- Critically analyse the theory, concepts and models of operations andinformation management;
- Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of information managementin international operations;
- Select appropriate problem-solving and improvement approaches;
- Design and implement a systems integration strategy using informationprovided in case study materials;
- Demonstrate a sound understanding of the importance of ICT in thedevelopment and maintenance of off-shoring stakeholder relationships.
Your answer should be 2,000 - 2,500 words, word-processed
The body text should be fully referenced (Harvard ReferencingSystem), with clear introduction, discussion and conclusion sections. Please note thatassignment marks will also be based on aspects such as use of exs, figures, tables,illustrations and statistics that indicate wider/independent reading.
Assignment Brief Part A
Heelz is a boutique shoe retailer based in England, owned by Sally. The business started with a single shop, which Sally has grown into a chain of eight. The first four shops were opened from scratch but in July 2012 Sally bought 'Zapatos' a group of four outlets, which she intends to operate under the Heelz brand. The recent acquisition is a significant expansion in the operation of the business, not least because two of the new outlets are in Spain. Sally is hoping that this will help her to gain a foothold in the European market.
As a result of the expansion Sally has identified a need to open a new warehouse in the South of England, and she has decided that this would be an excellent opportunity to launch an ecommerce arm to the business, capitalising on the success of the Heelz brand, but with a relatively small additional overhead.
You are a consultant with OIM Consultants, who specialize in Strategic Systems Integration Planning (SSIP). OIM Consultants have been employed by Sally to advise onhow to address the technology needs of the growing business. Heelz and Zapatos have different IT systems, and in addition to integrating the two parts of the business there isthe need to add 'b2c' ecommerce functionality. Sally would like this to be fullyintegrated with the retail stores, allowing customers to collect and return stock via thestores, as well as via courier. She has asked whether the use of open-source software is appropriate for the business, as Heelz uses packaged software from commercial vendors,which is proving increasingly expensive.
Based on the case study outline above, you should prepare a report advising Sally of thekey issues and how they might be addressed. Your report should focus on the informationsystems needs of the business. As space is limited you should select a key issue from themodule which will form the focus of your report. exs of issues include (but are notlimited to), integrating ecommerce, use of packaged software (e.g. CRM, ERP), aligningwith business processes, legacy systems, open source software, globalization, organizational issues.
You should also ensure that the report describes the overall process that OIM will use tomanage the project so that Sally has a clear understanding of how this will fit with thestrategy and needs of the business.Your report should include an introduction and conclusion, as well as the main body ofthe report where you present your argument based on the evidence you have researchedrelevant to the report topic. If you wish you may attach appendices illustrating elementsof your analysis (such as models created). These will not be marked but may be referredto from the report. Your report should be structured to include the following:
Very briefly introduce Heelz with reference to the case above. Youshould briefly describe the key issues that arise in this project andidentify one issue that you will focus on in this report. Include anoverview of how you are going to address the topic, to lead the readerinto the main sections of your report.
Discussion of your chosen key issue arising in the area you havechosen together with an analysis of how this impacts upon Sally'sfuture plans. Please situate your discussion in the relevant literature,using, citing and referencing high-quality and, where appropriate,peer-reviewed sources.
describe how the SSIP process will be utilized to ensure that yourrecommendations are fully aligned with the needs of the business andwill support its future development.
Conclude your report summing up your points and your argument