1. Draw a system diagram showing the product and information flows between WGD and FastFit, starting with FastFit placement of an order through when it makes payment for goods received. This diagram will represent each company as a circle for a total of two circles.
2. Next, complete a more detailed diagram that has five distinct processes (hence five circles), two for FastFit (Headquarters and the Warehouse)) and three for WGD"??s three departments. This diagram should also include the database associated with each WGD department using the cylinder symbol, there are three of these. Now fill in the flows from Q1 above. Then diagram all the flows of information that occur within FastFit and within WGD to support the processing of the order. Do not diagram any computer network details; just illustrate the three databases using the cylinder symbol.
3. What happens when a customer calls and asks for the status of their order? Is this a business problem and why? When a customer calls to inquire about the status of their orders, the sales team confirms with the customer each order and its delivery date, after which, the order is forwarded to the Accounting Department which reviews and approves it. Invoice is then issued by the Accounting department, which also ensures that the customer pays for the goods in accordance with the terms and conditions of the transaction.
This is a great problem in business because unless the customer calls to confirm the order status, nothing goes on and the order remains with the sales department. The order cannot be forwarded for approval by the accounting department unless the customer calls. This results into wastage of customer’s time.
4. Are errors in filling orders likely, why is that and what is their business impact? Errors are likely to occur in filling the order forms as it is done manually. Again, the sales team takes the orders over the phone. The degree of clarity in the conversation presents likelihood in error occurrence, as compared to taking orders from written sources.
An error in the order form may result into wrong quantities of goods, wrong delivery dates, wrong prices, and generally a total loss to the organization. It can also lead to loss of customers and poor turnovers which reduce the profit margins.
5. Estimate how long it takes from when a customer gives WGD an order until it is shipped? Do this by estimating the elapsed time for the order to spend in each step. Is this a business problem?
An estimate of 45 days is a big business problem. Orders should be handled with the urgency they deserve. Any slight delay can result into massive losses. This is not desirable.
6. What changes to the Information Management processes and information technology systems (IT) would you make to address these problems? Describe the changes to the IT and then draw the diagram, as originally presented in question 2, again after these changes are in place.
This firm needs to upgrade its information system and brings in new machines which can handle the information appropriately. The mode of making orders and the manner in which the orders are taken promotes errors. This should be avoided by using more advanced systems rather than the manual paper work. Delays in delivery always arise as failure of follow-up due to poor information system.
The process of information flow in this organization is quite lengthy, i.e. from the customer, to the sales department, then confirmation of orders which take a couple of days, to accounting department, then to the operations department which is located miles away. A proper system that minimizes the time wastage should be put in place. The number of computers should be added so that several orders can be handled at the same time. All the departments need to be networked to ease communication.