Information systems are by no means a source of competitive advantage. Many organizations are investing towards information systems to reap the benefits that are associated. Information systems have been known to enhance business processes and bring competitive advantage for many organizations. Many companies are using information as a basis for competitive advantage in their operations. This paper will focus on how information systems are used in Volvo Company, a car company. The company has made use of information systems to gain an edge over the competition. The systems and operations of CRM implement the company’s goals and objectives for customer access, interactions sales and other services. With the developments in the field of information technology, there is the possibility to merge the CRM and other technologies such as social networking. This provides a greater opportunity for marketing and customer interaction at a cheaper and more affordable cost. Organizations and businesses are increasingly adopting customer relationship management (CRM) systems in order to improve their interactions with customers. The CRM systems management application is used to manage customer interactions by integration of processes that are customer oriented like customer service and sale. The CRM systems are not only used in automation of these processes for cost reduction but also collection and analysis of customer information with the aim of better fulfilling customer needs and improve customer satisfaction.
The company has implemented a range of information systems to aid in the management and operation of its operations. These include customer relation and management systems, supply chain management, product design and development systems, and manufacturing systems. CRM is used to manage the interaction of the company with current and future customers. It integrates multiple channels such as social media, telephone, email and search to organize, automate, and synchronize sales, customer service, technical support and marketing. CRM integrates a number of features such as value chain planning and execution, product lifecycle management, manufacturing, and order orchestration. Product design and development systems take care of the vehicle design and development processes. The information system is instrumental in the design and development of new models as well as the re-design of faulty models. Analysis of streamed data provides an insight in re-design and improvement of safety-oriented, stylish and reliable models.
CRM can be categorized as a management information system. This is because it generates and summarizes client data so that the managers can get client information.
One of the business requirements that drove the development of the information in Volvo Company is the need to understand the clients and know their needs. This was because clients had varying needs which had to be met in order to continue having them. Another business requirement for the development of the system was the need to increase the sales of the company. One way to increase sales is to understand the clients deeply.
There are many benefits that the company has benefited with the installation and implementation of this information system. With this information system, the company is in a position to understand the clients and know what they want. With online CRM, the customer needs are well understood. It is important to understand client while undertaking any business. This information system has enabled the company know what they need to improve in their operations. The use of technology can be used to get the feedback from the client. Customer history and preferences can be used to make new products. Google has grown extensively and it has aligned their processes. There has been growing concerns that businesses should align themselves to tap from information technology. There have been four major issues that have been said to be of major concern with many organizations. One of the issues include business process engineering, business and IT alignment, IT strategic planning and privacy and security. Given the fact that nearly all operations of the company are done online, an online CRM should be implemented. This will boost the company to get feedback from clients from many places. They will be able to get information that will be used to further their competitive advantage against the competition. The use of customer relationship management in business enhances several business operations in organizations these include marketing, customer services and support, improves quality and efficiency, decision support and improved planning.
Volvo acknowledges the fact that customer desire cars built to individual specifications and delivered in short lead-times. In order to keep up with this trend, it has adopted a comprehensive IT infrastructure and information system that oversees efficient order execution and integrated manufacturing and information flow.
Big Data gives Volvo Car Corporation a competitive advantage over it competitors in the manufacturing industry. The ability to analyze the data provides enormous breakthroughs in terms of safety, quality, customer satisfaction and cost efficiency. The availability of up-to date, quality-controlled data is changing decision making processes within the organization leading to gains in quality, warranty costs, customer satisfaction and profitability. In addition to these, Volvo is famed for safety-oriented manufacturing. Features such as anti-lock braking systems, side impact protection, 3-point seatbelts and energy absorbing bumpers are the main drivers for improved safety and growth. The company approximates that with the vast amount of data in its use; future designs of its cars will not kill or injure anyone by the year 2020.
The company started collecting read out data in the year 1999 as a window for improved performance and mechanical failure analysis in the real world field conditions. The systematic utilization of this data has subsequently led to improved performance in production quality and design. The data obtain has also reduced the company’s operations, maintenance, licensing and other parameters that were initially not available. For example, the returns on initial project costs rose to 135% after elimination of three single-purpose data marts and shifted to the clouds. The new Teradata systems expanded access to more than 300 users in various departments who were initially restricted by performance constraints.
The future plans and developments of the system will be that of using social media and complex social interactions. With the increase in technology use and change, the customer relationship and interaction is bound to change in the future. Most organizations and companies are moving from the basic customer interaction to more complex methods of customer relationships, therefore, the operational CRM will be a critical aspect in the implementation of the customer relationship management in the business. With the integration of many information systems in organizations, CRM will be integrated with other information to synergize operations.
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