The ever-changing world of technology is making the world become smaller every day. Businesses and organizations are taking advantage of the advances in technology to improve their organizations. Technology’s influence reaches beyond improving relations within an organization to enhancing an organization’s ability to service its customers. But even more than that technology is influencing the shape of the organization itself. In order to realize the impact of technology on business organizations, the following paper will focus on how organizations use technology within an organization (intranet, email), how organizations use technology to communicate with and service clients or customers, and finally how organizations are using the current technology to train both employees and customers.
How are businesses utilizing technology with their organizations? Email Many businesses at the very least are taking advantage of the current technology to implement email systems. Email systems, in addition to traditional methods of communication including telephones, voice mail and face-to-face interactions are increasing the ease of communication between people in an organization. Through the use of email, people are able to send messages on a one-to-one basis, or to send broadcast messages to an entire organization, or to send messages to a specific group or department. Email provides an alternative to the traditional face-to-face or telephone communication that is necessary in business. With the increased productivity and demands that accompany day-to-day operations, people are always looking for ways to do more in less time. A written message sent via email can be short concise and to the point, eliminating some of the small talk that would normally take place in a face-to-face or telephone interaction.
Excellent communication skills are necessary for organizations to build enduring relationships with organizations in the corporate world. Exchanging accurate data and information between organizations creates a more cohesive working environment. Business employs a number of communication methods including e-mail, memos, letters, and proposals. Communications are delivered via, e-mail, interoffice ...
Another advantage of email is that people are able to respond when it is convenient for them. In a society where time is of the essence, people are able to sort through messages and to prioritize which ones should be addressed first. Furthermore, some people prefer sending email messages instead of face-to-face interactions because they are more likely to be intimidated by face-to-face communication. Email gives those types of people the freedom and the opportunity to say exactly what is on their mind. Electronic messaging systems are also a great asset to a manager in running his / her department.
Managers are able to send out messages regarding everything from schedules to changes in departmental policy without having to call a meeting. Employees within the department are given the chance to give feedback without having to schedule an appointment or sending a long voice mail message. Setting up target groups for certain types of email transmissions, much like the reflectors used at UWM, also saves time and money. People are not spending time reading frivolous messages that do not apply to them, and are not spending as much time attending departmental meetings to decide policy issues.
Finally, email systems provide a way to send a message to a large number of people in a very short time. Electronic messaging is a much more practical option for mass distribution than telephone or face-to-face options. Although telephone systems do allow people to send broadcast messages, email seems more efficient when the amount of information to be dispersed is large. Email systems also provide the opportunity for people in one organization to interact with people from another organization. The ability to communicate effectively and responsiveness to issues are two elements that are key to a successful business organization. Top executives from companies that have a business relationship are able to accommodate busy schedules by using email for correspondence.
Intranets Within organizations, electronic messaging systems are usually part of a bigger network. To manage the bigger network of an organization more and more businesses are developing intranets. An intranet is an internal web site used in a company to disseminate timely corporate and business related information to employees. Organizations are likely to invest money in technology to create intranets for a variety of reasons.
Promoting a World Wide Web Site As we enter the new millennium, more and more businesses are deciding to go along with building what is called sites on the world wide web, better known as a web site. It seems as though these days to many people is that all you have to do is build a web site and you are set to go. Being as upfront as possible there is an extreme downside to this method. Just ...
For example, many businesses use their intranets to centralize corporate communications. Companies will post documents for internal use in order to make them easily accessible and to ensure that they are current. Intranets also give employees easy access to client product and organizational information. Instead of trying to track down information about clients from the sales and marketing departments, client information posted to an intranet is easily accessible to everyone. An intranet also gives users the option of reading it online or printing it out to be read at a later time. People are not forced to share a limited number of hard copies as they have been in the past.
Intranets also foster interaction between departments, which are normally isolated from each other. Online newsletters are one way to let people within an organization know what everyone else is doing. Many times people are so focused on their own work they tend to overlook opportunities to work with other departments in accomplishing their goals. Another reason companies implement intranets is to provide training for their employees. Training using an intranet is far less expensive than sending individuals to class or even using a CD-ROM. intranet training allows companies to update and modify information continuously and employees can participate in the intranet training during slow times, rather than having to take training given at a certain date and time regardless of how many hot projects are currently underway.
Intranets are about as diverse as the companies that choose to use them. Intranets vary in complexity from basic (providing company phone lists, forms, etc. ) to very elaborate systems that include messaging components, quality and procedural information and forms, product information, and internet access. Implementing an intranet can be a major undertaking depending on the complexity of the system. One of the suggested readings, Intranet Planning Guide, discusses the detailed step-by step process of creating an intranet for a company. The reading includes development considerations, manpower considerations, and safety considerations.
The organisation on which this case study is based is named MGON| which is an acronym for Media And Games Online. | The company is based in Stockholm, Sweden, although as it is an Internet based company it could be considered as a world-wide organisation. The company currently has a workforce of just over 200 employees, around 20 of which work full time. The majority of the company however, ...
Developing an intranet takes a lot of time and planning, even if the organization has highly qualified people for the implementation. The systems and services that are provided by the intranet must have support from everyone in the company from the executive committee to the new employees. Goal setting is another component of the development process. Defining both short and long term goals will help keep the project focused. Then the project team must determine what information and applications should be included on the company intranet.
Since the development of an intranet is a major undertaking, a lot of time and resources go into the implementation of an intranet. In addition to the webmaster who is usually responsible for the day-to-day updates of an intranet, companies need content producers, system administrators, programmers, and management support. Some companies choose to outsource the implementation of their intranet simply because they cannot afford to spare internal resources. The issue of security is usually addressed during the development and implementation process. One of the safety features included in most intranets are firewalls, especially intranets that allow employees access to the internet. A firewall is a computer, router, or other communication device, which filters access to a protected network.
Firewalls allow companies to protect their internal networks from unwarranted intrusion from the internet while providing employees access to the web and email. Firewalls can also be manipulated as an access control tool, only allowing certain people within an organization access to the internet. Many firewalls now contain features to control, authenticate and secure users who may want to access a company’s internal data from the internet or even from another company. In addition to those organizations that are using firewalls to protect against internet intrusion, firewalls can also be used to protect mainframe or other central resources from general access within an organization. Firewalls may also be used to ensure confidentiality of information passing across public networks whether it is internally or externally. Therefore, certain hierarchies often present in an organization’s structure can be maintained through the use of firewalls.
Joseph Haynes Chapter 1: Case Study 1 - Cisco Systems 01/12/2003 Seat: 11) The relationship between information systems, Internet Technology and Cisco's business strategy was quite intriguing. Cisco's company worked hand in hand directly with the Internet and their IS system was supported by almost 45% by digital means. Their sales were all Internet driven by almost half of their production. 2) ...
Firewalls are established to protect a company that allows its employees to have access to the internet. Organizations can give a wide variety of reasons why they use the internet. The internet provides expanded marketing opportunities because it reaches business organizations all over the world. Organizations also use the internet to offer or sell their products and services.
Companies spend a lot of time and money gathering information about the visitors to their websites. Not only are they interested in the number of people who reach their websites, companies also provide surveys to capture customers’ preferences. The internet can also be used as a source of obtaining the latest information on just about any subject. Companies are able to use the internet as a research tool. The following section examines what businesses are doing to use internet technologies to enhance their relationships with their customers. How are organizations utilizing technology to improve communication and service to their clients / customers ? The new trend in business organizations is the use of extra nets.
While intranets are for internal company use, extra nets are created for communicating business-related information to a particular vendor, distributor or customer. Companies are using extra nets to improve their customer service. Customer account information and ordering opportunities are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week through the extra net. People who are busy juggling a career and family commitments are given an alternative to going to a store for shopping.
Consumers are able to shop when it is convenient for them. Customers can also access real-time information about project status, costs and development. Vendors can also use the extra net to order material, check account balances, and access database information. extra nets are not a passing trend. Companies that want to remain leaders in their industry will have to make investments in extra net solutions that facilitate resource sharing with their partners and customers. Extranets provide benefits for both parties involved.
... all the changes locally and globally within the organization. Technology is a key for all companies trying to stay competitive in their market ... an entire paperless system and provide us more options for creating better work orders for the customer. It will cut down all ... spends a lot of time with its employees on training for the newest technology available. We are currently in the process of ...
Customers or vendors are able to obtain timely information when it is convenient for them and organizations are receiving feedback from customers and vendors which indicates what a company is doing well and what needs to be improved. Surveying the visitors to a website is critical in order to focus on their needs, not just the technology used to provide the services. In addition to opening more channels of communication between organizations and improving responsiveness to customer concerns, the internet provides a forum for training and education. Today’s online education via the internet provides a media-rich environment where students can exchange ideas with instructors and other students, while attending courses, seminars and programs that feature streaming audio and video content. The following section explores just how business organizations are taking advantage of multimedia technologies for training, and the effectiveness of computer-mediated communication. How are organizations using technology to train or educate their employees and customers? Services provided to customers and employees through the internet and company intranets include training.
Companies are embracing the newest available technology to provide training that is practical and efficient. Organizations are able to offer training for more people at a lower cost by utilizing several different methods of computer mediated communication. In terms of organizations, training usually takes several forms, including traditional classroom training, computer-based training, interactive video, asynchronous correspondence and synchronous correspondence. Many organizations provide training for their employees via their company intranet. For example, an organization that is in the business of software development could offer computer-based courses that include such subjects as SQL, Oracle or Informix. Classes that are given in this format are advantageous because individuals can proceed at their own pace at times that are convenient for them.
Take the human mind's imagination and stretch it to its farthest limits. Write a computer program to breathe life into the conceived idea. Hook up the whole contraption to the latest cutting edge technological equipment and the end result is guaranteed to overload our perception of reality, the reality as we know it. Yes, folks, virtual reality is taking our society by storm, invading almost every ...
However, organizations seem to still rely pretty heavily on traditional classroom training. Companies also provide training for customers on their company’s internet websites. Using the internet, customers are able to sign up for computer-based training classes. People are able to receive the training that they require without incurring the costs of travel and lost time away from work. Online education is spreading from large corporations to others in their supply chain. The short shelf life of knowledge makes it important for companies to train their customers and suppliers as well as their own employees.
An area that has really expanded in the past few years is the idea of corporate universities. Corporate universities are strategic business units designed to provide opportunities for employees to develop skills and knowledge through innovative means. Organizations have partnered with universities to provide services for their employees. Although much of the initial development of corporate university programs involves traditional classroom settings, the demand for practical classes that can be given via computer-based media is increasing the curriculum that is offered online. As technology continues to improve development of more online classes will continue. Another alternative that is being used by organizations is a synchronous video classroom environment.
Students are still required to participate at a certain time, but they are not required to travel to the location of the instructor. The advantage of synchronous video is that students interact with each other and the instructor as well as receive immediate feedback. Concerns about the effectiveness of training using multimedia technologies have been raised with the increased frequency of its use. The newer technologies including streaming audio and video is a more method of disseminating information. The process associated with knowledge transfer is available using streaming audio and video technology.
The technology also allows measurement of whether the student has learned the content. One example of measurement is interactive testing for achieved learning. Instructors could also use chat or messaging to assess a student’s performance. Studies comparing the performance of students given interactive video instruction and face-to-face instruction found no differences in performance Researchers have argued that studies to measure differences in student performance should go beyond just grades.
Therefore, additional studies have included outcomes including student involvement, and participation, cognitive engagement, technology self-efficacy, attitudes toward the technology employed, the usefulness of the technology, attitudes toward technology-mediated distance learning and the relative advantage and disadvantage of distance learning. In order to achieve learning most effectively, methods should include the use of rich media, interaction between students and instructors, and instructors who project positive attitudes. As technology continues to advance, distance learning will continue to become more like traditional classroom training. More people are looking for alternative means for continuing education.
Continuing education in organizations is becoming the rule, not the exception. In all areas, internally and externally organizations are embracing technology to get in touch with their workers and the world. The dynamic nature of technology will continue to push organizations in new directions and will continue to play a role in defining and shaping the organizations themselves.