Recognized as a core enabler for business, information management is becoming increasingly important today. Studies from industry analysts and management companies show that companies and organizations using their information effectively perform considerably better than those who are unable to derive an advantage from their enterprise knowledge.
However, as organizations grow, it is becoming difficult to get critical answers to key business issues. The primary reason for this is that data needed to inform key decisions have to be drawn from multiple offices and locations, each with different environments, many of which are not connected to each other. The problem is aggravated by the fact that there is a very real barrier to enterprise decision-making, which means that the data most needed for making crucial decisions is largely unavailable to access.
Why has the above situation come about? It has come about because past technology solutions were often designed specifically to satisfy the needs for a given project or business unit. While they may be suitable for a focused use-case, such solutions are unlikely to consider the needs of the enterprise as a whole, leading to incompatibilities, and duplication of effort and cost.
At the rate at which information is created today, this problem will only get worse, unless an enterprise-wide approach is taken for accessing and managing information.
The Information Challenge for Organizations
As organizations seek to gain competitive advantage, reduce costs, and gain greater efficiency and productivity, the methods they use to gather and manage increasingly vast amounts of information become a critical factor in their success.
Information is data processed for a purpose. Data becomes information that people can use to make sense of their business environment after it has gone through a transformation process. The environment encompasses not just the organization itself, but also ancillary factors such as suppliers, customers, competitors, economic, as well as general technological, legal, political and geographical factors.
Whether it is for tactical mid-range planning or for long-term strategic planning at the highest managerial level, businesses gather and process information for day-to-day transactional purposes. Naturally, the type and amount of information acquired depends on the particular business environment, and this information is either tangible, where cost of gathering the information is measurable, or intangible, where the value is harder to quantify.
The challenge for organizations is not only identifying the best ways to use information, but also finding out the value of information systems in managing business, which means determining the return on investment of investing in these systems. Remember, the effective use of IT and staff training is far more important than merely spending on IT and business information systems.
It is crucial that businesses do not unnecessarily adopt and invest in information technologies that become quickly obsolete, possibly for fear of falling behind the competition, or by over-estimating the potential benefits.
In short, the challenge for organizations is to research and implement a system that is fit for purpose, use IT staff effectively, and monitor systems and staff continually to evaluate for optimal performance versus cost.
Driving Value from Your Business Information System
Development in information systems has brought both opportunities and threats. The onus is on businesses to identify opportunities and implement them. As a business, it is important you develop strategies which can best utilize information systems to increase overall productivity. Many businesses are turning to automation for this purpose.
While automation can be useful in driving value from a business information system, it has its limitations. Then how can you drive value from your business information system? You can drive value from your information system by focusing on the following things.
The proliferation of information systems has reduced product life cycle, reduced margin and brought in new products. Considering this, customer satisfaction alone will not be enough. Instead, businesses need to strive for customer delight.
So, how can organizations collect customer feedback and develop products which exceed customer expectation? They can do this by using information systems with data warehousing and analytics capability. The customer delight will not only lead to loyal customers, but will also provide you with brand advocates.
To mitigate distinctive process and requirements, businesses require different types of information systems. With an efficient business transaction system, any organization can become productive. These systems ensure that routine processes are captured and acted upon effectively. Examples of these routine processes are payroll, cash transaction, sales transaction etc.
In addition to the above, information systems are required for executive decision. To allow top leadership to devise a strategy for organization, an information system must provide precise internal as well as external information. Look for systems that are designed to execute this function. This will help contribute to overall organizational productivity.
It is important that your information system facilitates the increase in workers’ productivity. Collaboration across organization and departments have increased with the introduction of email, video conferencing and shared white board collaboration. This increased collaboration ensures smooth execution and implementation of various projects across geographies and locations.
Value Addition for Organization
Organizations use information systems to implement various strategies and achieve their short-term as well as long-term goals. Improving productivity and business effectiveness of organization is the reason development of information systems is taking place.
With correct development, deployment and usage of information systems, organization can achieve lower costs, improved productivity, growth in top-line as well as the bottom-line and competitive advantage in the market.
To know more about how you can drive value from your business information system, get in touch with us today.
by Bobby J Davidson
We love our company and we love what we do. Check out the ‘Why Percento‘ page to learn more: Love of Technology and Business! As the President of Percento Technologies International, I provide day-to-day leadership to the company’s senior management and I am personally involved in the strategy, business development and sales activities of the firm.
The company was founded in 1999 with the purpose of providing a one call source for organizations in need of Enterprise IT Consulting and Management. We also provide a line of products in the boutique Cloud Server space with a touch of high-end website strategy consulting and design services. We personalizes the IT Service experience with a team approach, working with clients from diverse sectors of industry, including energy services, financial, legal, entertainment, healthcare, hospitality, retail and general and/or corporate business.
Our Mission: “Creating innovative IT solutions for business leaders worldwide through cutting edge technologies.”