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Managing and Using Info Systems : Mid-term exam

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by: Winn

Managing and Using Info Systems : Mid-term exam MIS 475

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Study guide for the mid-term exam
Managing and Using Information System
Study Guide
Strategic, IS, Mid-term, exam, Enterprise, system
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This 8 page Study Guide was uploaded by Winn on Tuesday February 23, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to MIS 475 at Marshall University taught by in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 114 views.

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Date Created: 02/23/16
Mid Term Exam Review There will be 25 multiple choice questions worth 2 points each and 5 short answer questions worth 10 points each. Chapter 1 Understand the Information Systems Strategy Triangle (Business strategy, organizational strategy and information strategy)  Purpose: design their organization and there is strategies to complement their business strategy.  Is strategy must be accompanied by changes in the organizational strategy and must accommodate the overall business strategy.  IS strategy always involves consequences – intended or not – within business and organizational strategies Porter’s strategies for competitive advantage a) Potential threat of new entrants : switching costs, access to distribution channels , economies of scale ex : Twitter has erected a barrier to entry for new microblogging sites in the United States , individuals want to tweet but Twitter make it difficult for another U.S microblogging site tot enter the industry. b) Bargaining power of buyers : buyer selection , switching costs , differentiation ex :’s One Click encourages return purchases by making buying easier. c) Bargaining power of suppliers: selection of supplier, threat of backward integration. ex : when Apples’ operating system makes it simple to back up to their iCloud, their power increases. d) Threat of substitute products : redefine products and services , improve price/ performance. ex: internet auction site eBay used innovative IT to create a set of services for their small businesses, a major source of revenue for the online auctioneer. e) Industry competitors: cost-effectiveness, market access, differentiation of product or service. Ex : many companies try to compete with Fb by offering a different focus , either a different type of interface or additional features. What does alignment mean?  Alignment as the situation in which a company’s current and emerging business strategy is enabled, supported and unconstrained by technology and it pertains to the balance between organizational strategy, IS strategy and business strategy.  With synchronization, technology not only enables current business strategy but also anticipates and shapes future business strategy. Convergence goes one step further by exhibiting a state in which business strategy and technology strategy are intertwined and the leadership team members operate almost interchangeably. Chapter 2 Describe value chain of the firm and value systems  The value chain model addresses the activities that create, deliver and support a company’s product or service.  2 fields: support and primary activities. Primary activities relate directly to the value created in a product or service, whereas support activities make it possible for the primary activities to exist and remain coordinated.  Primary activities relate directly to the value created in a product or service, whereas support activities make it possible for the primary activities to exist and remain coordinated. _Ex: more efficient IS for repairing a product may increase the possible number of repairs per week, but the customer does not receive any value unless his or her product is repaired, which requires that the spare parts be available  Its framework suggests that competition stems from two sources: lowering the cost to perform activities and adding value to a product or service so that buyers will pay more.  This value system is a collection of firm value chains connected through a business relationship and through technology.  Supply chain management ( SCM ) : an approach to how companies source materials for operations.  Enterprise resource planning (ERP) : a tool that automates functions of the operations activities of the value chain.  Customer relationship management ( CRM ) systems : tool to optimize the processing of customer information are routinely used to automate the internal operations of a firm’s value chain.  PDAs How can information resources be used strategically? Using the resource-based view to attain and sustain competitive advantage This view maintains that competitive advantage comes from the information and other resources of the firm, concentrates on areas that add value to the firm or on the resources that it can manage strategically in a rapidly changing competitive environment.  Resources to attain competitive advantage: considerable when it enables the firm to become more efficient or effective.  Some call them table stakes or resources required just to be in the business.  Other ex of initially rare and valuable resources are the communities many companies implemented using social IT.  Resources to Sustain competitive advantage: continue to innovate and to protect against resource imitation, substitution or transfer.  Ex : Walmart’s complex logistics management, prostores in Ebay, the Oakland A’s use of information systems Chapter 3 How does IS affect the design of an organizational structure? What is organizational strategy? Includes the organization’s design, as well as the managerial choices that define, set up, coordinate and control its work processes. Know the basic types of organizational structures.  Decision rights indicate who in the organization has the responsibility to initiate, supply information for, approve, implement, and control various types of decisions.  Formal Reporting Relationships and organization structures.  Hierarchical organization structure  Flat organization structure  Matrix Organization structure  Networked organization structure  Informal networks What are the roles of IS in management control processes? 1. Data collection 2. Evaluation 3. Communication  Planning and IS  Data collection and IS  Performance measurement, evaluation and IS  Incentives and rewards and information systems. Information Systems and Culture  Culture  Beliefs  Observable artifacts  Espoused values  Enacted values  Assumption Chapter 4 Work design framework  What work will be performed?  Who is going to do the work?  Where will the work be performed?  When will the work be performed?  How can IT increase the effectiveness of the workers doing the work? New ways to do traditional work  Changing the way work is done  Change communication patterns  Change organizational decision making and information processing  Change collaboration  Change the ways to connect Virtual teams : defined as two or more people who (1) work together interdependently with mutual accountability for achieving common goals (2) do not work in either the same place and/or at the same time, and (3) must use electronic communication technology to communicate, coordinate their activities, and complete their team’s tasks. Factors driving use of virtual teams Disadvantages and challenges of virtual teams :  Commucation  Technology  Team Diversity Chapter 5 Silo perspective VS Business process perspective 1) Silo perspective : _ in hierarchical structure, departments are organized on the basis of their core competencies. _ silos or self-contained functional units are useful for several reasons. a) Allow an organization to optimize expertise and their training b) Allow organization to avoid redundancy in expertise by hiring one person who can be assigned to projects across functions on an as-needed basis instead of hiring an expert in each function. c) With functional organization, it is easier to benchmark with outside organizations, utilize bodies of knowledge created for each function and easily understand the role of each silo. 2) Process perspective : keeps the big picture in view and allows the manager to concentrate on the work that must be done to ensure the optimal creation a value. _ Focus on the process by its very nature ensures focus on the business’s goals 3) Different : _ silo : business operates as a set of processes that flow across functional departments. Changing business processes  Business process reengineering (BPR ) : radical process, redesign  Total quality management ( TQM ) or simply quality management and Six Sigma.  Incremental Change : Six Sigma Enterprise Systems : a set of info systems tools that many organizations use to enable this info flow within and between processes across the organization. Largest vendors : German-based SAP and California-based Oracle. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) Characteristics of ERP systems :  Integration such as manufacturing, accounting, human resources, sales.  Packages  Best practices  Some assembly required  Evolving  Managing Customer Relationships  Managing supply chains Chapter 6 The leap from Strategy to Architecture to Infrastructure Enterprise Architecture Virtualization and Cloud Computing Short answer questions – write one or two paragraphs (no bullet points) 1. List and explain Porter’s three generic strategies for gaining competitive advantage. Provide an example of a company for each strategy. a) Cost leadership : results when the organization aims to be the lowest-cost producer in the marketplace. ex : through mass distribution, economies of scale, and IS to generate operating efficiencies, Walmart epitomizes the cost-leadership strategy. b) Differentiation : the organization qualifies its product or service in a way that allows it to appear unique in the marketplace. ex: Progressive Insurance breaks out of the industry mold , its representatives are available 24/7 to respond to accident claims. c) Focus : allows organization to limit its scope to a narrower segment of the market and tailor its offerings to that group of customers. ex : Marriott International demonstrates focus in the business and related IS strategies of two of its hotel claims. 2. What is alignment in the context of the Information Systems Strategy Triangle and why is it important for a business to be in alignment?  Alignment as the situation in which a company’s current and emerging business strategy is enabled, supported and unconstrained by technology and it pertains to the balance between organizational strategy, IS strategy and business strategy.  The reason because it provide readers with an appreciation of the need to ask questions, a framework from which to derive the questions to ask, and a foundation sufficient to understand the answers received. It takes the perspective that understanding what questions to ask and having a framework for interpreting the answers are skills more fundamental to the general manager than understanding any particular technology. 3. Provide an example of two companies that have built a strategic alliance. Briefly explain the benefits of the relationship. Example : game-maker Zynga and Facebook. At that time Zynga develop some popular games : Mafia wars or Farmville. Facebook got exclusive rights to those games that generated thousands of new members. The alliance generated significant revenue for both parties.  IS can be the platform upon which a strategic alliance functions. Technology can help product the product developed by the alliance, share information resources across the partners’ existing value systems, or facilitate communication and coordination among the partners. 4. Give an example of a company whose switching costs are too high, effectively keeping its customer captive. How is this company using technology to maintain high switching costs? Oracle Company, the reason because :  It is using a complex accounting program so software can take advantages of their customers’ reluctance to leave by charging them a bit more each year:  Low asset intensity: Software can generate the high returns on invested capital because there are no fixed assets beyond furniture and PCs.  Scalable: the incremental costs of “manufacturing” a copy of the software for each new customer is virtually non-existent. This is a business with almost no cost of goods sold 5. How does IS impact the 3 managerial levers: organizational, control and cultural?  Organizational variables : Decision rights : helps the system manage and control the system in the easy way Business processes : makes the transaction go smoothly Formal reporting relationships : develop the language which is easy to look through and organize to reflect all the tasks in the business. Informal networks : develop the speed of exchanging information in the new ways which are more secure and fast.  Control variables : Data : collecting and putting information into the right orders and easy to look up Planning : helps to write a better business plan based on the data collected in that period of time Performance measurement and evaluation : by creating reports and charts about the performance in each period of time, IS will help organization to find out which things they need to improve to be better. Incentives : IS will help business to calculate the fair incentive for each worker’s performance.  Cultural variables Values : by exchanging info around the world , IS helps to build the connection for business to all over the world. 6. Assume you are a manager of a local doctor’s office. How could you use IS to help monitor the performance of the nurses and doctors? State the benefits as well as the challenges. a) Benefits : _ Collect the data from nurses and doctors from their daily works easily such as what time they checked in to work, how many patients they take care one day and so on. _ Create the system to organize the feedback from the patients and friends of them to know who met the target of the hospital: friendly and helpful. _ Create a system to check the health status of each nurse or doctor to see if they are good or bad because it will somehow reflect the behavior of them to the patients b) Challenges : _ IS is type of technology so collecting data will be from the beginning time when patients first come, if they bring so many wrong information, it will make the system calculate the wrong things. _ By giving the wrong information about the performance of the nurse or doctor, it will demonstrate the evaluation which is not closely right to each member. 7. Describe one job that once existed but today is obsolete (or is slowly becoming obsolete) because of technology. Deliverymen: who is delivering the products to the customer or the final destination In Amazon, they are developing the helicopter, which can deliver to the destination faster and exactly to the customers. In Japan, they develop the robot, which can automatically bring the product to the hand of customers. Therefore, with the fast development in the real life, eventually this job will be disappeared and according to many scientists, it will happen in the next 5 years. 8. Describe a business process by identifying the input to the process, some tasks associated with the process, the output of the process and a metric that could measure its effectiveness.  Business process include customer order fulfillment, manufacturing planning and execution, payroll , financial reporting and procurement.  A beginning and an end (requirements for goods or services)  Outputs (receipt of goods, vendor payment)  Sub processes (filling out a purchase order, verifying the invoice)  Metrics of the success of the process might include turnaround time and the number of paperwork errors. 9. Explain why installing an enterprise system often requires the redesign of existing business processes and the impact this has on the organization. The reason because:  The enterprise system is an automation of the major business processes such as financial, manufacturing and human resource management.  It is purchased from; it is rare that an off-the-shelf system is perfectly harmonious with an existing business process.  Either the software required significant modification or customization to fit with the existing processes, or the processes must change to fit the software.  The business processes are changed, often through a radical change project. 10. Why would an organization use cloud computing for its IT infrastructure needs? Cloud computing is described as needed by the user and makes maintenance easier since resources are centralized. The reason because:  The speed at which additional capacity, or provisioning can be done.  It is a large cluster of virtual servers or storage devices.  No upgrade and maintenance cost, no power and electricity cost , no physical space needed and no storage servers needed => the network is much simpler, too since the virtual infrastructure manages the network within all the applications.  Business who embraces a virtual infrastructure can consolidate physical servers and possibly eliminate them, greatly reducing the physical costs of the data center. Book : Managing and Using Information System : A strategic approach 5 edition (Keri E.Pearlson and Carol S.Saunders)


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