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Information Technology and the Manager

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Information Technology and the Manager

Information Technology and the Manager
Because technology is so pervasive, managers at all levels and in all functional areas of the firm are involved with IT.
Managers are involved in a wide range of decisions about technology, decisions
that are vital to the success of the organization.
On the following page, you will find the results of a survey of managers, who were asked for their opinions on the importance of IT.
A Survey of Senior Managers
Information technology and data management are the top priorities for CEOs in
the survey
Ninety percent of the respondents cited information technology as essential in
every way or very important for the future success of their business
Twenty-six percent attributed their company's current success to using new
technology efficiently and to leadership in IT; 33% believe that using new technologies and new IT applications are the critical factors for future success.
33% believe that using new technologies and new IT applications are the critical factors for future success.
Fifty-eight percent of the respondents identified loss of competitive advantage
as the main consequence of not keeping pace with IT, and 13% predicted bankruptcy as a possible outcome.
Information Technology and the Manager
Managers are faced with many decisions with relation to Information Technology. Click the cubes to read about some of the challenges a manager might face

One
The use of technology to design and structure the organization.
Two
The creation of alliances and partnerships that include electronic linkages. There
is a growing trend for companies to connect with their customers and suppliers,
and often with support service providers like law firms.
Three
The selection of systems to support different kinds of workers. Stockbrokers,
traders, and others use sophisticated computer-based workstations in performing
their jobs. Choosing a vendor, designing the system, and implementing it are
major challenges for management. Four
The adoption of groupware or group-decision support systems for workers who
share a common task. In many firms, the records of shared materials constitute
one type of knowledge base for the corporation.
Five
Determining a World Wide Web strategy. The Internet and World Wide Web offer ways to provide information, communicate, and engage in commerce. A manager must determine if and how the firm can take advantage of the opportunities provided by the Web.
Six
Routine transactions processing systems. These applications handle the basic
business transactions, for example, the order cycle from receiving a purchase
order through shipping goods, invoicing, and receipt of payment. These routine
systems must function for the firm to continue in business. More often today
managers are eliminating physical documents in transactions processing and
substituting electronic transmission over networks.
Seven
Personal support systems. Managers in a variety of positions use personal computers and networks to support their work.
Eight
Reporting and control. Managers have traditionally been concerned with controlling the organization and reporting results to management, shareholders, and the public. The information needed for reporting and control is contained in one or more databases on an internal computer network. Many reports are filed with the government and can be accessed through the Internet and the World Wide Web, including many 10K filings and other SEC-required corporate reports.
Nine
Automated production processes. One of the keys to competitive manufacturing
is increasing efficiency and quality through automation. Similar improvements
can be found in the services sector through technologies such as image processing, optical storage, and workflow processing in which paper is replaced by
electronic images shared by staff members using networked workstations.
Ten
Embedded products. Increasingly, products contain embedded intelligence. A
modern automobile may contain six or more computers on chips, for example,
to control the engine and climate, compute statistics, and manage an antilock
brake and traction control system. A colleague remarked a few years ago that
his washing machine today contained more logic than the first computer he
worked on! Positive and Negative Outcomes – Case Studies
"A CEO who is not totally knowledgeable about information systems-how to invest in them and how they help the business-just isn't competent. . . . If you look at most successful companies, the senior officers really understand IT." Harvey Padewer, CEO of Aquila Energy, a $4 billion Kansas City company.
Visit the resource section at the introduction to the course to download some case studies that illustrate the outcomes of managing Information Technology. You will read about the positive outcome at Brun Passot and the negative outcome at Oxford Health Plans.