In order to gain a desired organisational goal or objective, flow of information needs to be proper. Information needs is basically considered as the requirements, which are needed by the organizations in order to accomplish their works in concrete manner. The present business environment has different competitors in different marketplace, where the information systems are helping them to bloom and flourish with enhancing their functional areas and market performance. In addition to that approach of different information system in the business area is helping the organisations to gain competitive advantage.
This discourse has chosen the Microsoft Corp in order to descriptively understand the business functions of the organisation. This course study evaluates the significance of different information systems and technology in the current business environment. In addition to that, this study highlights the current trends of business, where the information systems are used in order to communicate effectively and efficiently to their customers and other stakeholders.
AC 1.1 Information system in different functional areas of organization
Information system in organisation helps the business to communicate collaboratively and effectively in order to enhance and intensify their functional areas. In case of Microsoft Corp, different functional and business area collaboratively works together with each other in order to deliver the information and collectiveness within the business functions.
In terms of Microsoft Corp, the organisation possesses different functions and business areas, which helps to have proper flow of the information system in the organisation.
Figure 1: Organisational structure of Microsoft Corporation
In the opinion of Laudon and Laudon (2016, p.42), different functions areas in an organisation helps to deliver different works and business functions, which ultimately helps the organisation to flourish their business. In order to gain a concrete position in the marketplace, Microsoft is enhancing their capabilities and skills, which can help them to gain customer loyalty and satisfaction. In order to achieve the aims and objectives of Microsoft, the organisation is using their different business functions to intensify their skills and collecting the market information through using their information system.
Different business areas of Microsoft possess different functions. Information need in the Microsoft Corporation is as following:
Sales and marketing
Sales and marketing business area of Microsoft Corporation helps them to analyse the market orientation and thus to report the organisation based on the analysis. In addition to that the inventory of business and pricing are also done by the market and sales business area of Microsoft. On the other hand, processing of order for the customers and overall marketing is done by the business key area of marketing and sales.
In the view of Peppard and Ward (2016, p.94), information in the sales and marketing business area plays a crucial role in influencing the organisational functions. In order to enhance the organisational performance and to gain a competitive advantage, Microsoft has to intensify their products. On the other hand, in order to intensify the products based on the customer demand, Microsoft has to collect the relevant data on the market trends and needs and thus can add features in their products.
In the opinion of Galliers and Leidner (2014, p.45), approaching of information system in the organisational business areas can help to identify the necessities and thus to help them to flourish.
Figure 2: Business Areas of Microsoft and their functions
Manufacturing and Production
From the past studies and reports it has been seen that in order to run and establish an organisation or business prosperously, the concerned organisation needs to maintain proper and strong customer satisfaction and loyalty. On the other hand, as Wildavsky (2017, p.21) has commented that, customer satisfaction and loyalty can be gained by an organisation with delivering quality products and specifications in the products based on the customer's perception and choice. As manufacturing and production department of the organisation helps to manufacture the finished goods, thus it is necessary to add specifications during the manufacturization, in order to gain customer satisfaction. On the other hand, as Friedman et al. (2013, p.61) has stated that customers choice and perception can be identified with having proper information through feedbacks and approaching other information system tools.
Finance and accounting
Finance and accounting is an important business area which helps to allocate budget and resources based on the requirements. In the function of finance and accounting, collection of accurate and proper information system will help Microsoft to communicate on the proposed financial issues and thus to analyze and deliver the acquired budgets for the production, advertising and other functions.
Human resource department uses the information system in order to ensure proper maintenance of functions and works in the organisation. HR department of Microsoft uses the information system to monitor various disputes, culture, ethics and business operations of organisation. In addition to that, HR department uses the information system in order to recruit different skilled employees in the organisation, through having proper information.
Research and development
The basic enhancement of an organisation depends on the development through proper research. In the view of D'antoni et al. (2016, p. 41), R&D business area helps the organisation to gain information on different areas of market and other functions, in order to identify the barriers and requirement of changes. Microsoft uses the results of research in order to develop their business functions, in order to deliver quality services and products to the customers and thus to gain high customer satisfaction and strong market position.
AC 2.1 Different types of information system in organisation
With the growing age of competition, it is necessary for an organisation to maintain their market position at strong position. Microsoft uses different types of information system in order to be with the current market trend. However, the different types of information system which are used by the Microsoft possess dissimilarities are used for different functions and at different levels of business in the organisation, such as:
In order to manage the business operations, Microsoft uses the information systems of TPS, OAS, ATM, Payroll, Stock Control and others.
In the view of Petry et al. (2014, p.1401), OAS approach in the operational management of an organisation helps the business to maintain their basic tasks and works through manipulating, storing, and relaying the official information of Microsoft digitally through approaching proper software.
Figure 3: Support system at different organisational level
On the other hand, ATM in Microsoft Corporation is used in the operational functions of transactions, money transfer and other business transactional processes. In the view of Kasemsap (2015, p.270), Payroll are used in order to store and deliver the information related to the employee wages, hours of work, tax descriptions, deductions and other information related to the payments of employee through software. TPS on the other hand stores the transaction data of Microsoft. Stock control information system in the Microsoft are used for storing and keeping all the necessary data and information of the organisation, extending from the flow of goods and services, locations, orders, resources and all other necessary data.
Middle level management
Middle level management of Microsoft uses the information system of MIS, SCM and MSS. MIS are used by organisation in order to identify the reports based on the internal and external data of organisation. MIS use in Microsoft helps the middle level management to take decision through the analysed reports extracted from the organisational data.
SCM is used in the organisation in order to track all the organisational information extending from the suppliers to the buyers. Microsoft uses the SCM information system in order to keep the records and thus to analyse the barriers in order to manage their supply chain management system.
Strategic management helps the organisation to approach proper strategies in the organisation through proper monitoring and detailing of the implementation process and planning. In order to intensify the strategic management of the Microsoft, the organisation uses the information system of DSS, ES, ESS and other systems. Approaching the information system of DSS, Microsoft gains the advantage of analysing the influence of possible outcomes of their decision and thus to evaluate the changes. On the other hand, ESS is used by Microsoft in order to identify the strategies which can help them to run on a long-term basis with approaching proper strategy meeting the expectations and perceptions of customers.
AC 2.2 Use of current trends of information system in business trends
With the changing trend of business, extending from the physical appearance of stores to the online appearance on the online stores has included different challenges which are faced in the business processing. According to Wild et al. (2014, p.38), appearance of online business have evolved different security issues, which can threat the organisational process and performance in a negative manner. In order to manage the security and other threats of business, Microsoft has used different information systems in their business functional areas such as marketing, sales, IT administration, Human resource, resource and development and others. Microsoft uses the information system in order to simplify their business procedures and processes.
In terms of the current trends such as dealing with their customers and competitors, Microsoft uses the information system of internet in order to gather data and information of their rivals and customers with orientation and several other organisational reports. Microsoft uses the internet as a communication tool of information system which helps them to connect to their customers in order to gain the perceptions of customers, which helps them to identify their needs and thus to add the features in the services and products of Microsoft.
On the other hand, in order to store the data and information of Microsoft, the organisation uses the information system of cloud computing which helps them to retrieve their data, which are automatically stored in the software. However, storing of data on the cloud computing services and maintenance of business function such as online transactions can threat the business with the security. Thus, Microsoft uses different information system and information technology systems of firewalls and encrypted passwords with proper configuration of data and networks through IT infrastructure area.
In addition to that other different business areas and functions of Microsoft such as finance, marketing, manufacturing, product development areas uses the information systems of Big data analytics, Google analytics and other such systems in order to simplify their services. On the other hand, advertising department of Microsoft uses the information system of internet services, in order to advertise their services and products, which help them to reach to a large numbers of customers.
In addition to that, in order to enhance the productivity of the organisation, Microsoft uses the systems of OAS in order to have convenient use of devices from any place and through different devices. In order to gain competitive advantage, Microsoft is developing their software and programs in order to gain over the competitors such as android and MAC. On the other hand, as Gomez and Hunt (2016, p.10) has stated that Android is becoming slow in demand of customers. Thus, development of software and other programs of Microsoft can help the organisation to gain competitive advantage.
AC 2.3 Information system use for different functions of organisation
From analysing the factors of business determinants, organisations needs to maintain their data and records in a proper manner. As Ryals and Knox (2013, p.541) has stated that using the information system in the business functions and processes, the organisation can gain different advantages in the current competitive market.
As proper information is necessary in an organisation in order to gain accurate planning, monitoring and strategising, thus, Microsoft uses different information systems in order to deliver proper flow and gain of information in the organisation. Microsoft Corporation uses the information system of MIS, in order to deal with the internal and external business affairs. The organisation develops the custom information system, with approaching the use of SQL, which helps them to cross-reference various reports and studies and thus helps to gain information for the functioning of the research and development business area. Thus, using the information system of MIS, Microsoft identifies the current and future needs of the market with reference to identification of the customers and rivals.
In order to deal with the financial barriers, Microsoft can use the DSS information system in order to manage the budgetary problems and business trends. On the other hand, Microsoft uses the DSS in their business function area of product development and manufacturing. Using the information system of DSS, Microsoft develops their programs, software, sensor, interface and other storages. However, implementation if such IS in the organisation can have negative influence of overloaded information and databases. In order to overcome the business constraints from implementation of information systems in the organisation, Microsoft approaches the Supply chain management systems in their organisational procedures in order to efficiently gain the organisational objectives and aims.
In addition to that as for an example, ESS can be used by Microsoft Corporation in their financial business area in order to ensure the credit accuracy and check. On the other hand, Microsoft can use these information systems in their organisation in order to deliver the products and services of Microsoft effectively and efficiently.
AC 3.1 Use of reliable and valid information system in concerned problem of organisation
Approaching and analyzing all the information system in the Microsoft Corporation, it can be seen that Microsoft can use the information system of MIS in their business areas and functions, in order to enhance organisational productivity and procedures.
However, Microsoft needs to gather information from the reliable and validated sources in order to use the information system in an accurate manner. As with the growing internet age, the major problem and barrier which is faced by Microsoft is the security threat, related to the organisational and customers data. Thus, in order to enhance the data security barrier in Microsoft, MIS can be approached. On the other hand, Microsoft needs to maintain and secure their information in cost effective manner which can help them to enhance their staging. In addition to that as Hammer (2015, p.12), has commented that organisations need to revise their information system regularly in order to manage the systems updated.
On the other hand, in order to maintain the accuracy and reliability of organisational data and information, Microsoft needs to maintain and consider the legislative policies and regulations of data protection act. As Brandenburg et al. (2014, p.304) has stated that, data protection acts ensures the proper security and validity of customers and organisation data in business. In addition to that, in order to maintain the reliability and validity of data it can be analysed through approaching different information systems in Microsoft. Moreover, Microsoft needs to gathered information from validated and reliable sources, in order to gain accuracy and valid results.
AC 3.2 Alternative solution to solve the concerned problem of organisation
Inspite of using different information systems of MIS, DSS, ESS, ES and others, Microsoft can approach the cloud computing technology in order to secure the data gathered from their customers and the organisational information. In addition to the use of cloud computing technologies to resolve the barrier of security threats, Microsoft can approach the Big Data in order to provide security to the concerned information. Moreover, as customer’s information and details are vital for an organisation and to the security, thus Microsoft can approach encrypted passwords with using the VPN services, in order to gain accuracy and strong passwords.
In addition to that as Jeston and Nelis (2014, p.28) has commented that encryption of password with approaching VPN can help the organisations to secure their data and information in validates and accrued manner.
On the other hand, Microsoft can approach separate client servers in order to enhance and intensify the order processing by the customers. In the opinion of Venkatesh et al. (2013, p.22), approaching the strategy of separate client server can help the organisation to place quick orders with reference to offering the client to order with using different systems and servers. On the other hand, using the encrypted passwords to the website of Microsoft can help them to secure the customer details, which might get accessed through approaching through hacking and unauthorized access through different servers. In addition to that, Microsoft needs to develop their programs in order to gain competitive advantage over the android and MAC. Development of features and programs can help Microsoft to gain more numbers of customers and thus to enable the features which are not present in the services of Microsoft Corporation.
The above studies on Microsoft have evidenced different problems which are faced by Microsoft. On the other hand, Microsoft has approached different systems of information system in order to manage the efficiency and effectiveness of organisation. However, the study has shown that Microsoft needs to develop their services in order to effectively accomplish the concerned objectives and aims. The recommendations, which can be approached by Microsoft, are following:
As the Microsoft is one of the major hardware and software developing business, which have higher chances of getting breached and hacked through the hackers, thus, Microsoft needs to manage and upgrade their antivirus and firewalls. Proper management of their website through antivirus and firewalls on their website can help them to secure the organisational data and customer details.
Application of office automation system needs to be more developed and functionalized in order to develop software based on the perception of customers. Development and adding of advanced features in their software based on the OAS can help the users to gain authentication before the installation of software on system.
In terms of IT spoofing, Microsoft needs to ensure their website to be confirmed as digitized. As, the information on the website can be accessed through unauthenticated individuals, thus, Microsoft need not to upload the data on system without ensuring the website to be digitized.
The above study has demonstrated different business areas and functions which are used through the application of information system in Microsoft. Application of information system in organisations can help them to enhance their productivity and performance in a positive manner. In addition to that, approaching information system in concrete manner in the business can help them to develop their basic functions and business environment properly.
Different applications of information system help businesses to maintain the organisational functions in a proper manner, extending from suppliers to the finished goods. However, different security systems can arise with the approach of information system, which can be minimized by implementation of proper network installation. Thus, approaching the implementation of information system in organisation can help the business to gain positive feedbacks however the breaching and security needs to be maintained properly.
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