and transmitting sales data. This ability is the backbone of globalization as it eliminates the time delay that used to hinder communications between continents.
Why are information systems so essential for running and managing a business today?
Information systems allow for business to operate more efficiently by having trend data, customer data, sales data and many other forms of data at their fingertips at all times. Systems that are programmed properly can sort and provide only relevant data when called for giving the user a major competitive advantage in their given market. To stay competitive or gain a competitive advantage these systems are needed to maintain large amounts of data that flow through businesses today.
To stay competitive companies like AutoNation are making huge investments in their Information systems. AutoNation is investing 50 million dollars with two main goals, to make systems speak to one another so employees don’t have to duplicate information in each and “Speed transaction time, let consumers control their shopping experiences”. (Wilson, 2012) They will be able to cut labor hours spent on duplicating information and increase customer satisfaction giving them both an overhead cost advantage and build customer loyalty. Markets adjust to current technology and anybody wanting to stay competitive has to adapt and Information systems help make those decisions as well as give companies opportunities to improve their offerings.
What exactly is an information system? How does it work? What are its people, organization, and technology components?
An information system as quoted earlier is a system that links data bases by collecting, processing, storing and distributing pieces or groups of information that help a business operate by allowing manager to make informed decisions. The data base portion of an information system is a storage system of information of any type. The key component of an information system is the process that processes and sorts that data. Each business or company using an information system will need it sorted differently and the computer system put in place to manage that data is carefully selected by managers with input from all levels of users so that everybody has the information they need inside the company from the CEO to the Janitors.
How will a four-step method for business problem solving help you solve information system-relations problems?
The first step of a four-step method is the most important as it is to identify the problem to be solved. Until a problem is known to exist and identified the rest of the process of solving the problem cannot be completed. Designing a solution to a problem is where an information system could become part of the solution. Some problems can be resolved with simple policy changes but many have to do with information not getting to those that need it and most issues within a business