Of Information Technology I. CHAPTER OVERVIEW Foundation Concepts: Enterprise and Global Management of Information, emphasizes the impact of e-business applications and technologies on management and organizations, the comp onents of information systems management, and the managerial implications of the use of information technology in global business.
Managers and IT – Information technologies and e-business applications are changing the distribution, relationships, resources, and responsibilities of managers. That is, IT is helping to eliminate layers of management, enabling more collaborative forms of management, providing managers with significant information technology resources, and confronting managers with major e-business and e-commerce challenges.
The Networked Organization – The organizational structure and roles of e-business companies are undergoing major changes as they strive to become agile, customer focused, value-driven enterprises. Figure 12.2 summarizes the major characteristics of the e-business organization compared to the structure and roles of a previous organizational model.
Failures in IT Management – Information systems are not being used effectively or efficiently by many organizations. The experiences of successful organizations reveal that the basic ingredient of high-quality information system performance is extensive and meaningful management and user involvement in the governance and development of IT applications. Thus, managers may serve on executive IT groups and create IS management functions within their business units.
Managing Information Technology – Managing IT can be viewed as having three major components (1) managing the joint development and implementation of e-business and IT strategies, (2) managing the development of e-business applications and the research and implementation of new information technologies, and (3) managing IT processes, professionals, and subunits within a company’s IT organization and IS function.
Managing Global IT – The international dimensions of managing global e-business technologies include dealing with cultural, political, and geoeconomic challenges posed by various countries; developing appropriate business and IT strategies for the global marketplace; and developing a portfolio of global e-business and e-commerce applications and an Internet-based technology platform to support them. In addition, data access methods have to be developed and systems development projects managed to produce the global e-business applications that are required to compete successfully in the global marketplace.
Global e-Business and IT Strategies and Issues – Many businesses are becoming global companies and moving toward transnational e-business strategies in which they integrate the global business activities of their subsidiaries and headquarters. This requires that they develop a global IT platform, that is, an integrated worldwide hardware, software, and Internet-based network architecture. Global companies are increasingly using the Internet and related technologies as major components of this IT platform to develop and deliver global IT applications that meet their unique global business requirements. Global IT and end user managers must deal with limitations on the availability of hardware and software restrictions on transborder data flows, Internet access, and movement of personal data, and difficulties with developing common data definitions and systems requirements.
The purpose of this chapter is to analyze the managerial challenges presented by information technology. A slide has been prepared for instructors to use to discuss the complexities of managing e-business technologies. This slide should provoke discussion on why information technology must be managed in order to meet the challenges of today’s internetworked e-business and technology environment, and the customer value and business value which is imperative for success in the new economy.
Figure 12.3 illustrates several key dimensions of the new e-business organization, compared to the same dimensions of a pre e-business organization model used by many companies. Instructors should spend some time on this figure, and discuss it thoroughly with students so that they can obtain a strong understanding of the major changes that are taking place in this area. Figure 12.3 provides an example of the e-organization structure of an e-business company. Stress to students that there is a global executive core, four market-focused business units, and two shared support services business units. However, all six business units are customer and market focused. Instructors should use Figure 12.4 to discuss with students how an e-business approach to managing information technology can be used in an internetworked e-business enterprise. This figure illustrates the major components of e-business technology management.
Figure 12.10 illustrates the major dimensions of the job of managing global information technology. Stress that all global IT activities must be adjusted to take into account the cultural, political, and geoeconomic challenges that exist in the international business community. Should students eventually take a course in International Management these topics will take on great significance. Figure 12.13outlines some of the business reasons driving global e-business applications.